After watching a vivid and colorful sunrise at the Auro beach, it was time to experience the Chunnambar backwaters boating and Plage paradiso island also called paradise beach in Pondicherry.Plage Paradiso island or paradise beach is an isolated beach from the main land by the Chunnambar backwaters. Thus to reach the paradise beach, one has to cross the Chunnambar backwaters to reach there.
To paradise beach from Chunnambar backwaters by boat:
A regular boat on a regular basis takes around 15-20 minutes of the time to reach on the island of paradise beach. These boats leave from Chunnambar boat-house which is situated on the Pondicherry-Cuddalore highway, around 7 kms from the main city of Pondicherry. We took an Auto-rickshaw for 100 rupees to go there.
Boats at the Chunnambar backwaters and Cuddalore highway in the background
After buying the tickets for 30 rupees, one can ride the designated boat and get down at the beach and then after staying for an hour or two, one can return by the same boat. Boats keep plying from one bank-side to another bank of the backwaters and their avarage frequency is 20 mins between the two.
Chunnambar backwaters is said to be very deep and life-jackets are necessary for every one on the boat, the cost for which is included included in the ticket-price. Once the boat leaves the Chunnambar boat house, one can see the clean backwaters and their under-stream currents. The 20 min journey to paradise beach is really exciting and filled with fun. I would say that the backwaters and the paradise beach are heaven for fun-lovers including photographers, sports-lovers and even family outing.
On the way, you would also see a lot of speed boats and boats of different sizes, filling up the backwaters of Chunnambar with their presence. There is a large mangrove and palm forest along the left shore of the Chunnambar backwaters. These mangroves and palm forest, after the monsoon, are full of greenery and are a treat to our eyes. Its a regular sight to see people filming and shooting photographs. The ride is surely full of amazement while the biggest amazement wait on the other side of the backwaters.
As you approach closer to the paradise beach, you can see the beach appearing out of the waters. Even you can also see the point where the backwaters and the sea meet. Excitement reaches to its peak when the first glimpse of the paradise beach meets our eyes.
There are a few huts at the paradise beach which sell normal snacks and cold-drinks. Except those huts, the beach is not commercialized and still safe from the vendors thus pollution.
After getting down at the sea, one can clearly see the point where the sea and the backwaters meet each other. This point is said to be the perfect fishing ground because in these backwaters sometimes, fishes from the sea venture out.
Sand of the Paradise beach is soft in nature, unlike coarse sand of the Auroville beach. Thus making them a perfect ground for sports and having fun. However, the under currents at the beach are strong and it is not advisable to venture deeper into the sea. The sand at the Plage paradiso appears as a mixture of golden reflection over silvery sheet beside a turquoise water vessel. The vividness of the colors and the peace are a treat to our soul.
The beach is truly paradise in sense that the water color is really blue; sand is golden and silvery; Besides sands are also soft; there is no rush or any sign of busy city-life; there are tree at the far along the beach and they all in confluence make it a true paradise.
Huts at the Paradise beach
After having a lot of fun and peace time together, I personally felt rejuvenated and for a moment, I did not want to go back. However, we had to eventually. So, we stood at the bank on the wooden platform waiting for our ferry while wondering the beauty around.
Important things about the plage paradiso beach:
- You can take your football/Volleyball with you
- Boating takes on the avarage 20 mins from Chunnambar boathouse to Paradise beach
- Avarage boat ride costs around 30 rupees
- Chunnamabar backwaters and boat-house is situated at the Cuddalore highway, 7 Kms from the Pondicherry.
- An auto would cost around 120 rupees.
- Boating Tariff for half an hour:
- 2 Seater Pedal: 25
- 4 Seater Pedal: 40
- 1 Seater Kayak: 10
Chunnamabar backwaters news:
Paradise beach on Chunnambar is coming up with a boxful of plans on this new year. Every new year, thousands of tourists flock at Paradise beach, Chunnambar to celebrate the new year. Keeping the upcoming new year in view, the tourism department is focussing more on tourists amenities like boutique shop, dining pavilion, beautified riverside etc.
Chunnambar backwaters are located south of Pondicherry on the Cuddalore road, To reach the Paradise beach, one has to take a boat ride from the Chunnambar boat house to the paradise beach. Recent heavy lashing along the east coast of India completely washed away many intact buildings of the Chunnamabar backwaters. Seeing the new year at hand, the tourism department has started working day and night.
It is expected that by January end, there will be new guest rooms, toilets and ticket counters. Besides these basic amenities, the project also includes electrification, landscaping, an entrance arch, paved pathways and three boat jetties.
From January end, tourists visiting the Paradise Beach will also be taken to the Arts and Crafts Village at Murungappakam located on the Cuddalore Road. However, the mode of transportation from Chunnambar to Murungappakam is not decided yet.
A part of the construction works related to public amenities like the construction of main reception, dormitory block, kitchen facilities, a dining hall, and toilets are complete. The work on beautifying the landscape is going on. These work will include the construction of amphitheater, restaurants, coffee shops etc. The four-acre Arts and Crafts Village is modeled on the lines of the Dilli Haat and can provide accommodation for more than 50 artisans to stay and work at a time.
New Houseboats for Chunnambar backwaters:
Chunnambar backwaters and paradise beach, one of the most visited and famous beach in Pondicherry is going to see its next version of tourism. PTDC (Pondicherry Tourism Developent Corporation) has decided to introduce Kerala style house boat services on Chunnambar backwaters from January, 2016. Introduction of the Kerala style houseboats has been marked with January seeing the upcoming peak season of tourists.
Pondicherry houseboat facilities:
Though a Kerala style houseboat, these houseboats will be built by a Chennai based company on the Paradise beach itself. The double decker houseboat is expected to have all the latest and modern facilities with 30 feet by 30 feet dimension. Besides, the lower deck of the houseboat is also expected to have three fully air-conditioned bedrooms with attached bathroom, dining room and living room. On the otherhand, the upper deck is expected to have ample space for social gatherings and meetings like corporate meetings and group parties accomodating up to 50 people at a time. This will help PTDC attract the corporate world customers situated in the nearby Metro Chennai where a lot of IT industry are settled.
The houseboat will also have life jackets, life buoys or small lightweight plastic boats, 24 hours electricity back up and back up of ground staff and communication facilities with the head office at the land. Like Kerala houseboats, the houseboats at pondicherry will also be equipped with modern kitchen. A guest will be served with a welcome drink, breakfast, lunch, dinner. Traditional cuisines from Pondicherry and Tamilnadu will mostly be served in lunch and dinner. However, there will also be a focus on continental cuisines for the tourists who are looking for a change of taste.
Pricing, Chunnambar houseboats:
Pricing of the upcoming houseboats at Chunnambar has not been disclosed yet. However, the plush boats can be hired privately at 10,000 rupees per day and you can take full 24 hours cruise in the Chunnambar backwaters.
Most of the cruising will be done during the day time. From the upper deck, one can the palm and coconut groves along the banks of beackwaters. The houseboats will take a round trip on backwaters starting from Chunnambar backwaters to Pudukuppam beach. Pudukuppam beach is situated 13 kms by road to the south of Pondicherry town. However, on water, this distance will be of 12 kms. The houseboat will take a break at Pudukuppam before returning back to Chunnambar backwaters. In the breaktime, passengers can get down as well. The houseboat will return to the Chunnambar backwaters by seven in the evening.