Nainital, also known as the “City of Lakes,” is magnificent in every sense. The night, my train reached Bareilly, and I stepped out of the station to rent a cab to Nainital. Never had I any idea that a short trip of 3 days could change my whole perspective about traveling. I have always been fond of traveling, but Nainital was my first female solo trip, and the excitement, fear, and thrill juxtaposed all together inside my heart. But, let me tell you, even though the beautiful city is known for the lakes, it is much more than that. Nainital welcomes you with open hands, and trust me when I say this; it is one of the safest cities in India.
Now, I decided I would give you a list of activities you could do in Nainital, and none of them would burn a hole in your pocket. When I left for my solo travel, I only had 7,000 INR with myself, and I saved 3,000 INR, and I am not at all bluffing. The entire trip, excluding the train tickets, cost me 4,000 INR only. So, let’s get started on the list of activities you could do when you visit Nainital:
- Walk around the City
One thing, I had never experienced before Nainital, was walking around a city leisurely. This was my first time alone, and I had no restrictions on me, which is pretty standard in an Indian household, especially if you are a girl. So, three years back, when I set my feet on the roads of Nainital, it was way into the night. I had my luggage with me, and no outside cars are allowed inside the city premises at night. The cab dropped me on the outskirts, and I started walking without any idea of where to go. I had not booked a hotel yet, and to be honest, I was scared to death to walk alone on the streets. But the moment I came closer to the lake of Nainital, the beauty of the night sky filled with stars, and the reflection on the still water of the lake, I forgot what fear feels like. I was mesmerized by the beautiful sight of the city, and I walked on the streets the whole night. In my opinion, this is the most affordable way to look around the city. Go out and walk around leisurely, the beauty of the town would keep you captivated for a long time.
- Visit the Mall Road
Walking around the Mall Road was one of the most exciting activities for me. The entire road is always filled up with tourists and local people. There are tiny little shops on one side of the mall. You can buy a souvenir from one of the shops, for cheap. The Mall Road is the busiest place in the city. Every day, I used to walk down the Mall Road at least once, and talk to the people around. The people who live there are incredibly polite and friendly, and you can learn a lot about the city from them.
- Row Boating at the Naini Lake
If you are in Nainital, you have to visit Naini Lake. The city, Nainital, is named after this particular lake. The lake’s atmosphere is vibrant in the day time, and you can also experience the beautiful silence at night time. Also, it would be best if you experienced row boating at the lake. The ticket is for 200 INR only. I would personally recommend you to visit the lake at night, too. The silence and the night sky make the lake more peaceful at that hour.
- Visit the Mukteshwar Temple and the Rocks
After my first day at Nainital, I rented a cab with eight other tourists to visit Mukteshwar. I had heard a lot about the temple located at Mukteshwar and planned on visiting it. But, the most spectacular incident took place after I reached my destination. The Mukteshwar Temple was undoubtedly magnificent. But, I started to walk around the temple, and that’s how I found a trail to the most beautiful view I had ever seen. Rocks surrounded the entire place, and you could try rock-climbing, too. I spent the whole afternoon sitting on one of the stones, completely mesmerized by the view in front of me. I witnessed the snow-covered peaks of the mountains in front of me while sipping on a hot cup of tea. At that time, I realized how wonderful it was to be on your own, in an unknown city, with strangers.
- Go on the Ropeway
On the last day on my solo trip to Nainital, I planned on going up on the ropeway to observe the entire city. Undoubtedly, one of the most extraordinary experiences I had in Nainital is this. You don’t want to miss out on this one. There is always a massive line of travelers waiting to board on the ropeway. It took me a good one hour to finally get my turn, but I completely forgot about pretty much everything when I did.
Nainital is immensely close to my heart. The city has given me a lot more than mere beautiful scenic sites. The town has given me beautiful memories to look back at, and it has taken away my fear of the outside world. The city made me fall in love with being alone and taking risks, even when you might face trouble. Before Nainital, I have been to multiple other cities and towns with my family, but what Nainital gifted me was more than just traveling. If you are a woman who is afraid to go solo or you are anticipating whether to take the trip alone, please do it. There is nothing freer and more peaceful about traveling at your own pace and on your own. To conclude, I would like to quote Jane Austen, “What are men to rocks and mountains?”