“Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” – Ibn Battuta
I always had this desire to visit Pondicherry, not because of the awe-inspiring sea shores but because of it’s French colonial heritage & legacy. It’s a must visit place for all history doters , at least once. My last two endeavors were in vain, I never managed to reach beyond Vellore, on both occasions almighty showered his mystical enchantments in the form of cumbersomely hefty rain & thunderstorm.
The connecting highways are astounding (From Bangalore to Pondi) & you can authentically relish your ride with less stress (Try to follow Krishnagiri-Vellore route), it integrates supplemental 30 km but roads are in best condition. The distance I covered was virtually 750 km in two days upfront. We left Bangalore in the morning around 0600 Hrs. The overall journey was astounding however ascertain you check weather conditions afore you depart. I had this realization after two failed endeavors. 🙂
I already had made a booking in Hotel Jayaram for a day, we reached pondi around 12:00 PM & checked in into the hotel. During this time of season, conventionally it’s sultry. So my orchestration was to commence exploring Goubert Ave in the evening. No offense to veggies but if you are in Pondi, sea food is a must thing.
I would recommend, once you are in Pondi, try to find restaurants preferred by local people. You will be astonished to check the options you can get & in your budget. I relished Chili Prawns & roasted squids.
In the evening strolled towards Goubert Ave., this is the heart of this place & 2 km away from my hideout. This whole avenue is in an oval shape & have a well maintained pictorial estate of French era. The best subset of the path is adjacent to the shores of Bay Bengal & you will be amazed to see so many people but without any chaos & which makes this place more serene. I missed the sunset as I was remotely lost in the nap. I explored near by places, I was fortuitous that I managed to eluded in the harbor, this is a restricted place & the moment Guards noticed me there, they showed me a way out :).
I was exploring some nearby places with the help of GPS & found this great restaurant “New Banana Cafe”, the first impression was not that good however after meeting the owner & chef Mr. Senthil, I realized that his main customers are dedicated foreign tourists & it’s an off season here. They are specialized in French cuisines & trust me the drinks & food was amazing. I would recommend to try it, if you are in near by places. I had a good time there.
As I was loitering here & there & trust me it was humid even in the night, I was tired & drained, I tried one of the local bars on the way, consumed couple of beers & snoozed of for the night in the hotel. To my surprise I found the bars are pocket friendly.
- Try restaurants preferred by locals (you can figure-out it by visually examining the crowd). They offer an abundance of options & are pocket friendly.
- If you are there in pre-monsoon season, ascertain that you try to explore surrounding either in the evening or early in the morning .
- Try cuisines in “New banana cafe”, you will relish the food & ambiance of this place “simple & serene”.
- Drinking in bars are affordable (surprisingly) .
- If you are visiting Pondi (TN) first time, filter tea is must recommended beverage. I loved it especially on highways.
The way I missed the sunset, didn’t optate to miss the sun rise & moreover the weather was congenial too in the early morning. I reached the Avenue by 5 in the morning, the view was spectacular, I endeavored to imbibe this comeliness;fisherman boats sailing along harbor, people indulged in yoga, this is something which genuinely did affectionate me. I also speculated near by French colonies, Museum , Auroville Ashram (didn’t go inside) however the day was getting sultrier, I covered virtually 8 km in diameter (as per GPS) :). Then decided to head back to the hotel. As anon as I reached hotel, I was a zombie.
Next destination was Chunnambar back waters (Paradise Beach), ideally I should have gone there in the evening but time was on shorter side . You require to take a boat ride (Chunnambar boat house) to reach the beach & it will cost you 200 Rs (both sides). The boat ride was astounding & It’s a well maintained beach & good place to spend time with your loved ones .
- Go Goubert Ave. in the morning afore dawn, you will dote it.
- Chunnambar back waters is a good place to enjoy water sports, please don’t compare it with other famous hubs but if you are here , you can relish it.
- Paradise beach is a serene place especially for family , food & drinks are available at the beach.
I hope, I had some more time to relish this place. I ken I left a plethora of places to explore but as I managed to check mark my priority list . I hope next opportunity will come soon.