[PHOTO_135722] Niagara Falls has one of the highest flow rates of any waterfall in the world with a vertical drop of more than 165 feet. It’s actually several waterfalls created by the Niagara River draining into Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. On the Canadian side is the Horseshoe Falls–the largest and most spectacular waterfall. The smaller American Falls and miniscule Bridal Falls are located on the USA side of the border. Much the chargin of the neighbouring Americans, not many people are interested in the two smaller falls.
This is one occasion when the typical touristy thing is rather breathtaking. Take the Maids of the Mist boat ride to the base of Horseshoe Falls to get up close to the thundering cascade of water. You can also go through the tunnel to “Journey Behind the Falls” and stand in the midst of the mist while hearing about the tale of the Indian Princess who canoed over the falls to her death rather than marry a man she didn’t love. She can be seen in the image in the rainbows over the fall.
On site is the Niagara Falls IMAX theatre showing Legends and Daredevils. This film tells the tales of the various mad daredevils who, unlike the Indian Princess, took a plunge over the falls and lived to tell about it. Annie Taylor, a 63-year-old schoolteacher, was actually the first person to go over the Falls in a barrel.
If the boat is not available due to bad weather take the Yellow Bug elevator in the Skylon Tower Observation Deck to 775 feet above the falls. The glass-enclosed elevator shows a dazzling view of the falls as well as the Toronto and Buffalo skylines. It’s particularly impressive at night. Atop is the Skylon Revolving Restaurant with a spectacular view and an average menu.
[PHOTO_135723] The Clifton Hill District is within walking distance of the falls. This permanent carnival has an assortment of tourist attractions, entertainment, amusement park rides, bars, restaurants, nightclubs and shops. Enjoy Vegas-style magic shows, several Wax Museums and House of Horrors. Ripley’s Believe it or Not remains the perennial favorite.
Lundys Lane is the hard-core shopping street in the area with dozens of factory outlet stores all within walking. There’s also Casino Niagara with 45 gaming tables, a comedy club, and clubs hosting weekly live entertainment.
Also within walking distance is the more upscale Fallsview Boulevard where you’ll find the luxury Fallsview Casino Resort with 100 gaming tables as well as the casino hotel with a spa, shopping and several upscale restaurants. This is where a majority of the hotels are located–in case you decide you would like to stay over.
Performing dolphins at Marineland — Photo courtesy of Courtesy of Marineland of Canada It wouldn’t be a tourist destination without some theme parks and Niagara Falls has a couple of standouts. Marineland of Canada is a popular destination with the kids who delight in the performing dolphins, walruses and sea lions. You can feed a beluga and watch trained killer whales jump through hoops. Further outside the city is Safari Niagara with 500 exotic and domestic animals to visit spread over 110 acres. Kids can feed the giraffe and hippos, watch live shows or earn their animal behaviour degree at the Zooniversity.
The Fallsview Indoor Water Park has a full-size wave pool with 3-foot white caps, Swirling Plunge bowl, 1000 Gallon Tipping Bucket and the Tiny Tot Splash Area among its attractions. Waves Indoor Waterpark has 25,000 sq ft of swimming, splashing and sliding fun with 8 water slides up to three storey high, wave pool, activity pool and plenty of tot slides and swings all in a 84 degree.
There’s a lot of see and do in Niagara Falls. You may be captivated by the whole area and decide to stay overnight for a second honeymoon. The Falls are rather romantic at night.