Nainital is a popular hill station situated at an elevation of 2084m above sealevel in Uttarakhand. It is an eponymous district and the judicial capital of Uttarakhand as the High court of the state being located here and is the headquarters of the Kumaon division as well. It also houses the Governor of Uttarakhand, who resides in the Raj Bhawan.
Nainital is a treasure situated in the heart of Kumaon. It is one of the most visited hill stations since British period. Enveloped in thick foil of nature, surrounded by mighty beautiful mountains with the emerald lake in the midst of the beautiful town, it gives a soothing essence which makes everyone to fall in love with this place.The city is set in a valley around the Nainital lake - an eye shaped lake. The lake is 1433m long and 463m wide, and is approximately two miles in circumference. The bed of the lake is at a depth of 85m near Pashan devi, the deepest point of the lake. The lake is deduced to have been formed tectonically.
Mythologically, it is said that this is the place where Lord Shiva performed his Tandava. It is believed that the Naini Lake is one of the 51 Shakti Peeths, which was established after the death of goddess Sati. Out of grief and sorrow, Lord Shiva carried Sati's body, and roamed around the universe with it. Lord Vishnu had cut her body into 51 body parts, using his Sudarshana Chakra, which fell on Earth to become sacred sites. The spot where Sati's eyes (or Nain) fell, came to be called Nain-tal or lake of the eye. The goddess Shakti is worshiped at the Naina Devi Temple, known by locals as Naini Mata Temple on the north shore of the present-day lake.
The fishes found in the lake are generally carps Mahseer, and the mirror carp. Two species of Mahseer fish Tor-tor (the red finned mahseer) and the Tor putitora (the yellow finned mahseer), a food fish which grows to varying sizes from 20 to 60 cm are found. The imported fish breed in the lake is Mirror carp. Gambusia affinis also called Mosquito fish has been introduced in the lake as a biocontrol measure to control mosquito larvae.
The Naini peak or the China peak is the highest in Nainital with a height of 2611m.Nainital is also famous for its various schools and research facilities. The observatory or the Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES) is located 9kms from Nainital on Manora Peak and is the centre for Astronomical studies and optical tracking of artificial satellites. It also proudly houses many renowned schools some from the British period. Important and famous schools in Nainital includes Sherwood college, St Joseph’s College, Birla Vidya Mandir and Sainik school.