One of the most popular and frequented temples in Puducherry is the Manakula Vinayagar Temple in White Town. More than 500 years old, it is dedicated to Lord Ganesha. Forty incarnations of Lord Ganesha are carved into its monumental interior with the golden spire forming the superstructure. This temple's architecture is similar to most of the temples of the Deccan era. It already existed here before the French set foot or settled in Puducherry.

The shrine of Lord Murugan, the brother of the presiding deity, also lies within the temple complex. While these aspects of Manakula Vinayagar are impressive in themselves, perhaps the most alluring facet is Lakshmi, the resident elephant who, upon receiving offerings of grass or fruit, will gently place her trunk on your head as a blessing. During the months of August and September, the festival of Lord Manakula Vinayagar is celebrated here, annually, for a period of 24 days and draws swarming crowds.

Other Attractions in Puducherry