If You are Looking for a Relaxing Getaway Where You Can Enjoy Nature’s Bounty, Nainital is the Place to Go To. Here are Top 10 Places to Visit in Nainital

If You are Looking for a Relaxing Getaway Where You Can Enjoy Nature’s Bounty, Nainital is the Place to Go To. Here are Top 10 Places to Visit in Nainital

Nainital is one of the best hill stations in India fenced with green hills, old cottages, and a web of strolling streets. Nainital’s charm includes everything from boating and sailing to old temples and heritage buildings, and of course, scenic views at every step. All of this adds up to the list of places to visit in Nainital that you just can’t miss. Here’s the list of the best places to visit in and around Nainital for an amazing experience:

Amazing Hill-Station Nainital

A very popular honeymoon and holiday destination for the people of North India, Nainital holds quite a significance for those looking for a quick and inexpensive but relaxing getaway. It is a quaint little resort town nestled at the foothills of the Himalayas in the Kumaon region. Located in the Uttarakhand state, it is perched at an elevation of around 2000m. Nainital has been an important tourist destination even before independence when the British found relief from the scorching Indian summers in this chilly town. The hill-station is set around the beautiful Nainital Lake, which is also a popular boating site. Tourists also visit the famous Naina Devi Hindu Temple on its north shore, after which the town has been named. There is a snow view observation point at around 2,270m where tourists can go via a cable car. You get beautiful views of the town and mountains including Uttarakhand’s highest peak – Nanda Devi, while aboard a cable car. The town has a lot more to offer. Lets us read more to find out why Nainital should be in your travel bucket list next.

Why Is Nainital Called Nainital?

According to an ancient Indian mythological legend, all the fifty-one places in India – where parts of Sati’s body fell, came to be known as Shakti Peeths. The green eyes of Sati fell on the earth on what is known as the Naini Lake. The shimmering green waters of the lake are a reflection of the pretty emerald green eyes of Sati. The eye shaped lake was given the name ‘Nainital’ or ‘Naini Lake’ and the town has been named after this lake.

Lesser Known Facts About the Glorious Hill-station Nainital

The Lake District of India has some interesting facts, knowing which, you will not only increase your general knowledge but also get intrigued by this charming little town:

  • It is said that Nainital is older than Christ. It was initially known as Khadesh and was ruled by the Khasis.

  • Legend has it that this town was initially known as Tririshi Sarovar – lake of three sages, who arrived here but found no water. Through meditation by the sanctum of Mansarovar Lake in Tibet, the three sages dug a huge crater in the earth and then filled it up with water.

  • This town has one of the oldest Golf Courses in India – an 18-hole golf course which dates back to 1926. However, it was opened to the public only by 1994.

  • The lake was discovered by a British sugar merchant named P. Barron in 1839. He later set up a European colony there.

  • The Naina-Devi temple, one of the Shakti Peeths of India was destructed in the 1880s but was reconstructed again.

  • Almost every afternoon faces a rainfall in Nainital because of the location of the lake on the north side.

  • At a distance of 22 km from the lake, is another lake named after Bhima, the Bhima Lake. This lake has a 17th-century temple right in the middle. It is an important location for paragliding.

  • The famous Jim Corbett National park is at a 2 hours drive from here.

  • The Nainital Zoo has a snow leopard and a Siberian tiger too.

Famous Alumni of Sherwood College of Nainital

Nainital also has a famous College - Sherwood College, which boasts of famous Bollywood celebrities being a part of its Alumni. Prominent graduates from here include politicians, businessmen and athletes apart from Bollywood. Few of the famous celebrities have been mentioned below. The town is also visited by some avid fans, who do come outside the main gate of the college to catch a glimpse of the institute where their superstar once studied.

  • Amitabh Bachchan – A living legend today, Amitabh Bachchan attended this college during the 60s. He rose to fame in the 70s with movies like Deewar, Zanjeer and then went on to gave many hits in the Indian film industry. The angry young man has appeared in more than 180 films and has a career spanning of more than 50 years which continues till today. He has quite a major fan following in India.

  • Kabir Bedi - a prominent Indian television and film actor, Kabir Bedi has a career spanning in three continents including India, the United States and many other European countries. He has done some commendable work in a TV mini-series and also in the James Bond film Octopussy.

The famous Alumni list of this college in Nainital doesn’t end here. There are some other renowned Bollywood and Indian television actors such as Dilip Tahil, Ram Kapoor, Minissha Lamba and others who have got their degree from Sherwood college.

10 Best Places You Must Visit in Nainital

So while planning your trip to Nainital, do include the below mentioned 10 famous places, which are worth visiting and will complete your trip to the city.

#Idea 1 - Naini Lake

Offering a surreal experience with nature’s bounty, snow-clad peaks and serene and tranquil environment, the Naini Lake is often the first destination tourists hop to as soon as they land on this hill-station. Tourists can avail boating facilities at this lake, situated in the middle of the town. One can also choose to take a relaxing stroll around the lake. Tourists can even enjoy a picnic near the lake or visit the Naina Devi Temple nearby.

Ticket Price: Rs. 100 for parking and entry, boating charges extra
Opening Time: Open all day
Duration: 2 Hours

#Idea 2 - Tiffin Top

Also known as Dorothy’s seat, the magnificent Tiffin Top is perched at an altitude of 2,292 m above the sea level, on the Aryapatta Hill. The peak got its name after an English painter – Dorothy Kellet, who used to sit here every day to paint. One gets breathtaking views of the Himalayas and Nainital from here. Tourists can do horse riding here and watch the sunrise and sunset from the famous point.

Ticket Price: Free, horse riding charges will be extra.
Opening Time: Open all day
Duration: 1 hour to 2 hours

#Idea 3 - Naini Peak

Source triphopp.in

Also known as China Peak, this is the highest peak in the town. It is situated at an elevation of 2615m above the sea level and is also an important trekking point here. This peak offers the most panoramic views of the town. Tourists come here for hiking and also to watch the sunset and sunrise.

Ticket Price: Free
Opening Time: Open all day
Duration: 1 hour

#Idea 4 - Pt. GB. Pant High Altitude Zoo

Pt. GB. Pant High Altitude Zoo is located at an altitude of 2100 m above the sea level. It was established in 1984 but open to the public in 1995. One gets to see several rare and exotic animals and birds species, which are native to this region in India, such as Snow Leopard, Tibetan Wolf, Himalayan Bear, etc. Tourists can also visit the Astronomical Observatory here and go for hiking and trekking.

Ticket Price: Rs. 50 for adults and Rs. 20 for children
Opening Time: Open all days except Mondays from 9.30 am to 4.30 pm.
Duration: 2 hours

#Idea 5 - St. John in the Wilderness

This one is an ancient Church established in 1844. The church is named after a Bishop of Calcutta who was forced to sleep in the unfinished house after falling ill. Built amidst the deodar trees, this church was later built to commemorate the victims of the landslide of 1880. Tourists interested in history, nature and serenity will enjoy this place. One can also pay a visit to the cemetery.

Ticket Price: Free
Opening Time: Open all day from 7 am to 6.30 pm. On Sundays, this place is open from 9 am to 6.30 pm.
Duration: 1 hour

#Idea 6 - Gurney House

This house was built for the British conservationist Jim Corbett in 1881 near the Nainital Lake. This house was later sold to Mr. Sharada Prasad Sharma in the year 1947 after the Corbett family left for Kenya. The house is currently owned by his granddaughter, who allows a private tour of the house on request. History lovers will love to take a quiet stroll around the ancient house built with reused components of the older house which was present here before.

Ticket Price: Free
Opening Time: Open all day from 9 am to 5 pm.
Duration: 1 hour

#Idea 7 - Snow View

One should also take the cable car to get a magnificent snow view in Nainital. Located at an elevation of 2270 m from the sea level, these mountains can be seen by ropeway. One can see majestic views of the snow-capped Himalayan peaks from here such as the Nanda Devi, Trishul and Nanda Kot. Tourists can also enjoy trekking on these mountains and enjoy the magnificent scenery around.

Ticket Price: Free
Opening Time: Open all day except Saturdays from 10.30 am to 5 pm.
Duration: 1 hour

#Idea 8 - Kilbury Bird Sanctuary

Located at an elevation of 2000 m, the Kilbury Bird Sanctuary is one of the few high altitude bird sanctuaries in India. One can find over 240 species of rare and exotic birds here. The birds are both migratory and resident species. This sanctuary is located in the serene and picturesque forest village called Pangot. Tourists can try out the local cuisines at the village and enjoy bird watching. One can also go for trekking here.

Ticket Price: Free
Opening Time: Open all day all time
Duration: 2 hours

#Idea 9 - Land's End

Known as Land’s end because it is believed that trekkers and climbers reach this place in the end and there is no other place to go from here. This magnificent spot is located at an altitude of 2118 m from the sea level. It is a picturesque spot with beautiful scenic mountain view around, lovely pine forests and beautiful trees around. Tourists can take pony rides here or go trekking to the Naina Peak from here. One can also catch a glimpse of the scenic Khurpa lake from this point.

Ticket Price: Free
Opening Time: Open all day from sunrise to sunset.
Duration: 2 hours

#Idea 10 - Eco Cave Gardens

The Eco Cave gardens are a huge network of caves which are interconnected. These caves are a treat for kids and this spot attracts a lot of tourist attention. There are seven caves in the park and one needs to cross a narrow and winding road with amazing views to reach the caves. There is a musical fountain here which attracts the kids and this is a must-visit destination for families along with their children. There are light and show programs arranged at the musical fountain at specific times.

Ticket Price: Rs. 20 for adults and Rs. 10 for children. You need to pay Rs. 25 extra for your camera.
Opening Time: Open all day from 9 am to 6 pm.
Duration: 1 hour

What to Eat While in Nainital?

Being a famous tourist spot, Nainital has almost all kinds of Indian cuisines and a few international cuisines readily available. But while here, you must try the famous Kumaon Cuisine, which is readily available here. It includes varieties such as Chudkani, Bhattiya, Gautras and Mattha.

Are You planning Trekking or Camping in Nainital?

For the nature enthusiasts and adrenaline junkies, Nainital has a lot to offer on the trekking and camping front. Away from the hustle and bustle of the polluted cities, this hill station offers you the perfect dose of rejuvenation and relaxation. Various activities like paragliding, rock climbing, rappelling, hiking, trekking, jungle tours, yoga, caving, kayaking, mountain biking, bird watching, make this town a haven for the thrill seekers. There are various companies offers pre-planned camping trips such as Camp Mehi, Camp Dhanuli, Ayar Jungle Camp, Camp Kyari and many such others, which offer perfectly planned camping trips inclusive of trekking, rappelling, hiking and other such activities. So if you can, do keep two to three days for trekking in Nainital while planning your itinerary for this beautiful hill-station.

From our editorial team

Nainital Sightseeing by Car

To enjoy Nainital sightseeing, one conventional mode of transport is a car. You can halt at places of your choice and go to nook and corner of the city. Tourists can also opt for private cab and car rental services as per their own convenience. Further, travellers can choose between self-driven and chauffeur-driven cars too. There are several agencies that provide such services for Nainital sightseeing and cover most of the key attractions of the city on their route.