Sights to See
Conceived in 1826, the Botanical Gardens boast of a variety of rare and exotic plants from India and abroad. The aquarium inside has rare varieties of ornamental fish and affords a glimpse into the coastal fishing methods adopted in Puducherry. Tel: 0413 2228218.
Eglise de Sacre Coeur de Jesus
This Church on the South Boulevard is dedicated to the sacred heart of Jesus. It is noted for its Gothic architecture. Stained glass corridors and panels depict events from the life of Jesus Christ.
The 1,500-metre promenade along the Goubert Avenue on the coast has many of Puducherry's little delights lined up. The Gandhi Memorial with its light carved pillars, French war memorial, the 29-metre high light house and the glistening beach are some of the sights to interest tourists.
Across the road from the Raj Niwas, the official residence of the Lt. Governor of Puducherry, is the well-laid out Government Park with flowers, lawns and fountains, one of them dating back to the period of Napolean III.
Romain Rolland Library
Founded in 1827, the library has a collection of 30,000 volumes and a large number of periodicals in French, English and Tamil. A few rare books form part of its collection.
Manakula Vinayagar Temple
This Ganesh temple is situated on M.V. Street. Every Friday, people gather here to seek divine blessings for their new ventures. Tel: 0413 2336544.
Established in 1955, this is a research centre for Indian languages and culture. The scientific and technical section prepares vegetation maps, maps of soil types, geology and lithology of India.
Museums and Art Galleries
Located opposite the Government Park, the museum provides glimpses into Puducherry's rich past and present. The sculpture gallery contains some specimen of the Pallava and Chola art from the Pondicherry and Karaikal area. The Archaeological section displays a collection of famous finding from Arikamedu, such as Roman pottery, burial urns, etc. The French gallery is the most interesting part of the museum and provides a glimpse of an office room,
drawing room, dining room and bed room with furniture typical of the French India. The other sections of the museums are Archaeology, Geology, Bronze images, Arms, Handicrafts and Arts. Timings: 9.40 am to 1 pm and 2 to 5.20 pm. Mondays closed.
Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Known as the centre of Integral Yoga, the Ashram was founded in 1926 by Sri Aurobindo, a patriot, philosopher and savant. The Ashram symbolises the ideals of Sri Aurobindo and Mother. The activities of the Ashram include agriculture, industries art and culture. The samadhi, the final resting place of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother is always decorated with flowers and attracts a large number of devotees. Tel: 0413 2233649/650