Karaikal Tourism
Beach

Karaikal Tourism

Karaikal Info

  • State: Pondicherry
  • Famous for/as: Beach
Karaikal is an ancient temple town situated along the eastern coast of the Union Territory of Pondicherry. Karaikal is a popular destination of tourists as well as pilgrims. It is located on the Koramandel coast of the Bay of Bengal, at a distance of about 300 km from the south of Chennai and 135 km from Pondicherry.

Situated on the delta of the River Cauvery, Karaikal is the second largest among the four regions in the Union Territory of Pondicherry. Karaikal is bounded by Nagappattinam and Thiruvarur Districts of the southern State of Tamil Nadu.  

History of Karaikal

Karaikal is a place with rich cultural and religious history. This place has been mentioned in the ancient texts of Nayanmars and Alwars. Karaikal was known by the name Karaigiri in Sanskrit, which came from two words 'Karai' and 'Kal'. The town of Karaikal was under the rule of the Pallava dynasty during the 8th century AD. Sekkizhar, a renowned poet of the early 11th century, has mentioned about the town of Karaikal in his Peria puranam.  

The later historical records about Karaikal remain rather obscure until the 18th century. Then, Karaikal was an integral part of the Thanjavur Kingdom. In 1738, Dumas, a dignitary from France bargained with the Sahuji of Thanjavur for the town of Karaikal, Karakalcheri Fort and 8 villages under the its rule.

In the year 1739 the French took possession of Karaikal town from the King of Thanjavur. The French expanded their province later on by acquiring the surrounding villages from Pratap Singh, the successor to the throne of Thanjavur.

When the French surrendered to the British in 1761, the vast territory that the French possessed around Thanjavur came under the British rule. In accordance with the 1814 Treaty of Paris, the British gave the territory back to the French. Karaikal continued to be under French rule until 1954. Even today, the town retains a French flavour.

Things to do in Karaikal

Karaikal Ammaiyar Temple, Lord Saneeswara Temple at Thirunallar, Sri Dharbarenyeswaraswamy Temple, Badrakaliyamman Temple, Ayiramkaliyamman Temple, etc. are some of the prime pilgrim centres in Karaikal.  

The proximity of pilgrim destinations like Velankanni and Nagore also attracts tourists to Karaikal. The presence of the Lord Saneeswara (Saturn) Temple makes Karaikal a unique pilgrim destination.

Best time to visit Karaikal is during winters between November and February. 

Travelling to Karaikal

The nearest international airport to Karaikal is in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.  From Chennai to Karaikal the distance is around 300 km, while 7 to 9 hours by road. The other nearest airport is ay Trichy. 

The nearest railway station to Karaikal is at Nagore, which is 10 km away. Karaikal is directly connected to major cities of Tamil Nadu which include Chidambaram, Mayiladuthurai, Kumbakonam, Thanjavur, Tiruchirapalli, Thiruvarur, Velankanni and Nagapattinam.

Pondicherry Road Transport Development Corporation, Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation and private buses ply to Karaikal from major places of Pondicherry and Tamil Nadu. Taxis, auto-rickshaws and local buses are available for local transportation.   

Accommodation options in Karaikal

There are numerous accommodation options in Karaikal. These include hotels ranging from budget to luxury catering to the needs of the travellers.
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Most preferred by...

Travellers from Chennai, Salem
Family
Couple

Best time to visit Karaikal in the next six months

  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December
  • January
  • February

Karaikal Traveller Reviews

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Read 32 destination reviews
with average rating of 5.3/7, 1
out of 557 Karaikal reviews 32
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Sudharsan

  • Scout
  • Sudharsan
  • Lives in Delhi
  • 3 Reviews
  •  84 readers

"A great experience" new review

  • 7/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
Great experience in Karaikal. Great darshan in the saneeswara bhagavan temple. Speechless. We came out with overwhelming happiness. Since it was a short trip we were not able to see all the other temples and places but otherwise whatever we have seen through was completely rememberable.
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Harish Kumar

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  • Harish Kumar
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 3 Reviews
  •  5 helpful votes
  •  1786 readers

"A must visit for a religious person"

  • 4/7
  • Posted Apr 4, 2015
Are you a religious or cultural oriented person then definitely you should visit here. It is the place which is associated with history and this town holds history of 500 more years where Gods were living. Scientifically proven temple of Lord Saneeswara that there is some radiation coming in this place at particular. You will appreciate if you are a science background person and that's why our ancestors asks us to wear black dress in this temple. Black absorbs 100%, hence to absorb this we wear black there.
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Venkatesh

  • Scout
  • Venkatesh
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 3 Reviews
  •  45 helpful votes
  •  4580 readers

"Peaceful Pilgrimage"

  • 5/7
  • Posted Mar 21, 2015
Karaikal is not only place to have a peaceful stay. It is a best place for people who have religious believes. People of all religion have places nearby to go and visit. Like Nagur dharga for Muslims, Velankanni for Christians, and Saneeshwaran temple for hindu deities. Also Karaikal beach and resort is there for entertainment.
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Rakesh Sharma

  • Tourist
  • Rakesh Sharma
  • Lives in Karaikal
  • 3 Reviews
  •  19 helpful votes
  •  4993 readers

"An awesome place to spend time"

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted Oct 8, 2014
Superb temple, beach and Teppakulam, Thirunallaru Temple, Tranqbar tourism spot and many places. The boating was extraordinary and awesome. The Velanganni temple is also good.
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Dr vijayakrishnan nair Nair

  • Explorer
  • Dr vijayakrishnan nair Nair
  • Heritage seeker
  • Lives in Thiruvananthapuram
  • 1 photo
  • 7 Reviews
  •  33 helpful votes
  •  14383 readers

"Karaikal... a nice vacation spot"

  • 7/7
  • Posted May 23, 2014
Nice vacation spot. There are many famous religious places nearby. Also, there are beaches available for you to enjoy. I really had a good time. You can get trains easily to reach this place. And there are also many hotels in the area to help you stay and have a good time. The hotels are available at reasonable rates.
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Mohammed ismail

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  • Mohammed ismail
  • 2 Reviews
  •  3400 readers

"A religious heritage"

  • 4/7
  • Posted Feb 8, 2014
Karaikal is a good sea side city it beauty lies in its calmness. Karaikal is one of the four regions of the Union Territory of Pondicherry in India. It is the destination for those who seek solitude, leisure, serenity and piety. Known from times immemorial for its rich religious heritage, Karaikal is a 'must visit' for the pilgrim tourist and the religious minded. It is a peaceful destination off the beaten path of the South Indian tour Circuit.
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Ramesh

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  • Ramesh
  • 4 Reviews
  •  5085 readers

"Had a very good experience"

  • 6/7
  • Posted Jan 16, 2014
The over all experience was very good. We have made a plan to to come back here with our friends.
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Johnson T.

  • Scout
  • Johnson T.
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 2 Reviews
  •  3 helpful votes
  •  3615 readers

"Nice Town"

  • 5.5/7
  • Posted Nov 6, 2013
Karaikal is a small but nice town there are many historic temples in and and route this town. If you are planning to visit the Nava Graha temples then it is better to stay in this town and visit..
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  • 2 votes

Balu

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  • Balu
  • 3 Reviews
  •  4 helpful votes
  •  5539 readers

"Beautiful religious town"

  • 5.5/7
  • Posted Oct 8, 2013
Karaikal is a small but nice town. There are many historic temples on route and in the town itself. If you are planning to visit the Navagraha temples then it is better to stay in this town and visit all the temples. Karaikal is a very good tourist attraction and a religious destination.
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K satyanarayana  Murthy

  • Explorer
  • K satyanarayana Murthy
  • Lives in Mumbai
  • 7 Reviews
  •  8 helpful votes
  •  7355 readers

"Amazing Karaikal!"

  • 5.5/7
  • Posted Oct 6, 2013
Karaikal has a lot to offer for all ages. Beaches, fort, temples, churches and also famous dargah at Nagore. Though we had wished, we could not visit the holy dargah. We could complete our dream of visiting Annai Vailankanni Church at Vailankanni. Sikkil singaravelan temple and tirunallar temple are worth visiting and are very holy.

Try the masala vadai, banana bhajia and cutting chai at karikal bus stand.
We were out most of the time, used to get up very early get ready and head out. Visited lot of temples at Nagapattinam (Neelayudakshi temple, Soundararaja Swamy Perumal ( a very handsome idol of lord vishnu), Sikkil Singaravelan temple of lord Muruga and Nellukadai Mariamman temple. Half an hour travel from Karaikal will take you to Tirukkadavvur (goddess Abhirami ) temple . You can also visit Keezhaperumpallam (ketu) and Tiruvenkadu (Buddha) temples also.
Do visit the dutch fort at trancobar,
Best mode of transport is by bus as Tamilnadu and Pondicherry have a very good network of buses.
Had a great time !!!
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  • 1 vote

Manikandan Harish Praksh Thomas Manikandan, Harish, Praksh and 1119 other people have been to Karaikal.
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Karaikal Sightseeing


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