Wonders of Nature and Design
Still one of the greatest shows on Earth, Niagara Falls is the most famous wonder in this region. You’ll find many surprises, too. Lewiston, rich in history, offers whitewater excitement on the Niagara River, and Lockport showcases the man-made wonder of the Erie Canal.Day OneNiagara Falls State ParkThe Today Show recently named this park one of the Top 10 Most Beautiful Spots in America. Stop at the visitors center to learn about all there is to see and do, and board the trolley for a three-mile guided tour. It stops at the park’s most scenic vistas and at the Niagara Gorge Discovery Center, which tells the history of the falls with exhibits and a theater presentation.
Take the observation tower elevator down 180 feet for a close-up view of the American Falls.Maid of the Mist Boat TourDon your waterproof poncho, and take a 30-minute narrated boat ride right up to the base of the American and Horseshoe Falls. One of the most popular attractions at Niagara Falls State Park, the boat tour runs from April to October. Board near the entrance to the observation tower.Top of the FallsMake a reservation to enjoy lunch or dinner with one of the best views of the Falls. Located on Goat Island, this unique restaurant’s floor-to-ceiling windows and outdoor dining decks overlook Horseshoe Falls. Along with creative seasonal cuisine, the menu includes regional specialties like Buffalo wings and a popular traditional sandwich called Beef on a Weck.Day TwoCave of the Winds TourWearing the poncho and boots provided, follow a tour guide over a series of wooden walkways to the famous “Hurricane Deck.” As you stand at the railing, 20 feet from Bridal Veil Falls, the rushing waters will douse you with spray.
Rainbows are usually visible day and night. Prepare for a challenging walk, because tropical storm-like conditions include winds reaching up to 68 mph.Aquarium of NiagaraJust a few blocks from the famous Falls, you’ll see fish of wondrous colors and have fun learning about marine mammals. Watch sea lions perform, penguins play, sharks feed, and harbor seals interact with trainers in outdoor pool exhibits. You can even feed the seals. The Aquarium is open year round.Daredevil MuseumExplore this fascinating museum in Niagara Falls to learn about Niagara’s rich daredevil history.
Exhibits include a two-person barrel and a jet ski used in attempts over the Falls, and highlight high-wire tightrope acts that once performed across the Gorge, including The Great Blondin, who carried his manager on his back.Day ThreeWhirlpool Jet Boat ToursHead to Lewiston, less than ten miles from Niagara Falls, for a 45-minute heart-pumping experience ranked as one of the Top 5 adventure rides in North America. Your guide will speed you upriver, into the breathtaking stonewalled canyon of Niagara Gorge, and then splash into the whitewater of Devil’s Hole Rapids. Tours run from late April through the third week in October.Lockport Cave and Underground Boat RideAbout 20 miles northeast of Niagara Falls, take an exciting 70-minute guided tour through history. You will explore historic Erie Canal locks, walk through a water tunnel that was blasted out of solid rock in the 1850s, and view stalactites, flow stone and other geological wonders on an underground boat ride.
If you’re lucky, you may even find a fossil or two.