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Bhimtal Tourism

Explore Bhimtal, the mesmerizing hill station in Uttarakhand, and enjoy the Himalayan vistas and serene whispers of untouched nature.

Bhimtal, with its clear blue skies, sparkling lake, and absolute peacefulness, is another pearl in Uttarakhand's crown. Bhimtal is a charming town about 20 kilometres away from the hill station of Nainital. Bhimtal, located 1370 metres above sea level, is a prominent tourist site in Uttarakhand's Kumaon Region, and it is where mythological hills stand strong to tell their tales to the world. This small beautiful town is named after Bhima from the Mahabharata, who is claimed to have built the centrally located lovely lake, which is also the town's main attraction.

In contrast to the highly populated region of Nainital, Bhimtal remains an unpopulated and pollution-free town where visitors can enjoy peace and recreational activities at their best. The Himalayan hills border the town's northernmost section, and Almora and Pauri Garhwal are nearby regions. This magnificent hill station is surrounded by dense forests of pine, oaks, and bushes, giving it the appearance of a gateway to heaven on Earth. It is covered with appealing panoramas of nature, from stunning dams to large water bodies and eco-friendly conservatories. Indeed, this Bhimtal hill station tour will be a distinctive experience for solitary travellers, families on vacation, couples, and friends, since it has something to offer everyone.

Aside from tourism, Bhimtal has now become a mini-district headquarters, with the majority of district administration offices relocating to the recently finished Vikas Bhawan, a district administrative building complex.

Town Bhimtal
Coordinates 29.35°N 79.5667°E
Geographical area 1,370 m (4,490 ft)
Popular Tourist Attractions in Bhimtal Bhimeshwar Temple, Bhimtal Lake, Bhimtal Island Aquarium, Victoria Dam, Folk Culture Museum, Hidimba Parvat, Nal Damyanti Tal, Karkotaka Temple, and many others.
Popular Activities to do in Bhimtal Boating, Fishing, Sightseeing, Camping, Stargazing, Picnic, Hiking, Trekking, Kayaking, Paragliding and Dirt Biking
Languages Spoken Hindi, Kumaoni, English

Top Tourist Attractions in and around Bhimtal

Travelling alone or with the whole family, Bhimtal is sure to please since the town features a variety of tourist attractions ranging from exquisite temples to beautiful lakes to adventure sports. The town also caters to both the daring and lazy sides by offering a variety of activities such as camping, kayaking, paragliding, and trekking, because the finest view comes after the most difficult ascent.

Bhimtal Lake

It is one of Uttarakhand's largest lakes. This beautiful C-shaped lake is a tranquil area surrounded by green mountains. It covers an area of 47 hectares. This picturesque lake and its surrounding is named after Bhima and is located at an elevation of roughly 1370 metres, and is home to exquisite varieties of flora and fauna. The lake supplies drinking water and supports aquaculture with a diverse range of fish species.

During the winter, a variety of migrating birds can be seen perching here. A boat tour is an excellent way to see the lake. In the middle of the lake lies an island with a restaurant, a temple, and an aquarium with a diversity of fish species. Its masonry dam, constructed in 1883, provides a good storage facility, which is the reason for Bhimtal Lake to be so well-known. It has a catchment area of around 17.12 square kilometres, which is relatively significant.

Enjoy boating on the lake and watching the breathtaking sunsets. Not just boating but kayaking and zorbing are among the best things to do in Bhimtal which are offered to visitors planning a tour here.

Timing : 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Victoria Dam

The dam, which is located on one end of the Bhimtal Lake, provides a great view of the lake and its picturesque surroundings. The flowery terrace gardens on both sides of the dam are a notable feature of the dam. Near the dam is a historic 17th-century Bhimeshwar Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. This dam, built during the British colonial era, is a testimony to that era's architectural skill and is now a popular destination for nature lovers, adventure seekers, and history aficionados alike.

The Victoria Dam is set among the beautiful Himalayas in the midst of the Bhimtal Valley. The dam was named after Queen Victoria and was built by the British government in 1883. It was originally constructed to hold water for agricultural purposes, but it has now become a popular tourist attraction in the region.

The Victoria Dam is constructed over the Gargi River, a tributary of the Bhagirathi River. This 40-foot-high dam draws a huge number of tourists, and one can also take a stroll in the forest that surrounds the lake. Even though it is frequently visited by pilgrims, it is extremely enjoyable during the Shivratri festival. Tourists can find calm in the area surrounding the dam's peaceful setting.

Timing : 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Bhimeshwar Temple

Bhimeshwar Temple, which is highly rich in architecture, is another notable tourist attraction in Bhimtal. This remarkable 17th-century temple is dedicated to the divine Lord Shiva and was named after Bhima from the Mahabharata. According to the Skanda Purana, Bhima once travelled alone to the Himalayas. On his journey, a divine voice from the sky told him that if he wanted to be remembered for generations, he should build a Shiva temple with complete dedication. As an avid Shiva devotee, he built a temple for Lord Shiva from the mountain in that location. Bhima is a massive and powerful being with the strength of 100 elephants. He broke the mountain with his mace. The Ganga flows from there, and when the Ganga's water flows, it creates Bhimtal Lake.

This classic shrine is considered sacred by locals and believers alike for its exquisite construction and is undoubtedly an important attraction. It was also thought that the Bhimeshwar Mahadev temple in Nainital district is considerably older than the town itself.

This temple welcomes visitors throughout the year, attracting devotees and travellers seeking its quiet ambiance and spiritual significance. The temple becomes a hive of activity, especially during the major festival of Mahashivratri. It is ideally positioned near Bhimtal Lake and is easily accessible by road.

Timing : 04:30 A.M. to 9:00 P.M

Karkotaka Temple

The temple is located on the hills and these hilltops are highly likely to compel one to meditate. Assume sitting atop the Naag fan (snake's head) and mediating like an authority figure. The magnificent Himalayas can also be seen from the peak. When visitors stand at Karkotak Temple in Bhimtal, they feel connected with nature.

Every year on Shiv Ratri and Naag Panchami, a small fair happens and thousands of devotees come to worship at the temple. Karkotak is also mentioned in the Vedas. This is an ancient Nag temple on the Karkotaka hill in Uttarakhand's Bhimtal area. The temple is dedicated to Nag Karkotaka Maharaja, the serpent god. The name of this hill is mythical. On Rishi Panchami, an enormous number of devotees come here to pray and see the Lord. According to tradition, this god protects believers from snake bites.

Folk Culture Museum

Padmashree awardee Dr Yashodhar Mathpal is the man behind this one-man institution. Dr Yashodhar Mathpal built this elegant museum, also known as 'Lok Sanskriti Sangrahalaya,' to preserve culture, artefacts, and other fundamental kinds of art. The museum contains some rare collections of wood antiquities as well as valuable exhibits like paintings and other artefacts such as folk artwork, wooden artefacts, old manuscripts, god and goddess idols, brass and copper utensils, clothing, and agricultural equipment.

This museum, built in 1983, highlights Uttarakhand's historical and cultural value. Dr Yashodhar Mathpal worked in Madhya Pradesh caves for 30 years, creating thousands of cave paintings. Padmashree honoured him for his dedication and excellence.

The Folk Museum is organised into three distinct galleries. The first is a cultural gallery that exhibits nature and heritage paintings. The second gallery is a cave art gallery, which is quite distinctive and different. The art gallery has a collection of about 300 hundred paintings. The museum displays an extraordinary collection of pictures and copies of rock art. The third gallery is dedicated to Tibetan, Folk, and Tribal Arts. This museum is situated close to Bhimtal Lake.

Timing : 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Hidimba Parvat

The Hidimba Parvat is about 5 kilometres away from Bhimtal. This mountain on the outskirts of town is named after another character from the epic Mahabharata, Hidimba, who was actually a demoness. Hidimba, according to legend, dressed herself as a lovely lady to attract the attention of the Pandava brother, Bhima.

Today, the hilltop is known to be home to a variety of wildlife species, and an environmentalist named Vankhandi Maharaj has taken it upon himself to protect the region. He founded the Vankhandi Ashram, which is surrounded by a wildlife sanctuary with unique flora and fauna. Many people can enjoy the opportunity to see wildlife in their natural habitat. There is a 2 km long simple hiking trail to this site for those looking for a thrill.

Nal Damyanti Tal

Nal Damyanti, a small natural lake about 2 kilometres from Bhimtal, is regarded as a spiritual spot. The lake is surrounded by woods and has shallow water as well as great natural walking pathways. The natural lake is filled with natural beauty that will take the breath away. The lake is a good place to relax and rejuvenate away from the hustle and bustle of cities, and to take in the breathtaking beauty of nature. Numerous old houses in the area showcase the typical Kumaoni building style.

Nal Damyanti Tal is also regarded as a sacred site by the people. A few steps further, one could see the Sattal cluster of seven lakes. So it's an ideal location for individuals seeking solitude and tranquillity.

A classic story from the Indian epic Mahabharata mentions this location. Locals say this is where King Nala, a powerful and kind king, and Damyanti, a beautiful queen, lived blissfully. Many demi-gods and superhumans attempted to court her hand in marriage. She denied them all and married King Nala because she loved him. This enraged the demigods, and this wonderful pair eventually received the consequences of their faith. His entire palace was submerged in water. During that moment, his wife Damyanti was frying the fish, and the burn marks on the fish in the lake can still be seen.

Bhimtal Island Aquarium

While on the boat, visitors can come across an island in the middle of the lake that holds another Bhimtal attraction in the form of an aquarium. Developed by the Lake Development Authority of Bhimtal as this aquarium, located near Bhimtal Lake, is a magnificent escape for all nature lovers.

There's a cafe inside the island which is a unique concept in the middle of the lake with an aquarium inside, which is home to fish from countries such as South Africa, Mexico, and many more. Tourists can visit this beautiful island by hiring a boat and can enjoy the stunning beauty of the lake while dining on some fantastic cuisine with a beautiful view.

Timing : 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM

Best Time to Visit Bhimtal

Bhimtal offers a moderate and pleasant environment all year, with an average yearly temperature of roughly 15 degrees Celsius. The weather at Bhimtal is mild and pleasant throughout the entire year. Summer weather is a mix of warmth and cold winds after sunset. However, the ideal time to visit these best places in Bhimtal is from March to June and September to December as the weather remains perfect for participating in outdoor and adventure activities.

  • Summer : During the summer, it experiences a combination of chilly and mild breezes. Soak in the relaxing rays that beam brilliantly here at Bhimtal. The months of March to May, with temperatures ranging from 10 to 27 degrees Celsius, are great for adventurous sports and temple hopping. This is also peak tourist season, so visitors should expect greater crowds and higher accommodation charges, especially during the peak summer vacation months.
  • Monsoon : Here in Uttarakhand, the monsoon season runs from mid-July to mid-September, and rainfall is in charge of the town throughout this period of the year. Monsoon season covers the entire area in lush flora with continuous rainfall. The temperature does drop, making the land more appealing. However, sometimes severe rains make outdoor activities less appealing. As a result, caution is recommended when visiting during this season.
  • Winter : The cold weather months welcome tourists to Bhimtal during the months of September, October, and November, when temperatures drop to -3 degrees Celsius. During the winter, it becomes slightly colder but not frigid. Explore the top tourist places because this is the ideal time of year to visit Bhimtal as one can get to experience snowfall and winter wonderland at this time of the year.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is the famous regional food in Bhimtal ?

Bhimtal's cuisine is primarily Kumaoni, including dishes prepared with lentils, rice, and local spices. Bhimtal's restaurants and eateries serve a variety of cuisines, including Chinese, Mexican, and continental, as well as traditional Indian cuisine. Momos are also at the top of most restaurants' menus, and the cuisine served is quite outstanding.

Q. What are the top things to do in Bhimtal for visitors ?

Visitors can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities in the adjacent mountains and forests. Trekking, camping, rappelling, and paragliding are all popular activities in and near Bhimtal. Because of the rugged terrain and natural beauty, it is a perfect location for various sports.

Q. Is Bhimtal appropriate for everyone ?

Yes, Bhimtal is a fantastic vacation spot. It features a peaceful setting, natural beauty, and opportunities for sightseeing tours, trekking, and outdoor enjoyment. The town is quite secure, and there are lodging options for all budgets. Bhimtal is an excellent place for wildlife enthusiasts. The atmosphere is really serene, and the weather is incredibly calming.

Q. What are the most popular Bhimtal tourism attractions ?

Bhimtal offers a range of popular tourist attractions that draw visitors from across India and the world which include Bhimeshwar Temple, Bhimtal Lake, Bhimtal Island Aquarium, Victoria Dam, Folk Culture Museum, Hidimba Parvat, Nal Damyanti Tal, Karkotaka Temple, and many others.

Q. Is there a market or a shopping area in Bhimtal ?

Bhimtal features a small market area as well as a "mall road" where tourists can buy local handicrafts, souvenirs, and street food. However, it won't be as crowded as markets in larger cities such as Nainital.

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