Main Attractions in Nainital Town
The essence of Nainital’s beauty is its stunning lake, surrounded by seven hills adorned with charming cottages and villas. The lake’s reflection during the day is a captivating sight, but it becomes even more enchanting at night when the hillside bulbs and lights illuminate the water.
The lake provides plenty of opportunities for holidaymakers to enjoy yachting, boating, or paddling. The rates for rowing or paddle boats are displayed on prepaid booths situated at various points along the lakeside. Both ends of the lake, the northern end called Mallital and the southern end called Tallital, have boat stations where rowing and paddle boats are available.
The Tallital end of the lake has a bridge, known as Danth bridge, featuring a statue of Gandhi and a post office on its sides. This bridge is the only one in the world to have a post office located on it. Additionally, there is a bus station, taxi stand, and railway reservation counter on the same bridge. Both ends of the bridge have well-maintained shopping centers, consisting of beautifully laid-out marts, stores, and luxury shops.
Govind Ballabh Pant Marg, now known as Mall Road, runs alongside one side of the lake and is home to numerous hotels, restaurants, travel agencies, shops, banks, and other businesses. During the popular tourist months of May and June, the Mall Road is closed to vehicular traffic in the evening to allow for leisurely strolling. It serves as the main connection between Mallital and Tallital.On the opposite side of the lake, lies Thandi Road. This road is less crowded and features the Pashan Devi Temple. Thandi Road does not allow vehicles.
On the northern side of the lake lies a popular gathering spot that attracts people from all walks of life, especially in the evenings. Here, one can find a statue of Pt. Govind Ballabh Pant and a beautiful fountain, as well as a band stand. The Flats also has a playing ground for sports and cultural activities during festivals, as well as a Chat Bazar and Bhotia Market, where vendors sell their fancy items. Additionally, there are a Mosque, Gurudwara, and Naina Devi temple located in the Flatts. Capitol cinema and Rink theatre, which is used for roller skating, are also situated in the Flatts, with a portion of the area being used for car parking. For recreational activities, the New Club, Boat House Club, and Masonic Hall are located in the periphery of the Flatts.
High Altitude Zoo:
Govind Ballabh Pant High Altitude Zoo is situated in an expansive open area at an altitude of 2100 meters, about one kilometer away from the bus stand. Currently, it houses a variety of animals such as monkeys, Himalayan black bear, leopard, Siberian tiger, palm civet cat, wolf, silver pheasants, rose-ringed parakeet, hill fox, ghoral, barking deer, and sambhar. Please note that the zoo is closed for visitors on Mondays, all national holidays, as well as during Holi and Diwali.
The British constructed Raj Bhavan as the residence of the Governor of the North West Province. Currently, it serves as the official accommodation of the Governor of Uttarakhand, as well as for state guests visiting Nainital. The property features a beautiful garden, golf links, and swimming pool. Other notable places within the complex include Jhandidhar, Modi Heights, and Munshi Heights. The Governor’s House is designed in the style of Buckingham Palace and boasts 113 double-storied rooms.
The Naina Peak:
The Naina Peak, located 6 kilometers from the town, is the highest peak in Nainital with an altitude of 2611 meters. From this peak, visitors can enjoy a breathtaking view of the snow-capped Himalayas, spanning from Bandar Punch in the west to Api and Nari peaks of Nepal in the east. On the other side, the peak offers a bird’s eye view of the magnificent Nainital city. Using a pair of binoculars, one can get a good panorama of the surrounding area of Nainital. To visit this peak, visitors can hire ponies or horses from Snow View or Barapathhar.
Located just 12 Kms away from Nainital, Kilbury is a peaceful and serene place at an altitude of 2194 mts. Accessible by a motorable road, this place is surrounded by lush green forests, providing a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city. Kilbury also offers a stunning view of the Himalayas. There is a forest rest house available for those who wish to stay overnight. Overall, Kilbury is an ideal destination for a calm and tranquil holiday.
Situated in the Ayarpatta region, Tiffin Top is a peak that stands at an altitude of 2292 meters above sea level, only 4 Kms away from the town. The road to this scenic spot winds its way along the rugged hillside, offering breathtaking views of the countryside before revealing the picturesque Tiffin Top. From here, visitors can enjoy stunning views of the Himalayas and the surrounding landscapes. Dorothy’s Seat, a memorial dedicated to an English lady painter named Dorothy Kellet, can also be found here. It was built by her husband and admirers after her death. Tiffin Top and Lands End can be conveniently visited together, as both spots are situated side by side.
Other Popular Places in Nainital
Located at an altitude of 1220 meters above sea level, this place is situated 26 kilometers away from Nainital and 4 kilometers away from Bhimtal. The picturesque lake here has a unique shape with nine corners and is 983 meters long, 693 meters wide, and 40.3 meters deep. It is surrounded by a charming valley and offers excellent opportunities for angling and bird watching. Visitors can also enjoy rowing, paddling, or yachting on the lake.
Located on the Nainital-Almora Road, 17 kilometers from Nainital and 9 kilometers from Bhowali, Kaichi is a modern pilgrimage center famous for the ashram of the renowned Neem Karoli Maharaj. The name “Kaichi” is derived from the local dialect, which refers to the two sharp hairpin bends of the motor road, and has no relation to scissors.
At an altitude of 2286 meters and situated 51 kilometers away from Nainital, this stunning location is surrounded by fruit orchards and dense coniferous forests. It was established by the British as a research and education institute (IVRI) in 1893, and it is a well-known scenic spot that overlooks the long ranges of the Himalayas. At the top of a rock, there is an ancient temple of Lord Shiv
Located at an altitude of 1370 meters and 23 kilometers away from Nainital, Sattal is an exceptional and unforgettable destination. It boasts a group of lakes nestled amidst the oak forest, similar to Westmoreland in England. The first lake that one comes across while approaching Sattal is the old Nal Damyanti Lake. Moving forward, there is the ashram of Stanley Johns, an American Missionary, followed by Panna or Garude lake. As one descends, there is a group of three lakes, namely Ram, Laxman, and Sita lake.
Located at an altitude of 1370 meters, Bhimtal is approximately 22 kilometers from Nainital and 11 kilometers from Bhowali. The main attraction of Bhimtal is its beautiful lake, which is larger than Naini lake and offers breathtaking views to tourists. Visitors can enjoy boating on the lake and explore the island in the middle of the lake, which houses a stunning aquarium. The island is located 91 meters away from the shore and can be reached by boat. The 17th century Bhimeshwar temple complex, situated along the 40 feet high dam, is another popular attraction. The local bus stand and taxi stand are located nearby, and one road from Bhimtal leads to Naukuchiatal and Janglia Gaon, while the other goes to Kathgodam, which is 21 kilometers away.
Located 1706 meters above sea level and at a distance of 11 kilometers from Nainital, Bhowali serves as a road junction for nearby hill stations. This place is renowned for its scenic beauty and as a hub for hill fruit trade. Additionally, Bhowali is recognized for its T.B. sanatorium that was established in the year 1912.
Renowned for the temple of Lord Golu, worshipped by the hill people, and the Sainik School, this place is located 3 kilometers away from Bhowali and 16 kilometers from Nainital.