Nainital: 7 must-do’s in the foothills of Kumaon

The honeymoon destination of 80s & 90s – Nainital -is one of the most beautiful, commercialized & planned hill stations of India.

Situated in the Kumaon foothills of mighty Himalayas, this hill station still manages to take your breath away. If you visit it in Summers, the bright, green colors of Pine & Oak tress leave you amazed & happy. And if you visit Nainital in winters, it takes you straight to the Bollywood movie scenes of 90’s where a newly wed couple is aiming & throwing snowballs at each other & suddenly the ‘heroine’ slips on the slippery, white snow only to be caught by the ‘hero’ in time.


Looking for a weekend getaway or want to spend some personal time with self or spouse, Nainital offers you a wide variety of options. From adventure trekking to boat riding to clicking family pictures, Nainital presents you all.

Here are the seven must do’s if you are visiting Nainital:

1. Take a boat ride in the beautiful Naini lake:

After multiple boat rides in different lakes of numerous hill stations, I have one thing to say – every boat ride is different. Story teller boat men, beautiful boats, fish spotting underneath water, stuck boats or a hole in the boat only to be discovered in the middle of the ride – every boat ride has got a story. Take a boat ride & get your story. If you already have one, share it in the comments.

Oh yes, hole in the boat is a true story from a lake ride from Mount Abu. Ask my friend, Sonam.

Boat ride.jpg
Naini Lake from June 2014

2. Walk on the Mall Road & buy trivia:

The most interesting part about hill stations is – Mall Road. I love walking on Mall roads. You find all kinds of trivial, colorful stuff being sold on roadside stalls of Mall road. Shop them! You will find geometrical, junk jewellery, leather look alike purses, flimsy cotton tops & bottoms & cheap yet beautiful show pieces. Take a walk, click some pics & shop for trivia.

Trivia 2
Junk Jewellery stalls on Mall road, Nainital
Trivia being sold on road side stalls on Mall road

3. Befriend a dog:

We took a long walk on the Mall road every evening when we visited Nainital. Once you cross all the starry, studded shops & enter the main market area dotted with little, sweet shops, you will come across many hairy beings who are friendly as hell. We met many but this handsome, dark one really piqued me. And I clicked this pic to share with my very dear friend, Kiran who is a proud friend of a gorgeous lab, named Bingo.

Dark, handsome dude from Nainital!

4. Take the Nainital Ropeway & indulge in games:

If you like to enjoy views from high altitude & don’t mind taking a few risks here & there, enjoy the Nainital Ropeway & indulge the adventurer in you. Near the ropeway area, they have reserved some space for all sorts of silly yet fun games. Leave your kids there & take some moments of respite. If you don’t have kids yet, watch those of others fighting with the laws of gravity & remind yourself why you don’t have kids yet. You may also visit the  zoo nearby too. It’s a delight for the animal lovers.

Near the Ropeway area
Local Games, Nainital: You are supposed to shoot one of the bottles. See, ecofriendly!

5. Enjoy the view from your hotel on Mall road:

You must get a hotel on the Mall road. And if you do, you must get the elevated room. And if you do, you must get the one with a view. Watching the lake at dusk or at night is therapeutic. I absolutely loved that view even though the Naini mosquitoes were feasting on my B+ ,RBCs. Every time I think of this view, somewhere in my mind, happy neurons are activated.

View from the balcony of my hotel.jpg
Naini Lake, view from the balcony of my hotel, Mall road, Nainital, 2014

Every hill station has some peaks & joints that you can check out. And they sell good snacks at some, set-up telescopes at some, create folk stories at others & put an entry ticket to all of them.

6. Complete the local sightseeing like Tiffin Top, Khurpa Tal & Saria Tal:

Every hill station has some peaks & joints that you can check out. And they sell good snacks at some, set-up telescopes at some, create folk stories at others & put an entry ticket to all of them. That said, it’s fun to mingle with the crowd, fight over the parking space, speaking with your cabbie & get ripped off in the name of sight seeing. Nainital won’t disappoint you. There are plenty of local spots. Visit them & splurge.

Sight seeing.jpg
Sight Seeing: Nainital, 2014
A fresh fruit stall near Khurpa Tal, Nainital, 2014

7. Click a selfie in a cap/ hat:

Nainital is always full of tourists. You also spot couples with chooras (red, plastic bangles worn by newly wed ladies) & kgs. of make up. In the midst of all this, take a selfie in a toursity style with a cap or a hat. If you don’t have one, pick it from one of the stalls. They will loan it to you for a few selfies & charge INR 100 only. 

Selfie in Nainital, 2014

Pic Credits: All pictures clicked by me using my  Nexus 5.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. V Maruti Rao says:

    WoW! a lively write up Yamini. You took me to Nainital and to the hills, the great and picturesque lake and to the Mall. Love it.- V. Maruthi Rao


    1. Just Yamini says:

      I am glad you liked it, Sir. Will come up with a new post really soon!


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