Nainital is a beautiful hill district situated in the Central Himalayas.Various vantage points around Nainital afford splendid views of the Himalayas. It is divided into two segments, Tallital and Mallital, at the lower and upper ends of the lake, respectively. It is often referred to as India's 'Lake District' as there are numerous lakes spread across its boundaries. It is an unbelievably beautiful place and excellent sightings of some of India's most attractive birds are guaranteed. Even though it is only a one and half hour drive north from Corbett National Park, the bird life and flora are completely different.

The town itself is set around Naini Lake (tal) and is encircled by seven hills. According to Hindu legend when the body of Shiva's consort, Sati, was dismembered, one of her eyeballs fell into the Himalayan foothills and the emerald green Naini Lake (or Tal) was formed.

A large variety of Himalayan bird species can be expected to be seen, such as Lammergeier, Himalayan Griffon, Blue-winged Minla, Spotted & Slaty-backed Forktail, Rufous-bellied Woodpecker, Rufous-bellied Niltava, Khalij Pheasant, and variety of flycatchers, chats, thrushes, etc. Almost 150 bird species have been recorded at Pangot and the surrounding areas. The numerous perennial & seasonal creeks are home to an amazing variety of flora and fauna including the Leopard, Yellow-throated Himalayan Martins, Himalayan Palm Civet, Ghoral, Barking Deer and Sambar.

The Pangot area (1900m) lies 15 kilometres past Nainital and its surrounding hills supports over 200 Himalayan bird species, with the highest numbers recorded during periods of migration. There are extensive species-rich mixed forests dominated with key species being ban-oak, pine and rhododendron.

Mangoli is a beatuiful valley which lies at a lower elivation to Nainital. It is a mix of terraced farmland and woodland, hosting a large diversity of birds. This site, together with Pangot are of special interest to birdwatchers.

Nainital Facts

  • Area : 11.73 sq. kms
  • Altitude : 1938 metres
  • Temperature (deg C): Summer- Max 27.0, Min 10.0. Winter- Max 15.0, Min 3.0
  • Rainfall : 1100 mms
  • Opening Times: All Year