You might think Pondicherry and Auroville is one or the same. Isn't it?
But it's not and I am so glad that it's not.
My journey to Pondicherry was always planned for 2019, but the dates where not.
The dates somehow kept moving and I was so depressed as I needed a break.
Finally I did my journey to Pondicherry and how beautifully my stay was at Auroville and not Pondicherry.
My stay was at Time Travellers Hostel. This place is just opposite to MatriMandir Entrance Gate.
It has the rustic, old world charm. They stay is in hut with old vintage feeling. So many hammocks around.
It indeed takes you to a different time.
I travelled to Pondicherry on Friday night via Orange Travels on AC sleeper and reached Pondicherry Bus Stand the next day at 8am Saturday.
As soon as you land, there are flock of autoriders waiting to loot you down with there insane charge.
Don't fall for the trap and walk ahead to the signal and wait for Tuc Tuc.
Tuc Tuc and Autorickshaw is different here.
And if you plan to hire a two-wheeler to explore and stay at Auroville.
Then from the bus stop walk a little further and look for Vijay Two Wheeler Hire. They are very famous and easily googled as well.
They are so welcoming and warm people.
There two-wheeler isn't over priced and very basic like 300-400rs depending on vehicle.
They help you with a city map, marking all the important places to eat, visit and stay.
We took a Vespa as we always wanted to ride it and didn't get the chance in Goa.
We started our journey and headed to our stay in Auroville. As soon as you enter Auroville you are transported to a different zone all together.
We freshened up and started our journey to explore Pondicherry but first we made our booking to MatriMandir.
We started exploring all cafes and white town and french colony.
But didn't really find anything different than Goa or Any other cities.
It was over crowded with very few Cafe's having good food and reasonable price.
Don't go by Zomato reviews and Google reviews they are over hyped.
Aurobindo Ashram was one peaceful place. The Samadhi is beautifully decorated with flowers and incense sticks. A peaceful sitting for sometime there is so soothing.
Head out and explore the white town and the yellow houses.
Click some beautiful pictures, color coordinating with your dress on the yellow wall is a must when in Pondicherry.
Out of all we fell in love with Villa Helena & Coromandel Cafe (Le Mason).
Didn't find any place that actually charged Beers any less than that in Hyderabad.
Do try GMT ice cream on the rocky beach road. It's an italian ice-cream that is to die for you.
Sitting at the Rocky Beach just infront of Promenade was a view to love for. Though the place gets overcrowded just before the sunset and loses it's charm.
Visit to Basilica Church is a grandeur one. The decor is such a lit.
While walking the lanes of White Town and MG road, explored this cute cafe called PY Cafe.
Auroville has some amazing place to stay..sit and explore.
Don't miss the Serenity beach specially during it's sunrise.
Auroville Bakery for its amazing baked breads and cookies.
Tantos for its delicious pizza.
Smoothie bar to keep you hydrated with its smoothies.
Marcs Cafe for amazing english breakfast.
Bread & Choco for its fresh breads.
The best was Solitude Farm Cafe, only if you can pass the Security check post, head over and have the lunch...everything is freshly picked from the farm and cooked (veg only) surrounded in the forest has an amazing charm to it.
I will choose Auroville always beyong Pondicherry is because it has this charm and beauty and silence that I miss staying in a cosmopolitan city. Pondicherry is crowded with shops, malls, traffic and cafes and pubs.
But Auroville life is slow..it gives time a break.
Everything is up in the morning 5. Everything bids goodbye by 7-8pm.
Amidst nature everywhere. Such loving and caring people. Meditation...Yoga...fresh air and fresh breeze. Healthy food and farms to produce fresh fruits.
Calm and soothing.
I will write about my experience to Matri Mandir and The Petal Chambers on another post. It's very close to my heart and putting it down would take a little more time.
DM if you need any info, would happy to help.