Puducherry is a quiet little town on the southern coast of India and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. The city is a perfect amalgamation of spiritual aura, colonial heritage, Tamil culture and the cosmopolitan lifestyle boasting tree-lined boulevards, colonial heritage buildings, spiritual sceneries, endless stretches of unspoilt virgin beaches, backwaters and a surprising choice of restaurants serving a melange of cuisines.
The best way to take in the modern heritage and spiritual culture of the city is to indulge in some of the best things to do in Puducherry which include heritage buildings with a significant French influence like Alliance Francaise de Pondicherry, Foyer Du Soldat, French Consulate, French Institute, Lycee Francais and a number of memorials and monuments like Aayi Mandapam, Ambedkar Mani Mandapam, Dupleix Statue and the French War Memorial. One can get a better understanding of the history of the town at museums like the Pondicherry museum, Bharathidasan Museum and archaeological sites like Arikamedu. Puducherry is also home to some of the best beaches in the country like Auroville Beach, Paradis Beach, Promenade Beach, Serenity Beach and other attractions like Bharati Park, Botanical Gardens and Ousteri Lake. The unique attractions and the colonial influence on the town, add more to the existing charm of the city, making it one of the most sought after travel destinations.
Can't wait to discover Puducherry by yourself? Create a Puducherry itinerary today!
What to Do in and around Puducherry
Enjoy 28 best Puducherry attractions and points of interest to choose from!
#1 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 10431 times in trip plans
Marine St, White Town, Puducherry
08:00 am - 06:00 pm
If you are a spiritual person, you will love to visit the Sri Aurobindo Ashram. In many ways the Ashram and the philosophy behind it make it a very important part of the city’s identity. This beautiful place that was once home to a brilliant modern thinker is still the source of the practice of his philosophy. The Integral Yoga of Sri Aurobindo’s teachings make this place very popular with culture seekers and the seekers of spirituality.
You will be able to learn a lot more about the thoughts of this man and his disciple, the mother and be able to see the place where they propagated their thoughts from. The Ashram itself is quite beautiful and there is a lot to see in and around it. The quaint little buildings and the garden create a very peaceful atmosphere. They have a lot of activities including lectures and guidance sessions.
A lot of tourists even travel from far and wide to come and stay here and experience the thinking space of one of the most well-known modern Indian thinkers. The ashram is certainly a must visit. Located in the French side of the town it is ina wonderful area to explore as well.
#2 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 11517 times in trip plans
Auroville, Bommayapalayam, Tamil Nadu
09:30 am - 04:00 pm
Auroville, strictly speaking, is not a tourist attraction. It is a calm and peaceful community, dedicated to the unity of people. But it is precisely for this that it is a place worth seeing. Spread over a huge area, Auroville has a visitor center which will help you learn a lot more about the philosophy behind this ideal community.
Although you are not allowed to enter the projects of Auroville, one can visit the MaitriMandir which brings a lot of tourists toAuroville. You can also explore the forest area around and nearby making it a very idyllic spot. The place has a very calming feel to it. The spiritual nature of the place is also responsible for the influx of tourists.However, tourism is not their main goal and hence it’s important that no one disturbs the tranquility of the place.
However, the place does have a pretty little park for tourists where you can find interesting drinks as well as handmade goods on sale. Books written by Sri Aurobindo and his disciple, the mother, have also been put up on display. There may not be much to do but it is nevertheless a very fascinating place to visit.
#3 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 26700 times in trip plans
Pudukuppam, Pondicherry, Pondicherry UT, 605007
Although there are no Sand beaches in Pondi, there are a few around which are worth the trip. The best of these is perhaps the Paradise beach. Interestingly, the beach is on an island and it can only be reached by boat and is just off the coast.
The beach is often home to local film and television crews filming due to its secluded beauty. The boat ride to it is also quite very picturesque. This lovely isolated spot is quite popular with locals as well as tourists.
Make sure to check out the various tiny restaurants around the area where you can get delicious local food that is unique and lip-smacking. It is a great place to spend a lovely morning watching the sunrise or taking a leisurely walk in the evenings, with the cool sea breeze flowing through your hair.
#4 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 25972 times in trip plans
Beach Rd, Mandapathur, Puducherry 609307
If you are going to Pondicherry some one or the other is bound to recommend you to go to “Beach road” and may be some of you might have been disappointed by the fact that there is no beach on beach road. Fair warning, there really isn’t a sand beach on beach road. But what there is, is the promenade and it is more than worth a visit.
The lovely area is perfect for a quiet evening with friends or family watching the sea ripple with waves or observing a ship sailing at a distance. The triangular rocks form dainty barriers for the crashing water and the place is quiet lovely and tranquil. You can even walk around or exercise on the cement path. Tiny huts provide refuge from the sun. Speaking of the sun, while you can’t see the sun set, be sure to watch the Sunrise at this memorable spot. The war memorial, the Joan of Arc Statue and the Mahatma Gandhi statue are interesting things to see on the 1.5 km stretch of land.
You can eat at the café on the shore or sample the delicious street food on offer in the evenings. Toy vendors and candy floss make it perfect for kids as well. This is the kind of place that will be a favorite haunt throughout the trip to Pondicherry, and no matter how many places you see, you are always sure to come back to this Promenade.
#5 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 23872 times in trip plans
Cardinal De Beausset St, M.G. Road Area, Puducherry, 605001
07:00 am - 06:30 pm
If you happen to see the Sacred heart Church you won’t be able to help but go in. the building itself is so strinking that tourists will not be able to resist its charm. The Jesuit church is a part of the colonial history of Pondicherry too. So there are several reasons for visiting this beautiful place.
Even if you are not religious the beauty and eccentiricty of the building is sure to render you curious. The alar is very pretty and the whole place has a very rustic look to it.
Being well, preserved and striking looking, the place is sure to take you back in time. The architecture of the church is a beautiful example of the amalgamation of the French and Tamil cultures, especially the colorful Jesus statue out front.
#6 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 22715 times in trip plans
Dumas street and, Surcoof St, Puducherry
07:00 am - 06:30 pm
This fairly simple and quite elegant church on Dumas road in Pondicherry is most definitely a must see. the name of the church translated to The Church of Our Lady of the Angles. Truly, this baby pink building has a divine angelic feel to it. The churches of Pondicherry are a part of the Legacy and hence certainly worth a visit and this one is no different.
Situated on two of the better known roads in the town, you are sure to come across this beautiful building at some point of time during your travels so if it does, it makes sense to take a good hard look from the inside.
Its amazing location at the Promenade facing the beautiful sea makes it a rare and lovely treat for the eyes. Do visit this while taking a walk down the promenade to have that complete experience of Pondicherry.
#7 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 23571 times in trip plans
National Highway 45A, Ariyankuppam, Nonankuppam, Puducherry 605007
09:00 am - 05:00 pm
Although Pondicherry has its own friendly neighborhood lake, a boat ride in a river is something quite unique. The Chunnambar River is open for rides from 9 am to 5 pm every day. The river ride is an ideal way to relax and experience the charm of a green Indian river.
Other than boating and other activities, it is an ideal picnic spot. Just a mere eight kilometers from the town, the Chunnambar River provides for a lovely scenic spot for locals and tourists alike.
The back waters are verdant and pristine and typically tropical in every way. Be sure to visit this place to get a feel of the natural beauty of southern India. Make sure you have plenty of time though because this idyllic place is sure to keep you enthralled for hours.
#8 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 17202 times in trip plans
VaradarajaPerumalKovil St, Thirupapuliyur, Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu 607002
06:00 am - 09:00 pm
The VaradarajaPerumal Temple is a very important Hindu religious spot in the town of Pondicherry. Even though tou will be able to see temples around the place, none are as prestigious and as revered as this one.
The typical southern Indian Architecture is quite fascinating to see. The colorful façade and the small main entrance and the several inner rooms and sanctums make it a stunning sight to see. The sculpture work is quite spectacular and illustrative of the varied temple art in India
Moreover, it is also very popular among the devotees. The conviction with which people come to visit this place every year is quite heartening to see. Of the 32 temples in this small town, this one is perhaps the most noted and hence a must-visit. Being around 800 years old, the place is quite a historic site.
#9 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 21978 times in trip plans
Bharati Park, Puduchchery (According to google)
08:00 am - 08:00 pm
Bharathi Park is a beautiful garden area in the middle of the town of Pondicherry. The pretty little park is visited by tourists and especially families for a refreshing break during a busy day of sightseeing. The design of the park is an ode to the French influence on Pondicherry.
The lush green grass, beautiful trees, the chirping birds and everything in between make it a lovely place to hang out in. Whether it’s a lazy late morning walk or a calm evening stroll, one will certainly love to explore this pretty park and all its beauty. The colorful flowers and the landscaping add to its charm. The structures and sculptures inside the park are beautiful.
On weekends you will find a host of vendors outside selling yummy street-food and toys for the kids. The park is probably the most important meeting point for locals after a long day. If you are looking for a spot to hide away in on a sunny afternoon, this is the one for you.
#10 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 9903 times in trip plans
St Louis St, White Town, Puducherry, 605001
10:00 am - 05:00 pm
Puducherry museum may be tiny but it is a must visit while here. What the museum lacks in size it makes up for in creativity. The miniscule place is a huge source of information. If you want to know more about the history of this pretty French there is no better way than to pay a small visit to this place.
Several artefacts found in excavations in and around Pondicherry have been put up. Their origins have been speculated and interesting theories about the reason behind making those artefacts have been put up. So not only will you get a brief history lesson, you will also be able to use your imagination to learn more about each thing.
The place is a must visit with kids as it is brief enough for their attention spans and interesting enough to help them learn something new. It is a great option for a rainy day too.
This botanical garden has existed in the area since colonial times. The charming town of Pondicherry has the perfect tropical weather for a botanical garden. This old and much visited attraction will also take you back in time to the old feeling of Pondicherry.
Around 1500 species of rare plants and flowers find a lovely home in these gardens. The landscaping is old school and rustic while the newer green houses are pretty and chic. The species on display are simply fascinating.
If you have an hour or two between to destinations and want to spend it amidst rare beauties, pick this attraction as your go to. Located in a very popular area of the town, it is an ideal place to get lost even within the city. You can leave all your worries behind and get lost in the wonderful world of nature for a few hours.
#12 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 21725 times in trip plans
Auroville Beach, Bommayapalayam, Tamil Nadu 605101
Auroville Beach is right outside the community of Auroville and one of the most unique places you will see in Pondicherry. This lovely beach is a little hard to find but certainly worth the effort. Walking through tiny winding lanes you will be able to reach this hideaway.
The area leading up to is interspersed with greenery and tiny houses making it a real experience. The beach itself is tiny, in the sense that the strip of sand is quite small, but the roaring gray waters more than make up for it. If you stand at the beach, the water seems to be coming at you at an angle. The feeling is quite engaging and almost surreal.
Since the water is shallow, you will often find people swimming in it or just sitting around and soaking themselves in the forceful water. The beach is the perfect spot for morning and evening walks and a must visit if you intend to go and see Auroville.
#13 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 13890 times in trip plans
Osudu Lake, Puducherry. (Local Name)
09:00 am - 05:00 pm
Ousteri Lake or Ousudu Lake in Pondicherry is an idyllic spot to visit in the town. At one point of time in the past, it used to be the source of drinking water for the whole town. This gives it tremendous socio-cultural importance as well.
It has now been opened to tourists and is largely used for boating. It is about 15 kilometers from the actual town but it is certainly worth the effort and the drive there. A few restaurants dot the place in which you can sit and enjoy and unrestricted view of the water while sipping coffee or eating delicious food.
The main attraction is of course the boating. You can hire a paddle boat or rowboat and drift languidly in the still waters of this place. It is especially gorgeous in winter. In summers you can take a refreshing picnic like the locals would and enjoy the spread as the sun gleams brightly over the place.
#14 of 28 Things to do in Puducherry | Added 17614 times in trip plans
Kottakuppam, Puducherry 605101
If you are looking for some beach action not far from the charming town of Pondi, this is the best place to seek out. The Beach lives up to its name and provides for the much needed serenity on your lovely holiday.
If you think about it, it’s just another beach but the strange calmness it instills is quite unique. One of the more popular beaches, this place may get a bit crowded on weekends but on weekdays you will be able to enjoy the tranquility of it all. This place is perfect for a romantic evening out with a loved one.
There is a small bazaar that takes place every Saturday and Sunday from 10-5 that will see a host of tourists. The bazaar is something of a flea market with a host of different handicrafts and souvenirs on display. Shopaholics will love the colors of the place.
Although this church is lesser known, it is well worth the visit. The church is grand and imposing inside and out. The tall white building with its pretty curving arches is one of Pondicherry’s prettiest churches.
The egg shaped white church decorated in gold and blue, is quite striking. The many pretty windows and the huge altar are all worth seeing. It also happens to be the most important church in the town and hence it has tremendous religious significance.
Another of the many symbols of the colonial rule in the town, this beautiful church is a very important part of the cultural history of Pondicherry. Be sure to visit it during mass or if you are going in winter, during Christmas celebrations, it will certainly be an absolute delight to see.