Most of us have been to Goa before and it is one of those rare travel destinations, which is ideal for people of almost all age groups. Because of the reason that Goa has got everything that we need on a vacation from cheap drinks to delightfully delicious food to beachside luxury hotels. On the other hand, Goa has changed a lot in the last decade or so and one thing that has increased is the number of people travelling to this beach town, which has resulted in too much hustle-bustle. In addition to that, almost every corner of the city has been commercialized which is why it has become pretty difficult to find an offbeat travel attraction. All these are the reasons people have started looking for beach towns other than Goa wherein they can get crystal clear beaches with less commercialization and more of love nature.
Well, first of all, Pondicherry is one of those rare beach cities in the country that will certainly satisfy your desire to travel the way Goa would have done. We simply can’t just deny how Pondicherry has turned out to be the new Goa for travellers from all across the globe and has pretty much more to it which is still unexplored. This beach city is known for its French way of life, reputed meditation institutes, Sri Aurobindo Ashram in neighbouring town Auroville, and very well-maintained sea fronts, to name a few. The place is also accessible by almost all modes of transportations like train, bus and flight. So, what are you waiting for? Skip that Goa trip and spend your holidays in Pondicherry for the love of beaches, waves and soft sand. Below is the list of reasons to visit Pondicherry.
Amazing & Silence Beach
If we talk about the number of beaches, Goa has more beaches than Pondicherry, but all of them are touristy all year long, which is not the case with Pondicherry. Beaches in Pondicherry are fairly clean and full of adventure activities. The beaches one must surely stop by are Promenade Beach, Paradise Beach, Serenity Beach, Auroville Beach, Mahe Beach, and Pondicherry University Beach.
Tasty food is one thing that most holidaymakers look for at the time of travelling because it is something that can make or break their day. And when it comes to lip-smacking food, Pondicherry is a paradise for food lovers especially the ones who wish to try something different every, now and then. Vacationers will find a perfect blend of French, Chettinad and Italian cuisines all across the union territory and a few of the dishes everyone needs to try are a local seafood, our soru biryani, calamari Mediterranean pasta, wood fire pizzas and pazham puri.
Paradise for Adventure Sports Enthusiasts
Similar to Goa, Pondicherry has got an array of options when it comes to beach adventure activities. Seaside actions in Pondicherry consist of scuba diving, camping at the beach, canoeing, surfing, parasailing, kayaking, Banana Boat ride, backwater sailing and many more. If you wish to indulge in these water sports activities then the following beaches are the best for an amazing time on the coast.
- Kayaking or Canoeing at Paradise Beach, Serenity Beach and Karaikal Beach
- Surfing at both Serenity and Paradise Beach
- Jet Skiing and Scuba Diving at Paradise Beach
- Sailing at Veerampattinam Harbour more fun
Shopping is an integral part of your trip to Pondicherry and going to the right market will help you save a good amount of money as well as buy something different and unique. One such market that most of the tourists are not aware of is Auroville, where you can purchase artisanal products like colourful beachwear, souvenirs, local south Indian handicraft, antiques and crockery. Other markets that can be taken into consideration are Goubert Market, White Town, Saram China Market, Mudaliarpet Market, Ariyankuppen Market, Mission Street and Serenity Beach Bazaar.
Auroville is one of those rare travel attractions in India, which is famous for its meditation courses all across the world. Located at a distance of 6 kilometres from the city centre, this quaint little town was designed by world-renowned architect Roger Anger. Founded in the year 1968, Auroville is accessible to travellers through all modes of transportation. When you are in this beautifully designed city do visit Matrimandir, Town Hall, Tibetan Centre, Repos, Organic Farms and of course the Auro Beach. A visit to this offbeat travel attraction will certainly make your trip an unforgettable one.
What is the Difference Between Goa and Pondicherry
Why Pondicherry is best
Pondicherry has six beaches. The one in the city is the Promenade beach, which we will talk about a little later. The popular beaches are Paradise Beach and Serenity Beach. To get to Paradise beach, you need to hire a motorboat for pick up and drop at the beach from Chunnambar Boathouse. There is also a beach near Auroville, Auroville Beach, which is also very good.
I must admit, Goa has more beaches compared to Pondicherry, which means Goa has the greater range. There are also beaches for any reason/occasion you want. There are beaches you head to to party, to lounge or for luxury. But, Goa is also a victim of its own popularity. Goa today is very touristy and most beaches are crowded during the peak season. Pondicherry, today, has the pace and feel of what Goa did maybe 10-20 years back. It has an easier pace to life. Time slows down a notch here. The omnipresence of Shri Aurobindo also helps, give the place a spiritual bent.
Food lover area
The European influence weighs on the cuisines available too. There are a lot of options in Continental cuisines available in both places. In Pondicherry, you could try the local Chettinad cuisine and local seafood as well. Also, try the wood fire pizzas they are delicious.
Goa has a rich cuisine of its own the popular ones are Vindaloo, Xacuti, Corporal. If you are a lover of seafood, Goa does not disappoint. You can try any catch of the day cooked in garlic and butter. Also, you could try the local liquor of Goa which is Feni. You get Feni made from coconut and cashew, you could have it tonic water, Sprite or any other cold drink. It’s an acquired taste, but well worth a shot (pun intended), for sure.
Although Pondicherry has some party places, this is one area where Goa wins hands down. Goa has many places to party till the sun rises. Head to Baga or Calagunte, for the bigger and more happening party spots. It is hard to pick between Goa or Pondicherry. Goa is the popular, more touristy place with better beaches; head to Pondicherry for a more peaceful, quieter time.
Why goa is best place
Goa has around 50 beaches, so you are never short of choice. The more popular ones are Baga, Calangute and Anjuna/Vagator. These beaches are centrally located and have tons of options for accommodation and dining. Most of the luxury resorts are south of Margao – Mobor, Varca, Colva, etc. Some resorts have private beaches. If you want to have a quieter time and go easy on your pocket, you will have to head to the North and South extremities. Beaches like Palolem, Agonda or Arambol, are what you should look at. The popular beaches in Goa offer water sports like jet skis, banana rides, parasailing, etc. Some quieter beaches also offer rides to spot dolphins and canoeing.
Old Goa is a UNESCO heritage site and has some beautiful sites built during the Portuguese rule. Some of them are Se Cathedral, Basilica of Bom Jesus and Chapel of Our Lady of the Mount. The Basilica of Bom Jesus has the mortal remains of St Francis Xavier who died in 1552. Old Goa is a must-see place in Goa. Walk around Fontainhas in Panjim, which has brightly-coloured Portuguese influenced houses. Dudhsagar Falls, Dudhsagar, which translates to a sea of milk, best describes the sight of these falls. The Dudhsagar falls is a couple of hours drive from Panjim. At a width of 100 feet and a height of over 1000 feet, this is one of the largest waterfalls in India.
If you have seen Dil Chahta Hai, there is an iconic shot of the three protagonists in a fort overlooking the sea. This fort is the Chapora Fort and is one of the many forts that you can visit while in Goa. The other popular forts are Aguada Fort, Reis Margos Fort and Terekhol Fort.
Conclusion about of Pondicherry Vs Goa
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