IntroductionNainital, the famous hill town in Kumaon hills, in Uttarakhand state is a choicest and popular destination for tourists and throughout the year it is crowded with the visitors who come here to enjoy the serene and clean environment. The famous Naini lake, flush with water, around which Nainital town is developed is about a Km long and is the main attraction of the town and presents a picturesque and magnificent look to the tourists. Boating in the Naini lake in a leisurely afternoon is one of the best activities, the visitors can choose from the available options there. It is the inherent beauty of this hill station that people visit here again and again.
It is an ideal destination in Christmas and New year time when a lot of activities are possible in this area. There are so many options to choose from - hiking, trekking, horse riding, boating, lazy walks in Mall road and shopping in the Mallital market.
About NainitalFor those who are not much aware of this place and are interested to visit in the coming Christmas and New Year time, it will be good to know briefly about this place and its origin.
The Kumaon Hills of Uttarakhand came under British rule after the Anglo-Nepalese War during the years 1814–16. The origin of Nainital can be traced back to 1841, when P. Barron, a Britisher and sugar trader from Shahjahanpur, Uttar Pradesh (then known as United Provinces) while trekking in the Himalayan hills liked this place much and started construction of the first European house (Pilgrim Lodge). Soon many settlements started to crop up mainly in the Northern and Western sides of the Naini lake stretching to the lands towards the rising hills. The Southern side known as Ayarpatha being in limited sunlight zone was selected for construction activities only at a later course of time. There was a rapid construction of churches, lodges and cottages in Nainital and soon it became a favourite health resort of British soldiers and Colonial officials and their families in the pre-independence era.
Nainital is situated at an altitude of 2084 m above sea level. The town is the headquarter of Nainital district and is developed around the mango shaped Naini lake. The circumference of the lake is about 3 km and it is surrounded by mountains in its North, West and South sides but opened to the valleys below in its East side. The highest peak is Naina Peak (Earlier known as China Peak) having an elevation of 2615 m. Spectacular views of surrounding landscapes are seen from the Naina Peak and it is one of the famous tourist points for sightseeing. One has to go there either on feet or by horse riding.
The western lakeside settlements in Nainital are known as Mallital while the Eastern side as Tallital and the Mall road along one side of the lake joins them. They are also joined by another road known as Thandi road along the other side of the lake and has this name because of the limited sunlight available in that area making it coolest in the town. Most of the people come from Mallital to Tallital through the Mall road only through the walkers prefer the less crowded Thandi road.
Due to its elevation and subtropical highland climate, it is cool even in summer months (May to July) and even in July which is the hottest month as per annual temperatures here, the temperatures go up to hardly 16 to 24 degree centigrade. January is the coolest month having temperatures in the range of 2 to 11 degree centigrade.
As per 2011 census, Nainital had a population of only 41,377. It has an average literacy rate of 92.93%, much higher than the Uttarakhand state average of 78.82%.
Accommodation in NainitalAs this place is always crowded with visitors and tourists, it is advisable to book a hotel in advance. There are all sorts of hotels ranging from budget to luxury and there is no problem on that account. Sometimes if a good hotel is not available as per one's choice then there are options to go for hotels in the nearby places like Bhimtal, Bhawali, Jeolikot etc which are within an hours drive from Nainital and one can make a base there itself and then one can plan to visit the different nearby places from there.
Activities during Christmas and New year time in NainitalNainital is an ideal destination to enjoy during Christmas and New year as the town is crowded by the tourists and nature lovers to start their new year in the serene environment and enjoy the place and its magnificent surroundings. There are all sorts of hotels in Nainital where people can opt to go for their new year parties with a choice of food and other fun activities to enjoy. Due to the winter season, one has to take woolens and other protective clothes like the shawl, cap and muffler etc to protect oneself from exposure to cold. Generally, in the month of January, snowfall takes place here but sometimes it can be there during the new year time and if it so then one can enjoy this also during one's visit.
Some of the activities one can choose during ones stay in Nainital is -
In addition to above, there are other leisurely activities here like roaming and enjoying small eateries/ cafes in the Mallital market or indulge in shopping in Tibetan Market for woollen goods or taking a peaceful walk through the Thandi Road which connects Mallital to Tallital on the other side of the lake. In Mallital, just adjacent to the lake, there is a football ground and other open fields where a lot of activities, cultural shows, games and plays are organised time to time and the visitors enjoy them. This area is known as 'Flats' and there are fun and frolic activities going on there around the year.
How to reach?Nainital is well connected with roads to all the nearby areas and the nearest Railway station is at Kathgodown (34 km) and nearest limited flights Airport at Pantnagar (68 km). The full-fledged Airport is in Delhi (332 km) only from where taxis and buses are regularly available. So reaching Nainital is easy from any part of the country.
ConclusionNainital is a very good place to make a visit during the Christmas and New Year time and to enjoy the place as well as its surroundings and enter the new year in this serene and clean environment.
Nainital is a famous tourist spot for the nature lovers. I like this place because it is nearby Delhi. Also, the road connecting both the cities is good. Nainital is known as the Queen of Taals(lakes) as there are plenty of lakes in the city.
Nainital zoo is where one can see a snow leopard and Himalayan black beer. There are many activities one can do in Nainital like boating, trekking, ropeway, picnic spots.
It's very tough to get accommodation during the peak season so it's better to book the lodge or hotel in advance to avoid the situation.
Nainital is one of the best tourist places in Uttarakhand state. It was developed by the Britishers in a very methodical way.
I remember when I visited there first time to attend a function in some relatives house, I was simply stunned by its beauty and ambiance.
The town is developed around the lake and there are many nullahs and gutter lines connecting the high points of the surrounding hills to the lake. That was a mastermind work by the Britishers to contain the soil erosion and reducing the incoming silt to the lake.
In hills, the landslide is a major source of disasters and if we can control that then it helps in having a secure habitat for the residents and travelers there.