Home again but still enjoying Niagara Falls
Updated: Mar 3, 2020
Niagara Falls? I know some of you are thinking that's so old school, and a place only your grandparents would want to visit. Okay, it's true, we are grandparents, but I'm here to tell you it was fun, and we recommend it. I'll also tell you the visitors there were of all ages and descriptions. Sightseers were international, especially on the Canadian side; youthful, including young singles and families with kids; and active, taking part in zip lining, boat trips into the falls, and climbing catwalks to the top and the base of the falls. Our Niagara Falls visit was definitely one of the highlights of our nine week trip.
We only had two full days allotted to the area and stayed on the US side, at a nearby KOA, to minimize complications traveling into Canada, using Uber to get to the falls from our campground. The first day we walked across the Rainbow Bridge to enter the Canadian side of the area. We had our passports, and it was hassle free. The Canadian side has the best views of the falls and quite frankly is considerably nicer, cleaner, has better restaurants, and a better vibe in general. It's also much more crowded. Thankfully, we started early, because by mid-afternoon it was hard to get near the railings along the waterfront. Due to time constraints we didn't visit other Canadian attractions, but I understand there are some beautiful spots and fun things to do. I would probably recommend staying on the Canadian side so you can take advantage of those. It was actually somewhat embarrassing as we returned to the American side after our day in Canada. It had a totally different feel, commercially tacky, and run down. There was a lot of construction activity at the park near the Maid of the Mist docks, so maybe improvements are on the way, but even our Uber driver told us not to venture more than two blocks into town. Very sad.
The second day we returned to explore the American side and take the Maid of the Mist boat trip. We walked to the Goat Island portion of
the State park. It was nicely maintained and had better views of the falls than we expected. The highlight, though, was the Maid of the Mist trip. I hadn't planned on taking the boat trip, because I thought it was one of those touristy things, but Larry said if he was going to Niagara Falls, we were taking the boat trip. To him, it was quintessential Niagara Falls. I'm extremely glad he suggested it. The day before, from the Canadian side, we watched the boats, both Canadian and American, enter the falls all day long, so we had an idea what to expect. The experience exceeded our expectations and was incredibly memorable. We suggest getting there early, so you don't have to wait in long lines. We got a 9:30 AM boat and walked right up to it. We both enjoyed it immensely, and we would have gladly turned around and done it again. Make sure you include it in your itinerary.
We've been off the road several weeks now, but unfortunately have been under the weather much of the time. We haven't been able to take full advantage of our terrific, beach location, but we've loved every opportunity to hug the grandkids and catch up with family. We are using the down time to sort through vast gigabytes of videos and photographs. The fun thing is it allows us to re-experience great moments all over again. That's exactly what we did when we put together the Niagara Falls video. I love how pictures and especially videos can transport you right back to fabulous, joyful moments. This afternoon we posted the Niagara Falls video. You can find it on our YouTube channel, LarryandBarbi, or simply use the "Videos" tab above (or the "Videos" menu option for mobile users) to check it out. We hope it properly reflects the wonderful time we had at this bona fide, national treasure!