Ranikhet is a place related with the legends of Himalayas. Historical accounts tell us the Queen Padmini of Kumaon was enchanted by this tiny hill paradise. King Sudhardev obliged her, by building a palace here for the queen and named the place Ranikhet (the queen’s fields).
No trace of the palace can be found today, but the place remained the same: captivating, abounding with flowers, trees and green meadows in the midst of heavenly Himalayan surroundings. Lost into oblivion for long, the picturesque hill station was rediscovered by the British. They bought the land from the native villagers and build it into a summer resort apart from establishing an army recruitment centre. Ranikhet still remains the head quarters of the gallant Kumaon Regiment. Situated at a height of 1,829 meters, with an area of 21.76 sq. km.
Ranikhet has too much to present to the visitors – a healthy climate, tall coniferous trees, vast green meadows, tranquil surroundings, perfect peace and warm, open-hearted people. Every season has its own irresistible charm. This is what makes Ranikhet an all-season destination. Ranikhet also boasts of one of the best hill golf greens (9 holes) in the country.
PLACES TO VISIT
10 km south of Ranikhet are the famous fruit-laden orchards of Chaubatia. These orchards are known for delicious apples of several exclusive varieties, apricots, peaches and various other alpine fruits. These can be directly procured from the growers themselves. There is also a state-run Fruit Research Centre. Situated nearby is Bhalu Dam in the background of a beautiful lake created by this dam, which attracts tourists round the year.
An ancient temple dedicated to Goddess Kali, Lord Shiva and Radha-Krishna. This beautiful temple adjacent to Nar Singh Ground has been rebuilt by the soldiers of Kumaon Regiment.
Jhoola Devi And Ram Mandir
7 kms from Ranikhet. A famous pair of temples dedicated to Goddess Durga and Lord Rama.
8 km from Ranikhet. Gandhiji stayed here in the 1920s. His cottage is a major tourist attraction. The famous temple of the local deity, Golu can also be visited at Tarikhet.
Nainital has a small but a very beautiful Zoological garden. There are several animals including Deer, Bears, Tigers and many more. Special efforts have been put in to make the environment of the zoo hygienic and clean. Not surprisingly this zoo is one of the cleanest zoos in the country. The zoo can be reached on foot or by small vehicles.