Nainital Travel Guide: Complete travel information and advice on Nainital, Uttarakhand. Sightseeing, things to do, how to reach, where to stay, FAQs and other details about Nainital from travellers.



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Last Updated:17 Nov 2010 8 Contributors

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Go here for: Romantic, Hills, Weekend Breaks

According to ancient Indian mythology, it is believed Naini Lake is one of the religious sites where parts of the charred body of Goddess Parvati fell on earth while being carried by Lord Shiva. The spot where her eyes (or Nain) fell is called Nainital.

Discovered by P. Barron, a European merchant in 1839, Nainital was a summer retreat for the British and the Indian maharajas then. It is home to many prestigious educational institutions; among them is Diocesan Boys' School later renamed as Sherwood College, which boasts of alumni’s like Amitabh Bachchan! Nainital is also linked with legendary hunter turned conservationist Jim Corbett, who lived here with his family and established one of India's first national wildlife parks the Corbett National Park.

Nainital, set amidst the towering peaks of the Kumaon Hills is the perfect destination for weekend getaway to beat the summer heat and revitalize your senses. The beauty of this place beckons nature-seekers, and travel enthusiasts all across India. Nainital, situated at an altitude of 6,358 feet above sea level is set in two parts, Talli Tal and Malli Tal, with the lake separating them. Tallital is the southern side of the lake, while Mallital consists of the northern side. The city is bustling with tourists from April to June and then again from Sept-Oct.

The Mall is flocked with many great places to eat and stay suitable to everyone’s budget. Try the Garhwali food at Shiva restaurant, Bara Bazaar. For lip smacking North-Indian cuisine try Sher-e-Punjab and Machan. Try the momo’s at the Tibetan market and don’t miss the popular samosa & jalebi hawker. Alka, Everest, Pavilion and India Hotel are good places to stay at Mall road at the reasonable rates. Opt for Manu Maharani, a 3-star hotel for a luxury stay at the hill station. Other affordable and good places to stay are Grand hotel, Lakeside inn, Sheela and Mount view hotel.

Nainital has more than just boating on the lake to offer. Take a walk along the Thandi Sadak which lies on the other side of the lake. Vehicles are not allowed here and hence it makes for a nice walk. Take a look at the Pasan Devi Temple along the way and the Naina Devi Temple at the Malli Tal end.

Walk up to see the Raj Bhawan which has been modeled after the Buckingham Palace. Another must see is the St. John’s church near the Uttaranchal High Court which was erected around 1848. It is a beautiful church with marvelous interiors and stained glasses. The architecture is striking and the doors and hinges are of the old times though the outside doesn’t seem well maintained.

Pay a visit to the High Altitude Zoo to see the Siberian tiger, white tiger, leopards and Himalayan bears along with many birds and variety of deer.

Book in advance for the trip on a trolley to Snow View which costs about Rs.70. On top here there are a lot of stalls and games for tourists. Make your way to the view point to see the snow capped peaks in the distance and the seven peaks that surround Nainital. Camel’s Back Peak is the easiest to spot.

You can also book for the lake tour or use your own transport to see the lakes around here. The lakes are – Bhim Tal named after the Pandva Bhim, Sat Tal which is made up of seven lakes, Garud Tal is a small lake near Sat Tal viewed from a distance and Naukuchiya Tal that has nine corners and a myth that states that anyone who can view all nine together will be released from the cycle of rebirths. Boating is available at all the lakes

Apart from being home to awe-inspiring beauty, the hill resort is also a preferred destination for adventure tourism - with the numerous options of yachting, kayaking, canoeing and boating, it offers.

Being a popular tourist destination, Nainital has plenty of stay options. There are a number of hotels in Nainital that are suitable to everyone’s budget and taste. If you want to stay in the heart of the town there are many options and for those who like it quiet and peaceful, there are good stay options too.
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Nainital Photos
Naini Lake Ariel view - Eye (Naini) Shape

Naini Lake Ariel view - Eye (Naini) Shape

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