Saturday, October 18, 2008

Pulicat Lake -> Une belle place de pique-nique

Hey Guys,

This time its Pazhaverkadu or Pulicat Lake. See the name the dutch people have given to this place "Pulicat Lake" since Pazhaverkadu didn't fit in their tongue. What ever the name may be the place is really awesome.

Location: Pazhaverkadu is located at 60KM to North of chennai. It can be reached by taking Natinal Highways 5 (NH5) and take right at Thatchoor. That right cut is called Thatchoor Kootu Road. When you are going from chennai in NH5 after travelling some distance you will come across the toll gate. After crossing the toll comes the above mentioned right cut to go to pulicat lake.

History: Pulicat is a small town situated at a distance of 60 km from Chennai. It houses a Dutch cemetery dating back to the 17th century. The Dutch built a fort here in the year 1609, to ensure a comfortable stay at the Coromandel Coast for a long time. It was finally occupied by the British in 1825. After independence, the fort became a part of Madras state of India, which was later renamed as Tamil Nadu, in 1968. There is also a Dutch Church here, which has withered away in spite of renovation.

Owing to the number of monuments and lakes present here, a trip to Pulicat is interesting from travel and tourism point of view. The cemetery is looked after by the Archaeological Survey of India. The main attraction of the place is the Pulicat Lake. The lake is separated from the Bay of Bengal, by a strip of land which comprises of the Pulicat town. Owing to its proximity to the sea, it has turned into a salt water lagoon. It is the second largest lagoon of India and boasts of a rich biodiversity.

Therefore, the lagoon has been preserved as a Wildlife Sanctuary. A host of animals, such as the fish, aquatic and terrestrial birds, mammals and reptiles, find shelter here. It is the hub of migratory birds like Flamingos, which are the most frequent visitors, with about 15,000 of them visiting every year. Pelicans, Kingfishers, Herons, Painted Storks, Spoonbills and Ducks are some of the other birds that show up at Pulicat Lake every year. There is also a light house on the opposite side of the lake. Thus, Pulicat makes a good picnic spot for all.

Our Trip Experiences

Actually I went to this place twice within a span of 2 weeks. Both these times I enjoyed the place thoroughly. Main attraction here is the shallow beach that is situated at the place where lake merges with the sea. A narrow opening that lets water to flow to and fro from the lake to sea. Its a beautiful view in the evening time. Other places there are a Savukku Thoppu ( i.e Casuarina tree Grove) with little bit of shade nice romantic place with a beach view in front of you to relax. And then there is a bird sanctuary.

Our agenda was like this, We started at 8 AM in the morning from Chennai reached pulicat lake by 10 AM took the boat and went to savukku thoppu by 11 AM played volley ball there in the near by shore. Very good time pass. We enjoyed playing in that beach. The fishermen in those areas will be ready to serve you with boat. They will prepare whatever sea food you order and bring it for lunch. The boat plus food may cost you approx. 1000 Rs for a strength of 11 people. So after a good lengthy playing session of beach volley ball we got exhausted. We bought prawns and some good variety of fishes good for making fish fry from the local market there and gave it to the fisherman who came with us in the morning. He prepared the lunch and brought it by 2 PM. So after that exhausting play we all were famished. The food he brought was absolutely delicious. You will not get that taste even in 5 star hotels. It was so spicy and tasty even the quantity was more so it really filled our stomach, for all 11 of us. We spent for fish and prawns a 500 bucks. So total expenditure at pulicat lake is 1500 bucks. Then comes your traveling expenses. If you are going to take your own vehicles then only the fuel cost is the expenditure. Else if you are going to book any private travels It would cost around 2500 bucks.

After having a feast we took a short relaxation that afternoon under the shades of the casuarina trees with a beautiful beach view in front of us. Then started for the next location that is the shallow beach. The beauty of this shallow beach is you can keep on going inside the water for quite a long distance till water comes to your chest level. Very mild waves will be there. It will be very shallow for some distance from the shore. Nice place to swim and play in the beach waters. The entire ambience will be superb in the evening. And if it rains it will be very beautiful to sea. We spent rest of the time there till 6 PM and started our journey back in the boat to the Pulicat town and came home back.

Please click below to see the slideshow of our pictures taken in pulicat lake.