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 Though Pondicherry is very close to Chennai, it is a separate state by itself.

Pondicherry consists of four regions: Pondicherry, Karaikal, Yanam, and Mahe. The state is named after the largest region: Pondicherry. 

Pondicherry was a French colony till 1954 when it became part of the Union of India. The French influence is still very evident in the region. Many French citizens still live in the town. A French consulate functions in the town.

The entire town is divided into the French quarter and the Indian quarter. The French influence is still present in the layout of the town. It is perhaps the only town in India where the numbering of houses is done in an peculiar way; the even numbers are on one side, and the odd numbers are opposite. French is still one of the official languages of the town along with Malayalam, Tamil, and Telugu.

Pondicherry is one of the most popular tourist destinations of South India.The city has many colonial buildings, beautiful temples,churches, and the unique French ambience, evident everywhere, present a wonderful experience to the tourist.

The must-see places in Pondicherry include the four beaches in Pondicherry: Promenade Beach, Paradise Beach, The Auroville Beach,and the Serinity Beach. The other places include the Aurobindo Ashram and Auroville, a small township situated about eight kilometers from the town. Auroville is meant to be a universal town where men and women from any nation,caste, and beliefs can live in peace and harmony.

Pondicherry can be easily reached from Chennai by driving along the coast on the scenic East Coast Road. It takes about three hours to reach Pondicherry from Chennai. Accommodation and food is available at the ashram. Prior booking is a must.

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