December 13, 2014


Site Name: Nainital
Site Type: Hill station, Lake
Location:  Uttarakhand state, India
Highlights: One of the most popular hill stations and tourist destinations in India
Nearest Railway Station: Kathgodam, 35 kms from Nainital
Nearest Airport: Pantnagar, 70 kms from Nainital
How to reach: Well connected by road through National Highway 87
Hotel: A lot of options across the entire town
Restaurants: Varieties of options across the entire town

Nainital is one of the most popular tourist destinations in India. It is situated in Uttarakhand state of India. Various lakes and picturesque lakes in Nainital and the surrounding places make it the important tourist site. Let us explore about all the important destinations in Nainital.

Drive from Kathgodam to Nainital

Kathgodam is the base station to reach Nainital. The railway link is available only till Kathgodam. The one hour drive to cover 35 kms from Kathgodam to Nainital, which is located at an altitude of 6837 feet above sea level,  is interesting with a lot of breathtaking viewpoints. Nainital, one of the most beautiful places in entire India, is situate on a valley with a large lake and is surrounded by hills in all sides. The highest hill in the mountain range is called as Naina.

Naina Devi Temple

Naina Devi Temple is located on the shore of the famous Naina Lake in Nainital. As per the legend, the Goddess Sati destroyed herself by falling on the yagna fire of her father Daksha. Lord Shiva got extremely angry;he lifted her corpse and started dancing rudra thandava. To protect the universe from the wrath of Lord Shiva, Vishnu cut down Sati's corpse into multiple pieces. The sites where her body's parts fell were called as Shakti Peethas. Naina Devi temple is one of those Shakti Peethas. It is believed that Sati's eyes fell in this site. (Naina means eyes.)

The temple is small and beautiful. The main deity Naina Devi is represented by two eyes. She is flanked by Lakshmi, Saraswati, Riddhi and Siddhi. Some of the idols that are found in this temple include Ganesha, Navagraha, Shiva Linga, Hanuman and Radha-Krishna.

Nainital Lake

Nainital Lake aka Naini Lake is the most important tourist attraction of Nainital. The lake got its named from the Goddess Naina Devi and the town got its name from this beautiful eye shaped lake. The lake which is located at the heart of the town is the most visited site in Nainital. A boat ride in the lake to view the picturesque hills that are surrounded should never be missed out. 


Although the zoo is very small, it is unique due to its altitude. It is located at an altitude of 2100 meters from the sea level. An one km trek or a yak ride takes the tourists to this small and cute zoo. Importantly, it is one of two high altitude zoos in India.


Located at a distance of around 11 kms from Nainital, Bhowali is the junction from which one can travel to all the nearby hill stations. It is famous for it hill fruit mart. 


Situated at a distance of about 3 kms from Bhowali, Ghorakhal has a tribal temple dedicated to tribal God called Golu. The deity is small and is sitting on a horse. The temple which is full of bells hanged also houses other deities such as Kali, Smashan Devi etc. Devotees bring goats and sheep in large number to sacrifice in this temple.


Sattal is a cluster of seven lakes. It is located at an altitude of 1370 meters at a distance of about 23 kms from Nainital. Nala Damayanti and Garud lakes are the first two lakes. As we move down further, the cluster of five lakes namely Ram lake, Lakshman lake, Bharat lake, Sita lake and Hanuman lake are found as a group. The boating is not available in Hanuman, Garud and Nala Damayanti lakes.


Bhimtal, which is located at a distance of 22 kms from Nainital at an altitude of 1370 meters is larger than Nainital lake. The lake has an island in the middle where tourist vistas are located. Boating is the highlight of this site.

Hanuman Garhi Temple

At a distance of around 4 kms from the Nainital bus stand and at an altitude of 1951 meters, Hanuman Garhi temple is located. It has a large idol of Hanuman as the main deity. The other deities found in this temple include Shiva and Ram-Sita. There is a replica of Vaishnov Devi cave shrine found in this temple complex. 

Naukuchia Tal

Naukuchia Tal, which is located at a distance of 26 kms from Nainital at an altitude of 1220 meters is an ideal place not only for boating but also for bird watching.


Ropeway is one of the best attractions in Nainital. It connects snow view point at 2270 meters with Nainital. 

Horse Riding

Horse riding is an important tourist attraction in Nainital. Horses are available at Barapathar. The tourists can visit Lover's Point, Tiger Top, Tiffin Top, Dorothy's Seat and other viewpoints and also get spectacular Himalayan view on horse riding.

Caves Garden

Caves Garden is a collection of six natural caves located in a garden along with a fountain. It has become a main tourist attraction in the last 10-15 years.


There is a waterfalls located in the outskirts of Nainital. It is an added tourist attraction where tourists can take refreshing bath.

Happy travelling.

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