About Auroville Beach
Auroville Beach is a prominent beach, situated near to Auroville in Pondicherry. Located at about 12 km from Pondicherry, it is an ideal place for weekend getaways. Popularly known among the locals as Auro Beach, it offers a picturesque landscape with the crystal blue waters and the phenomenal sunrise and sunset.
Every year, tourists from India and different countries of the world visit the beach in large numbers to experience the golden beach sands and the silent waves. It is a perfect place for swimmers and surfers. The name of the beach is derived from the renowned Auroville township. It is a tranquil place ideal for meditation and peace. In 1968, Mirra Alfassa “The Mother” christened the concept of the town Auroville.
The main purpose was to promote the thoughts and teachings of Sri Aurobindo, the divine saint. The beach is accessible to the public and is mostly crowded during the weekends. The weekdays are comparatively less populated. There are many hotels, guesthouses, and resorts nearby if you want to stay and experience the beauty of the beach.
The beach is not overburdened by food stalls and shops hence you can spend absolute serene leisure time. You can observe a lot of enthusiastic surfers and swimmers at the beach, displaying their skilled movements in the sea waters.
Auroville Beach is a must inclusion into the bucket list of Pondicherry’s tourist attractions. The quiet atmosphere allures tourists to spend a relaxing time while experiencing the gleaming waters and the glittering sands.
How to Reach Auroville Beach
The distance between Auroville Beach and Pondicherry bus stand is 8.3 km. It takes approximately 15 mins to reach the beach by car, via the Mahatma Gandhi Road and the East Coast Road. From the Pondicherry bus stop, you need to cross a distance of approximately 2.5 km to reach the Mahatma Gandhi Road.
From there you need to travel a distance of 3 km to reach the crossing of the East Coast Road. You need to further travel a distance of 2.8 km to reach the Auroville beach. Bus services are also available from the bus stand to the beach.
Best Time to Visit Auroville Beach
The best time to visit Auroville beach is during the winter season. Usually, the winters in Pondicherry start from October and extends till March. The weather during the winter is comfortable and pleasant. The winds create a calm and cool environment, perfect to send a quiet vacation away from the humdrum of regular life. You can lie down on a beach chair or a hammock and immerse into the scintillating beauty of the beach.
The swimmers and surfers prefer the winters to indulge in the shimmering waves of the beach.Few tourists even prefer to visit the beach during the summer season to spend their vacations. Summers in Pondicherry starts from April and extends till June. The weather at this time of the year is hot and stuffy. You can enjoy a sun tan before a cool dip into the sea waters.
What Not to Miss at Auroville Beach
Things to do at/near Auroville Beach and Attractions near Auroville Beach
Auroville Beach and its nearby places offer a wide range of activities and tourist destinations.
The key sites you can visit near the beach are:
1. Matrimandir - In colloquial language, it implies the temple dedicated to the Mother. It is situated in the Auroville township and is considered as the symbol of divine power. The temple signifies peace and calmness. It is located in the midst of a large open space in the town and binds the city and the locals with its enigmatic power of eternity. If you need a silent zone to recognize your inner self, then the temple is a perfect place to concentrate.
2.Savitri Bhavan- The Bhavan is phenomenal in imparting the spiritual teachings of Sri Aurobindo. The centre is dedicated to promoting the works and vision of the heavenly saint. It hosts workshops, conferences, academic classes, library, picture gallery to showcase the epic vision of the saint.
3. Kala Kendra- It is an exhibition cum learning centre for talented and skilled artists of India to showcase their exclusive creations. Several shows and workshops are conducted to promote and encourage artists from various regions. The tourists who are ardent lovers of art and craft can visit the centre and stay to participate in discussions. They can also volunteer to conduct programs and illustrate their talents.
4.Peace Tables- The Peace tables are a unique creation by the famous artist George Nakashima. There are 6 such tables placed in the Hall of Peace in Auroville. The tables were created from the wood of three hundred years old Walnut trees. It was in the year 1996 when the tables were displayed for the public. George Nakashima had carved the tables to symbolize peace and unity among human beings. Every week meditations are conducted surrounding the tables to promote peace of mind and tranquility of the human soul.
5.Botanical Garden- The Botanical Garden is the home of a wide variety of plant species, spreading across the flora through its lush greenery. You can experience the wide diversity of nature’s ecstatic beauty. Spread over an area of 44 acres, there are 15 parts of the garden. Almost 250 species of plants and trees are present inside the garden. It is a wonderful experience to traverse through the different corners of the garden, displaying an incredible aura of greenness. There is also a nursery inside the garden where you can buy plants. You can even participate to volunteer in preserving the garden.
The key activities you can engage and enjoy near the beach are
1. Yoga and Meditation- There are innumerable options to meditate and practise yoga in Auroville. You can also relax inside the Quiet Healing Center which offers spas, body massages, and various therapies. The center is present on the beach and hence accessible while strolling or enjoying at the beach. The ambiance inside the center is perfect for rejuvenating the mind and the body. You can also visit Arka, a health and wellness center in Auroville. They conduct several physiotherapy sessions and massages for the tourists. Seminars and workshops are also conducted to spread awareness of health care. You can also visit and volunteer in the Pitanga cultural centre, dedicated to serving the people with education and cultural activities. Several martial arts and yoga sessions are conducted in the centre.
2. Youth Center - The youth center is an interesting concept for young generations. There are various kinds of activities for the youth to participate in and build up a community. You can get involved in cooking or gardening or any other activities as per your choice. The center also hosts parties for the participants.
3. Auroville Bakery and Boulangerie- If you are a foodie then you must not miss the Auroville bakery and boulangerie. It is a famous bakery store selling a wide range of products. The products are all locally produced from the farms. You can plunge into their delicious offerings sitting outside in a beautifully ornate garden.
4. Cycling- For adventure enthusiasts and bikers, there is a stupendous opportunity for an adrenaline rush across the twining roads of Auroville. The pollution free environment in the town and near the beach provide an appropriate atmosphere for cycling. The huge trees along both sides of the roads bring about a cool sensation for the bikers. You can either ride your cycle or rent a cycle from the adjacent shops. Many cyclists can be seen during the tourist season, especially in the evenings and even at midnight.
5. Cultural Pavilions- Cultural Pavilions in Auroville bring in an exquisite cultural extravaganza of almost 50 countries of the world. The pavilions host multiple cultural events to educate and showcase the diversity of world traditions and heritages. The motive for creating such pavilions is to unite the world along with its diversities.
Other Essential Information About Auroville Beach
Location:Auroville Beach is located at Bommayapalayam, which is 12 km from Pondicherry. It is located on the right side of the East Coast Road near the Auroville Beach bus stop.
Timings:The beach is open every day from morning 7 AM till evening at 6 PM.
Entry fee:A nominal entry fee of INR 5 is charged to the visitors of the beach.
Visitor's Facility:There are beach chairs and hammocks available for visitors to relax and sunbathe. Surfing boards are available on rent. Visitors can also swim and relax in the waters.
Parking Facility:There are no parking facilities inside the beach. Visitors need to park their car outside before entering the beach premises.
Distance from Pondicherry bus stand:Auroville beach is located at about 8.3 km from the Pondicherry bus stand if you avail the Mahatma Gandhi Road first and then the East Coast Road.
Places to stay at/near Auroville Beach
There are several beach hotels, guesthouses, and resorts near Auroville beach.
1. Beach Bubbles - Auroville Beach Resort Located near the beach, the resort offers all the modern amenities and provides an experience of a sea like feeling inside the resort campus.
2. Maple Leaf Beach Resort- A perfect choice for travellers visiting the Auroville beach. It provides all the modern amenities with a 24 hour front desk for serving the guests. There is a wonderful pool as well for refreshment. Shops are available at the resort for the guests. It also has a restaurant .
3. Auro Mokhsha Homestay- It offers beach views from the rooms. There are family rooms with a shared kitchen and terrace. The location of the beach hotel is in the midst of a peaceful surrounding.
4. Prince Park Farm House- Located at about 5 km from the beach, it offers a great ambiance. The hotel has 25 rooms for the guests. It is well connected to the Pondicherry railway station as well as the airport. It offers all the modern amenities.
5. Auro Resort- The Auro resort is located about 1 km from the beach. The Pondicherry airport and railway station are 8 km from the resort. There are 18 rooms available for the guests.
Places to eat at/near Auroville Beach
There are many eateries in and around the beach. Simple and casual dining, as well as luxurious dining options, are available as per your choice.
1. Theevu Plage Beach Resort - The owner of the restaurant is a French man. It offers seafood delicacies along with lips smacking veg and chicken dishes. There is a lounge present at the restaurant for waiting or eating while enjoying the sea view.
2. Tanto Pizzeria - It is an Italian restaurant in a pleasant location, with wonderful seating arrangements. It offers excellent Italian and Continental dishes. The food is tasty, especially the brick oven pizzas. They offer a wide range of drinks and desserts too.
3. Marine Drive Multicuisine Restaurant- The eatery does not offer any seafood, but north Indian dishes are available. Both veg and non veg delicacies can be enjoyed by the guests.
4. Goodman Restaurant Pondy- The restaurant offers a wide spread of North Indian dishes. Seated in an outdoor environment, you can enjoy your food amidst the cool breeze outside.
5. White Pearl Residency- It is a hotel cum restaurant with a rooftop terrace for dining. It has a wide spread of dishes for food lovers. You may also opt to stay at the hotel which offers free breakfast and Wi fi facilities.
Tips before visiting Auroville Beach
1. Pack your bag with dresses of breathable light or cotton fabric. Heels are not preferred, slippers are needed while moving around on the beach.
2. Sunscreen lotions are a must at the beach to avoid sun tan.
3. Carry a good pair of UV protected sunglasses with you at the beach.
4. Drinking and smoking are prohibited in Pondicherry in public areas.
5. There are no food stalls or shacks inside the beach. Therefore it is recommended to keep some light food items and water along with you.