Thursday, 29 December 2016

Heritage walk on the Streets of Pondicherry

Crowded streets, blaring horns, busy people, petty shops on every nook and corner! Compare this with lush gardens, colonial mansions, quiet lanes with lined up trees.

This is the scenario in the city of Pondicherry.

Pondicherry boasts of buildings with both French architecture and Franco-Tamil architecture. The town that is inhabited on the south of the Canal is popularly known as White Town (French Quarters) and predominantly consists of buildings with French architecture.

The portion that lies on the north of the Canal Street is the Tamil Quarter and has Franco- Tamil architecture.

Here is a quick peek into both the quarters...

The buildings in White Town are mainly colored with 'earth' colors- Sun burnt yellow, orange, peach, ash, white and brown.

They are beautifully styled villas/ mansions with high compound walls and ornate doors.

The windows stand out with their elaborate cast iron grills. There are quarters with large windows slit into two (which sometimes is open) that lets an onlooker peek into them stealthily.

The buildings at the Tamil Quarters have verandahs with wooden pillars in front of their main doors and they are much more inviting than the mansions of the White town.

A grand mansion in the Tamil quarters...

 Lot of structures in the Tamil quarters are dilapidated and are in ruins, yet the intricate wood work on doors and jaali work are a witness to their grandeur they enjoyed long ago.

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