Travel Tales of a Backpacker~ Day 1 -Pondicherry

In my last post I wrote about my impromptu trip to Pondicherry and other places in South India, if you have not read it yet click the link above.

I reached Pondicherry around 21:45hrs, checked into dormitory at the railway station and immediately headed out to grab my dinner (Pondicherry station has no canteen). It was late and I managed to get only Idly sambhar 😦

Back in the dormitory I chatted with a fellow traveler who was also on a solo trip. He was an engineering student and was on a month long trip exploring different cities of India. We chatted for a while and then went off to sleep. Unfortunately the place was thriving with mosquitoes and I could not sleep properly, and could only manage to grap a few minutes nap sometime in the early hours of morning.

Around 6:30 am my fellow traveler woke me up and asked me if I wanted to go to the Pondicherry beach for getting the view of sunrise. I said yes and after freshening up we headed off to the famous Pondicherry beach.

Sunrise at Pondicherry beach

After witnessing the sunrise we took a stroll on the promenade and clicked some pictures.

There is this old pier which is in a very bad shape now and is supposedly off limits for the crowd yet most of the tourists flock there for pictures, the view after all is great.

Old pier near Pondicherry beach

We also took some pictures of and on the pier and on the rock boulders there. I usually do not take my pictures, but my fellow traveler insisted and I asked him to take my pictures from behind and far off ( profile pics only)

Me sitting on rock boulders and trying to give a candid pose πŸ™‚
This dog was sleeping all curled up and I had to take his pic

We spend around two hours walking and talking and exploring this beachside area.

I wanted to visit Sri Aurobindo Ashram so that is where we headed next.

The place is very calm and peaceful, we meditated for a few minutes and then went into there in house book shop. We both bought few books and then left the place.

Sri Aurobindo Ashram

The Ashram is in the French colony area so we walked around the by lanes and marveled at the French inspired architecture, the whole experience was surreal.

One of the by-lanes in French colony

After we were done in this part of Pondicherry we moved on to explore other places. A botanical garden was about 2.5 kms from where we were so we decided to walk.

Botanical Garden Entrance

It was a well kept park all green with pathways to walk amidst a little sort of jungle in the city. The park also had a toy train which unfortunately was not functional when we visited. Also there were some really tall trees with huge trunks.

And we also saw this tree house in the park πŸ™‚

We spent some time there in the peaceful environment and then headed to “Auroville” by local bus. The bus dropped us near Auroville beach. We asked the local people for guidance to Auroville and they said it is very far (5- 6 kms) and that we need to take an auto.

We had time in hand and so decided to walk instead, the journey was long but it gave us the opportunity to explore of the neighborhood of Auroville which had some amazing cafes and hang out places.

We took a short break and decided to have some coconut water. After quenching our thirst with two rounds of it we marched again, and just within 100 meters of our walk we came across the beautiful lake full of lotuses blooming all over it.

Lake full of lotuses

We reached Auroville visitor center wherein we were asked to watch a short audio visual about Auroville, after which we cllected our passes for visit to Matri Mandir the main attraction of Auroville.

My fellow companion posing in front of Matri Mandir- Auroville

Also I would like to share with you about a banyan tree which is in the compounds of Matri Mandir. This banyan tree is told to be more than 150 years of age and its branches are now growing back to the ground. The whole phenomena is amazing and its something not to be missed if you are going to Auroville and Matri Mandir. The video shot of this banyan tree can be seen on the feed of my instagram handle @nilesharmaa .

My fellow companion was from Bihar and he was more interested in seeing the beach then being Auroville so we did not spend much time at Auroville and instead decided to head to Auroville beach πŸ™‚

It was almost evening when we reached auroville beach and it was a perfect time to be there. We walked on the beach with shoes in our hands and legs drenched in the waters, the breeze passing by us and bringing relief to the tiredness from all of the days walking.

Unfortunately the batteries of both of our phones conked off so we could not take any pics from our time at beach.

Day 1 at Pondicherry and Auroville was fun in every way and I will treasure the memories I have made at this place. This trip will always hold a special place in my heart.

Have you been to Pondicherry and Auroville? If yes, do share your story from there. For those who haven’t but are planning a trip there and need any guidance, do write to me, I will be more than happy to help πŸ™‚

My post on Day 2 from this trip will be out soon, so stay tuned

Love & gratitude

Nilesh Sharma

5 thoughts on “Travel Tales of a Backpacker~ Day 1 -Pondicherry

  1. Pingback: Travel Tales of a Backpacker~ Day 2 -Pondicherry | Nilesh Sharma

  2. Pingback: Travel Tales of a Backpacker~ Day 3-Kanyakumari | Nilesh Sharma

  3. Pingback: Travel Tales of a Backpacker~ Day 4-Chennai | Nilesh Sharma

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