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Nainital Delights: Lakes & Adventures

Anupam Srivastava Wednesday, November 8, 2023
Nainital Delights: Lakes & Adventures

Imagine visiting a place situated in the lap of the Himalayas where the air is refreshing, and the views are breathtaking. Yes, that is Nainital, a radiant city nestled at 2085 meters above sea level. People fondly call it the 'Lake District of India', and trust me, it is a place that will capture your heart. Nainital is not just another regular type of tourist place, but it is like a 'dream come true' for travellers worldwide.

Do you know the reason? Well, Nainital is just like a treasure chest that is full of infinite wonders. It offers sky-high majestic snow-clad peaks and numerous exquisite lakes that glitter in the bright sunlight. While exploring this magnificent place, you can witness beautiful green hills, cute cottages and curvy streets that look like a fairy tale.

The weather in Nainital is like a faithful friend, always welcoming you warmly throughout the year. Whether you are here for a serene boat ride on the tranquil lakes or eager to explore the ancient temples and heritage buildings, Nainital has it all.

And don't talk about the views – they look like they are straight out of a painting, and you see them everywhere you go. So, if you are seeking adventure, peace, and a serene atmosphere, then Nainital is the place where you need to go.

Come join me on a magical journey to Nainital, a hill station paradise where nature wraps you in her loving embrace, and the warmth of the local people leaves an indelible mark on your heart.

Making the Plan for Our Nainital Adventure

Before starting the Nainital trip, we thought that this must be an unforgettable experience for everybody. After some research, we discovered that the best time to visit this picturesque hill station was from March to June. These months are like a gift from nature's wallet, thus offering the perfect opportunity to explore this magnificent town.

In Nainital, we discovered a bunch of places to stay, from fancy 5-star hotels to comfy budget lodges, charming bungalows, and friendly homestays. We discovered that finding a confirmed accommodation during the busiest time can be tough and costly. So, we made an early reservation to ensure a smooth and relaxed stay without any last-minute problems.

Nainital is easy to reach from many nearby towns and cities in Uttarakhand, and the closest railway station is Kathgodam, only 35 kilometres away. Moreover, getting to Nainital is super easy because there are good roads connecting it to big cities in Northern India. As we sorted out our travel plans, we could sense the excitement growing. Now, we were eager to explore Nainital's natural beauty and ready to create everlasting memories.

Day 1 - The Arrival

Our Nainital adventure began as the sun peeked over the horizon, and we arrived at Kathgodam railway station at 9:30 am. A friendly private taxi was waiting for us, ready to whisk us away on a scenic drive to Nainital.

As we checked into Hotel Channi Raja, perched along the famous Mall Road, our breaths were taken away by the sheer beauty of Naini Lake. The morning sun gracefully painted the Naini Lake in shimmering hues, and we felt like getting a warm welcome.

After a delicious lunch at our hotel, we are now ready for a boating escapade on Naini Lake. The boat ride was amazing and made us feel like we were entering into a magical story. The cool mountain breeze tousled our hair as we gently sailed on the emerald waters. We were surrounded by Nature's orchestra, with birdsong as its melody.

What made our experience even more unique was the warm and beaming smile of our boatman. Amidst the breathtaking natural beauty, it is the genuine human connections that can truly etch our journeys into our hearts and make them truly unforgettable.

Naini Lake, shaped like a pear, held us in its spell with its calm beauty. Surrounded by seven lush hills, it indeed was the heart of Nainital. Boating in Naini Lake is a must-to-do activity where the prices start at just ₹320 for a 25-minute ride or ₹420 for a 35-minute adventure. Boating usually begins at 7 am, except on Wednesdays when the jetties get a clean-up, and it starts at 10 am. And if the weather doesn't cooperate, don't fret; thrilling options like parasailing and yachting at the yacht club are available.

Our boatman dropped us off near Naina Devi Temple, a must-visit place in Nainital. The temple's atmosphere was very serene and sacred, and it is quite fascinating to know that the name "Nainital" actually originated from the Naina Devi temple.

Besides Naina Devi Temple, a Hanuman Temple was also nearby, both easily accessible on foot from most hotels. If you bring your vehicle, there is a parking fee of Rs 120, so walking is the best bet.

After the sunset, we took a relaxed walk along the vibrant Mall Road. The Mall Road comes to life after the sunset, bustling with charming shops, delightful local eateries, and cosy cafes. The aroma of street food filled the air, and the cheerful chatter of fellow tourists created a warm atmosphere, the perfect ending to our first day in Nainital.

Day 2 - Into the Wild and Treasure Hunting

We embarked on a thrilling adventure to the GB Pant High Altitude Zoo on our second day in Nainital. In this place, we would get up close and personal with the rare and endangered species of Himalayan fauna.

The zoo was located in the middle of the hills and houses many animals and birds native to this region. During our visit, we witnessed many amazing animals on the way. Some notable ones were the Snow Leopard, Hill Fox, Royal Bengal Tiger, and the Himalayan Black Bear. We were so happy to see a beautiful white peacock.

Sitting at an elevation of 2,100 meters, this place has become a cherished home for numerous species. Nainital Zoo is not just a normal tourist spot to visit, but it was a delightful journey that allowed us to peek into the marvels of nature.

The road to the zoo was very adventurous, and we felt like enjoying a roller coaster ride. Private cars or taxis are allowed to go only some of the way up, but don't worry; there is a shuttle service near India Hotel on Mall Road that takes you there in just about 10 minutes for a mere 60 Rs round trip.

We purchased our entry tickets at the zoo's entrance, priced at Rs.100 for adults, half for children, and free entry for senior citizens. The zoo really showed how much they cared for their animals, as they were all so healthy and well taken care of. We had an amazing time there and spent around 3-4 hours just enjoying the company of these amazing creatures.

Later in the evening, we visited the vibrant Tibetan Market, and that was like stepping into a wonderland of handcrafted treasures. There were a lot of shops in this market selling warm winter outfits like handmade sweaters, socks, soft shawls, comfortable caps, etc. It felt really nice and comfortable to see them.

Souvenirs like homemade scented candles, wooden trinkets, small boats, lanterns, and unique items were everywhere, and haggling with the friendly local vendors added an element of adventure to our shopping spree. We couldn't resist savouring the authentic street dishes the market offered.

As the night fell, we found ourselves back on Mall Road, taking a soothing night stroll. The serene surroundings wrapped up our day beautifully, reminding us that Nainital had wonderful surprises waiting for us around every corner.

Day 3 - An Adventure-Packed Odyssey

Our third day in Nainital unfolded as an exhilarating adventure extravaganza. We visited some of the most enchanting places in this lovely hill town. We started with an exciting ride on the Nainital Aerial Ropeway. This airborne escapade gifted us with panoramic views of the entire town. We could see the town's every nook and cranny from above, nestled amidst the hills like a gem.

Then we went to the mysterious Eco Cave Garden, which was famous for the seven narrow caves that were naturally formed. Passing through the winding caves was a wonderful experience, and the kids were very thrilled. We took a stroll and fully enjoyed the breathtaking beauty of nature.

Our next stop was the breathtaking Snow Viewpoint. To reach the summit, we hopped on a ropeway that cost us a reasonable 350 Rs for a round trip. For a mere 20 Rs, a friendly gentleman with a telescope allowed us to marvel at the detailed beauty of the Himalayas and capture memories through our cameras.

We then drove towards Naina Peak, which was the highest summit in Nainital, standing tall at 2,615 meters above sea level. The trek was incredibly thrilling, where we went through lush forests filled with pine, oak, and deodar trees. As we climbed the top, the scenery became even more amazing, and we were rewarded with a 360-degree spectacle.

The summits of Nanda Devi, Nanda Kot and Trishul stood majestically on the horizon. We enjoyed a stunning view of Nainital Lake, the greenish hills, and the picturesque valleys that were painting a truly mesmerizing picture.

We couldn't wrap up our day without stopping by the Woodland Waterfall, a serene park with a calm waterfall. While the entry fee was a reasonable 50 Rs per head, the park offered photo opportunities and a quick trek to the waterfall's source. Nearby eateries provided sustenance.

Our last destination of the day was the Mountain Magic Adventure Village, an absolute must-visit spot in Nainital, especially when you are travelling with kids. We tried rope cycling, zip-lining, go-carts, bumper cars, and more in this well-maintained paradise. We then enjoyed scrumptious meals at the canteen and concluded our day on a delicious high note.

We had such an exciting day with breathtaking views and unforgettable moments that will be in our hearts forever.

Day 4 - Exploring a Nature Paradise

We continued our journey from Nainital and went through a scenic drive to Hanuman Garhi, which was our day's first stop. We drove through curvy roads towards the beautiful hills where the views were astonishing, and it felt like they greeted us at every twist and turn. We were getting really excited because we couldn't wait to find the amazing things that were still waiting for us.

Hanuman Garhi, perched high on a hill, greeted us with a divine view. From there, we could see Nainital nestled amidst the mountains. The temple dedicated to Lord Hanuman was incredibly peaceful and filled with devotion, which beautifully set the tone for our day.

Our next stop was Naukuchiatal, which can be considered a serene paradise for nature enthusiasts. As we neared the lake, we couldn't believe how green and beautiful everything looked around us. Our home for the day was Latitude29 Lake Resort Cottage Room, hidden by the lake's edge. It felt like being in the heart of a forest, with birdsong as our constant companion.

You can't say you truly visited Naukuchiatal if you didn't take a boat ride on the serene lake. With mountains as our backdrop, boating on Naukuchiatal Lake offers a soothing experience. As we sailed by the tranquil lake, we felt a profound sense of peace and connection with the gentle ripples, the cool breeze, and the harmony of nature.

The sunset painted the lake in a warm, golden hue, filling our hearts with deep gratitude for this serene paradise we were lucky enough to experience. Naukuchiatal had welcomed us into its heart, letting us connect with nature's beauty in the most profound way.

Day 5 - Lakeside Adventures and Farewell

Our last day in Nainital was all about lakes and their enchanting beauty. We began by visiting Bhimtal Lake and embarked on a boat ride to the Island Cafe. The serene lake and the charming café set the perfect tone for a wonderful beginning to our day.

Next on our itinerary were the serene waters of Sattal Lake, Sariyatal, and Garud Tal, where each lake has a different story to tell. These hidden gems proved that Nainital was indeed the land of lakes.

We wanted to add an extra dose of excitement to our adventure, so we thought, "Why not give water sports a shot at Sattal Lake?" The rush of adrenaline as we smoothly sailed across the water was absolutely invigorating. This activity enhanced our travel experience and made it truly memorable.

During the lake tour, we passed through beautiful tea plantations and lush green apple farms, seeing which was truly a joy. These green valleys and the sweet fragrance of tea leaves are still present in our memories.

As the day ended, we reluctantly bid farewell to Nainital, but our hearts were not empty; they were brimming with cherished memories. We carried back not just photographs and souvenirs but the warmth of human connections and the pristine beauty of this hill station.

As the rhythmic clatter of the train's wheels slowly distanced us from Nainital's picturesque landscapes, we couldn't resist the urge to delve into a reflective conversation, tracing back the beautiful memories and experiences that had filled our journey.

It had been a tapestry woven with moments of natural wonder and the kindness of the people we had met along the way. Nainital truly touched our hearts, and the memories we had created will stay with us forever. is now on WhatsApp Channel    Follow Channel

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Express your comment on this article

Saturday, December 30, 2023
Well written Anupam....

Thursday, November 9, 2023
Good one.

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