Steeped in a historical legacy that is a mix of culture and tradition, Pondicherry makes for a charming tourist destination. Known as the ‘French Capital of India’, the city will enthral you with its Parisian vibes. As you gaze upon its ornate and well-preserved architecture, you will be transported back to the French Colonial era. It wouldn't be wrong to say that when you're in Pondicherry, you will truly wonder if you’re still in the Indian mainland!
Located in the Union Territory of Puducherry, Pondicherry is the largest French colony in the country. This is perhaps what sets it apart from any other vacation spot in India. Appreciate the scenic charm of the city as you walk through its quaint streets and experience pure bliss as you lie down on the golden beaches, watching the glittering waves crash against the shore.
Pondicherry is also the perfect spot to unwind and holiday with your family. The city offers endless opportunities to bond with one’s family as the list of the things to do in Pondicherry is limitless. By the end of the trip, you will be closer to each other as the serenity and majesty of the city invigorate your spirits. You will also take some amazing memories of the fun you had back home. To put it simply, you never have to worry about what to do in Puducherry, as you will always wish to explore just a little bit more.
Planning a trip to Pondicherry can have travellers feeling a little confused, thanks to the various option of activities on offer to the vacationers. But this curated list is the best guide for you to capture the true essence of Pondicherry. So, quit worrying about what to do in Puducherry, because we’ve got you covered with this list of top 30 things to do in Pondicherry.
Things to do in Pondicherry
Take a City Tour
Tour will begin at 9:30 am
Explore the French Colony on Two Wheels
Cycle tours operate from 7am - 9 am
Visit the Serenity Beach for a Surfing Experience
Prices for these courses start from INR 1000
Get in Touch with Your Spiritual Side at Sri Aurobindo Ashram
8 am to 12 pm & 2pm to 4 pm
Go Scuba Diving in the Depths of The Sea
6 am – 8:30 pm
Prices start at around INR 6,000
Visit the Temples and Churches
9 am - 8:30 pm
Enjoy Water Sports at Karaikal Beach
Jet Skiing- INR 450 onwards, Parasailing- INR 1,000 , Banana Boat ride- INR 300 onwards
Experience the Glimmering Sunset in Pondicherry
Ayushman Ayurveda Healthcare
9:00 am – 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm – 8:00 pm. Open every day.
Visit the Pondicherry Museums
Approximately between 10 am to 5 pm
INR 10 for adults, INR 5 for children and INR 50 for foreign nationals.
Have a Relaxed Day at the Lighthouse
3:00 – 5:00 pm
Pay Homage at the French War Memorial
10:00 – 7:00 pm. Open every day
Take up Lessons to Learn Clay Modelling
Soak Up the Pondicherry Culture at Sita Cultural Centre
9:00 am – 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm. Monday through Saturday
Enjoy the Camps at the Dune Eco Village
Best time to visit - December - March
Take a Boat Ride
9:00 am to 5:00 pm
INR 200 per person for a to and fro ride. + INR 10 for beach entry fee + INR 20 for still camera + INR 40 for video camera
Ride in a Boathouse
9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Entry to the boathouse is INR 5. Hiring motor boats costs INR 50-100, depending upon the length of your trip; whereas jet skis cost about INR 250-500.
Go Bird Watching at Ousteri Lake
9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Visit the Cluny Embroidery Centre
8:30 am -12:00 pm and 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm. Open every day
Go for Fun Land Sports
8:30 am to 6:30 pm
Go on a Shopping Spree in Pondicherry
Relax on a Private Cruise Boat
Cruise boat timings - 6:30pm -11: 30 pm
Indulge in Some Drool Worthy Meals at the Bay of Buddha
7 am to 10:30 pm every day
Visit the Harmonious Auroville
9.30 to 10.45 am
Sailing and Yachting in Pondicherry
INR 1,750 onwards
Explore the Roof Garden and Café for a Memorable Trip
Explore the Streets of the Saram China Market
9:30 am - 9:30 pm. Open every day
Indulge in the Local Savoury Cuisines of Pondicherry
Get Spiritual with Yoga and Meditation at the Yoganjali Natyalayam
Visit the Botanical Garden of Pondicherry
10:00 am – 5:00 pm
1. Take a City Tour
When you reach the city, you might be confused about the top things to do in Pondicherry. Your best option to figure it out is to begin by taking a tour of the lovely city. Pondicherry covers an area of about 90 kilometres, which means you’ll need to set aside 10-12 hours for a relaxed tour of the quaint city. You will also have plenty of tour operators and options to choose from. Typically, the tour will begin at around 9:30 am with packages starting from INR 500.
Imagine walking down the charming streets of Pondicherry and enjoying the sun and the smell of the ocean while you get acquainted with the city. You will learn about the culture and history of Pondicherry as you traverse its old French settlements. You also get to witness the gorgeous cathedrals and colourful bungalows that occupy the area of Pondicherry. Don't forget to delight your taste buds with some authentic Tamil and French cuisine on your tour. Undoubtedly, this journey tour will make you fall in love with this little city on the very first day, and you'll be raring to explore it with the list of the things to do in Pondicherry at hand.
2. Explore the French Colony on Two Wheels
With so much do in so little time while in Pondicherry, you can start your day bright and early with a beautiful sunrise at the Promenade beach in this coastal city. The cool sea breeze coupled with the pink sky will wow even the staunchest of cynics. The coastline of Pondicherry is dream-like with its golden sands. And a long walk at the Promenade beach is a must when in Pondicherry. The seafront does not allow for any traffic movement from 6:30-7:30 am, making your experience a tranquil one as you watch the first rays of the sun hit the blue waters, making it gleam.
After this therapeutic experience with your family, you can then proceed to explore the city on a bike or a scooter. Pondicherry offers various guided tours for tourists to experience the old-world beauty of the city on vintage bicycles. The tour takes you through the traditional Tamil settlements and elegant French colonies along with a stop at the Green quarter. These cycle tours operate from 7-9 am and cost about INR 1700, giving you a spectacular snapshot of Pondicherry. Complete your experience with a sumptuous South Indian breakfast at a local establishment. When thinking about what to do in Puducherry, you must not forget to put this amazing family activity on your list.
3. Visit the Serenity Beach for a Surfing Experience
When thinking of things to do in Pondicherry, there’s no way you can miss a surfing experience, especially if you’re a family of adventure lovers. Surrounded by palm trees, the Serenity Beach in Pondicherry fulfils your innate need for adventure. One of the best things to do in Pondicherry is to hit up the waves at the beach and get your surf on. The playful waves at the beach and the steady wind make for the perfect spot for all adrenaline junkies. Surfing is the most exhilarating experience that you could do in Pondicherry, and the best part is that if you don't know how to surf you can sign up for lessons at the beach. Prices for these courses start from INR 1000 and increase based on the level that you choose, ranging from beginner to professional.
And for those uninterested in surfing, there’s no shortage of things to do in Pondicherry. While the others ride the waves, you can relax along the sandy shores and read a book catch up on your sleep. Rejuvenate your body and soul, or head over to the colourful beach shacks for a delicious helping of food, the options in Pondicherry are endless. You never have to pause to think about what to do in Puducherry because your adventure starts right where you are.
4. Get in Touch with Your Spiritual Side at Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Sri Aurobindo was a renowned spiritual guru who established the Aurobindo Ashram in 1926 alongside a Frenchwoman, Mirra Alfassa, who was also known as ‘The Mother’. After a crazy day of activities, the Ashram is high on tourists’ list of things to do in Pondicherry. It is the perfect spot for those who wish to soothe their inner being and seek peace. This Pondicherry ashram offers various meditation programs, and the calm, serene atmosphere that exists perpetually in the ashram completely engulfs you, bringing you closer to unite with the world. The retreat even has yoga sessions to help you transcend into a tranquil state of mind. Members are generally busy with collective meditations, prayers chanting and discovering their inner consciousness and eternal peace. People also give offerings to the samadhis of Sri Aurobindo and his mother who were interred in Pondicherry. You can also stand testament to the life of Sri Aurobindo and his work through the videos and exhibitions held in the Ashram. Most recommend at least a day’s stay for a truly enriching experience during your Pondicherry trip. Experience these precious moments of calm and tranquillity with your family and etch memories that last a lifetime.
5. Go Scuba Diving in the Depths of The Sea
If you’re wondering what to do in Puducherry for a thrilling experience with your family, head down to the beaches for a fun-filled dive. Boasting clear azure waters, Pondicherry is perhaps the best scuba diving location along the Eastern coast of India (Bay of Bengal). You can opt for a one-day dive or take a course to become a certified scuba diver. Prices start at around INR 6000 and go up based on your choices. Scuba diving in Pondicherry is set up by certified PADI instructors and includes two dives a day. There are dive sites that start from 5 meters and go up to 40 meters depending on your level of expertise. Some of the best diving sites in Pondicherry include the Coral Shark Reef, Temple Reef, The Hole and 4 Corners.
There’s no doubt that the experience of scuba diving is otherworldly. As you move underwater, a whole new world opens up for exploration, and a calm takes over you. Enjoy the diverse marine life - colourful fish and corals - in the blue waters of Pondicherry, and stare at wonderment at the life that thrives in the ocean. It is an absolute must for all water babies and those seeking a thrilling adventure in Pondicherry. Witness the sheer beauty of the coral reefs, teeming with spectacular marine life like manta rays, lionfish, angelfish, sea snakes, triggerfish, parrotfish and many more majestic sea creatures. So, think no more and cross scuba diving off your things to do in Pondicherry bucket list.
6. Visit the Temples and Churches
Pondicherry houses many places of worship, and magnificent churches and sacred temples are scattered all over this coastal town. The city is a perfect destination for the spiritually inclined members in your family. You can set up a day for a heritage walk around the town to explore the vibrant culture of the French colonies. Marvel at the ornate architectural buildings and vivid, colourful streets while making some great memories in Pondicherry. Indulge in a walk around White Town where high-end boutiques, cosy cafes and heart-warming yellow buildings seem to stretch as far as one can see. You can even interact with the locals of Pondicherry and enjoy their warm, welcoming hospitality. The perfect blend of French essence and Tamil culture is unique to Pondicherry that is sure to leave you delighted. Enter the little chapels and churches that you spot along your walk and surround yourself in the spiritual atmosphere present there, while you gaze upon the intricate designs. Of all the things to do in Pondicherry, visiting the Eglise De Notre Des Anges, Church of Our Lady of Lourdes, Church of Our Lady of Good Health, The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and Immaculate Conception Cathedral (with French Gothic tones) is a must; their sheer majesty and peaceful atmosphere will leave you speechless. The majestic sculptures of Sri Gokilambal Thirukameswar Temple are a sight to behold and should not be missed when in Pondicherry. Another temple, The Manakula Vinayagar, is known for its elephant blessings and has a beautiful golden chariot and stone carved walls, a splendid sight indeed. While the places of worship will be open all year round, October to March is typically recommended as the best time to visit Pondicherry.
7. Enjoy Water Sports at Karaikal Beach
Famous for its extensive sea coast, Pondicherry boasts adventurous water spots at Karaikal or Paradise beach. If you’re thinking about what to do in Puducherry today, it’s time for you to try the water sports that the city has to offer. Karaikal Beach is situated a little over 130 km from Pondicherry and provides a host of thrilling activities that you can enjoy with your entire family. You can indulge in activities like hopping on speedboats for an exciting ride or go for family bonding activities like kayaking. And if you are worried about being inexperienced, don't worry, there are plenty of instructors available and you'll be a master in no time. If you're tired from all the rowing, you can relax in the shacks that dot Pondicherry beaches. There are scores of people playing volleyball or cricket on the beaches, and you can play a game or two with them. You can even try out fishing with the fishermen or go for a dip in the ocean. It depends on your mood as the options in Pondicherry are limitless. Do visit this lovely site for a day of adventure and entertainment with your loved ones in Pondicherry.
8. Experience the Glimmering Sunset in Pondicherry
Blessed with a heavenly coastline, Pondicherry offers some breath-taking views of nature for beach-lovers it is indeed a paradise on earth. Your list of things to do in Pondicherry needs to include viewing a sunset from the beaches as it is mesmerising and its beauty is sure to captivate your mind. Head over to any of these beautiful Pondicherry beaches to witness the magnificent glory of the sun. Be it Paradise, Karaikal, Serenity or Rock Beach; the view will be just enchanting. As the sun sets on the sapphire waters of Pondicherry, you will be bewitched by the last rays of the sun as they merge and seem to become a part of the waterline, with the sky in hues of orange and pink. It is a moment that cannot be captured by the lens of a camera and as it binds you in its spell, you will be awash with a sense of calm. You can also set up a bonfire on the beach after the gorgeous sunset to add to your relaxed atmosphere. The orange hues of the fire against the velvet night sky of Pondicherry, with food being passed along the circle and soothing music playing as you dance around and gossip will create precious memories for you and your family.
9. Ayushman Ayurveda Healthcare
Pondicherry is known for its rejuvenating and refreshing experience and the Ayushman Ayurvedic Treatment is no exception. Based on ancient ayurvedic healing, this place offers treatment for all your ailments, big or small. The holistic experience provided by this Pondicherry clinic aims to cure people through the power of Ayurveda and herbal medicine. It cures ailments through classic ayurvedic, non-invasive treatments for multiple health issues like rheumatism, spondylitis, diabetes, heart diseases and many more. It also aims to detoxify and provide relaxation to its visitors for cleansing the body, mind, and soul. They have state-of-the-art treatment facilities and provide classical Panchakarma and traditional Kerala Ayurvedic treatments based on the assessment of a physician. The clinic has different packages based on the client’s needs. So, if you’re wondering what to do in Puducherry for a rejuvenating experience, this place is the solution to your problems.
Open Hours: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm – 8:00 pm. Open every day.
10. Visit the Pondicherry Museums
Steeped in culture and history, Pondicherry is home to many popular museums. These powerhouses depict the art that exists in Pondicherry and makes for quite an enlightening experience. If you wish to soak up a little culture with your family, these Pondicherry museums are the perfect place to visit. They boast of a wide collection of unusual artefacts and pre-Christian relics that were uncovered from Arikmedu. You can also enjoy the stunning remains from the archaeological findings of a Roman settlement. And some of these collections are located in the royal houses of yesteryear, making for an exciting experience.
The Pondicherry, Bharathidasan, and Ananda Ranga Pillai Museums are amongst the most visited in the city and always pique the interest of history buffs. The Jawahar Toy Museum and Puducherry Science Centre and Planetarium are the top picks for some interactive fun and learning for children of all age groups. Some museums house an incredible collection of unique stone sculptures and rare bronzes statues that belonged to the ancient Chola and Pallava dynasties, telling the tale of a time gone by. They also have a collection of prehistoric fossils, a geology room to tell the tale of our earth, delicate handicrafts, and rustic French furniture displayed at the museum. If you have an affinity for history and legacies of our rich past, you need to quit wondering what to do in Puducherry and book yourself a ticket to all these museums.
11. Have a Relaxed Day at the Lighthouse
If you’re wondering what to do in Puducherry, visiting the old Lighthouse should be your safest bet. Built by French engineer L. Guerre, this lighthouse was the only beacon of light that guided the mariners at sea through the night at the Red Hill and still serves as one of the most prominent landmarks in Pondicherry. Apart from its architectural and historical importance, it makes for a shoot-worthy location with sweeping views of Pondicherry. Although the lighthouse was closed down to construct a new one to the south of the town by the French colonists, it still is a tall-standing masterpiece, marking the elegance of Pondicherry. You would’ve probably worked up an appetite after the lengthy photo sessions at this beauty. In this case, you can head over to the roof-top restaurant at the Lighthouse as it offers views of Pondicherry that are just as gorgeous along with the added pleasure of sumptuous, delicious food to go with the spectacular sight, making your trip to Pondicherry even more divine.
Open Hours: 3:00 – 5:00 pm
Entry Fee: INR 10
Location: Promenade Beach, Pondicherry
12. Pay Homage at the French War Memorial
Your list of things to do in Pondicherry can be further enriched with a rare historical experience. Built in honour of the soldiers who sacrificed their lives in World War I, the French War Memorial is a sight to behold. If you’re visiting Pondicherry in July, it is essential that you visit the monument on the 14th which is Bastille Day - the national day of France. As a token of appreciation for the dedication of the fallen soldiers, the Memorial is beautifully lit up on this day, illuminating the whole area. Throngs of people come up to Pondicherry from neighbouring cities to pay their respects.
Located on Goubert Avenue across the promenade, it is perhaps one of the most impressive memorials that you will ever come across. Since it is built over a small area, you won't spend too much time taking a stroll at the Memorial. But it's intriguing past, and unusual charm makes it a definite must-visit on your family vacation to Pondicherry. The best time to visit the Memorial is at dawn or dusk when the lovely weather adds to its unmistakable old-world charm.
Open Hours: 10:00 – 7:00 pm. Open every day
13. Take up Lessons to Learn Clay Modelling
If you’re wondering what to do in Puducherry, head to the Golden Bridge Pottery Centre for a fun session of clay modelling. Ray Meeker, from Southern California, is responsible for bringing this art form to Pondicherry. He moved to Pondicherry in 1970 and opened up the hugely successful Golden Bridge Pottery Centre, becoming one of the first producers of handmade glazed stoneware in South India. This led to an increase in the interest of clay modelling in Pondicherry and consequentially, reawakened the love and passion for pottery and ceramic making in India. Apart from its intriguing history, the centre offers a great opportunity for you to rouse your inner artist and have a fun-filled day with your loved ones. You can cherish the experience of learning from some of the most-esteemed potters in Pondicherry as they give you lessons on the techniques of creating ceramics and pottery. The place is a great way to channel your creativity and take back some amazing souvenirs and precious memories back home from Pondicherry. Undeniably a great way to spend time with your family on a Pondicherry vacation.
Location: No. 56, Thottakkal Main Road, Karamanikuppam, Mudaliarpet., Thottakkal Main Road, JVS Nagar, Mudaliarpet, Pondicherry
14. Soak Up the Pondicherry Culture at Sita Cultural Centre
Famous for its rich heritage, Pondicherry has a great Franco-Indian cultural spot called the Sita Cultural Centre. It has become one of the most alluring spots for tourists who are keen to learn and take a little bit of Pondicherry’s culture back home. Located on the Candappa Mudaliar Street, the place offers recreational classes in a variety of disciplines, making it one of the most exciting things to do in Pondicherry. Some of the popular classes they offer are the Tamil language course, Pilates, Yoga, Bharatanatyam among others. You can have a fun-filled experience and opt for Indian cooking or a Kolam art class. They even have sessions on the history and making of Ayurvedic medicines for holistic healing. What makes this place particularly unique is that not only does it teach visitors exquisite art forms, it also offers them a chance to appreciate Pondicherry’s rich culture with dance performances, art exhibitions and other events. Teachers here speak Tamil, English and French, so you should have no difficulty conversing with them. It is one of the experiences unique to Pondicherry and is a great way to bond with your family.
Open Hours: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm. Monday through Saturday
Location: 22 Candappa Mudaliyar Street, Pondicherry
15. Enjoy the Camps at the Dune Eco Village
Explore the Dune Eco Village for a laidback day in Pondicherry. You can go for a spa treatment to rejuvenate your body and soul, or you can go on a walk and take in the rustic charm of the place for a relaxing experience with your family. This place in Pondicherry also offers some great adventure sports and lures in tourists with its beauty. The place even offers camping facilities and is surrounded by organic farms that add to its natural beauty. Due to its proximity to the beaches, it makes for a great spot to relax with your family and spend some quality time. Finish the trip by indulging in a hearty meal at this retreat in Pondicherry and create a memorable family vacation.
Best Time to visit: December - March
Entry Fee: INR 5300
Location: Pudhukuppam, Keelputhupet Village, via Pondicherry University
16. Take a Boat Ride
For all the water babies who can't get enough of water-related activities or perhaps are looking to explore the charm of the clear Pondicherry waters in a more steady and relaxed manner, add boating onto your list of things of to do in Pondicherry. Located about 7 kilometres away from Pondicherry along the Cuddalore Main Road, the backwaters of the Chunnambar River set the perfect scene for an exciting boating experience. The backdrop is filled with lush, green plantations and scenic blue waters, making the backwaters an ideal spot to turn into a shutterbug and flood your social media feed with the beauty of Pondicherry. You can opt for a pedal boat if you want to laze around in the water, taking your time and enjoying the company of your family. It is also a great place to soak up the sun and sand, gazing upon the picturesque landscape of Plage Paradiso, the most famous beach in Pondicherry. It is indeed an ethereal experience as nature, and exotic birds in your surroundings engulf you while you boat. To take your boating experience to the next level, you can go on a night camp, spending some lovely time up in the treehouses in the backwaters of Pondicherry. And if you are fortunate, you will be able to spot some dolphins, jumping out and frolicking in the water, making for an exciting sight for people of all ages.
17. Ride in a Boathouse
If pedal boats aren't the experience, you're looking for, but you're still excited at the thought of coasting through the sapphire waters, renting a boathouse for the day should be on your list of things to do in Pondicherry. You can embark upon an enthralling experience on the majestic boathouse that will captivate your senses with its sheer beauty. Chunnambar’s boathouses are a famous tourist destination and pull in a significant crowd to the backwaters. It is an idyllic activity and gives you a sense of calm and tranquillity. The gentle rocking of the boat against the waves puts you in a hypnotic trance as you and your family enjoy the gorgeous sunsets on Pondicherry’s majestic waterfront. Its natural landscape is scenic and offers various adventure sports along with the boat rides. You can take a stroll or go picnicking if you’re looking for a bonding experience with your family in Pondicherry. The entry to the boathouse is INR 5. But the trip to the boathouse is completed on a Jet Ski, speed boat, or motorboat. Hiring motor boats costs INR 50-100, depending upon the length of your trip; whereas jet skis cost about INR 250-500. The price of the journey on a speedboat depends on its size – if it is a two or a four-seater. Rest assured, a boathouse ride in Pondicherry with your family is a memorable experience that you are bound to cherish all your life.
18. Go Bird Watching at Ousteri Lake
Popularly known as the Osudu Lake by the locals, visiting the Ousteri Lake is an absolute must when wondering what to do in Puducherry. This freshwater lake is the most gorgeous of its kind in all of Pondicherry. Comprising of marshy lands and mudflats, the Ousteri Lake was designated as one of the most significant wetlands of Asia by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Children and adults alike will be spellbound by the colourful and majestic birds that call the lake their home. The sights and sounds of the various birds that are found near Pondicherry are sure to be great for your family. It’s a bonus for the avid birdwatchers of the country who flock to the area to catch a glimpse of the wide range of residential and migratory birds and take in the rich biodiversity at the lake. Keep your eyes peeled for some of the greatest attractions like the Indian Golden Oriole, a bright yellow bird that calls Pondicherry home. You can even spot the Openbill Storks, White Ibises, Egrets, White-Breasted Water Hens and even some Greater Flamingos. If you’re not a big fan of birds, the sunset at the lake will make anyone proclaim Pondicherry to be the prettiest city in India. You can even opt for a boating session and surround yourself with all the magnificent creatures found in the area. You'll find no dearth of exciting things to do in Pondicherry with your family.
19. Visit the Cluny Embroidery Centre
Run by Catholic nuns of a local convent to support underprivileged women, a trip to the Cluny Embroidery Centre in Pondicherry is a must on your list of things to do in Pondicherry. The underprivileged woman employed here is from all over Pondicherry and Tamil Nadu. Trained at the art of embroidery and needlework, these women bring to life the cloth with their vivid artistry. The centre is a shopper's paradise, and you can drop by and browse through their wide selection of intricately sewed products. Full of natural motifs like colourful birds and delicate flowers, generally those found in and around Pondicherry, you're sure to find something here that suits your fancy. If you're looking to spruce up your house with a touch of vintage charm, you can shop for some gorgeous tablecloths, bedsheets, pillowcases, curtains, bath towels, tray cloths, and even some stunning wall-hangings with delicately embroidered motifs on them. You can also take some pieces home as gifts and souvenirs from Pondicherry for your loved ones. This marks a place of female empowerment in Pondicherry and should be visited when travelling with the family.
Open Hours: 8:30 am -12:00 pm and 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm. Open every day Location: White Town, Pondicherry
20. Go for Fun Land Sports
Not fond of beaches, but still wishing to indulge in some adventure sports in Pondicherry? Then you are in luck because Pondicherry is chockfull of adventurous activities which can be enjoyed with the family, all without getting wet. Paintball is a fun way to release stress and jazz up your everyday routine and is also the perfect team-building activity for you to enjoy with your family. One of the most fun experiences in Pondicherry, you can visit the Paintball Zone to feel the adrenaline surging as you run around the compound, escaping the paint pellets and shooting targets. Paintball in Pondicherry is quite safe, and a minimum of 4 people are required to book a session which costs INR 300, and the timings are from 9 am to 5 pm.
Another fun sport to enjoy in Pondicherry is going on an ATV ride that will spike your adrenaline. You can opt for a package that costs INR 1080 and includes other fun activities like archery and target shooting. Other activities in the combo package include zorbing, slingshot, the rope course, and zip lining. Run by Thrillopedia, the site is about 20 kilometres away from Pondicherry and is open from 8:30 am to 6:30 pm. Now that you know all about the fun things to do in Pondicherry go ahead and have the time of your lives.
21. Go on a Shopping Spree in Pondicherry
Shopping is another answer when you ask yourself what to do in Puducherry. Famous for its wide range of products, Pondicherry is indeed a shopper's paradise shops, boutiques and local markets to explore from. Pondicherry is home to speciality handicrafts like aromatic candles, essential oils, handmade paper, incense, and paper lampshades that make for amazing souvenirs to remember the city. And being one of the largest textile producers in Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry is the place for you to shop from the widest range of cloth items. Chambray, satin, oxfords, poplins are just some of the fabrics that are available in Pondicherry at lower than normal rates. Pondicherry is famous for its traditional ways of producing leather items, and you can shop for some custom-made footwear to show-off to your friends. Pondicherry is also renowned for its beautiful metal objects, which can be used to decorate your home or be a gift to a loved one.
The boutiques in Pondicherry will prove to be a delight for the shoppers as it serves as a one-stop shop. These boutiques sell all kinds of items including aromatherapy products, precious gems and stones, marbled silks and some delicate floral embossed candles. You can shop for some French antiques to add a vintage charm to your home and or even shop from an extensive collection of Tibetan handicrafts. Casablanca is the ultimate hub for all your shopping needs ranging from home décor like linens and pottery to some exclusive high-end leather products. Other local souvenirs and trinkets that stand out in Pondicherry are the bowls made of coconut shell and palm stem paintings. Some of the other wonderful things you can take back include handmade dolls, Kora grass bags, bamboo knick-knacks, eco-friendly trays and baskets made from palm leaf, wooden toys, crocheted hats and more. One of the other popular locations to shop at is the Kalki Boutique which is known for its silk and cotton clothing and accessories. So, shopping is the way to go when you're thinking of what to do in Puducherry.
22. Relax on a Private Cruise Boat
Want to party with your family in Pondicherry without the hassle of getting into crowded lounges and bars? Well, then coasting on a private cruise boat with your near ones is one of the best things to do in Pondicherry. They offer some amazing packages that let you rent the cruise boats from evening till midnight. You can set sail onto the clear waters of Pondicherry and live it up for a night. You can capture the spectacular views of the sun setting in the backdrop, transforming the Pondicherry skies into a heavenly mix of shades of pink, purple and oranges. The private boat has a music system set up for you and your family to party all night as you glide across the dark waters. The cruise will cost you approximately INR 2000 and has a minimum requirement of 10 people for the package and is the perfect spot to celebrate a happy occasion. It even offers a buffet spread onboard, and dinner is served when the ship is anchored on the backwaters. The timings of the cruise boat are from 6:30-11: 30 pm; sailing through the Chunnambar backwaters of Pondicherry and you’re brought back to the jetty by midnight. So, hop onto a cruise boat and create some of the most memorable moments from your Pondicherry holiday.
23. Indulge in Some Drool Worthy Meals at the Bay of Buddha
Located in White Town by the Promenade, visiting the Bay of Buddha is a must thing to do in Pondicherry. The Bay of Buddha is a rooftop restaurant with an outdoor seating area that overlooks the picture-perfect old Lighthouse of Pondicherry at Goubert Avenue. You can enjoy a delicious meal that is whipped up for you as you take in the breathtaking setting of this place. The restaurant is always lively and is a sure-fire way to jazz up an evening with your family during your Pondicherry visit. The Bay of Buddha offers a variety of cuisines from different cultures, with pan-Asian cuisine being the restaurant's speciality. Some of the restaurant's most delectable dishes include seafood, mee goring, and the chicken satay. The place is open from 7 am to 10:30 pm every day. Rest assured, you can be certain of having a great dining experience at this cosy, little restaurant with your loved ones while enjoying the great food and service.
24. Visit the Harmonious Auroville
Located about 14 kilometres away from the quaint city of Pondicherry, visiting Auroville, an experimental township should be on top of your things to do in Pondicherry list. The township was established by Mirra Alfassa - the woman who inherited the legacy of Sri Aurobindo. Also known as the ‘City of Dawn’, Auroville was founded on the principle of unity in diversity and the town is divided into several zones with major focus on the Peace, International and Residential Zones. The place welcomes everyone with an open heart, irrespective of their caste, creed, race or religion and aims to spread peace, divinity, brotherhood and serenity in the world. The founders believe that without these elements, the world will become an immoral, unethical place and will eventually cease to exist. You can talk and bond with residents and share your ideas and experiences at this harmonious place, making you realise the power of peace and unity. You can even practice meditation at sessions hosted at the Matrimandir, which is the highlight of the Peace Zone, to focus on finding your inner consciousness and awareness. The International Zone consists of community halls for events, and the Residential Zone was built for the citizens of Auroville. You can even opt for volunteer work at Auroville for an enriching experience. If you ever get confused about what to do in Puducherry, merely head to Auroville and get lost in the peace and tranquillity of this place.
25. Sailing and Yachting in Pondicherry
If you’re thinking of what do in Puducherry, going yachting or sailing will undoubtedly be the highlight of your trip to Pondicherry. Thanks to the expanded coastline of Pondicherry, there are so many water activities for you to choose from. Embark upon a sailing adventure to satiate your need for some thrill and excitement. Apart from the fun, yachting is the perfect experience that offers a blend of luxury and adventure. Pondicherry’s water provides a wide range of yachts to rent from. These vessels have high-powered engines for a fun, adrenaline-filled sailing experience and are just the right place to try out the high life for yourself as you cruise through the waters of Pondicherry. These yachts pull major crowds of tourists and sailing have become one of the most popular attractions in Pondicherry. So, it’s time for you to wind down with the breeze in your hair as you make yourself comfortable and lie peacefully on the deck, right here in Pondicherry.
26. Explore the Roof Garden and Café for a Memorable Trip
The Roof Garden in Pondicherry is a popular attraction among tourists on a family vacation to Pondicherry. Although the garden is best-known for its sightseeing and the spectacular views, it is not the only highlight. You can take a walk around the Roof Garden and spend some quality time with your family as you gaze upon its beautiful architecture and innovative layouts, making it an amazing place for the tourists visiting Pondicherry. You will certainly feel refreshed after a trip to the garden. If you get hungry on your trip, the garden even has a café where you can indulge in a variety of tasty dishes. Located at White Town on Goubert Avenue, the open area seating of the restaurant provides for a refreshing experience with a gorgeous view of the promenade. It is well-lit up at night, turning it into a cosy, little café. It is popular for its North-Indian cuisine but cooked organically and healthily. For a memorable experience and delicious food in Pondicherry, this place is your best bet.
27. Explore the Streets of the Saram China Market
The Saram China Market is a great place for you to get your shopping game on and bring your bargaining skills to the fore. This popular street market is located at Naveena Garden, Brindavanam in Pondicherry. Chock full of imported Chinese goods, this market is the place to go to if you want to shop till you drop in Pondicherry as it sells a range of good quality products at very reasonable prices. In particular, the Saram China Market is popular for home décor items. You can even shop for local food and fish that are found here. This street market is one of the reasons why Pondicherry is called the shopping paradise of South India and is definitely a thing to do in Pondicherry which you cannot miss.
Open Hours: 9:30 am - 9:30 pm. Open every day
Location: Pondicherry Road, Naveena Garden, Brindavanam, Puducherry
28. Indulge in the Local Savoury Cuisines of Pondicherry
Pondicherry is a place where multiple cultures and traditions blend. Hence, it is only natural that they showcase the same principles in their cuisines. Made with the use of dried spices, fresh local catch, and plenty of vinegar, the cuisine of Pondicherry is a blend of French and Portuguese food. The influence of these two cuisines resulted in the creation of a melting pot of delicious flavours. As time passed by, the influence of Tamil food came into the mix and played a major role in modifying the already sumptuous cuisine of Pondicherry. Freshly baked baguettes and crispy croissants with a side of piping hot coffee sum up the French influence for breakfast in Pondicherry. But that is not all that Pondicherry has to offer in terms of food. Delicious South Indian specialities like steaming idlis, masala-filled Dosas and Mendu Vada with Sambar are also some dishes that you have to try. Some other must-try delicacies of Pondicherry are the coconut curry, tandoori potato, soya Dosas, Podanlangkai, Assad, curried vegetables, stuffed cabbage and Palpayasam. Kadugu Yerra, an incredibly tasty curry, is cooked with potatoes, fenugreek, mustard and creamy coconut milk in spicy tomato sauce along with some fresh prawns. Curried vegetables make for a nutritious and colourful vegetarian meal which is just as lip-smacking. Visit Kasha Ki Asha for fusion food, like a European thali and chutney with chips, right here in Pondicherry. Another option is Café des Arts, a bohemian restaurant, offering classic French baguettes, toasties, croque-monsieur and coffee. You can go to La Pasta to switch it up and fill up on some delicious, lip-smacking pasta served with a variety of sauces. Le Club serves a classic French casserole, or you can go to the New Banana Café in Pondicherry for ratatouille. You can even have the Bouillabaisse fish stew at Maison Rose and finish your meal with some classic French pastries. The list could go on; the food options in Pondicherry are truly limitless. Exploring the deliciousness of all the dishes in Pondicherry will prove to be a truly gastronomical experience, the right thing to do in Pondicherry for foodies.
29. Get Spiritual with Yoga and Meditation at the Yoganjali Natyalayam
If you’re thinking of things to do in Pondicherry that will help you achieve some mental peace and calm, you must visit the Yoganjali Natyalayam. Experiencing the yoga sessions at this centre is truly surreal and is a great way to channel your inner energy positively. Located in Pudupalaiyam, the place offers a refreshing experience with the backdrop of idyllic Pondicherry beaches along with the gentle breeze to keep you cool while you practice your poses. There are experienced yoga practitioners who host special training programs for advanced yoga from 9am-6pm daily and teach students how to achieve mental stability. You must visit the place for a therapeutic experience in Pondicherry.
30. Visit the Botanical Garden of Pondicherry
Built-in 1862 by C.S. Perrotet, the Botanical Garden in Pondicherry covers 22 acres of land and boasts of a rare and enchanting collection of flora and fauna. The exotic plants that are housed here comprise of 1500 different species, a truly enthralling collection that will leave you fascinated. The Garden also hosts a beautiful musical fountain show that you can enjoy with your family in the evening. The beautiful Japanese rock structure here and the aquarium are bound to pique the interest of children as well as adults.
Open Hours: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Entry Fee: INR 10
Location: Marimalai Adigal Salai, Near Anna Statue, Orleanpet, Pondicherry
Pondicherry is a popular tourist destination that is rife with culture, history, tradition and an even mix of fun and adventurous activities. To make the most of your trip to Pondicherry head over to Club Mahindra Pondicherry resort in Tamil Nadu. It offers comfortable and spacious rooms filled with modern amenities that cater to all your needs. You can even indulge yourself in the authentic cuisine of Tamil Nadu at the in-house restaurant at the resort. The chefs whip up some delicious dishes belonging to various local cuisines of Tamil Nadu that can be relished over hearty conversations about your memorable trip with your family. Visit Club Mahindra Reviews and go through the glowing testimonies of happy guests. So, go ahead and mark your calendars for the most memorable trip of your life in Pondicherry with Club Mahindra.
Also, have a look at this Tamil Nadu tourism guide to experience Pondicherry like never before!