The promenade in Pondicherry,India

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Puducherry (Pondicherry)

Pondy is a seaside town, but that doesn’t make it a beach destination; the city’s sand is a thin strip of dirty brown that slurps into a seawall of jagged rocks. But Goubert Ave (Beach Rd) is a killer stroll, especially at dawn and dusk when half the town takes a romantic wander. In a stroke of genius, authorities have banned traffic here from 6pm to 7.30am.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Puducherry (Pondicherry) attractions

1. École Française d'Extrême-Orient


This handsome heritage building and library is home to over 11,000 Indology books and a series of Sanskrit, Tamil and Manipravalam palm-leaf manuscripts…

2. Notre Dame des Anges

0.14 MILES

Looking out to sea, past a statue of Joan of Arc (opposite), Notre Dame des Anges was completed in 1855, and is arguably Pondy's most attractive church…

3. Gandhi Memorial

0.31 MILES

The main sight along seafront Goubert Ave is this bronze striding statue of Gandhi.

4. Old Lighthouse

0.33 MILES

Pondy's lighthouse was completed in the 1830s and functioned for more than a century before being replaced in 1979.

5. Bharathi Park

0.34 MILES

A shady green haven that's always busy, Bharathi Park faces the neoclassical governor's residence, Raj Nivas, on its north side.

6. Puducherry Museum

0.43 MILES

Goodness knows how this converted late-18th-century villa keeps its artefacts from disintegrating, considering there’s a whole floor of French-era…

7. Raj Nivas

0.46 MILES

Once home to Governor Dupleix, the neoclassical governor's residence looks out over Bharathi Park from the north. You can't go inside.