Around the Dune
To the south (15kms), lies Pondicherry, an ex French colony with its quaint colonial houses and numerous restaurants. The entertainment ranges from amazing shopping experience in the street bazaars to quiet cultural evenings in Alliance Francaise. Sri Aurobindo’s Ashram is also a place to visit. Also to the south, but closer (8km) is Auroville, an experimental township sustaining a unique community. Life with people from 44 different nationalities living and working together, this utopian concept is the realization of the dream of Mirra Alfassa, a French disciple of Sri Aurobindo, known as “The Mother”.
To the north, on the way to Chennai one can visit the ancient Pallava port of Mahabalipuram, famous for its magnificent shore temple, it’s rathas (stone chariots) and its numerous talented stone sculptors.
To the west, lies Gingee, an ancient fort set amongst a landscape of granite chaos, further west (50km), lies the town of Thiruvanamalai, famed for its very large and ancient temple and the sacred hill called Arunachala, symbolizing the element fire. At the foot of this hill, lived one of the greatest seers of India, Ramana Maharshi.
Trips can be organized even further to Cuddalore, Chidambaram, Swamimalai, Karaikudi, Madurai etc, places that offer a unique insight into enchanting Tamil culture.