Perching on the border between Canada and America, the city of Niagara Falls houses one of the world's most famous waterfalls. The Canadian side of the Falls sit in the “Golden Horseshoe” of Canada's Southern Ontario region, across from the New York sister city across the border. Take the opportunity to see the falls from the top, the thundering base on the lower Niagara River, or even from behind. At dusk, the Falls become a totally different attraction, with the neon reflections from the Fallsview Casino and the nightly rainbow light show illuminating the water. Take things up a notch afterwards with the amusements at Clifton Hill or a literally revolutionary meal in the rotating Skylon Tower.
Get an up-close and personal view of the Falls, with a ride on Maid of the Mist boat tour, venturing close enough to feel the mist of the water on your face. Alternatively, take a look from another angle behind the base of the great Horseshoe Falls, shooting down by elevator and strolling the observation decks at the Journey Behind The Falls experience.
Wildlife fans should check out the Butterfly Conservatory at Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens. As well as 40 acres of herb gardens, fragrant roses and sculpted hedgerows, this attraction features more than 2,000 butterflies flying free among the exotic blooms and greenery.
Queen Victoria Park sits opposite the Falls, contains unique plants from around the world, and is one of the best places to take a few panoramic photos of the Niagara River Gorge.
Shopping isn't neglected at Niagara Falls. Lundy's Landing includes the Canada One Factory Outlets with over 40 brand-name stores. The nearby neighborhood of Clifton Hills is filled with amusements and souvenir shops. For a decadent shopping excursion, head over to the Galleria at the Fallsview Casino Resort.
For a family dinner at Niagara, grab some pizza or go for one of the multiple buffets in the area, from Indian to Sushi to Brazilian fare. A fine dining experience is certainly different at the Skylon Tower's Revolving Dining Room: as you enjoy rock lobster or tenderloin steak, the view never stays still and you'll have the chance to see Niagara Falls from all 360 degrees.
Luxury hotels in the city of Niagara offer unparalleled views of the Falls, with many along Niagara Parkway like the Four Points Sheraton, Crowne Plaza and Embassy Suites all close enough to the gorge to practically hear the roar. Most attractions are within walking distance of the horseshoe curve of the city, and you can bag a bargain family stay from around $50 per night, right up to $130+ for towering 4-star suites.
Enjoy outdoor concerts in Montbello Park, energetic stunts and street performers careening on Clifton Hill, and fireworks as you cruise along the river. Niagara's summer season is filled with events.
In the fall, the Niagara Food Festival offers cuisine prepared by local restaurants and celebrity chefs. Later on in the year, guests enjoy the Festival of Lights, with over three million lights used to decorate the area, creating 125 animated displays.
Summer is the best season to visit Niagara Falls. Average temperatures are in the 80s, and the activities are in full swing. With hotels busier and rates higher in June and July, fall is still a very smart time to plan a trip. Temperatures are cooling into the 60s, events are still planned, and crowds have thinned considerably. It's a great time to take advantage of hotel discounts as well.