One of the most popular and exquisite hill stations "Nainital" is located in the Kumaon region in the state of Uttarakhand. It is a distinct and famous tourist destination of India. The town not only lures the domestic travelers and tourists but also a number of foreign tourists. It shines as a glittering jewel in the Himalayan Mountains and is surrounded with lakes and nature's bounty.
Nainital is a glittering jewel in the Himalyan necklace, blessed with scenic natural spledour and varied natural resources . Dotted with lakes , Nainital has earned the epithet of ' Lake District ' of India . The most prominent of the lakes is Naini lake ringed by hills . Nainital has a varied topography . Some of the important places in the district are Nainital , Haldwani , Kaladhungi , Ramnagar , Bhowali , Ramgarh , Mukteshwar , Bhimtal , Sattal and Naukuchiatal . Nainital’s unending expense of scenic beauty is nothing short of a romance with awe-inspiring and pristine Mother nature.
Nainital is the headquarter of Nainital District and It is also the divisional Headquarter of Kumaon Division of Uttarakhand State.
Nainital is referred to in the ‘Manas Khand’ of the ‘Skanda Purana’ as the Tri-Rishi-Sarovar,the lake of the three sages, Atri, Pulastya and Pulaha who were reputed to have arrived here on a penitential pilgrimage, and, finding no water to quench their thirst dug a hole and siphoned water into it from Mansarovar the sacred lake in Tibet.
The Second important mythological reference to Nainital is as one of 64 ‘Shakti Peeths’.These centres were created wherever parts of the charred body of Sati fell, when Lord Shiva was carrying around her corpse in grief, It is said that the left eye (Nain) of Sati fell here and this gave rise to patron deity of town Nainital. It is said that the lake is formed in the emerald eye shape. Naina Devi temple is located at the northern end of the lake, thus name of Nainital was derived from Naina and the tal (Lake).
Geography Of District Nainital
In the Uttarakhand, district of Nainital lies in the Kumaon division. To its north is Almora district and to its south lies the Udham Singh Nagar district. Champawat district flanks it in the east and district of Pauri Gahwal is in the west. It is located approximately in between 80º14’ and 78º80’ east longitude and 29º00’ and 29º05’ north latitude . On the northern side lies the Himalayan ranges while on the southern side lies the plains making the resultant climate of the district enjoyable one.
The total geographical area is 4251 Sqr. Kms. Geographically the district is divided in to 2 zones viz. Hilly and Bhabar.The hilly region in outer Himalayas is known to geologists as Krol. The highest peak of the district is Baudhansthali 2623 mts. high near Binayak adjoining Nainital town.The hilly region of the district .The hilly region of the district used to have big & small lakes. Bhimtal ,Sattal, Naukuchiatal,Khurpatal, Nainital, Malwatal, Harishtal , Lokhamtal etc. are known lakes of bigger size.
The foothill area of the district is known as Bhabhar. The name Bhabhar is derived from a tall growing grass growing in the region . The underground water level is very deep in this region .
Kosi is the main river of the district. River Kosi arising out of Koshimool near Kausani flows on the western side of the district. There are number of smaller rivulets like Gaula , Bhakra , Dabka , Baur etc . Most of these have been dammed for irrigation purposes. Nainital district has good received good rainfall in recent years . As per 2011 records total average rainfall of district was 1487.00 MM while total average rainfall up to August 2013 was 1466.40 MM.
Places of Interest
Naini Lake is the most appealingly lovely natural freshwater lake, situated in the midst of Nainital city of Uttarakhand and the lake offers photographic views and a soulfully delightful experience. It's the Naini Lake after which the hill station has been named. The lake is formed in the middle of the mountain slopes thus adding to its magnificence and beauty. As indicated by a legend, the lake started to be the point at which the eye of Sati's body dropped out while Lord Shiva was carrying her across. The Naini lake which forms a lunar shaped crescent is the main lake around which the entire city of Nainital has sprung up. The lake offers several water sport activities for tourists and transforms into a happening entertainment destination in the evenings. The early mornings and late evenings are more serene and calm allowing space for self reflection. Several inns – resorts and stay options near the lake make it a favoured destination.
At 8,622 ft above ocean level, Naina Peak or the China Peak has the distinction of being the highest peak in the town and is a good trekking option for moderate trekkers. Likewise pony rides to the top of the hill are also available. The Naina peak offers enchanting views of the Himalayan range and from the top one can also get an eye view of the entire Nainital city.
Naina Devi Temple
Considered as one of the 'Shakti Peeths' and a noteworthy religious place for Hindus, the Naina Devi Temple is a sacred place of great devotion in Nainital. It is dedicated to Goddess Naina Devi.
The Naina Devi temple is situated on the Naina hillock close to the Naini Lake, and attracts a large number of pilgrims and tourists consistently.
St. John Church
The congregation happens to be a standout amongst the most visited vacation destinations in Nainital. Established in 1844, the St John Church is one of the earliest buildings of nainital and is among the finest churches in any hill station in India. The church is located near the Naina Devi temple and is surely worth a visit on a trip to the city of lakes.
While on your vacations in Nainital, you can likewise decide to make a visit to the exquisite Govind Vallabh Pant Zoo in Nainital. The Zoo Garden has wild creatures including tigers, bear, dears , wolf, panther, palm civet, sambhar and numerous other warm blooded animal and feathered creature species.
The Nainital Zoo lies at an elevation of 2,100 m above ocean level. It stays shut on Monday.
The Eco Cave Gardens are a major attraction for children.A fairly new tourist attraction in Nainital , it has severalnatural interconnected caves of different animals. Regular educational eco tours for students are organized at the Eco Gardens.
Hanuman Garhi is a famous temple dedicated to Lord Hanuman and located at 1950 mts above sea level. It is a 3.5 kms drive from Nainital city. The temple is well known for its majestic views of sunsets. A view of the setting sun as it sinks down, painting the azure skies golden red is a delight to watch. The temple was built in 1950 by a famous local Hindu saint named Neem Karoli Baba.
Located at 2270 mts above sea level, the snow view is a popular tourist destination in Nainital and is accessible via cable cars or pony rides. The point offers magnificent views of the snow covered peaks of the Himalayan range and a bird’s eye view of the entire Nainital city. Located at an altitude and in the lap of nature the place is also a good trekking spot.