It’s Time to Discover Niagara
We’ve all heard of Niagara Falls, and rightly so, it’s a gem in Canada’s national landscape. But if you haven’t really discovered the Niagara region yet, it’s time to book your trip! We teamed up with Expedia.ca to bring you some must-do’s to help you plan your trip:
1. Visit the falls…obviously:
Once you’ve arrived, start off by visiting the falls. Board the famous Maid of the Mist, a boat that lives true to it’s name and brings you so close to both the American Falls, and to the famed Canadian Horseshoe Falls that you become engulfed in the mist of it’s tumbling basins. Want to get behind the scenes? You can also take a Journey Behind the Falls by heading down into the cliff, and exploring the caves underneath the Niagara Falls. If you’re curious to see how the falls were created, Niagara’s Fury will help you do that, with a “4D” experience in a 360 degree theatre, where you can literally see and feel how the Ice Age formed the Niagara Falls.
2. Fun by the Falls:
Clifton Hill is your fast way to fun for the whole family around the falls. A ticket will get you access to a myriad of attractions, such as the Falls-adjacent Niagara Skyweel, themed mini-golf, a Wild West themed coaster, a wax museum, and much more. There are also themed restaurants and great shopping to be had, so for families, this is an easy yes.
3. Believe it (or not):
Niagara Falls has long been famous for having a bit of a fun and kitschy vibe. A fan favourite is Ripley’s Believe It or Not, an experience for the whole family that includes the Odditorium, a 10,000 square feet museum with 15 themed exhibits showing some of the strangest artifacts imaginable (two-headed animals are on the list!). Ripley’s also has the Waxworks museum if you’re feeling like rubbing shoulders with waxy stars old and new, and a moving theatre where you can act out your favourite films.
4. Get up close and personal with wildlife:
If you’re feeling less funky and more fluttery, then the Butterfly Conservatory and Bird Kingdom, both beautiful places to get in touch with nature, are minutes away from the falls. And let us not forget Marine Land, where you can spend an entire day kissing seals, belugas, killer whales, feeding deer and taking a ride on roller coasters.
5. Eat, drink, and be merry:
If you’re looking for a more “tasteful” experience, the region’s culinary environment is vast and varied. Whether you want to enjoy fine dining overlooking the falls, find affordable and delicious food for the family, or you want to enjoy the local food and wines of the region, Niagara has the right selection for you. Lundy’s Lane is known as Niagara’s favourite dining neighbourhood, looking for dinner theatre, a pub, fine dining? Lundy’s lane has it all.
6. Drink more and be merrier:
Wine country is also a must visit. Niagara-on-the-Lake is a town based in the region where Canada’s VQA wines have found their maturity in the last few years. In staying in the quaint small town, you have the opportunity to see the quieter, more sophisticated side of Niagara. The region carries 32 varieties of grapes in Canada’s largest wine-growing region, so sign up for a wine-tour, and enjoy a relaxing and luxurious experience. Find a cottage on the lake and go into town to window shop (or really shop) in the small boutiques.
7. Take a hike, or a ride:
To burn off the food and wine, Niagara also has extensive and beautiful paths to explore. Get your walking boots on, rent a bike if you’re looking for a relaxing jaunt through the rolling countryside, or bring your own bike and plan your trip out beforehand so you can rake up your km’s and see as much as the area as possible. Or if you’re still thirsty, take a bicycle wine tour and hit two birds with one stone.
8. Bet on it:
If you’re a blackjack fan or a poker aficionado, Niagara has two casinos for your entertainment. Fallsview Casino lives up to its name, overlooking one of the most fantastic natural wonders of the world, it is the largest, and one of the most luxurious casinos in all of Canada. If slots are more your game, then head to Casino Niagara, they have two full floors of slots, and 30 tables to test your hand.
Ever been on a White Water walk? Niagara has one of those that allows you to see some of the world’s wildest whitewater, and it’s only a short walk from the Falls themselves. If you’d like to get a little closer to the water, then book a Whirlpool Jet Boat tour, where you can speed along the Niagara river at 80 km/h while the guide takes you through Niagara’s historical past. There’s also the Fallsview Indoor Waterpark that might be better for a little more controlled water fun. The waterpark has 16 waterslides, a giant wavepool, and for the parents, adult-only hot tubs.
10. Catch some fireworks:
Finally, in Niagara it’s easy to end the night with a bang if you head back to the falls at the end of your day. Niagara has the longest running fireworks series, set against the backdrop of the falls themselves. They run at 10 p.m. every Sunday, Wednesday, Friday and Holiday from May 1 to Oct. 31.