"" Writer's Wanderings: Niagara Falls

Monday, June 15, 2009

Niagara Falls

On our mini-getaway to Niagara Falls last week, we stayed on the American side but went across for the day to the Canadian side. It really is the best side from which to view the Falls whether it be the American portion or the Canadian Horseshoe.

We had a few things on the list to see one of which was the Floral Clock. The last time we were there was the middle of December and of course there were no flowers. Unfortunately there were still no flowers on this visit. We were probably a day or two early. They were lining up the templates as a guide to where they would plant the flowers. We wanted to go back and check on their progress but we ran out of time.

On our way back to the Falls area, we stopped at the whirlpool. This is an almost 90 degree bend in the Niagara River that creates a huge whirlpool and several smaller eddies. Those with no fear of heights and falling, can ride the Aero Car across the whirlpool and back again. Added to the excitement is the fact that it's advertised as an antique.

When we got into the city, we found that parking was $18 (Canadian) down near the Falls but up by the Fallsview Casino Resort, it was only $5 (and free if you joined their players club). From there we could walk down to the falls and take the "train" up the hill for $2/each if we didn't think we could make the climb back.

We watched nostalgically as the Maid of the Mist lived up to her name and pulled into the misty area at the base of the Horseshoe Falls. Both of us have made the trip as children and again with our own children. We opted not to get wet this trip.

The Fallsview Casino Resort truly has a good view of the falls from their garden area in front of the hotel. There was also a number of restaurants in their mall area from which to choose your dining preference, anything from fast food to elegant dining. Once we decided we would stay to see the lights at night, we chose Canyon Creek Chophouse for dinner. They were featuring a three course meal for $30 (keep in mind that we were there in the middle of the week). If we would have had reservations, we probably could have sat next to a window with a better view, but we could see part of the falls and the garden area of the resort.

The Falls are lit at different times throughout the year but there are several signs posted that tell you the schedule. Hues of the rainbow are beamed across to light up both the American Falls and the Horseshoe.

Just remember if you go, you will need your passport or passport card to cross the border. There are no "free" passes anymore.

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