Nainital Uttarakhand


Nainital, is known as the lake city and lake district of Uttarakhand. The city is located around the Naini Lake. This place is named after the Goddess Naini Devi.

Nainital is one of the best holiday getaway, in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand. The picture perfect Nainital is surrounded by multiple lakes and the Kumaon Himalayas in the background which makes it an ideal place to relax and fall in love with nature.

Nainital due to its superb weather, beautiful landscape, good food, good accommodation facilities, adventure sport activities is like a dose of adrenaline to the tired minds of the tourist who get an ample time to let their hair down and be ready with full vigour for their routine life.

Please keep the town clean and green during your visit to Nainital.

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    Geography, Culture and People

    Nainital town lies in the Nainital district of Uttarakhand. The town of Nainital spreads over 11.7 sq km at an altitude of approx 2084 meters from sea level. Nainital is surrounded by lofty green Coniferous, Rhododendron, Oak and Deodar forests and huge mountains peaks include Shivaling, Satopanth and Bhagirathi. The river Kosi is one of the main rivers flowing in the district whereas Gaula, Bhakra, Dabka are a number of smaller rivulets also flowing through it. Nainital is surrounded by seven mountains named Ayarpata, Alma, Deopata, Sher-ka-Danda, Laria Kanta, Cheena and Handi Bandi.

    The population of Nainital district according to the 2011 census was 955,128 in which Nainital town has 47,378 with a sex ratio of 911 female per 1000 male. The literacy rate of is about 92.93 percent. Hindus form the majority of people in Nainital and Hindi and Kumaoni and the major languages spoken by the people. Other languages spoken in the region are Garhwali, Tibetan, Punjabi and English. People of all religion live together in peace and close harmony with each other.

    Almost all Hindu festivals are celebrated here in Nainital. As it falls in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand Fuldeyi, Bikhauti, Harela, Ghee Sankranti, Khatarua, Holi Uttaraini are most celebrated throughout the region.

    Nainital is around 300 km from Delhi and 280 kms from Dehradun. The city is divided into 13 small sub areas known as wards like The Snow View, Tallital, Mallital, Uppar Mal, Rajbhavan and so on.

    Nainital has a favourable climate so summers are cool and winters colder. Mussoorie receive snowfall during the winter during the months between December and February. Nainital can be visited any time of the year..

    Nainital Tourism

    Nainital is a big name in Uttarakhand tourism and attracts thousands of both domestic and foreign tourists every year for sightseeing and adventure.

    Nainital is also known as the city of lakes, the most famous amongst the lakes is the Naini Lake. This beautiful lake is about 2 miles wide and is surrounded by big lush hills.

    The Naini Lake is an eye - shaped lake and is encircled with many small cottages, shops, restaurants and hotels. The colourful yatches sailing on the lake enhance the view manifold. The Naina Peak that surround the lake is also a very popular tourist spot and offer a fantastic and breathtaking view of the Himalayas.

    Naina Devi temple at the end of the lake is said to be the exact spot where parvati's eye is said to be fallen.

    Nainital Zoo or the high altitude zoo is a very important tourist spot where you can find rare species of snow leopard and the Himalayan Black bear. It is considered as one of the best zoos in India.

    The Governor House and the Eco Cave Garden are also equally important tourist places.

    The city is also famous for its various schools and research facilities. Nainital also proudly houses many renowned schools some from the British period. The Observatory or the Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES) is located 9kms from the town on the Manora Peak and is the centre for astronomical studies and optical tracking of artificial satellites. One can also take a small trek of around 1 kms from Hanuman Grahi to reach here.

    Places to visit in Nainital


    Naina Devi Temple

    The Naina devi temple is named after a legend which says that when Lord Shiva carried the body of Goddess Sati (Parvati) her body parts fell and the Naina Devi Temple is the exact spot where the eyes of the Goddess fell. The boating and sailing on the lake is a sight to behold. It is one of the most revered temples of Nainital.


    Naini Lake

    This is an eye shape lake dedicated to Goddess Naina Devi. The lake is surrounded by lush green hills and is one of the most beautiful lakes in the country. Must visit when in Nainital.

    Naina Peak

    Naina Peak

    ( 2.5kms ) Highest peak in all of Nainital and a popular picnic spot. It provides a breathtaking view of the Himalayas and the entire Nainital region.

    Snow view

    Snow View

    ( 2.5kms from Nainital ) Snow view is a scenic picnic spot. The picnic spot provides a fine view of the snow covered Himalayas. Rope way facilities to reach the picnic spot is also available.

    Nainital High Altitude Zoo

    Nainital High Altitude Zoo

    ( 1.5kms ) One of the best zoos in India. There are well maintained Royal Bengal Tigers and Mountain Leopards with many more interesting animals. Lots of Birds can also be found. Walking inside the zoo is really enjoyable experience.

    Aries Observatory

    ( ARIES ) Nainital Observatory

    The Aries Observatory is situated at an altitude of (1951 mts) and is around 4.4 kms from Nainital. It is a great place for astronomical studies and optical tracking of artificial satellites. Opened for 4 days a week, the night view of the moon from the observatory is a unique experience and a learning opportunity to young children.

    Lands End

    Lands End

    This beautiful hillside terrace is situated almost 4.8kms from Nainital.We can see the fine views of the Khurpa Tal and also the terraced fields on the side of the hills.



    Bhowali is almost 11kms from Naintal. It is famous for it big and beautiful fruit orchards. Tourists can enjoy adventure activities here.



    Bhimtal ( 22.5kms ) is an ancient place named after Bhima of Mahabharata. Bhimeshwara Mahadev Temple, an old Shiva temple in the bank of Bhimtal lake, is believed to have been built by the Padavas during their banishment in the Mahabhatata epic. Bhimtal is also a beautiful lake resort.



    Mukteshwar (50kms from nainital ) is a small hill station amidst wooded forest and offers a majestic view of the Himalayas. The hill station also provides a 360 degree view of the peaks of Alomra and the Adi Nampa of Nepal. There is also a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva.

    Nauchakia Tal

    Naukuchia Tal

    Naukuchia Tal or the, Nine-Cornered Lake , is 26 km from Nainital and 4 km from Bhimtal. The lake is almost 1 km long, 0.5 km wide and approx 40 m deep. Migratory birds flock the lake and the lake is a good boating and fishing spot. Very good picnic spot.

    Flora and Fauna

    Nainital has a dense Sal ,Oak and Pine forest. Small packets of Deodar and Surai are found at higher altitudes. Some of the important trees and bushes growing are Panger, Akhrot, Hill Pipal, Chinar, Angu, Kilmora, Kunj, Hisalu, Weeping Willow, and Pine. In the lower altitudes around the Bhabhar region, one can see Babul, Sal, Kikar, Shisham, and Khair trees. All these make favourable conditions for the much abundant flora and fauna in the district.

    The forests here are home to a large number of animals like the Himalayan languor, Indian porcupine, wild pig, monkey, barking deer, black capped marten, gural, and brown flying squirrel. It also houses a large number of birds such as the streaked laughing thrush, house sparrow, the Himalayan tree creeper, the green backed tit, jungle crow, grey winged black bird and many more.

    At the high altitudes of Nainital you can find Apple, peaches, apricots and pears orchards while the litches and mango orchards on the plains around Ramnagar. Nainital is also one of the most fruit growing districts of Uttarakhand.

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    Nainital History

    Legends believe Goddess Naina or Parvati performed Sati when Lord Shiva was insulted by her father. Lord Shiva upon angry carried the burned body towards Mount Kailash. During this time some part of the burned body fell upon the earth and they were then worshipped as Shakti Peeths. There are in total 64 Shakti Peeths all over Asia. Parvati's eye ( Naina ) fell here and so place came to be known after after the Goddess Naini Devi.

    Legends also believe that the lake was dug by rishis and filled it with the water from the lake Manasarovar in Tibet.

    Even after the British occupation of Kumaon, Nainital remained a secret with the locals who were god fearing people and did not want the outsiders to know about the place. In 1817 the second commissioner of Kumaun Mr. G.W. Traill was the first European to visit Nainital he found the lake by chance but a god fearing man himself kept it to himself.

    In the year 1839 a shrewd and greedy businessman, Mr. P. Barron found about the secret and built a home on shores of the lake. In 1841, Nainital appeared in issue of the 'Englishman Calcutta' announcing the discovery of a lake in the vicinity of Almora.

    Nainital soon become popular and by 1850, the Nainital Municipal Board was formed and 1862, Nainital became the summer seat of the North Western Provinces and later and official summer capital of the British. The Sah of Almora obtained construction rights form the board and soon the expansion of the town happened. The greenery of the town gave way to huge magnificent bungalows, marketing areas, recreation centres and clubhouses, schools and institutes of higher education etc.

    What more to do at Nainital?


    Nainital is surrounded by seven lakes and the biggest being the Naini Lake. One can enjoy different water sports such as boating, yachting, kayoing, speed boating, angling in these magnificent lakes. The Boating Club of Nainital organizes the Yachting Competition in June every year so if you are lucky you can watch one of these tournaments.

    Paragliding and hot air ballooning is also available near Bhimtal and Naukuchiyatal lakes.

    Nainital also provides other activities such as Camping, Birding watching, Hill Climbing, Rock Climbing to explore the rich flora and fauna around here. Visitors can also indulge in outdoor activities like jeep tours on high-terrains, horse riding and mountain biking.

    Trekking can also be done in Nainital. One can visit to the picnic spots via small treks from the plains. The treks are small grade trek and excellent for first timers.

    Nainital also provides team building, leadership, execution and planning management activities for multi national organisations and get the team mentally and physically prepared for the next coming projects.

    Food and Shopping

    Nainital has a wide variery of fooding options that can be found in Mallital, Bara Bazaar and Mall Rd. The restaurants there serve authentic Punjabi, Rajasthani, Chinese, Continental and Thai foods.

    Some of the restaurants also serve Kumaoni food such as Ras, Baadi, Aloo Ke Gutke, Madua ( Buck wheat ) - Koda ki roti. The chutney made out of Bhang ( hemp ) is also very popular. Sweet dishes such as Arsa and Gulgula are also popular in Kumaon.

    Bara Bazaar, Tibetan Market and Mall Road are some of the popular shopping spots in Nainital. One can buy home made jams and juices as well as fresh Cherries, Apples, Berries and Peaches here. Home made decorative candles and wollens are other thing to buy here in Nainital.