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Pondicherry - Paris of the East

The Union Territory of Pudhucherry -- also referred to as Pondicherry and Pondy -- is a lovely place located nearly 160 kms south of Chennai, on the Coromandel Coast, India. Pudhucherry, Karaikal, Mahe and Yanam -- the four separate, previous French settlements make this wonderful Pondicherry, which is one of the most visited destinations in India.

The UT is enclosed by the Bay of Bengal and Tamil Nadu. The place was made home by many foreign powers, including the Romans and the French. However, it were the French, who exercised control over the territory for three centuries, who really left the most striking imprint on the region and its people.

Pondicherry Tourist Attractions

Pondicherry boasts of several key tourist attractions which draw the discerning visitors from all over the world. Its spiritual institution, French colonial heritages, Tamil culture and a multi-ethnic form of life much attract the visitors.

Perhaps nowhere else in India one may across so many amazingly beautiful French colonial buildings; clean and wide streets; virginal beaches (the Serenity Beach, Paradiso Beach, the Promenade Beach, the Chunnamber Beach and resort and the Auroville Beach); well laid out parks and gardens. In this connection, special mention needs to be made about the Botanical Gardens of Pondicherry. These gardens are home to many remarkable specimens of plants, not found elsewhere.

However, it is the Sri Aurobindo Ashram’s, called the City of Dawn or Auroville, which is the place’s USP. This tourist hotspot is pivotal from spiritual besides cultural point of view and is much thronged by both the foreigners and Indians who visit the place to do the much needed soul searching and attain the elusive peace of mind.

How to Reach

By Air: The town of Pondicherry has a domestic airport from where international travelers have to fly to Chennai, Cochin or Bangalore airport and afterward fly or drive down to the region.

By Rail: The nearest main railway stations from Pondicherry are Vilupuram and Chennai and linked to other parts of India.

By Road: Pondicherry is well connected by taxis and buses from Chennai.
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