Things to Do in Auroville for a Peaceful Vacation Experience

Sightseeing

Top things to do in Auroville

Auroville is one of a kind town situated in Pondicherry. The township runs on the principles of peace and harmony and sustainable living, and is endearingly known as the "City of Dawn". There are a number of activities and things to do in Auroville that attract a lot of guests all year through. From the famous Matrimandir, to Botanical Garden, beautiful beaches and dainty cafes, Auroville has got it all. Given below is a comprehensive list of the best things to do in Auroville. Have a look!

Here is the list of 21 Things to Do in Auroville for a Peaceful Vacation Experience

1. Find Peace at the Matrimandir

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Once the prime things to do in Auroville is visiting the Matrimandir. Matrimandir, which is the Sanskrit word for 'Temple of The Mother', is the most important edifice of the Auroville township in Pondicherry. Located just in the middle of Auroville in a large open area known as 'Peace', Matrimandir is fondly known as the 'soul of the city' and holds crucial spiritual significance for those who practice Integral Yoga. At the same time, it is also a place for individual silent concentration.

2. Take a Walk at the Golden Shores of Auroville Beach

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Auroville Beach, also known as the Auro Beach is located in Pondicherry. It is a part of the Auroville Ashram and is situated about 10 kilometres away. The beach is about 12 kilometres away from Pondicherry and lies on the right-hand side of East Coast Road. Auro Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Pondicherry. It attracts a lot of tourists and locals. The beach stays true to its form and doesn't have a lot of establishments that provide food or snacks. The Ashram has maintained its serenity and ensured that it is not tampered or changed a lot due to human encroachment.

3. Watch a Show at Cinema Paradiso

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The Multimedia Centre (MMC) of Auroville, also known as Cinema Paradiso, is a 120 seat theatre in Auroville where films are screened on a regular basis, almost every night. Several times a year, thematic film festivals are held. They also hold regular talk and live performances that you can participate in.

4. Relish Desserts at the Auroville Bakery and Boulangerie

Auroville Bakery and Boulangerie is one of the most popular bakeries in town and you should definitely check this out. All of their products are made from the local produce from the farms. Besides the delicious products, the cafe also has a wonderful seating outdoors amidst a gorgeous garden.

5. Natural Retreat at Botanical Garden

Botanical Garden at Auroville was established to celebrate and preserve the beauty and diversity of nature and nurture its relationship with the humankind. The 44-acre botanical garden is home to 250 different tree species divided into 15 beautiful gardens. The green zone offers a rejuvenating environment which can be explored by all. One can also purchase plants from the Garden Shop or volunteer to help maintain the beautiful botanical garden.

6. Take a Tour of the Savitri Bhavan

Savitri Bhavan is a centre of spiritual education which functions on the vision and the teachings of Aurobindo and the mother. The core of this system is Aurobindo's mantric epic 'Savitri' and was established to nurture and promote Aurobindo's vision, his work and his life. The Bhavan houses a Picture Gallery, a Digital Library & a reading room, a hostel for volunteers and conducts workshops, classes, orientations, guest lectures, retreats, etc.

7. Enjoy a Theatre Performance at Adishakti Theatre

Adishakti, also known as the Adishakti Laboratory for Theatre Arts Research is a performing arts company which also provides stay and accommodation facilities Located on the outskirts of Pondicherry, the theatre is known for its brilliant and evocative performances. If you are lucky, you might also be able to catch a live show running here.

8. Offer Help at the Youth Centre

Youth Centre is situated behind the Town Hall and is a space where the youth can come together to relax, construct or build a working community. For example, you can help with the kitchen or gardening or any of the like. No one person is responsible for any activity. You can just walk by the centre to enquire about the activities going on and help with the one that suits your liking. If you are lucky, you might also get invited to one of the fabulous parties organized at the Youth Centre. Be sure, not to miss it.

9. Gorge on a Delicious Pizza at Tanto

Tanto is a dainty cafe in Auroville popular for its super delicious, sumptuous pizzas. The pizzeria has been done up in an Italian decor and hosts a number of guests everyday. Besides, the chef's take special care of your health as all their food is made in extra virgin olive oil and everything is cooked in the oven. If you are a foodie, or even if you are not, you must definitely include visiting here in your bucket list of things to do in Auroville.

10. Meditate at the Peace Tables

The Peace Tables were crafted by a master of woodwork George Nakashima as a symbol of peace and harmony for the humankind. There are a total of six Peace Tables made from the wood of 300-year-old Eastern Black Walnut Trees, one of which is kept in the Hall of Peace in Auroville since 1996. Meditations to inculcate the sense and importance of peace are conducted around this table on a weekly basis.

11. Visit the Several Cultural Pavilions

Cultural Pavilions provide a window to know and understand the ways of life of different cultures in the world. It has been designed to bring out the true spirit of each country and inculcate a sense of respect for their culture. Auroville represents about 50 nations and the pavilion groups organise cultural events representing their continents and expressing unity in diversity.

12. Explore the Vibrant Kala Kendra

Kala Kendra is a famous hub for all art activities in the country and actively encourages artists to exhibit or demonstrate their art through shows, exhibitions and workshops. Artists_can stay with the community in Auroville and work with them to share and gain knowledge on the subject through their interactive programs._

13. Go All Organic at Naturellement

Naturellement is an organic food and drinks manufacturer in Auroville which is also a garden cafe. You can enjoy delicious and perfectly healthy meals in this gorgeous quaint cafe without having to worry about your health. You can also purchase marmalades, jams and jellies etc from here to take back home.

14. Practice Yoga and Meditation

Yoga and Meditation are some of the many facilities and activities that you can take part in, when you are in Auroville. Centres like Quiet Healing Centre, Pitanga and Arka are open to all visitors where you can meditate and find peace. When you are in Auroville, you should definitely participate and have an experience that will stay with you for a lifetime.

15. Indulge in Spas at Quiet Healing Centre

Quiet Healing Centre, also known as Auroville's Health Spa offers a variety of services to its visitors including spas, massages, and other healing therapies which can help you relax and rejuvenate. Moreover, the centre is situated on the beach, has a perfect ambiance and helps you relax your mind like no place else.

16. Cycle Through the Winding Roads

Cycling on the winding roads across town is one of the best things to do in Auroville and also one of the popular ones as the town promotes sustainable living and pollution-free transport. You can explore the peaceful roads even at midnight. There are several options in the region where you can rent these bicycles for any period of time.

17. Volunteer and Work at the Guest Service

If you are in Auroville, you can visit the Guest Service located above the Solar Kitchen and find out about the activities and volunteer work that you can engage in while you are in Auroville. This is not only the best way to get engaged but it also helps you relax and unwind from the monotony of life. Besides, no joy is greater than the joy of making friends, while you are helping build a better community at the same time.

18. Relax by the Beautiful Bodhi Beach

Bodhi Beach is a serene beach apt for leisurely strolls along the golden shoreline, for a swim or for surfing in the beautiful Bay of Bengal. Its proximity to the main town make it a perfect spot to unwind and relax.

19. Taste the Famous Cold Coffee at Marc's Cafe

Marc's Cafe is another one of the popular cafes in Auroville. Besides an amazing ambiance and delicious food, the cafe is also a hotspot for discussions and debates where people come over and sit to have a conversation. You must definitely try their cold coffee as that is the best ranking dish on their menu.

20. Get a Beauty Treatment at Arka

Arka is a wellness centre in Auroville where the visitors can avail the many wellness treatments and facilities like Ayurvedic massages, yoga massages, craniosacral therapy acupuncture, physiotherapy etc. You can also indulge in beauty parlor treatments like manicure, pedicure, facials etc. There are also workshops and seminars organized from time to time which all the visitors can attend.

21. Participate in Nature Walks in the Forests

Forests in and around Auroville are maintained by the Forest Group who are actively involved in restoring and protecting the biodiversity, conserving water, protecting the soil and educating locals on the environment. The forests expand over 70 acres of land that was neglected and left to erode till the group began restoration through sustainable energy to create a natural environment.

This post was published by Aqsa Aleem

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