This weekend I got to play the tourist in my own country. Dave’s parents came over from England for a visit so we took them out to Niagara Falls for a day of world famous sightseeing.
The weather was perfectly gorgeous and clear with the sun shining down illuminating all the summer colours of the area.
As always, the Canadian side didn’t let us down.
We arrived near midday and took a stroll along the boardwalk taking in the magnificent panoramas of both Horseshoe Falls and the American Falls. We’ve had tons of rain this spring and the river was flowing a full capacity. It was pretty spectacular!Afterwards, we paid our .50 cent toll and head across the bridge to the US of A. This is something none of us had every done and I’m surprised to admit that it really was worth a visit.
- The views from the bridge
This was worth my .50 cents alone. When your standing on the middle of the bridge the views are amazing. You can see right down the centre of the river with the American Falls and Horseshoe Fall all lined up for the perfect shot!
2. You can get up close and personal with the river
There are boardwalks that run all the way along the river which lets you to get right up to the cliff’s edge in many places. It’s allows you to see such an iconic place from an interesting and new perspective. Plus it’s pretty epic to get that close to the edge of the falls and watch that much water tumbling over its precipice. It’s tons of water! And I mean that literally – 3,160 tons every second! That kind of action is worth taking a closer look at.
3. It’s pretty painless to cross over
At least it was for me. When you leave the Canadian side you pay a .50 cent toll to cross the bridge (there was no toll to cross back). Once you get to the other side US customs was a breeze. I just handed over my Canadian passport and answered a few questions and was on my way (I didn’t even get a stamp). My British companions didn’t get off quite so easily. They required ESTAs (which they had) and then had to pay a whole $6 US dollars each! They also got finger printed and their photos taken. All and all though, it wasn’t much hassle. If you’re from a country where you have to do much more to get into the US then I’d recommend you just hang out in Canada instead.
So, at the end of the day, I think both sides are worth a visit and offer unique experiences. We have the perfect vantage points, the zipline, and the behind the falls tours. They have an up-close and personal experience with the river, a trolley that takes you around the park (for $3) and the Cave of the Winds boardwalk that lets you get right down to the base of the falls which looked neat (and very wet).
And of course both sides have their boats that take you up to the falls: The Maid of the Mist(18.25 USD) and the Hornblower (25.95CAD) both of which looked to offer identical experiences from their respective sides.
So, I know you’re dying to know..
What is my verdict!?
It kind of goes without saying (though I love to say it, so I will):
Canada For the Win!!
I mean common, was there ever any doubt? We’ve got the picture postcard views and Horseshoe Falls belongs entirely to us. I think even Americans will concede that the best place to take it all in is on our side of the escarpment.
But America is pretty cool too so take a stroll across and enjoy the best of both worlds!
Thanks for reading!
If you have anything to say please leave me a comment!