Top 15 Activities to Experience in Nainital to Create Unforgettable Memories during Your 2023 Vacation

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Experience the enchanting allure of Nainital, a mesmerizing emerald lake encircled by lush green hills, charming historic cottages, bustling markets, and an intricate network of scenic walking trails. This popular hill destination in India offers a plethora of picturesque sights and activities to indulge in. From boating and sailing on the tranquil Naini Lake to exploring ancient temples and heritage buildings, every step promises breathtaking vistas. Nestled in the lap of Uttarakhand, the idyllic Lake City of Nainital holds a special place in the hearts of honeymooners and couples. Below, discover some of the most incredible experiences and unmissable activities in Nainital. Take a glimpse into the possibilities that await.

15 Magnificent Things To Embark On in Nainital

Nestled comfortably within the majestic Himalayas of Uttarakhand, Nainital is an exquisite hill station that boasts a myriad of captivating activities and adventures. From indulging in boating excursions across the captivating Naini Lake to embarking on an invigorating trek up to Tiffin Top, this beautiful destination is brimming with treasures waiting to be discovered. A leisurely evening stroll along the serene lakeside is an absolute must. Allow us to guide you through a remarkable journey as we unveil the most extraordinary endeavors to embark on in Nainital.

  • Naini Lake – Delight in the Elegance of Boating
  • Tiffin Top – Witness the Majestic Sunrise
  • Tibetan Market – Traverse an Emporium of Local Keepsakes
  • Hanuman Garhi – Discover a Serene Temple
  • Nainital Ropeway – Revel in a Bird’s Eye Panorama
  • Mall Road – Immerse Yourself in a Vibrant Boulevards of Shops
  • Naina Devi – Pay Homage at a Lake-Embraced Temple
  • Pangot And Kilbury Bird Sanctuary – Encounter Captivating Fauna
  • Raj Bhawan – Immerse Yourself in Royal Splendor
  • Corbett National Park – Embrace Nature’s Sublime Beauty
  • Cheena Peak – Revel in Breathtaking Panoramas
  • Nainital Zoo – Witness an Abundance of Exotic Wildlife
  • Rock Climbing – Seek Thrills in Adventurous Heights
  • Chandni Chowk – Dine in a Time-Honored Restaurant
  • Cave Garden – Unearth a Hidden Gem of Exploration

Boating is one of the best things to do in Nainital

1. Naini Lake – Delight in the Elegance of Boating

Are you wondering where to commence your Nainital escapade? Fear not, as one of the most cherished activities in Nainital is to explore the serene lakes and partake in a leisurely boat tour. Revel in the tranquility as you embark on a peaceful boating experience surrounded by awe-inspiring natural beauty. Boats are available for family use, allowing you to experience the bliss of the lake for a duration of 30 minutes to an hour. Make a delightful stop at renowned eateries like the Boat House Club or Sonam’s to relish a scrumptious lunch, renowned for their delectable momos.

Location: Ayarpatta, Nainital, Uttarakhand

Timings: 6 AM – 6 PM

Tip: Prioritize your safety and always wear a life jacket during your boat ride

Of the many things to see in Nainital, viewing the sunrise from Tiffin Top is a must

Famous for: Boating

Price: Boating fees vary based on the duration of your ride

For more information, you can refer to Travelers Review

2. Tiffin Top – Witness the Majestic Sunrise

When visiting Nainital, one cannot overlook the unparalleled beauty of witnessing the sunrise from Tiffin Top. Behold the magnificent Himalayan Range like never before from this peak in Nainital. Located just 4 km from the center of Nainital, Tiffin Top offers a captivating trekking experience. Alternatively, you can enjoy a horseback ride to reach the top.

Shop at Tibetan Market

Location: Ayarpatta, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002Operating Hours: 6 AM – 6 PMTrekking Tip: Be sure to wear comfortable trekking shoesFamous For: Breathtaking sunrise viewsPrice: FreeTravelers’ Reviews

3. Tibetan Market – Discover Authentic Local Souvenirs

For an unparalleled shopping experience in Nainital and to collect unique souvenirs, head to the bustling Tibetan Market, where skilled locals craft exquisite artifacts. This vibrant market is dotted with shops and stalls offering distinct specialties. Explore a wide selection of Tibetan bags, delicate scarves, traditional garments, intricately designed shawls, warm mufflers, fashionable accessories, and stylish timepieces. 

Location: Ayarpatta, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263001Operating Hours: 9:30 AM – 9 PMShopping Tip: Prepare for higher prices and carry ample cashFamous For: Local souvenir shoppingPrice: N/ATravelers’ Reviews

Hanuman Garhi- experience the divinity of this place

4. Hanuman Garhi – A Serene Temple 

Immerse yourself in the spiritual aura of Hanuman Garhi Temple. Among the many attractions in Nainital, the breathtaking and romantic sunset from Hanuman Garhi is not to be missed. Located approximately 3.5 km from the bus stop, you can easily reach the temple by taxi. Arrive before 4 PM to witness the truly enchanting beauty of the setting sun.

Specifics: Haldwani Road, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002

Operating Hours: 5 AM – 12 PM & 4 PM – 9 PM

Recommendation: Make sure to witness the mesmerizing sunrise or sunset

Enjoy Ropeway of Nainital

Renowned for: Captivating sunset vistas

Cost: No fee

Reviews by Travelers

Further Reading: 3 Memorable Train Journeys from Delhi to Nainital

5. Nainital Ropeway – Aerial Perspective

The cable car transports you to elevated peaks in Nainital, providing a splendid aerial view of the hill station. If you have a fondness for lofty panoramas, this experience is worth a try. The cable car route traverses from Mallital to Snow View, offering breathtaking views of the hills and the enchanting Naini Lake.

Specifics: Mallital, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263001

Operating Hours: 10 AM – 4 PM

Recommendation: Not advisable for acrophobes (fear of heights)

Renowned for: Aerial viewpoint

Collect Candles from Mall Road in Nainital

Cost: INR 300

Reviews by Travelers

Further Reading: 60 Remarkable Honeymoon Destinations in India!

6. Mall Road – A Wonderful Shopping Stretch

One of the most enjoyable activities in Nainital is collecting candles of diverse shapes and sizes. The locals here craft exceptional candles with designs and patterns you won’t find anywhere else. Don’t miss the opportunity to purchase them and incorporate them into your home decor. Go for bargaining skills to secure the best deal. Additionally, indulging in ice cream during the winter season is highly recommended as one of the top things to do in Nainital in December.

Visit the Naina Devi Temple

Specifics: Mall Road, Nainital, Uttarakhand

Operating Hours: 24 hours

Recommendation: Explore the entire stretch of road to discover a multitude of unique shops

Renowned for: Extraordinary home decor items

Cost: Not applicable

Further Reading: Waterfalls Near Nainital: 4 Places to Revel in Serene Vistas Like Never Before

7. Naina Devi – Shrine Adjacent to the Lake

Immerse yourself in the spirituality by paying a visit to the Temple of Naina Devi. Take some peaceful moments here, and you will undoubtedly return feeling rejuvenated. The Temple of Naina Devi is dedicated to the goddess Naina Devi, who is believed to preside over the Naini Lake. It is considered to be one of India’s 64 Shaktipeeths. The temple’s location is truly awe-inspiring, providing pilgrims with a sense of serenity as they come to offer their prayers.

Location: Ayarpatta, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002

Hours: 4 AM – 10 PM

Tip: Dress modestly when entering the temple

Visit the Pangot and Kilbury Bird Sanctuary

Renowned for: Finding solace and tranquility

Price: Free

Reviews by Travelers

8. Pangot And Kilbury Bird Sanctuary – A Haven for Exquisite Wildlife

One of the most captivating attractions in Nainital is this sanctuary, where you can witness some of the most extraordinary bird and animal species. They will transport you back to your childhood and allow you to appreciate them with a sense of wonder. Kilbury is surrounded by lush forests of oak and pine. The forests of Kilbury provide ample opportunities for birdwatchers, making it an ideal destination for a birding holiday.

Location: Village Pangot, Budhlakot, Via Kilbury Road, Uttarakhand 263001

Hours: 6 AM – 5 PM

Tip: Don’t forget to bring your camera for breathtaking snapshots

Visit Raj Bhawan in Nainital

Renowned for: Witnessing rare and exquisite wildlife

Price: Free

Reviews by Travelers

9. Raj Bhawan – A Majestic Palace

This residence of the Governor of Nainital resembles the grandeur of Buckingham Palace in London and is a delight to explore, especially if you have a fondness for museums. The two-story mansion boasts around 113 rooms, although visitors are only permitted in its vast gardens and the 18-hole golf course on its grounds. Built by the British in 1924, the golf course is set amidst a picturesque forest and is home to numerous rare species of plants and animals.

Location: Amghari, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002

Operating Hours: 11 AM – 4 PM

Tip: The Bhawan is closed on Sundays and national holidays

Famous for: Its stunning appearance

Explore the Jim Corbett National Park

Price: INR 50 for entry, INR 450 for access to the golf course

Travelers’ Reviews

10. Corbett National Park – The Splendor of Nature

A three-hour journey from Nainital will bring you to the largest Tiger Reserve in India, and it will undoubtedly be a visit worth your while if you are fortunate enough to spot a tiger. Immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring view of other animals and make this safari an unforgettable experience. The best time to visit the Jim Corbett National Park is from November to June. Enhance your experience by booking a nearby resort. So, if you were seeking activities to do in Nainital, your search ends here.

Location: Nainital District, Ramnagar, Uttarakhand 244715

Operating Hours: 6:30 AM – 6 PM

Tip: Stay in your vehicles and always have a guide with you during the safari

Cheena Peak

Famous for: Birdwatching

Price: Safari prices vary

Travelers’ Reviews

11. Cheena Peak – Breathtaking Scenery

The city of Nainital appears truly magnificent from the summit of this mountain. If this view doesn’t inspire you to whip out your cameras, we don’t know what will. As the highest point in Nainital, Cheena Peak is a renowned trekking destination. For a rewarding view alongside enchanting lines of Cypresses, Deodars, and Rhododendrons, you should make your way to the top of the peak. Also known as Naina Peak, it is an extraordinary location to revel in the breathtaking scenery of the Himalayas. This peak paves the way for numerous camping spots in Nainital.

Location: Nainital, Uttarakhand 263001Hours: Open 24 hoursRecommendation: Bring trekking boots with youFamous for: Breathtaking vistasPrice: Not applicableTraveler’s Review

Nainital Zoo

12. Nainital Zoo – An Abode of Diverse Fauna

Nestled at an altitude of 2100m above sea level, Nainital Zoo, also known as Pt. Govind Ballabh Pant High Altitude Zoo, shelters a variety of wildlife. The zoo is home to Tibetan wolves, leopard cats, Sambar, Lady Amherst pheasants, red junglefowl, and rose-ringed parakeets. Located in Tallital, it remains open from Friday to Wednesday between 10 AM and 4:30 PM. Moreover, this place offers affordable admission fees, with around 50 Indian Rupees for adults and approximately INR 20 for children. A visit to this zoo is undoubtedly one of the top endeavors in Nainital.

Location: Tallital, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002Hours: 10 AM – 4:30 PMRecommendation: Refrain from feeding or disturbing the animalsFamous for: Diverse range of faunaPrice: INR 300Traveler’s Review

Rock Climbing

13. Rock Climbing – Embrace the Thrill

For adventure enthusiasts seeking adventure sports in Nainital, look no further. Often overlooked by visitors, rock climbing offers an exciting experience. With several rock climbing schools in the vicinity, even beginners can learn the ropes and participate in this activity. The Nainital Mountaineering Club (NMC) stands out as a prime destination for adventure seekers. The cost starts from INR 600.

NMC Location: CRST Inter College, Mallital, NainitalHours: 9 AM – 6 PMRecommendation: Pay close attention to the experts and follow instructions diligentlyPrice: INR 600

Chandni Chowk

14. Chandni Chowk – A Historic Restaurant

Delhi’s famous Chandni Chowk is well-known to all. But have you ever come across the one in Nainital? One of the best experiences in Nainital is indulging in a delicious meal at the renowned local markets. Located on Mall Road, Chandni Chowk is one of the oldest eating establishments in Nainital that aims to replicate the authentic flavors found in Paranthe Wali Gali. This restaurant offers a variety of mouthwatering dishes commonly found in North India, including Gol Gappas, Paneer, Jalebi, Samosa, Gulab Jamun, and many other delectable treats.

You can visit the restaurant any day between 9 am and 10 pm. On average, the cost for two people is around INR 400. If you’re looking for things to do in Nainital in December, make sure to include a visit to this restaurant.

Location: Mall Rd, Mallital, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263002Timings: 9 AM – 10 PMTip: Enjoy your meal to the fullestFamous for: Scrumptious dishesPrice: Varies depending on your orderTravelers Review

Cave Gardens

15. Cave Garden – Discover the Hidden Gem

If you’re seeking unique and offbeat activities in Nainital, the Eco Cave Gardens is a must-visit destination. This place features a network of interconnected caves designed to educate visitors about the diverse Himalayan wildlife. Each cave, such as the Tiger Cave, Bat Cave, Panther Cave, and others, is named after the animal it showcases. Easily accessible during your visit to Sukhatal, this attraction is open seven days a week and also offers a musical fountain and hanging gardens within its premises.

Location: Sukhatal, Mallital, Nainital, Uttarakhand 263001Timings: 9:30 AM – 5:30 PMTip: Embark on an offbeat adventureFamous for: Interconnected rocky cavesPrice: INR 20 for adults and INR 10 for childrenTravelers Review

If you want to experience ultimate tranquility, there is nothing quite like sitting by the lake. These activities in Nainital are truly remarkable and should be taken into account when planning your Uttarakhand vacation. Remember to share your experiences with us as you enjoy your trip to the mountains of Nainital.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Activities in Nainital

– How can I make the most of my 3-day trip to Nainital?

You can easily plan your Nainital trip with a well-curated itinerary. Here is a suggested one to follow: On the first day, explore the Hanuman Garhi Temple, Naini Lake, Raj Bhavan, Naina Devi Temple, and Cave Gardens. The next day, after breakfast, visit Kilbury Bird Sanctuary, Sariyatal, and Khurpatal Lakes. You can also enjoy horse riding, boating, and trekking. Reserve the third day for shopping and local sightseeing. Don’t forget to visit Mall Road and get some souvenirs.

– Is it safe to visit Nainital during the Covid-19 pandemic?

Your safety is in your hands. It is advisable to get tested before embarking on your trip to ensure the safety of yourself and your travel companions. Always wear a mask properly, maintain social distancing, regularly sanitize your hands, and get tested if you experience any symptoms during your trip.

– Is Nainital worth visiting?

Absolutely! Nainital is a highly sought-after weekend destination where you can indulge in snow activities, trekking, hiking, boating, and more. Additionally, its gardens, caves, and Naini Lake make it one of the finest places to visit in Northern India.

– What are the must-visit places in Nainital?

Some of the top attractions in Nainital that you must visit are Nainital Lake, Naina Peak, The Mall Road, Tiffin Top, High Altitude Zoo, Lands End, Bhimtal Lake, Kilbury Bird Sanctuary, Kainchi Dham, and Naukuchiatal.

– When is the best time to visit Nainital?

Nainital is a year-round destination, offering different experiences in different seasons. You can visit during the summer to escape the scorching heat or during the winter to enjoy snowfall.

– What are the things not to miss in Nainital?

Nainital offers a plethora of interesting and exciting activities. Boating on Naini Lake is a must-do while holidaying in Nainital. Witnessing snowfall is another unforgettable experience that attracts travelers from all over India to this majestic destination.

– How many days should I spend in Nainital?

If you are planning a vacation in Nainital, it is recommended to stay for at least 2 days. However, given the numerous attractions and the amazing weather, you are bound to fall in love with this destination.

– Which is better, Nainital or Bhimtal?

If you prefer a peaceful place, Bhimtal should be your choice. Unlike the bustling streets of Nainital, Bhimtal offers a serene beauty of lakes and nature.

– Does it snow in Nainital?

Yes, Nainital usually experiences snowfall towards the end of December or in January. If you want to witness this breathtaking phenomenon, plan your trip during this time with your loved ones.

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