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Jim Corbett National Park

Tiger - Jim Corbett National ParkAbout 300 kilometers (6-7 hours drive) away from Delhi this is one of the finest habitats of the tiger in India, the Corbett National Park nestles in the foothills of the Himalayas in Uttarakhand, in the area known as South Patlidun. With it's varied topography, diverse flora and fauna and the natural splendour of its landscapes, the Park makes a precious heritage. Gypsys and Canters are available to tour inside the park. They run on pre-determined routes at fixed interval. Unfortunately most of the wild animals stay away from the tourist’s view perhaps because they know the routes and timings. Areas outside core area may provide better sighting and the fact that movement is not controlled there, makes it even more attractive. Early morning trip to Sitabani from Rmnagar town has a good prospect for sighting wildlife of Corbett area. On this route one can take one’s own vehicle (sports utility) and drive far into this beautiful hill area.


Established in 1936, this reserve was known as the Hailey National Park. It was later renamed after Jim Corbett the famous hunter, author and pioneer conservationist who helped set up this wildlife sanctuary. At present, this national park encompasses an area of about 520 sq. Kms whish includes, the vast reservoir formed by the Kalagarh dam across the river Ramganga. It is one of the best manged protected areas in the country and attracts thousand of visitors each year. This area is also a tiger reserve under the Project Tiger. The Park is a large valley with forested ridges running through it. The magnificent Ramganga River winds through its entire length in a south - southwesterly direction and numerous forest streams and rivulets that flow into it carve up the area into little ridges and ravines. Dense stands of sal and mixed deciduous forests are found throughout the Park while the 'chaurs' or the grasslands in the valleys - about one -tenth of the core area, offer visitors a better view of wildlife.


With elevations in the Park ranging from 400m to 1210m there is a rich diversity in habitat. Animals of the Himalayas and those of peninsular India can both be seen here and over 50 mammal and 25Reptile species have been recorded at Corbett. Among the predators are the tiger, leopard, diverse species of lesser cats and the dhole - the wild dog. There are antelopes (nilgai and ghoral) varieties of deer (hog deer, sambhar, chital or spotted deer and barking deer), the primates (rhesus and langur) and other animals like jackals, foxes, civets, wild boar, sloth bear, black bear and a range of reptiles including the cobra, python and two species of crocodile.


The rare fish eating, long snouted gharial and the more robust mugger can be seen basking along the sand banks and pools of the Ramganga. The river which is also noted for its sporting fish, the mighty mahaseer and the malee is popular with anglers.


Corbett's BirdsCorbett’s Birds- Corbett is the home of 580 species of birds including water fowl, 17 types of woodpecker, raptors like the Pallas fishing eagle, harriers and kites, peafowl, kalij pheasant, the rare chir pheasant, red jungle fowl, minivets, shrikes, cuckoos, drongos and barbets.

A fine reservoir on the river formed with the building of a dam at Kalagarh now attracts diverse species of water birds - both local and migratory. With its avian variety Corbett is a marvelous location for bird watchers also.


Dhikala at the heart of the core area, is picturesquely located at the edge of a grassy plateau perched high above the Ramganga reservoir and set into a bend in the river. The grasslands of the Dhikala Chaur disappear into the dense sal forests of the foothills. This is a favourite viewing area. The chaur and surrounding forests support the highest density of tigers in the country - about one every 5 sq. Km. Splendid herds of Chital, hog deer and elephants are also to be seen here. There are viewing towers as well as elephant rides for visitors - morning and evening. This is perhaps the best way to see wildlife for it is possible to go deep into the park on elephants, to get close to the animals in an unobtrusive manner and to get a clear view of them.

Places to Visit in Nainital
Naina Devi Temple

The temple, destroyed by the Landslip of 1880 and later rebuilt, is located on the northern shore of Naini Lake. The presiding deity of the temple is Maa Naina Devi represented by two Netras or eyes. Flanking Naina Devi are the deities of Mata Kali and Lord Ganesh.

St. John in the Wilderness, established in 1844, is located on the north end of town (Mallital), about half a mile north-west of the Naina Devi temple. The church was so named by Daniel Wilson, the Bishop of Calcutta, who, after falling ill during a visit to Nainital in 1844 to lay the foundation of the church, was obliged to sleep in an unfinished house on the edge of the forest. A brass plaque on the altar is inscribed with names of the victims of the Landslip of 1880.


Governor’s House (also Raj Bhavan), was built in 1899 and designed in the Victorian Gothic domestic style by the architect F.W. Stevens. Originally built as the summer residence of the governor of the North West Province, it later became the summer residence for the Lieutenant Governor of the United Provinces. Currently, Raj Bhavan is the official guest house for the governor of Uttaranchal and for visiting state guests. The complex consists of a two-storied mansion with 113 rooms, a large garden, a swimming pool, and golf links. Obtaining prior permission is must for visiting.


Snow View (altitude 2270 m.), located atop the Sher-ka-danda Ridge (north by north-east of the town centre), is easily reachable by a cable car. On a clear day, it offers spectacular views of the snowbound high Himalaya, including Nanda Devi, Trisul, and Nanda Kot. The best time of the year for viewing the mountains is late October and November.


Naina (also China, also Cheena) Peak. Naina peak is the highest peak in the town, with an altitude of 2615 m. and at a walking distance of 6 km from north end of the town (Mallital). From atop the peak, one cannot only see a broad swath of the snow clad high Himalaya, but also obtain a panoramic view of Nainital town itself. The summit is an invigorating hike from Nainital town; in addition, for the less energetic visitors, ponies can be hired in Mallital or on Snow View.


Tiffin Top (also Dorothy's Seat). (Tiffin = light meal eaten during the day.) This terraced hill top (altitude 2292 m.) on Ayarpatta hill is a 4 km hike from the town centre and commands a nice view of the neighboring country side. Dorothy's Seat is a stonework picnic perch on Tiffin Top built as a memorial to an English artist, Dorothy Kellet, by her husband and admirers after her death in a plane crash.


Places to visit around Nainital


Jim Corbett National Park (29°32'N, 78°56'E) Nainital district is home to India's oldest national park, the Corbett National Park. The park, which is 63 km. west by north-west of Nainital, contains a wide variety of wild life including nearly 600 species of birds.

Mukteshwar (2286 m. or 7,500 ft), a picturesque town 52 km north-east of Nainital, is home to the Indian Veterinary Research Institute. It also offers an unhindered view of the high mountains of the western Himalaya, including Nanda Devi, Trishul, and Nanda Kot.

Bhim Tal is a lake named after the second Pandava brother Bhima in the Mahabharata who was known for his prodigious strength. The lake, which is larger than Naini Lake, is approximately 22 km from Nainital at an altitude of 1370 m. There is an island in the lake with a popular restaurant on it. There is also a 17th century temple complex, the Bhimeshwar, alongside a 40 feet high dam at one end of the lake.

Saat Tal (literally Seven Lakes) is at a distance of about 23 km. from Nainital at an altitude of 1370 m. It is a cluster of small-interconnected lakes in the midst of an old oak forest. On approaching Sattal, the first lake encountered is the Nal-Damyanti Lake; next it is the Panna or Garude lake; and finally there is a cluster of three lakes: Ram, Laxman, and Sita lakes.


Khurpa Tal (literally Trowel Lake) is an attractive lake about 10 km. by road (or a 5 km. hike) from Nainital at an altitude of 1635 m. It is popular with anglers and is surrounded by terraced fields (or farms), from which it presumably gets its name.

Naukuchia Tal (literally, Nine-Cornered Lake) is 26 km from Nainital and 4 km from Bhimtal at an altitude of 1220 m. The lake is almost 1 km long, half a kilometre wide and approximately 40 m. deep. It is the deepest of the lakes in the greater Naintal area. According to legend, if one takes in all nine corners in one glimpse, one can disappear in a cloud of smoke.

Hanuman Garhi (also Hanuman Garh), altitude 1951 m. The temple complex is about 3.5 km from the Tallital (South End) bus stop. The presiding deity of the temple is Lord Hanuman, the vanara god of the Ramayana, and he is depicted tearing open his chest to reveal Rama and Sita in his heart. Hanuman Garhi is also known for its spectacular views of the setting sun.


How to reach Nainital Nainital is well connected with rest of the country by road, nearest railhead to Nainital is Kathgodam.

Distance of Nainital with major places

Delhi- Nainital  297KM
Kathgodam- Nainital  37 KM
Almora- Nainital  62 KM
Ranikhet- Nainital 60 KM
Corbett Park- Nainital  128 KM
Kausani- Nainital  117 KM

Other Places to Visit
Haridwar-Rishikesh Mussoorie Almora
Nainital Jim Corbett Park Sri Badrinath
Sri Kedarnath Flower Valley Kausani
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