Buoyant Pondicherry – An Unforgettable Journey Part II
The second segment of my journey is rather very exciting and fun filled but with a touch of spirituality. Read on!
- Promenade Beach
Promenade Beach is an all-famous beach stretch which is about 1.2 kilometres long. Certain attractions alongside Promenade are French War Memorial, Dupleix Park, Gandhi Statue and Le Cafe which is a lovely beach front cafe popularly
known for its location and the amusing blend of Indian and French food. The one impressive feature of Promenade is how spick and span the road and the beach itself is. Cycling along the stretch of Promenade is of extreme fun and highly recommended.
- Park Guest House
Park Guest House, an exclusive body of Sri Aurobindo Trust is largely known for the marvellous sea view that it has to offer.
With a minimal looking building and a breathtaking back garden, the guest house has become a go-to accommodation for many tourists. It also has a cafeteria which serves delicious heterogeneous food. Cycles are available for rent at the cycle department with a basement filled with a variety of cycles and a lovely wall painting.
- Dis Dis and Co.
Dis Dis and Co., located on Romain Rolland street, is merely a minute’s walk from Park Guest House.
It is a boutique cafe with lush interiors screaming lights and chandeliers from every corner.
It couldn’t have gotten any more chic and sophisticated with the hip crowd and all that luxurious food. With an amazing mix of indoor and outdoor seating, the place surely becomes irresistible.
- Baker Street
As the name suggests, the place offers an eclectic range of bakery items, from croissants and quiche to delicious pita bread. Baker Street is located in a quiet corner of the ever-so-bustling MG Road.
- Indian Coffee House
The Indian Coffee House is located on MG Road with a history of serving customers with heritage taste and humbleness. The interiors, as well as exteriors, display the oldness and beauty of the place. Known for its delicious filter coffee, Indian Coffee House has, for a fact, built a large number of loyal customers.
- Serenity Beach
Situated in Kottakuppam, the beach has a sturdy construction going into the sea. Being the beach of the fishermen folk there, it definitely goes with the name it has been assigned.
With the lovely huts, little beach-front hotels and waters as deep as its beauty, Serenity beach is an ideal spot to bask in the sun and romance with the sand.
- Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Located on Marine Street, Sri Aurobindo Ashram belongs to the Aurobindo trust. It is the right place for individuals looking for some quiet and concentration. Along with this, the ashram also has its own press where there are a number of books published in various languages for you to make your pick. The ashram has a super serene vibe and houses the samadhis of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother.
For more information about the ashram, log on to www.sriaurobindo
Image courtesy: www.sriaurobindo
Situated at Rue de le Marine, Auroshikha is a part of Sri Aurobindo Ashram and a world class brand for fragrances. Auroshikha is the creator of exquisite products like incense (sticks, cones, gift packs), natural essential oils, perfumed sachets, perfumed oils, scented candles, incense holders and more. To know more, log onto www.auroshikha.c
Auroville is a township based in Pondicherry initiated by The Mother and Sri Aurobindo. It is a place to co-exist with spirituality, harmony and happiness because according to this concept, a new religion could not only be useless but disastrous.
With a population of nearly 2,100 people representing 43 nationalities, Auroville also houses a number of cafes, boutiques, clinics and health centres. A large number of people stay and volunteer here.
The boutiques display a large number of products like jewellery, garments, accessories, handicrafts, jute crafts and more, under labels produced in Auroville. It also has a variety of educational and cultural centres. Auroville is a wonder in itself, an epitome of beauty and peace, enlightening and changing lives every day. Among the various other things, Matrimandir is the soul of Auroville.
Matrimandir is a golden globe in the heart of Auroville, exclusively designed for concentration and meditation. At the centre of the town, The Mother suggested there would be a ‘Park of Unity’ and a pavilion she named ‘Matrimandir’ which means ‘The Mother’s Shrine’. The architect Roger Anger gave it the shape of a lotus in full bloom with it’s 12 large gardens in the shape of petals symbolising divine consciousness. The outer sphere is covered with around 1,400 golden discs to symbolise a golden Supramental Sun.
The names that The Mother gave the 12 gardens are Existence, Consciousness, Bliss, Light, Life, Power,Wealth, Utility, Progress, Youth, Harmony and Perfection. Inside the sphere, the four concentration rooms are named as Mahakali, Mahalakshmi, Maheshwari and Mahasaraswati. In the innermost chamber of Matrimandir, (known as chamber floor) is a crystal ball on which when the sun rays fall, symbolises future enlightenment. The pathway leading to Matrimandir is equally quiet, bare and beautiful. One is allowed up to the viewing point to view the golden globe. However, going inside the chamber needs special permission.
For more information, contact Auroville’s Visitors Centre at www.auroville.or
Two important parts of Auroville are :
The Amphitheatre. Here, a white urn in the shape of a lotus bud had been placed on top of a small mound. The urn consists of handfuls of soils from all over the world sealed inside it. Three times a year, for New Year, Auroville’s birthday and Sri Aurobindo’s birthday, a large bonfire is lit at dawn in the middle of the Amphitheatre and the community gathers for a collective meditation.
The Banyan Tree – By 1965, time had come to define the centre of Auroville. This was when The Mother decided to make a solitary banyan tree as Auroville’s geographical centre. The tree is a little more than 100 years old.
Rich with enthralling experiences and being a piece of wonder that it is, Pondicherry will aways be talked about for the handsome places, moments and souvenirs that it has to offer. Pondicherry will always be a slice of India that will be France, forever.