Chennai to Pondicherry One Day Trip


Hi All!

This time I want to talk about my travel experience of south India. I went to Chennai to meet my colleagues so you can say it was somewhat an official trip. On the first day went to office and had a wonderful team engagement party in one of the wonderful restaurant where the star attraction was barbeque dishes. We all were enjoying lunch, talks and some of guys were cracking jokes, that’s where I heard guys were planning for Chennai to Pondicherry one day trip and asked to extend 1 more day of my Chennai trip which I liked and agreed. 

Chennai as we all know is one of the metro cities of India formally called as Madras and the capital of Tamil Nadu State. Chennai is one of the largest cultural, economic and educational centers of south-India. Did you know for year 2015 it was ranked 43rd most visited place in the world, Also it is among the most visited Indian cities by foreign tourist. It is third largest emigrant population in India which includes professionals, skilled workers, or artists taking positions outside their home country.

It is interesting to know that both Madras and Chennai is derived from the towns of Madrasapattinam and Chennapatnam. There are various version related to the origin of Madras. One theory says the name was giving by Portuguese whereas historian believe that it is named after the prominent Madeiros family who declared Madre de Deus as a sacred church in San Thome in 1575. Similarly there are various version related to the origin of name Chennai. The most prominent is that the name Chennai is of Telugu origin and derived from the Telugu ruler Chennappa Nayakudu who was the ruler and served as general under Venkata 3 of Vijaynagar from whom British acquired the town in 1639. The meaning of Chenni is face in Telugu and Chenna Kesava Perumal Temple was thought of to be the face of city. Thus People believed that Chennapatnam is named after Chenna Kesava Perumal Temple.

At Marina Beach

On first day after team engagement and completing office work went to visit the famous Marina Beach which I had heard of lot and it didn’t disappointed me though it was dark when I reached after the sunset. The beach is 6 KMs in distance which makes it the longest natural urban beach in the country. It’s not only longest but also the average width of the beach is 300 meters and on some places more than 400 meters. At Marina beach bathing and swimming is prohibited as the undercurrent of water is very turbulent which makes it very dangers. Neighboring to beach there are Annadurai’s and MGR Memorials are found which has many visitors.

Chidambaram temple

On the second day we started our journey to Pondicherry but it was decided instead of going directly we went to Chidambaram temple. It is located in the state of Tamil and the Temple is dedicated to Nataraja Shiva as a lord of dance. The temple having the carvings which displays 108 karanas from the Natya Shastra which are the foundation of a classical dance form Bharatanatyam. It was built in the 10 century when Chidambaram was the capital of Chola dynasty. Also the temple is having 4 huge gateway towers having the stories. Each tower is colorful and unique which narrates stories from various Hindu texts, showing religious acts from Hindu traditions. It also has a big rectangular water pull called as Shivaganga Holy Pool.

Shivaganga Holy Pool

Its awesome experience as it was my first time ever to visit any south Indian temple and that too this such an old temple with such a high significance. After temple we started towards our destination Pondicherry and it was late afternoon we reached our destination. 

Blue Sea at Pondicherry

The first thing to do is to admire a beautiful sunset setting into the clear blue water. At night from the hotel balcony the moon shadow falling on sea is looking very awesome like a portrait. We had a great fun time and the very nice party. At night we went for a walk on the sea shore and was admiring scenic view of nature.

Sea View at Night, Pondicherry

The official name of Pondicherry know as Puducherry and is the capital of Union Territory of Pondicherry which is surrounded by the state of Tamil Nadu on the Eastern Cost of Indian peninsula. The place came into popularity after the arrival and colonized by French East India Company over a period of time and later became Indian Union Territory. The area was part of Pallava Kingdom in 4th Century and Poduke or Poduca (a marketplace) was Roman trading destination in those times. Thus its common to see the influence of French architecture in the home and building constructed in Pondicherry.

Building with French style

Next day it’s time to returns back to Chennai but while returning we had a visit Mahabalipuram also known as Mamallapuram. Mahabalipuram is located in Chengalpattu district and is 56 KMs away from Chennai. The main attraction are the collection Hindu religion sculpture and monuments from the 7th-8th century made by carving the single big rock and is declared to be UNSCO World Heritage site

Rathas, Elephant

Five Rathas

Five Rathas

It was one of the two major ports cities in the Pallava Kingdom and it was named after the Pallava King Narasimhavarman who was also known as Mahabali. The city was having economic prosperity and also famous for the group of royal monuments from Hindu religion which includes Five Rathas (temples in the form of chariots), Descent of Ganges, Elephant, Ganesh temple, Shore temple and Krishna Butterball etc. This temples and sculpture portraying events which are described in Mahabharata were largely built during the rules of king Narasimhavarman (Mahabali) and his successor. 

Descent of Ganges

Caves, Descent of Ganges

Krishna Butterball
"Sorry for dark Photo"

The city was found by the king Pallava king Mahabali in 7th Century AD. The place also witnessed the summit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping. The informal meet at Mahabalipuram grab lots of eyes and in conversation as PM Modi was in Tamil tradition wear.

It was really amazing experience to see all this monuments and this will make you think the greatness of the architecture of ancient people, you can’t stop yourself by saying how did they built all this. You will also amazed to see Krishna Butterball which gigantic granite boulder is resting on the short incline. How does its not sliding/falling on the incline ground and standing still from so many centuries. I think many researches were made on this and considered to be the wonders of world. It was evening to say good bye to Mahabalipuram as we have to reach Chennai to catch our fight back to home.

It was my first experience to visit South India. Really there are many wonderful places along the length and breadth of India. India is the country has blessed with everything like if you are looking for mountains, hill stations, waterfall, desert, snow, white sand desert, jungle, Sea backwater, Islands, lakes etc. you name it and we have it kind of thing. By all this it will make big and strong desire in your hearts to once in lifetime to visit/admire the beautiful peninsular land full of diverse culture, nature resources and surprising architectures.


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