Bhimtal is a town and a nagar-panchayat in Nainital district in the state of Uttarakhand, India, situated at an altitude of 1370 meters above sea level and is about 22 kilometres from Nainital.
HISTORY: Bhimtal is an ancient place named after BhÄ«ma of Mahabharata. Bhimeshwara Mahadev Temple, an old Shiva temple in the bank of Bhimtal Lake, is believed to have been built when BhÄ«ma visited the place during the banishment (vanvas) period of Pandavas. The present temple was built in the 17th century, by Baz Bahadur (1638â€“78 AD), a King of the Chand dynasty, and the Raja of Kumaon. Bhimtal came under British rule after the Anglo-Nepalese War (1814â€“16). Bhimtal is older than nearby Nainital as the city of Nainital is just 150â€“160 years old. But Bhimtal has been a stoppage for the travellers of the region from hills to plains or vice versa for a long time. The old pedesterial road is still in use here and this road connects nearby Kathgodam to all Kumaun region and even to Nepal and Tibet. It might have been the part of the famous ancient silk route.
Parvat: It is the source of river Gargi, also known as Gola Nadi in
Nal Damyanti Tal: 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.
Hidimba Parvat: 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.