The Serbian second seed saw off the top seed and defending champion to claim his first Wimbledon crown and confirm his status as the new world number one.
The first set went with serve until Djokovic pounced in the 10th game to break Nadal and he played inspired tennis to romp through the second set in 33 minutes and take complete control of the match.
Nadal, twice Wimbledon champion and winner of 10 grand slam titles, finally got a foothold in the match when a rare Djokovic error handed him a break in the second game of the third set and he broke again before taking it 6-1.
Nadal looked to have the momentum but Djokovic displayed nerves of steel to break for a 2-0 lead in the fourth.
The Spaniard broke back quickly but Djokovic struck again in the eighth game and he served out for victory.