Pondicherry or Puducherry (also known as Pondy) is one of the most charming and fascinating tourist places in South India. French people lived here before independence. So, you can experience French culture here. The French culture and Indian culture can be enjoyed with the perfect balance.
Tourists will cherish the French culture alongside Indian culture. Pondy is well-known for the Liquors at a very cheap price in whole India and also a tax-free union territory of India.
Pondicherry is famous for its beautiful beaches, temples, churches, cuisines, etc. Tourists can enjoy the pleasure of various thrilling activities like surfing, scuba diving, paragliding, boating, jet skiing, canoeing, kayaking, backwater sailing, and Overnight Camping. One can easily take a rental car, bike, or even scooty to roam around Pondicherry sightseeing.
Trust me, you can’t enjoy Pondicherry in a day, plan your trip for at least 4 to 5 days. I’ve visited Pondy so many times during my college days. I’ve done my engineering at SRM University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu. From College to Pondicherry, it is only about 120 km i.e 2.5 hrs journey.
My blog will definitely help you find the best places to visit in Pondicherry and make your trip memorable and enjoyable.
Are you guys excited to explore the beauty of Pondicherry?
Best Places To Visit In Pondicherry:
It is an experimental township located in Tamil Nadu. Some parts of Auroville are also in Pondicherry. The reason behind establishing Auroville is to perceive human unity. The Matri Mandir is situated in Auroville. The Matri Mandir (golden dome) located there which means the “temple of the mother” requires bookings for entry.
You can’t go inside the temple without booking. In my personal experience just do booking before you visit Matri Mandir Auroville. There’s so much to explore in this experimental town.
Location: Auroville, Bommayapalayam, Tamil Nadu
Also, see my ultimate guide to travel packing and why it is necessary to create a travel checklist.
2. Auro or Auroville Beach
On the other side of the ECR road, there is a popular Auroville Beach or Auro Beach approx 7 km from Matri Mandir. I always used to stay at the Muthu guest house near Auro Beach. This beach is ideal for surfing lovers. Whenever I hear the name of Auroville beach my unforgettable memories get refreshed. Just be there in the early morning to experience the glorious sunrise.
Waking up all night until I wouldn’t capture the glorious sunrise, the most common thing for me when I am at the edge of the sea.
Location: ECR Highway, (opp Auroville entrance), Periyamudaliar Chavadi, Tamil Nadu
3. Serenity Beach, Pondicherry
The Serenity beach is extremely popular for surfing even more than Auroville Beach. The golden sand and blue water of the sea provide a panoramic view of the seashore of Serenity beach. Colorful fishing boats floating over the sea are attracted tourists mainly kids.
It was a very sunny day in Chennai. We rented our Zoomcar from Chennai and went on a ride around Pondicherry.
After gobbling down lobsters with white sangria, I was in no mood to walk. That sweetness made it perfect for the juicy taste of my white sangria.
Location: Kottakuppam, Pondicherry
4. Rock Beach, Pondicherry:
Rock Beach is the famous beach in Pondicherry and is also known as “Pondicherry Beach” or “Promenade Beach”. The best place to walk alongside the beautiful rocks on the beach. I suggest you visit Rock Beach after 6:30 pm when the road is closed to vehicular traffic.
It was the time when I was living in Chennai. I also used to go to the beaches when I feel lethargic or low.
Beaches always make me feel alive. If you think the photos can do justice to the natural beauty that catches my eye, then you are wrong my dear.
Sitting on the rocks over the beach, when the water touches your feet, one feels a damn fabulous feeling. Le Café is the perfect place to eat near the beach. In front of the beach is the statue of Mahatma Gandhi, the inspiring Joan of Arc’s statue, the ancient heritage town hall, Joseph François Dupleix’s statue, and the old lighthouse.
The scent and sound of the waves coming from the sea add a special burn to the rocks and enhance the fragrance of the night air.
Location: White Town, Puducherry
In addition, don’t forget to check out the tourist places in Chennai.
5. Chunnambar Boat House
Chunnambar Boat House is famous for its backwaters. It is situated 8km from Rock Beach and well 7km from Puducherry, along the Cuddalore highway. Chunnambar Boat House is the best place for boat lovers. Here you can enjoy all kinds of boat or even ship rides. The tranquil atmosphere of the boathouse gives peace to your soul. From here you can also go to the most famous beach called Paradise Beach by boat or ship.
The Chunnambar Boat House Timings are from 9 am to 6 pm for boating and beach short rides and before 4 pm only for beach long rides.
I like the ambiance and vicinity of the colored boats in the backwaters of the Chunnambar Boat House. When you’re in Pondicherry, do not miss out on the impeccable houseboat experience. Chunnambar Boat House is famous for its backwaters lush greenery on either side.
Location: Pondy-Cuddalore Road, Nonankuppam, Puducherry
6. Paradise Beach, Pondicherry:
The beach at Chunnambar is also known as “Plage Paradiso” or “Paradise Beach”. You can book a rental boat from Chunnambar Boat House to reach the most beautiful and cleanest beach in Pondicherry. Paradise Beach Pondicherry gives you the feel of Goa. It is also the best beach to take sunbathe. One can also taste the delicious seafood on the beach. You can’t take away your eyes from the beauty of Paradise Island Pondicherry.
When I first laid my foot on this beach, I was feeling like I’m in heaven. The closing time of the beach is 5 pm. So I recommend you to reach around 11 am on the chunnambar boathouse.
Paradise Beach Pondicherry tells you spending a few hours doesn’t matter but the moments that make your trip unforgettable like the feel of sand between your toes, sunbathing on the beach, etc.
Location: Pondy-Cuddalore Road, Nonankuppam, Puducherry
7. Ousteri Lake
Ousteri Lake is also known as “Osudu Lake” and is one of the famous tourist places of Pondicherry. It is situated 10km from Puducherry. This freshwater lake has been recognized as one of the important wetlands of Asia by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN). This picturesque place attracts tourists for boat riding, the gorgeous sunset, and many beautiful migratory birds who flock here.
In addition, the Ousteri Lake Timings are from 9 am to 5 pm for all days of the week.
Location: Oussudu village, Vazhudavoor Road, Puducherry
Moreover, check out my ultimate travel guide to find the best places to visit in Coorg for couples!
8. The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
An ancient specimen of Gothic architecture, Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus is one of the most popular churches and also a tourist place of Pondicherry. The devotees worship at this sacred place. There are glass pictures of 28 saints related to the devotion of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the church.
Sacred Heart Basilica Mass Times:
Monday to Saturday – 5:30 am, 12:30 pm, 6:00 pm
Sunday – 5:30 am, 7:30 am, 12:00 pm, 5:00 pm (English mass), and 6:15 pm (Tamil mass)
Location: 132, South Boulevard, Near Railway Station, MG Road Area, Puducherry
9. Lighthouse Rooftop Grill
Lighthouse Rooftop Grill is one of the most fantastic seaside restaurants in Pondicherry. If you like to dine in peace, then this place is for you dear. Don’t forget to eat butter garlic prawns there, whenever you visit Lighthouse Restaurant Pondicherry.
Location: 23, Goubert Avenue, White Town, Puducherry
10. Les Alizés
It is located inside the most luxurious and beautiful hotels of Palais de Mahe hotel. This place is best for seafood lovers. The colonial architecture, breathtaking views, and mouth-watering kinds of seafood attract tourists to come there.
Location: Palais de Mahe, Door 4, Rue Bussy, Lal Bahadur Shastri Road, Opposite Studio Profile, White Town, Puducherry
So this was a summary of my best places to visit in Pondicherry. Hope this has helped and thanks for taking the time out to read my Pondicherry travel guide. The next shall be up soon. Stay connected!