Pondicherry also known as Puducherry, situated on the east coast of India, 135 km south of Chennai, is a former French colony. Even years after the French left it, Pondicherry has managed to retain its French influence with tree-lined avenues and Mediterranean style houses that lend it a curious non-Indian touch. Made up of four small unconnected districts, Puducherry, Karaikal, Yanam and Mahe, the union territory of Puducherry is bordered by Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala.
The best way to see Pondicherry and its surrounding areas is by renting out a bicycle or a motorcycle (Rs 40 or Rs 200 upwards per day) from the several outlets on Mission Street and MG Road.
With the slow pace of life in Pondicherry, there is not much you can do making it an ideal destination for a relaxing holiday. While there are a few tourist spots in the area, the major attraction of the area are the different water sporting facilities. Scuba Diving, Scuba Jumping and Surfing courses are available in Pondicherry and this attracts a large number of tourists to the area.
Another major attraction in the area is Auroville, an experimental township where people from all countries, races, castes, creeds and political ideologies can live together in peace and progressive harmony. Several tourists visit Auroville in order to meditate and focus on spirituality instead of material benefits.
While traveling to Pondicherry keep in mind the climatic conditions, summers can be quite unbearably hot.
BEST PLACES TO STAY IN PONDICHERRY
Being a beach town, Pondicherry has a considerable number of resorts that offer the best in luxury accommodation and panoramic views of the ocean. However, since the summers are hot and tourists visit the town almost throughout the year, it is advisable to book your rooms in advance and make sure they come with an air conditioner.
BEST PLACES TO EAT IN PONDICHERRY
Puducherry offers a variety of cuisines. From South Indian delicacies like idli and dosa to fresh, from continental cuisine to Creole, authentic French to Italian; Puducherry will spoil you with its food options. Creole food in Puducherry is not only a potpourri of French and Tamil cuisine, it also has influence of Portuguese and Dutch. French food is available in several restaurants especially those located in the French quarter. The restaurants typically offer non-vegetarian specialties. Some restaurants also offer exotic dishes like bebe octopus a l’Armoricaine. Vegetarians need not be disheartened as chefs do prepare vegetarian dishes on demand. Some of the best, fluffiest and tastiest croissants, breads, quiches, pastries and baguettes can be found in Auroville.
The average minimum and maximum temperature of Pondicherry is as given below. The best time to visit Pondicherry is also specified.