:- (1371 Meters) About 22 kms from Nainital, nestled
in a beautiful pristine valley, this jem of a lake is the largest
around Nainital. The beauty is enhanced by a small Island surrounded
by crystal blue water. One road from Bhimtal leaves for Naukuchiatal
while the another one goes to Kathgodam 21 Kms from here.
Bhimtal is one of the largest lake around Nainital named after
Bhima of Mahabharata. It has a island in the center approached
only by a boat and at present it has an Aquarium there. A gaggle
of ducks has made the lake their home and give company to the
lake visitor. Bhimtal is much less crowded than Nainital and
the lake, Bhimtal is much cleaner than it's better known counterpart
Nainital. Bhimtal can be reached directly from Delhi in 6-7
Bhimtal is slightly on the warmer side in mid June, but makes
for an all year round destination. For recreation one can do
boating at the lake or explore the surrounding jungle on foot.
It can also be made as a center for exploring the surrounding
lakes. There is a large Victorian dam at one end of the Bhimtal
lake and terraced flower gardens can be found on either side.
Next to the dam is the Bhimkeshwar temple dedicated to Bhim.
There is also the Godhakhal Temple 3 km from Bhimtal. Another
interesting place in Bhimtal is The Museum of Folk Culture (Lok
Sanskriti Sangrahalaya) housing collections of folk paintings
and ancient wooden artifacts. Bhimtal makes for an interesting
off beat destination both for the family and corporate traveler.
An Aquarium on the Island on Bhimtal
Bhimtal Lake is home to a large variety of aquatic species.
There is an island in the centre of the lake that used to have
a restaurant, which fascinated a lot of tourists until its beauty
was ruined due to publics leftovers. The Nainital Lake Development
Authority hence decided to develop an aquarium on the island.
They have converted the restaurant into an aquarium to prevent
pollution and clean the lake. Earlier, there used to be a restaurant
on this island and a lot of tourists used to visit the restaurant.
However, tourists used to leave behind waste that used to pollute
The Nainital Lake Development Authority Dhiraj Garbayal , Secretary
of the N L D A in Uttarakhand came up with the idea of converting
the restaurant into an aquarium to stop the lake from being
Aquarium on the Island on Bhimtal
A variety of fishes from countries like South Africa, Mexico
and China have been kept in the aquarium that are captivating
tourists attention. They are excited to watch different species
of fishes in it.
Bhimtal, from the Macnabb Collection Col James Henry Erskine
Reid Album of Indian views, taken by Lawrie & Company in 1895
The major attraction in Bhimtal is the Bhimtal Lake which has
an island at its centre. Besides tourism, Bhimtal has also now
become a mini district headquarters since most of the district
administration offices have been shifted to the newly constructed
Vikas Bhawan, the building complex for district administrative
History of Bhimtal
Bhimtal is an ancient place named after Bhima of Mahabharata.
Bhimeshwara Mahadev Temple, an old Shiva temple in the bank
of Bhimtal lake, is believed to have been built when Bhima visited
the place during the banishment (vanvas) period of Pandavas.
Bhimtal, earlier known as Bhimsarovar, is believed to be the
stamping ground of the Pandavas.
According to the locals the town is named so because when the
Pandanvas had been exiled in this region they could not find
a water body from which they could quench their thirst. It was
then that Bhima, the powerful, hit the ground with his "gada"
or club thus creating a cavity in the ground, which was filled
with an underground source of water.
Bhimeshwar Temple - Bhimtal
The Bhimeshwar temple is said to have been set up by the Pandavas,
who established a Shivling there.
Oil Painting on Paper Of the Temple July 30 1878." by Marianne
The present temple was built in 17th century, by Baz Bahadur
(1638-78 AD), a King of the Chand dynasty, and the Raja of Kumaon.
Bhimtal came under British rule after the Anglo-Nepalese War
(1814-16), when Naintal became the summer capital of the province.
Bhimtal is older than nearby Nainital as the city of Nainital
is just 150-160 years old. But Bhimtal has been a stoppage for
the travellers of the region from hills to plains or vise versa
for a long time.
The old pedesterial road is still in use here and this road
connects nearby Kathgodam to all Kumaon region and even to Nepal
and Tibet. It might have been the part of the famous ancient
Temple on the Bhimtal Lake Bhimtal Year 1864, by Samuel
The Boer Prisoners Camp, Bhimtal 1890
of Interest near Bhimtal
Near the Bhimeshwar temple is a small hill known as Garg Parvat,
which is the source of river Gargi, also known as Gola Nadi
in the region. About 2 km from Bhimtal is Nal Damyanti Tal,
a small natural lake. It is believed that the palace of famous
king Nala drowned into this lake. It is a very sacred place
for the dwellers of the region. About 5 km from Bhimtal is a
hill known as Hidimba Parvat. It gets its name from demon Hidimba
of Mahabharata. Vankhandi Maharaj, a monk and environmentalist
lives on the hill now, and has created a sanctuary for the wild
animals around the hill. The area is known as Vankhandi Ashram.
The hill of Karkotaka is supposed to be named after Karkotaka,
a mythical cobra. The hill is famous for its Nag temple in the
region and on every Rishi Panchami thousands of people visit
the temple and worship the Nag Karkotaka Maharaj. This is one
of the famous nag temples situated in Uttarakhand region.
There is a 17th century Bhimeshwar temple complex along the
40 feet high dam.
The Dam by the Bhimtal Lake and the Bhim temple at Bhimtal,
There are many government and private institutions in Bhimtal
which include Tassar Regional Research Center (Ministry of Textile,
Govt. of India), National Cold Water Fisheries Institute, Jan
Sikshan Sansthan, Birla Institute of Applied Sciences (an Institute
of Higher Technical Education), Kumoun University Campus (Faculty
of Management and Pharmacy) and District Institute of Teachers
Education (DITE). Bhimtal has quite a few English medium schools.
Sainik School in Ghorakhal near Bhimtal is a school where students
prepare themselves to join the Indian Military. The Head of
the school is a working officer from the Indian Air Force. Hermann
Gmeiner School, Mount Alvern Convent School, Lakes International
School and Central School are some other well known schools
in the area.
You Can Visit Bhimtal By Taxi Or By Tours & Travel Packages.
Nainital Tourism offers Transport & online
booking for various Hotels & Resorts in Bhimtal.
Hotel Booking or Package related enquiry
Or Talk to us at 09536-1182-78 or
Office Landline Number: 05942- 237476 (10.30
am - 6 pm)