Make memories you’ll never forget with your whole family — from the little ones to the grandparents — on a fun-filled trip to Niagara Falls USA.
Fall for the Falls
Get your family vacation started off on the right foot by visiting the Falls first. Once you arrive at Niagara State Falls Park, make your way to the Observation Tower for a panoramic view of all three waterfalls. Then, it’s time to get even closer to the action. Take the iconic Maid of the Mist boat tour, which has been operating since 1846 — expect to get seriously drenched underneath those famous plastic ponchos. The thrill seekers in your family will love Cave of the Winds, where you descend 175 feet into Niagara Gorge. After exiting the elevator, you’ll make your way onto a series of wooden walkways where you are within feet of the awesome crashing water of the Bridal Veil Falls. Now, that you’ve worked up an appetite, head to the (seasonal) Top of the Falls restaurant for jaw-dropping views and a delicious dinner. End the evening by witnessing the illumination of the Falls, which is not to be missed!
Venture up to the shores of Lake Ontario to take a step back in time at the beloved (seasonal) Olcott Beach Carousel Park. Featuring an original 1928 Herschell-Spillman carousel (manufactured locally), the vintage children’s rides are all 25 cents. Take your chances in the vintage arcade at games like skee ball and then head to the shores to walk alongside the lake. Before making your way back to Niagara Falls, make a stop at Old Fort Niagara for a fun-filled history lesson and plenty of panoramic Lake Ontario views.
Experience the Erie Canal
The opening of the Erie Canal is a defining moment in the development of the region. Learn about its significance at the Erie Canal Discovery Center, a multi-media interactive museum that transports visitors back to the 1820’s and the early days of the Erie Canal. Sail along the waters of the canal on a Lockport Locks & Erie Canal Cruise, where you’ll cruise through the only double set on the Erie Canal and below the widest bridge in the country. End your journey back in the Falls, rehashing all your adventures over an iconic New York-style pizza dinner.
Before descending into the Niagara Gorge for your breathtaking one-of-a-kind adventure, learn how Nikola Tesla harnessed the power of the Falls to create alternating current, experience what Niagara Falls looked like before it was a park and witness why people from around the globe have been drawn to the edge of the Falls for hundreds of years as you travel through The World Changed Here Pavilion. Then it is time to prepare for the power of the Falls! You will be outfitted in a poncho before descending 175 feet into the awe-inspiring Niagara Gorge. Exit the elevator cave and find yourself on a series of wooden walkways that will bring you to the unbelievable “Hurricane Deck” where you are within feet of the crashing Bridal Veil Falls and surrounded by tropical storm like conditions—even on the calmest of days. The Cave of the Winds and Pavilion is a timed ticketed attraction, and à la carte tickets are available for purchase in the park. The full Cave of the Winds tour operates from May to October.
If you are planning to visit Niagara Falls after October, there are still ways to get up close and personal with the Falls. The Cave of the Winds Gorge Trip is an abbreviated tour that allows you to view the Falls from observation platforms and keeps you a bit drier. And even throughout the winter, you can still experience the wonder in the World Changed Here Pavilion.