I still have family that live in the Niagara area so we go back there to visit, attend the graduations parties, weddings, and of course our family get-togethers for the Buffalo Bills football games (they won their first game this season in overtime against the Chicago Bears- Yay!).
It was time to take on the tourist role again so my husband and I looked like the typical tourists with our cameras in hand. (I still don't know what I'm doing, but I'm playing around with some settings on it now.)
Our first venture out was around the Falls on our side of the border in New York. The day was hot, humid, and windy so between the mist from the falls, the humidity, and the wind blowing my hair in my face some of the photos came out hazy and blurred, but I think we managed to get some pretty good photos, too.
|View from Niagara Falls, Ontario|
To tour Niagara Falls, New York, you get there through Goat Island. Goat Island is a good size Island and this is where the parking areas are to walk to the Falls and the Three Sisters Islands and the Niagara River. The Niagara Falls State Park is the oldest State Park in the United States. Here is a link to the park: Niagara Falls State Park. It was first established as the Niagara Reservation in 1885. The park was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed Central Park in New York City.
Years ago, when my husband and I were in elementary (middle school). there used to be a yearly festival held on Goat Island celebrating the Maid of the Mist Festival. As Girls Scouts and Boy Scouts we would learn various Indian crafts and then would display them at this festival. I can remember one year where our Girl Scout Troop learned Indian Bead work. We made headbands out of seed beads on a loom. We also made Indian tunics and long skirts out of white flannel that we trimmed using bugle beads and seed beads.
|Maid of the Mist (photo taken from Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada)|
For a close up look at the Falls there is a Maid of the Mist boat that you can tour the American and Bridal Veil Falls. You can also go through the Cave of the Winds in which you take an elevator to the base of the Falls to the Niagara River. Through a series of decks, walkways, and platforms visitors can walk right up to the Bridal Veil Falls and have the water flow beneath the decking they are walking on. You are provided with a rain-poncho. The decking is removed each fall to prevent winter damage from ice build-up. These two tours are great, but you need to have a waterproof camera. From the Canadian side of Niagara Falls you can take the Hornblower Niagara Cruises for a tour of the Falls.
|Rainbow Bridge in background (named because of the many rainbows that surrounds the falls?). You can walk across this bridge to Canada, but you still need a valid passport, Passport Card or enhanced drivers license to return to the U.S.|
|Bridal Veil Falls with people viewing it from the Cave of the Winds. |
(Photo taken from Niagara Falls, Ontario)
To see the "Falls" in its entirety, it is best viewed from Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. Growing up on the Canadian border was fun. As kids, we could walk across the Rainbow Bridge for 10 Cents. You felt quite grown-up walking into another Country without your parents. It was a good hike, and we found it entertaining to walk around the tourist areas. One of the things I loved the best over there was all the beautiful landscaping. I guess at an early age I was always attracted to flowers and landscaping. The flower gardens were beautiful, and are still well maintained. There was a little hidden/secret garden very close to the Rainbow Bridge and it was always beautiful. It's still there, but a little more "travel-worn" and not quite as I remembered it. And it doesn't look the same with the big buildings in the background like the Casino and Hard Rock Cafe. hahaha
|Horseshoe Falls with Hornblower boat. (Photo taken from Niagara Falls, Ontario).|
Sometimes we would ride our bikes across the bridge into Canada and head to a swimming area called Dufferin Islands. And we would not usually return home without purchasing a bar of Mackintosh Toffee in the plaid wrapper. Oh, soooo good and not available in the U.S.
At the time you did not need a Passport, but now to get into Canada you need a photo ID; and to return to the United States you need a valid Passport, Passport Card or an Enhanced Driver's License. Here is some information on obtaining one of the above documents: U.S. Passport Card and Enhanced Driver License. NOTE: THE PASSPORT CARD IS NOT APPROVED FOR AIR TRAVEL. It is valid for land and sea crossings only.
If/when you do travel to Niagara Falls, Ontario- be sure to cross the street from the Falls and take the walkways through the gardens. The views and flowers are amazing!
More photos from Niagara Falls, Ontario.
For other areas to visit while in the Niagara Falls region here is my blog post on Lewiston/Youngstown, NY: Lewiston & Youngstown, New York
If you missed my two posts from last year on Niagara-On-The-Lake you can click on these two links:
Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario, Canada
Niagara-On-The-Lake Part II; Niagara Parks Botanical Garden
Hope you liked your visit!
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I would love to hear from you!