Pondicherry, French city of India…

Each and every year from the very day I was born which is 21st February, 1996 till the end of 2018 has always been special to me. However, 2018 was one of the turning point of my life. I completed my graduation, before that I was placed in Bosch, started my travel journey, made so many new friends and the list goes on and on. The year 2018 ended with a very good note, my last trip along with my friends was to Coorg (also called as Scotland of India) and my very own Mysuru (Mysore). 

Why not start the last year of the decade with a travel where I had never been before? Sounds good right? That is exactly what we did, planned a trip to Puducherry (Pondicherry), one of the Union Territories of India. 

In my entire lifetime until this date, I had never visited any states rather than Karnataka, Maharashtra and Goa. Yes yes Goa, my friends (Amit, Chaitanya, Sourabh, Nikhil, Akash, Anirudh, etc…) were too good that they didn’t just plan the Goa trip but also made it successful and that too twice (Believe me or not). Grateful to them. That’s the story for another day. 

And so yes, I was very excited about visiting a new State or an Union Territory. 

Trip to Pondicherry was on then. The date was fixed, 12th and 13th January 2019. 

Almost the same group with whom I travelled to Nandi Hills, Coorg, Mysore. A few more friends were added to my list. A traveler (14 seater) was booked again. We left Bengaluru (Bangalore) at around 4am and by 10am or 11am, we reached Pondicherry. We had booked the stay in prior through OYO hotels, it was a tough time reaching there mainly due to the language problem, none of us knew Tamil and secondly due to unawareness of the driver. We had our lunch, got freshen up took a while and then left. 

Our first destination was Serenity beach, we decided to play.  I had a feeling of visiting Goa; it has been a long time since I had visited a beach. All Indian beaches are similar; the only difference is whether you are at the East coast of India or West coast of India. Because you will not see the Sunset if you are at the East coast of India, but you will be able to view something more than that, a Sunrise. 

Then we headed to one of the most iconic places in the city, which is the French colony. As I heard, Pondicherry is the last French colony of India. It became a part of India in 1954 as a union territory. At the time of transfer to India, the citizens of Indian and French origin in Pondicherry were given the choice to take Indian or French citizenship. There are still some French citizens in Pondicherry who retained their French citizenship. The French colony in Pondicherry makes you feel as if you are not in India. The buildings, houses and walls are built in a typical French architectural way and are mostly painted in yellow and blue with highlights of white. 

Very near to the French colony lies the Rock beach, unofficially called as the Marine Drive of Pondicherry. I hope you know where’s the famous Marine drive is. 

Bordered by a street with restaurants, this scenic, rocky beach draws crowds during the evening. It was already dark when we reached the Rock beach, didn’t had much glimpse due to darkness. But the area is very well maintained, clean and with a breeze of fresh air hitting us, we decided to spend a few hours at the beach. 

It was almost 12am when we headed back to the room, my friends were in no mood to sleep. They lit the bonfire and enjoyed the whole night. I went to sleep at 1am. We woke up soon at 5am to watch one of the most beautiful thing which is a Sunrise. As I said, I had never been to the East coast of India. Visualizing the sunrise at the beach was one of our top most curiosities. We again choose the same where we had been the previous night, the Rock beach. Oh my word!!!, it was beautiful. 

Sunrise always gives you hope, a blessing, a new day into your life to start over, the present as we call it. 

 We clicked loads and loads of pictures of ourselves, of the nature, of the beach, of the sunrise and the list goes on… 

It was time, we had to check out from the room. Unfortunately due to time constraints we couldn’t get the tickets of Matrimandir, Auroville Ashram. It I due for me. Will surely visit there some time in future. 

But we decide to visit Paradise beach. We didn’t play in water but we spent around 3 hours gazing at the waters. Our trip to Pondicherry was almost coming to an end, on the way back we decided to stop over at the French cafeteria located inside the premises of Matrimandir. The evening there was a pleasant experience, pink skies and I had my favorite, a cup of coffee. 

That’s it from Pondicherry (Part 1), many more places left to visit. Will definitely one day.

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