If your vision of Niagara Falls is one of a geographical area filled with honeymooners who spend all day inside with the shades drawn and come out in the evening for food and drink, you’re only partly right. Niagara Falls is a great place for memorable family fun. My wife and I took our two kids there when they were seven and ten years old, and had a great time. Keep in mind that Niagara Falls straddles the Canadian border, and it’s very cold in the winter. Unless you enjoy the cold and high winds, plan your trip during the summer months.
Niagara Falls really involves two cities that are separated by the Niagara River: Niagara Falls, New York and Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. While my coming admission is bordering on the verge of traitorous behavior, I must say that the Niagara Falls experience is much better from the Canadian side. The falls themselves are mesmerizing. It’s one thing to appreciate the beauty and majesty of the falls in a photograph, but a totally different experience to feel the power of the water as it thunders endlessly into the lower river.
One of the most exciting family adventures at Niagara Falls is the Journey Behind the Falls, which is a series of tunnels that allow you to take a scenic tour of the waterfall from behind the falling cascade of water. Two tunnels penetrate to a distance of about 50 yards behind the falls where you can stand in awe while watching the cascading water, hearing the thunderous roar, and feeling the water’s enormous power.
When you’re not standing in awe before the falls, there are a number of other fine attractions to keep the family busy for days. The Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens is a must see with over 50 acres of beautifully maintained flower gardens. Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks provides a great learning experience for the kids, and if the kids are old enough, the Nightmare Fear Factory is a memorable thriller that can be talked about fun for the entire family.
And, of course, we can’t forget food. Niagara falls has some excellent restaurants, featuring fine foods from both the French and English Canadian cultures. The most visible restaurant is the space needle that sets so prominently in the skyline. It is a smaller version of the Space Needle in Seattle, Washington. The food is great and the view is spectacular, especially at night when the falls are illuminated. Niagara Falls is a visit that your family will enjoy immensely and will never forget. A lifelong memory.