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My review of "Nainital" as a tourist destination

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Car Journey from Delhi -to- Nainital (Total Distance close to 310 kms)

Visual description of the road journey :

The things just got better for the Nainital seeker with the opening of Moradabad and Hapur bypass.
> Take the Ghaziabad bypass to leave Delhi and cross the river Hindon before taking the Hapur bypass (unless you want to buy the 'hapur ke papad' or the fancy towels in the town).
> One can stop at Gajraula for some sumptuous paranthas at this industrial town.
> Next when you see a lot of mooddah stalls on the highway you have reached Garh Mukteshwar. You can visit the Ganga ghat here for a dip or a boat ride.
> You have to no longer tread through crowded and narrow lanes of Moradadbad as you can pay just Rs.15 as toll to glide over the excellent dual carriageway of Moradabad bypass.
> After that reach Haldwani via Rampur and Rudarpur.
> The hilly road starts after Haldwani and then all the way to Nainital's Mall passing Kathgodam on the way.

Let me first give you some background info on the hill destination "Nainital" :

The hill state of Uttaranchal was carved out of Uttar Pradesh recently. It comprises of two two regions of Kumaon and Garhwal with Dehradun as the state capital. The state is blessed with lots of natural resources and splendour of scenic beauty. The new government is doing a lot to promote tourism and lots of tourist friendly measures are being taken to attract people from outside the state and foreigners too.
Nainital, one time contender for being the state capital the city has probably benefited by losing out , seeing the state of Dehradun after getting this status. Nainital is named after the Naini lake which means an eye, as folklore has it that the eye of sati Parvati fell here. The lake is also called lake of three sages after saints who meditated here to form it. The whole area was once called 'chakta', land of 60 lakes, though most of them have dried up now.

General Info :-
Altitude : 1900m
Weather : Summer temperatures range between 10 & 25 degree C, while in winter they are 2-15 degrees. Rainy season- July, August.
Rainfall : All the year round, maximum in monsoons, July-August

My Trip Diary :

Me and my friend left from Delhi on Saturday , 4:00 am for Nainital from Dwarka, New Delhi. My friend had got his Ford Ikon Car (Black) for the trip. By the way this guy is a Speed Freak. I also consider him a "Human GPS" coz he has good knowledge of Indian roads.

By 6:30 am we had reached near Garh Mukteshwara but we got stuck in a major traffic jam which went for about 30 kms and 3 hrs. This was one of the worst traffic jams i ever saw on a national highway. Actually the jam was due to a "Ganga Snan Mela" ahead at Garh Mukteshwara. We came out of the jam only after crossing Gajraula.

After crossing the newly constructed Moradabad Bypass flyover after paying the toll of Rs. 15/- the drive went smooth and we accelerated to cover up the lost time. We were also lloking out for some good place to have lunch, but we discovered that this whole highway has no great restaurants to have food. Thats really strange. Finally we found a restaurant on the highway near to a closed reliance petrol pump. The name of the restaurant was "A1 Food Plaza". This was owned by akash group. The restaurant is quite big in size. The ambience was clean and OK. The food was of good quality and the service was also OK. Nothing great about the whole restaurant but it was clean.
Well, we couldn't spot any other good restaurant either ahead or back of this restaurant, on the whole trip.

The drive ahead is smooth to some extent and gets much better as you start moving further ahead towards Nainital.

We reached Nainital by 4:00 pm. The place looks good in the very first view and is able to maintain that image throughout the trip.

The whole place is full of touts/agents of Hotels, cars, trip advisors, tour operators, restaurants, etc. Jut look around and you can find any service suiting your budget. Kindly bargain to get a good deal.

We finally found a hotel to stay on the mall road itself at a reasonable price.

By 6:00 pm we freshened up in our hotel room and went for a boat ride in the Naini lake. That was fun and the cold wind was flowing all over which was a great relief from Delhi's polluted environs.

After 7:30 pm we headed to have a walk at the Mall Road to discover what it was all about. Nothing great about the shops out there but yeah you might consider purchasing some local articles, etc. Well i headed to a Video Game shop to play some games and have a good time.

We had our dinner at a restaurant called "Mezbaan" which had the menu for chinese and indian food. There was a waiting for the table out here at around 10:00 pm. We had chinese here, which didnt enjoy much. But maybe the indian food would have been better, cant say.

The next day was Sunday and we checked out of our hotel room by 9:00 am. In nainital most of the hotels have a check in and check out time of 10:00 am.

We had parked our car in the municipal parking near the mosque and the cricket ground after the naini lake. The parking charges are Rs. 50/- for a day's parking but you have to move out your car from here after 9:00 am in the morning if parked a day earlier. Or you need to pay Rs. 50/- more.

We took the ropeway cable car to the Snow View Top and park. The view while travelling in the cable car is just thrilling. Good view.

On the top there are some food stalls and game activities such as Go-karting, Free Fall Ride, snow-ride, Binocular viewing of mountains, Car driving, rappling, mountain climbing, etc.

We finished the activities on the top and headed back to the Mall road through the cable car.
Once i reached back to the mall road i saw some vendors selling fresh strawberries. I purchsed some and found them to be sweet and worth it.

Finally we took off from nainital and started our drive back to Delhi, which was much smoother this time.

I would like to sum up by saying that a Nainital Trip is a recommended one. Have a great trip.
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