Magical Mahabalipuram & Picturesque Pondicherry – A Photo Story..
Before it gets too late, here is a simple photo story about our road trip to Mahabalipuram and Pondicherry. As I have already mentioned, these are the places you can spend as little time or as much time as you want. It totally depends on the kind of person you are and hence I am not going to recommend the length of the trip 😛
Here is how it looks on the map. Oh yes! You know I love doing this 🙂 This talks about the trip – up and down and the route we took.
You know the trip is perfect when the roads are this good and the speedometer says this!
On the way, we crossed Kanchipuram. This is a famous city in Tamil Nadu and known for it’s Kanchivarams (Silk Sarees). It is said that at every nook and corner of the city, you will find a saree shop. I did too!
On reaching Mahabalipuram, within 30 mins or so, we were out to explore the city. I loved the city – small yet stood firm against the test of time. Carved out in the 7th century, the city has temples, monolithic structures and yes, this group of monuments has been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The next day we headed out Pondicherry – I had heard a lot about the ECR and my expectations were set high. So, if you don’t know much – you will certainly enjoy the drive. The Bay of Bengal can be seen on your left and those occasional stretches of the sea are a pleasant sight indeed.
On the way, we also hit upon the famous Crocodile Bank.It is supposed to be one of the largest reptile zoo in the world and the largest in Asia. Okay! I agree – it not so pleasant sightings but yes a little unique 😉
I have already spoken about our visit to Alamparai Fort so I will not touch that again 🙂 But remember to visit the ruins and go back in time!!
Once in Pondicherry, the first stop was Aurobindo Ashram and the french colony. Sometimes, somethings get itched in your memory and personally for me, the French colonies were something I am never going to forget. Those roads with signs Rue saint Gilles and so many more such crossroads were so different and non-Indian. It felt that the end of every road was leading to the sea. The sight of people of bicycles and leaving a carefree life was something I wish I could do someday. If I was an author and I had a list of cities where I could spend the last days of my life, Pondicherry would certainly have a chance.
Something else that deserves a mention is the Paradise Beach or the Chunnambar Backwaters. This island is 7kms from Pondicherry. Tourists need to take a ferry to and fro to reach the island and then be back. To say the least, it’s a beautiful island. Clean and well maintained. You can spend some good time if it’s not too sunny! 😀
Auroville was our last stop! It is an experimental township and currently spread over an area of more than 1000 acres. You have to be at Auroville to see what this city is all about! Life comes to a standstill from the chaos of the city. The meandering roads adorned with greenery and humble neighborhood. The Matrimandir and the age-old banyan tree which constitute the man-made and the natural center of the place will incite the mathematician in you as it did to me!