A beautiful emerald lake surrounded by green hills, quaint old cottages and markets, and a web of walking tracks—there are plenty of picturesque places to visit and things to do in Nainital. One of the most popular hill destinations in India, Nainital’s charms include everything from boating and sailing to old temples and heritage buildings, and of course, scenic views at every other step. The Lake City Nainital, situated in the lap of Uttarakhand is one of the favorites for honeymooners and couples. Listed below are some of the best things to do in Nainital. Have a look.
15 Best Things To Do In Nainital
Nainital is a hill station comfortably nestled in the Himalayas of Uttarakhand. From boating at Naini Lake to trekking up to Tiffin Top, there are a number of things to do in Nainital. A must do is going for a evening stroll by the lakeside. Let us take you on a journey where we will share with you the best things to do in Nainital.
- Naini Lake – Enjoy Boating
- Tiffin Top – View The Sunrise
- Tibetan Market – Shop For Local Souvenirs
- Hanuman Garhi – A Beautiful Temple
- Nainital Ropeway – For The Bird’s Eye View
- Mall Road – A Fine Stretch Of Shops
- Naina Devi – A Temple By The Lake
- Pangot And Kilbury Bird Sanctuary – For Awesome Fauna
- Raj Bhawan – A Royal Palace
- Corbett National Park – Nature At Its Best
- Cheena Peak – For Splendid Views
- Nainital Zoo – A Wide Range Of Animals
- Rock Climbing – For An Adventure Time
- Chandni Chowk – An Old Restaurant
- Cave Garden – Explore The Hidden Gem
1. Naini Lake – Enjoy Boating
Wondering what to do in Nainital first? Don’t worry, one of the best things to do in Nainital is to go around and take a tour of the scenic lakes. You can also enjoy a peaceful time boating in them. Boats are available for 30 mins to 1 hour for one family. Stop over at points to savor a delicious lunch at famous eateries like Boat House club or Sonam’s, places famous for the momos they offer.
Location: Ayarpatta, Nainital, Uttarakhand
Timings: 6 AM – 6 PM
Tip: Be careful and always keep a life jacket before riding
Famous for: Boating
Price: Boating prices depend on the time you want to ride
2. Tiffin Top – View The Sunrise
Of the many things to see in Nainital, viewing the sunrise from Tiffin Top is a must. Himalayan Range will never look this beautiful to you. Catch a glimpse from Tiffin Top, a peak in Nainital and witness the most awe-inspiring sight. The place is only about 4 km from the heart of Nainital and makes for a wonderful trek. You can also enjoy a horse ride to go there.
Location: Ayarpatta, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002
Timings: 6 AM – 6 PM
Tip: You will need trekking shoes to trek to this point
Famous for: Gorgeous sunrise view
Suggested Read: 32 Best Places To Visit In Nainital For An Incredible Vacation
3. Tibetan Market – Shop For Local Souvenirs
One of the top preferred markets for shopping in Nainital and collect souvenirs from your visit is at the Tibetan Market where you can find artifacts made by locals. Dotted with shops and shacks of local specialties, this bustling market impresses visitors with its vibrancy and uniqueness. Tibetan bags, exquisite scarves, ethnic dresses, intricately designed shawls, woollen mufflers, junk accessories and stylish watches are sold here.
Location: Ayarpatta, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263001
Timings: 9:30 AM – 9 PM
Tip: The prices could be steep. Do keep a lot of cash
Famous for: Shopping local souvenirs
4. Hanuman Garhi – A Beautiful Temple
Visit this Hanuman Temple and experience the divinity of this place. Of the many things to see in Nainital, do not miss the most romantic and enchanting sunset. It is around 3.5 km away from the bus stop and taxis are available to reach there. Reach before 4 in the evening to witness the frenzy.
Location: Haldwani Road, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002
Timings: 5 AM – 12 PM & 4 PM – 9 PM
Tip: Do not miss the sunrise or sunset views
Famous for: Enchanting sunset view
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5. Nainital Ropeway – For The Bird’s Eye View
The ropeway takes you to small peaks in Nainital and also gives you a bird’s eye view of the hill station. It should definitely be given a shot if you love high rise views. The cable car runs from Mallital to Snow View, passing through hills and enchanting beauty of Naini Lake and other scenic environs.
Location: Mallital, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263001
Timings: 10 AM – 4 PM
Tip: Avoid it if you are afraid of heights
Famous for: Bird’s eye view
Price: INR 300
Suggested Read: 60 Best Honeymoon Destinations In India!
6. Mall Road – A Fine Stretch Of Shops
Collecting candles of various forms, shapes and sizes is one of the best things to do in Nainital. The locals make amazing candles here – designs and patterns that you have never seen. Don’t forget to buy some and include them in your home décor. Bargain to strike the best deal. Also, having an ice cream here in the winter season is one of the best things to do in Nainital in December.
Location: Mall Road, Nainital, Uttarakhand
Timings: 24 hours
Tip: Do explore the full stretch of road for the endless varieties of shops
Famous for: Unique home decor items
7. Naina Devi – A Temple By The Lake
Soak in the divinity by visiting the Naina Devi Temple. Spend some quiet time here, you will surely come back refreshed. The Naina Devi Temple is dedicated to goddess Naina Devi, who is believed to govern the Naini Lake. It is believed to be one of the 64 Shaktipeeth’s in India. The location of the temple is simply awe-inspiring, instilling a sense of tranquility in the pilgrims who come here to offer their prayers.
Location: Ayarpatta, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002
Timings: 4 AM – 10 PM
Tip: Dress moderately while entering the temple
Famous for: Spending quiet time
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8. Pangot And Kilbury Bird Sanctuary – For Awesome Fauna
One of the best things to see in Nainital is to visit this sanctuary to witness some of the rare species of birds and animals. They will make you feel like going back to your younger days and enjoy them in a childlike manner. Kilbury is enclosed by a flourishing green thick jungle of oak and pine. Forests of Kilbury provide sufficient opportunities to bird watchers and make Kilbury a perfect birding holiday destination.
Location: Village Pangot, Budhlakot, Via Kilbury Road, Uttarakhand 263001
Timings: 6 AM – 5 PM
Tip: Do carry your camera for awesome snapshots
Famous for: Witnessing rare species of fauna
9. Raj Bhawan – A Royal Palace
This Nainital Governor’s House gives a feel of Buckingham Palace London and is a treat to visit, mostly if you are a lover of museums. The two-storey mansion contains around 113 rooms, but visitors are only allowed in its vast lawns and in the 18-hole golf course within its premises. Constructed by the British in 1924, the golf course is set around a scenic forest, and is home to several rare species of flora and fauna.
Location: Amghari, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002
Timings: 11 AM – 4 PM
Tip: The Bhawan remains closed on Sundays and national holidays
Famous for: Its magnificent looks
Price: INR 50 for entry, INR 450 for golf course
10. Corbett National Park – Nature At Its Best
A 3-hour ride from Nainital will take you the biggest Tiger Reserve in India and it will surely be a visit worth it if you are lucky to spot a tiger. Enjoy watching other animals and make this safari a memorable one. Best time to visit the Jim Corbett National Park is from November to June. Book a nearby resort to manifold the experience. So, if you were looking for activities to do in Nainital then your search is over.
Location: Nainital District, Ramnagar, Uttarakhand 244715
Timings: 6:30 AM – 6 PM
Tip: Stay in your vehicles and take a guide at all times during safari
Famous for: Watching birds
Price: Safari prices vary
11. Cheena Peak – For Splendid Views
The city of Nainital seems truly splendid from the top of this mountain. If this view does not inspire you to get the cameras out, we do not know what will. The highest point in Nainital, Cheena Peak is a famous trekking point. For a rewarding view alongside rows of Cypresses, Deodars, and Rhododendrons, you should head to the top of the peak. Also called Naina Peak, it is an epic place to enjoy splendid views of the Himalayas. The peak leads the way for many spots to enjoy camping in Nainital.
Location: Nainital, Uttarakhand 263001
Timings: 24 hours
Tip: Carry trekking boots with you
Famous for: Splendid views
12. Nainital Zoo – A Wide Range Of Animals
A high-altitude home for wild animals, Nainital Zoo is 2100m above the sea level. It is also known as Pt. Govind Ballabh Pant High Altitude Zoo. It houses animals like Tibetan wolves, leopard cat, Sambar, Lady Amherst pheasant, red junglefowl, rose-ringed parakeet. Situated in Tallital, it is open from Friday to Wednesday between 10 AM and 4:30 PM. Another great thing about this place is that it costs around 50 bucks for an adult and around INR 20 for children. Visiting this zoo is one of the best things to do in Nainital.
Location: Tallital, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002
Timings: 10 AM – 4:30 PM
Tip: Do not feed or tease the animals
Famous for: Wide range of animals
Price: INR 300
13. Rock Climbing – For An Adventure Time
If you are looking for adventure sports in Nainital, you have to look no further than this. A number of people who visit Nainital usually overlook this activity. There are a number of rock-climbing schools in the area where you can learn the ropes and try the sport even if you have not before. Nainital Mountaineering Club (NMC) is one of the first places that you should check out if you are looking for adventure activities in Nainital. The fee starts from INR 600.
Location of NMC: CRST Inter College, Mallital, Nainital
Timings: 9 AM – 6 PM
Tip: Listen to the experts and follow instructions carefully
Price: INR 600
14. Chandni Chowk – An Old Restaurant
We all know about the Chandni Chowk in Delhi. But have you heard about the one in Nainital? One of the top things to do in Nainital is enjoying a meal at the famous markets. Chandni Chowk, one of the oldest restaurants in Nainital seeks to recreate the taste that we associate with Paranthe Wali Gali. The delicacies are the ones we commonly see in North India, such as Gol Gappas, Paneer, Jalebi, Samosa, Gulab Jamun and a mouth-watering assortment of dishes.
The restaurant is located on Mall Road and is open between 9 am and 10 pm each day. On average, the price for two people is somewhere around INR 400. Also, if you are looking for things to do in Nainital in December, then hitting this joint is a must.
Location: Mall Rd, Mallital, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002
Timings: 9 AM – 10 PM
Tip: Eat to your heart’s content
Famous for: Mouthwatering dishes
Price: Depends on what you eat
Suggested Read: 23 Places To Visit Near Nainital For A Revitalizing Vacation
15. Cave Garden – Explore The Hidden Gem
If you are thinking of offbeat things to do in Nainital, Eco Cave Gardens is just the place. There is a series of interconnected caves that aim to educate visitors about the Himalayan wildlife. Caves such as Tiger Cave, Bat Cave, Panther Cave and others, are named after the animals they put under the spotlight. On your visit to Sukhatal, you can easily visit this place. It is open 7 days a week and has a musical fountain and hanging gardens in the premises
Location: Sukhatal, Mallital, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263001
Timings: 9:30 AM – 5:30 PM
Tip: Do visit for an offbeat experience
Famous for: Interconnected rocky caves
Price: INR 20 for adults and INR 10 for children
There is nothing better than sitting beside the lake and enjoying the serenity. These were some of the best things to do in Nainital and must be considered while planning your Uttarakhand vacation. Do not forget to share your experiences with us while enjoying your Nainital trip within the mountains.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Things To Do In Nainital
How can I spend 3 days in Nainital?
You can plan your Nainital trip easily if you have the right itinerary in hand. Here’s a tentative one you can follow: On day 1, you can explore Hanuman Garhi Temple, Naini Lake, Raj Bhavan, Naina Devi Temple and Cave Gardens. Next day after breakfast, head towards Kilbury bird Sanctuary and Sariyatal and Khurpatal Lakes. You can also enjoy horse riding, boating and trekking. Keep day 3 for shopping and local sightseeing. Don’t forget to visit Mall road and grab some souvenirs
Is it safe to visit Nainital during Covid times?
Your safety is in your hands. Get yourself tested before heading for a trip, to be ensured that you and your travel partners are safe for travel. Always wear a mask properly and maintain social distancing. Keep sanitizing your hands regularly and get yourself tested if you get symptoms on your trip.
Is Nainital worth visiting?
Yes, definitely. Nainital is one of the most sought-after weekend options where you can enjoy snow activities, trekking, hiking, boating, and more. Other than this the gardens, caves, and Naini Lake make it one of the best places to visit in Northern India.
Which are the best places to visit in Nainital?
Some of the top attractions that you must visit in Nainital are: 1. Nainital Lake 2. Naina Peak 3. The Mall Road 4. Tiffin Top 5. High Altitude Zoo 6. Lands End 7. Bhimtal Lake 8. Kilbury Bird Sanctuary 9. Kainchi Dham 10. Naukuchiatal
Which is the best time to visit Nainital?
Nainital is a year-round destination and has different experiences to offer during different seasons. One can head here during the summers to escape the scorching heat or during the winter season to enjoy snowfall.
What should we not miss in Nainital?
Nainital surprises its visitors with numerous interesting and exciting excursions. Boating in Naini Lake is one thing, no one misses out on while holidaying in Nainital. Snowfall in Nainital is one such experience that lures travelers from across India to this majestic destination.
How many days should I spend in Nainital?
If you are planning a vacation in Nainital then a stay in this beautiful station must be for a minimum of 2 days. However, there are numerous attractions here and the awesome weather will surely make you fall in love with this destination.
Which is better, Nainital or Bhimtal?
If you are looking for a quaint place then Bhimtal should be your option. Unlike the bustling streets of Nainital, Bhimtal is more of a quiet place where one can actually enjoy the serene beauty of lakes and nature.
Does it snow in Nainital?
Yes, it usually snows in Nainital towards the end of December or in January. So, if you wish to witness snowfall, make sure to plan a vacay during this time with your loved ones.
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