11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital

The hill station of Nainital is a gateway to the Himalayan State of Uttarakhand, India. This charismatic lake town is situated at an elevation of approximately 2080 meters in Kumaon region.

Nainital is among the most liked hill stations in India and allures large number of tourists all through the year. The town of Nainital is surrounded by poised lakes and lofty mountains and is a perfect place to revive you from the hustle and bustle of the city life.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital tour

Mythology of Nainital

According to the legends, when Devi Sati died and Lord Shiva became angry and tried to destroy the world than, Lord Vishnu in order to make Lord Shiva calm down cut the body of Devi Sati into 52 pieces out of which the eyes fell into a lake in Uttarakhand which is now called Nain Tal means Lake of Eyes.

From Nain Tal it became popular as Nainital. The locals believe this lake to be Holy. In respect of Devi Sati the locals constructed a temple called Naina Devi Temple near the Naini Tal.

History of Nainital

Soon after Anglo-Nepalese battle, the region of Kumaon came under the reign of British. The British Government founded Nainital in the year 1841 and the British Colonists set up Nainital as their summer retreat in the year 1880. So, you can see glimpse of British Era everywhere in this town.

How to Reach Nainital

1. As Nainital Uttarakhand is a high elevation hill station so, it doesn’t have any railway station. The closest station to Nainital is Kathgodam Railway Station which is well linked with the cities like Delhi, Lucknow, Dehradun, Kanpur, Kolkata, Jammu, Ludhiana etc.

From Kathgodam Station you will get rented cabs at 150 bucks per person or buses at 60 bucks per person to get to Nainital which is just 35 kms away and takes approx. 1 to 2 hours.

2. Nainital is well connected by Roadways with Delhi, Rajasthan, Haryana etc. The cities/towns of these states provide regular bus service to Nainital. You will get Government buses and Volvo/deluxe buses as well which takes nearly 8 to 10 hours to reach Nainital.

3. Indira Gandhi airport in New Delhi is the closest Domestic/International airport to Nainital. It is at a distance of 315 kms and you will get buses and rented taxis to reach Nainital. Pantnagar airport is the nearest domestic airport about 65 kms away from Nainital.  

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Places to Visit in Nainital

The picturesque town of Nainital offers a number of alluring spots to explore. The best among them are listed below:

1. Mall road Nainital

The mall road is the heart of Nainital hill station and it runs parallel to the Mystic Lake Naini. The Mall Road is stretched up to 1.5 kms and it joins the 2 ends of Nainital called Tallital and Mallital. From Mall Road you will get magnificent views of the Naini Lake. 

You can also enjoy authentic Kumaon cuisines in the shops of Mall Road. Officially called as Govind Ballabh Pant Marg, this road experiences huge crowd all through the day.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital tour
Mall Road

Things to Remember

The Mall Road remains open from 9:00 am to 10:00 pm all the days.

You will get rented cabs, taxis and auto rickshaws for sightseeing from Mall Road.

You can enjoy Shopping in the shops of Mall Road.

>You will get many budget and hi-end hotels with lake/mountain views in the Mall Road.

2. Naini Lake

 Naini Lake or Nainital Lake is a natural fresh-water lake nestled in the lap of the Mountain Town Nainital. This mango-shaped lake is positioned in the mid of Nainital and is the most favorite location for the honeymoon couples & attracts a huge number of tourists worldwide.

The Naini Lake is bordered by 7 lofty peaks Aryapatta, Cheena, Alma, Handi Bandi, Laria Kanta, Deopatta and Sher ka Danda. The sublime tranquility of the lake, the mysticism of the lush peaks and the clear blue sky will make you wordless.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, places to visit in nainital
Nainital Lake

Things to Remember

This lake is open for the public from 7:00 am to 6:00 pm all the days.

The entry charge and the parking charge are 100 bucks each.

It takes 1-2 hours to explore the Naini Lake.

You can enjoy water activities like kayaking, paddle boating, yachting here in Naini Lake.

The boating charge varies from 100 bucks to 200 bucks per hour.

You can enjoy a Gondola ride from Naini Lake to the Snow view point to see the aerial view of the lake.

Gondolas charges 250 bucks per adults and 200 bucks per children.

You can make a visit to the Naina Devi Temple located just close to the lake.

Keep your camera ready for the perfect shots of this beautiful location.

3. Naini Peak

The Naini Peak is also recognized as China Peak is the uppermost point of Nainital. From the elevation of 2600 meters you will get a panoramic view of Nainital, Naini Lake and also Kumaon’s Terai regions. Located just 6 kms away from the Mallital, this peak can be reached by cars or by trekking. Naini Peak is one of the favorite destinations for the Himalayan trekkers.

On the way to Naini Peak you can see the verdant woods of Cypress and Deodar all around. This peak is a heaven for the nature enthusiasts and bird watchers.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, places to visit in nainital
Naini Peak

Things to Remember

Start early for the Naini Peak to get a nice view of the countryside.

You can also enjoy sunrise and sunset at this point.

You can enjoy hiking in Naini Peak.

Keep some warm/woolen clothes with you as the weather is cold and breezy at Naini Peak.

4. Naina Devi Temple

The Naina Devi temple is considered one among the 51 Shakti Peeths in India and is a sacred place for the Hindus. Situated on the edge of the Naini Lake, this temple attracts huge crowd of devotees all through the year. You can enter the temple after crossing a spacious courtyard. On the right side of the courtyard you will see temples of Hanuman and Lord Ganesha and on the left you will see a very old holy Peepal tree.

After entering the sanctum you will witness Lord Ganesha on the right and Goddess Kali on the left. At the center you will see 2 eyes which represent the eyes of Goddess Naina Devi.

This 15th century temple has gone through many damages by landslides and finally in the year 1883 this temple was re-constructed by the locals of Nainital.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital weather
Naina Devi Temple

Things to Remember

This temple remains open from 9:00 am to 10:00 pm all the days.

No entry charge as it is a place of worship.

This temple is at a walk able distance from the Mall Road of Nainital and accessible from Mallital via auto rickshaw.

5. St. John’s Wilderness Church

St. John’s Church was constructed in the year 1846 and is amongst the oldest structures constructed in Nainital. Located in Mallital this stunning old piece of history is only 2 kms away from the Naini Lake.

This church is named after Saint John. According to the locals, Daniel Wilson, a Bishop from Kolkata came to Nainital and founded this church in the year 1844. After sometime he fell ill and stayed in the half constructed church which was at that time located on the woods. In this way, this church is recognized as the St. John’s Wilderness Church.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital
St. John's Wilderness Church

Things to Remember

This church is accessible by auto rickshaw from Mallital and Nainital Mall Road as well.

Everyone is allowed to enter this Church.

No entry charge is needed.

Photography is not allowed inside the charge but you can capture the church photos from outside as the surrounding of this church is mesmerizing.

This church is open all days from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm and on Sundays from 7:00 am to 6:00 pm.

You can also take part in the prayer sessions. 

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6. Tiffin Top

Tiffin Top popularly called as Dorothy’s seat is a famed tourist spot and picnic spot sited atop Aryapatta Hills. At an altitude of 2200 meters Tiffin Top offers a bird’s-eye view of the serene town of Nainital and its surroundings.

The view at Tiffin Top is a treat to eyes and a paradise for photography. You can capture your best Nainital photos at this point. This spot is just 4 kms away from the Nainital Mall road so; you can reach there in just 15 minutes.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital tour
Tiffin Top

Things to Remember

Tiffin Top is open all days from 9:00 am to 5:30 pm.

You can take pleasure in horse riding here and charges are approx. 400-800 bucks.

You can also enjoy hiking here.

This is a public place so, no entry charge is needed.

It takes 1 to 2 hrs to explore the location.

Keep some warm clothes with you as the weather is breezy at the top.

You will get astounding views of sunset and sunrise at Tiffin Top.

7. Snow View Point

This is one of the most visited tourist spots in Nainital. Situated at an altitude of 2250 meters this peak proffers 360 degree view of Nainital and the view of the snow clad peaks of Naina Kot, Trishul and Naina Devi is magnificent.

There is a big pair of binoculars at the top of the Snow View Point for the tourists to enjoy a close view of the snow clad mountains bordering this point.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital
Snow View point

Things to Remember

There is no entry charge for this spot.

You can reach the top of Snow View Point via rope-way or cabs.

The rope-way charges 250 bucks per adult and 200 bucks per children.

This point is only 2kms away from Nainital town.

The binocular charge is 20 bucks per person.

This place is open all days from 10:00 am to 5:30 pm but remain closed on Saturdays.

Fun activities like rides and games for kids are available near the Snow View point.

An amusement park is there where you can spend some quality time with your family.

An archaic Tibetan Gompa named Gadhan Kunkyop Ling Monestary is located very close to this point which is a must visit place.

You can also enjoy some tasty snacks and a cup of hot tea/coffee at this high altitude point as many small food stalls are there near this point.

8. Eco Cave Gardens

This place has recently got recognition among the tourists. Located just 1 km away from the Mall Road of Nainital, this place is a huddle of natural stony caves formed in different animal shapes bordering which a garden is developed by the Nainital Tourism. 

This is a great place for the children to see the natural habitation of different animals. The famed caves among them are Tiger cave, Bat cave, Panther cave, Flying Fox cave and Apes cave. This place holds great informative and instructive importance related to the Kumaon region. The hanging garden is also an interesting part of this Eco Cave Gardens to explore.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital
Eco Cave Gardens 

Things to Remember

This place is open every day from 9:00 am to 5:30 pm.

The entry charge is 6o bucks for adults and 25 bucks for children.

Photography is allowed inside the garden with a charge of 25 bucks per camera.

You have to walk a lot to explore the entire garden area so, wear comfortable shoes.

Keep some warm clothes as weather is windy and cold here.

As it is close to the Mall Road, this place is accessible by auto rickshaw, cabs and walking also.

You can also plan a picnic with friends/family at this spot.
Keep your camera ready for mesmerising shots.

9. G B Pant High Altitude Zoo

This zoo in Nainital is among the three high altitude zoos in India. The other 2 are in Darjeeling and Sikkim. This zoo is located on the peak called Sher ka Danda at an elevation of 2110 meters and is extended over nearly 11 acres area. It was constructed in the year 1884 but opened for public in 1995 and officially called Pt. Govind Ballabh Pant High Altitude Zoo in the year 2002.

This zoo provide natural habitat to many rare species of animals such as Tibetan Wolves, Royal Bengal Tiger, Barking Deer, Sambar, Himalayan Bear, Japanese Macaque and Leopard Cat etc. and many exotic birds such as White Peafowl, Golden Pheasant, Steppe Eagle etc.

This zoo is located in between the Shivalik Mountain Ranges and the Himalayan Mountain Ranges and proffers spectacularly beautiful views which you should not miss in your trip to Nainital.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital tour
G B Pant High Altitude Zoo

Things to Remember 

This zoo is open all days except Mondays from 10:30 am to 5:00 pm.

The entry charge is 50 bucks for adults and 20 bucks for children below 12 years.

Photography and Videography are allowed inside the zoo.

The charge for still camera is 25 bucks and for video camera is 200 bucks.

Entry is free for physically disabled persons and senior citizens (after showing ID proof).

This zoo is 2 kms away from the Nainital Mall Road so, it is accessible by cabs and autos.

You can also trek to the zoo from the Mall Road.

Be ready for lot of walking while you are in this zoo and wear comfortable clothes.

>Keep some food and water bottles with you while exploring the zoo.

10. Land’s End

As the name says, Land’s End is a point at the peak after which no land is there. This spot is located at an elevation 2120 meters and is popular location among the trekkers.

From Land’s End you will see the amazing view of the extensive mountain ranges of the Kumaon region and the poised Khurpatal or Khurpa Lake. The area bordering Land’s End is rich in flora and fauna and is surrounded by heighted Deodar, Pine and Cypress trees. This location is a must visit place for the photographers as well to capture the sublime view of the verdant forests and the valley below the cliff.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital tour
Land's End

Things to Remember

This place is open for public all the days from 12:00 am to 12:00 pm.

No entry charge is needed.

This place is only 1 km away from Barapathar Nainital and 4 kms from Mall Road Nainital.

You can get to Barapathar by rented taxi or autos and then trek to Land’s End.

You can enjoy horse riding here which charge approx. 600 bucks to 800 bucks.

As this location doesn’t have any boundaries so, you have to be very careful while exploring the location and enjoying the views.

Wear comfortable shoes as you have to walk on a hilly terrain.

Keep some food stuffs and water bottles while getting to Land’s End as no eateries are there at this spot.

11. Pangot and Kilbury Wildlife Sanctuary

Nearly 12 kms from the hill town of Nainital, Pangot village is situated at an elevation of 1985 meters above the sea level. This village is nestled amid the blossoming greenery of Himalayas and a visit to this village is a treat to eyes. But the main reason of its popularity is that, this village has a bird sanctuary called Kilbury Bird Sanctuary which is an abode to approx. 580 different bird species such as Lammergeier, Blue Winged Minla, Brown Wood Owls, Little Pied Flycatcher etc. This village is also a habitat to many animals like Sambar, Leopards, barking Deers and Ghorals etc.

A journey to this village is a thrilling experience which passes via the woods of Naina Peak, Echo Zone as well as Himalayan Darshan zones which are popular for breathtaking views of Mt. Nanda Devi. Your Nainital trip will be incomplete without a visit to this Pangot village and Kilbury Sanctuary.

11 Amazing Places to Visit in Nainital, nainital weather
Pangot and Kilbury Bird Sanctuary

Things to Remember

This sanctuary is open every day from 6:00 am to 5:00 pm.

No entry charge is needed.

Photography is allowed and this place is a paradise for nature lovers and bird watchers.

You will get rented cabs from Nainital town to reach this location.

>You can opt for a guide to go deeper into the woods. Exploring this sanctuary is safe for tourists.

Best Time to Visit Nainital

1. Nainital can be visited all through the year. The summers are pleasant here and the Nainital weather ranges from 10 degrees to 25 degrees. This time is perfect for high altitude sightseeing and adventure activities.

2. In monsoon, Nainital receives good amount of rainfall which are frequent and unpredictable. Though the temperature ranges from 12 degrees to 24 degrees yet a risk of landslide is always there in a hilly terrain which can ruin your trip. So, monsoon is not recommendable for planning a trip to Nainital.

3. Winters are windy and cold in Nainital with a temperature ranging from 15 degrees to a minimum of 0 degrees at night. The months from December to February are ideal for enjoying in snow.

I hope my detailed descriptions and necessary information will help you to plan a perfect Nainital tour.

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