Niagara Falls Summer 2008

I was thrilled by the scenery of upstate New York; mountains, lakes, farms and rivers. So different from the relatively boring flat-lands of the Interstate 95 Miami to New York run that I had covered at least twice.

My wife kept gushing how lovely the road trip north was turning out to be; this was new territory for us, and by calculation it should take us about 8 hours from Bronx to Niagara Falls. The Garmin GPS turned out to be reliable and it took us straight to the Tourist Information Centre.

We were a group of four, me, wife, stepdaughter, and son. Being first timers we chose the full tour guide package, a little more expensive and in retrospect it could have been priced a little less. A young lady from Australia rounded off our group.

The guide was a fellow who had spent all his life in the area, he was a nice chap. He drove the bus to the Lower Rapids to begin the tour. I will not try to describe the tour in detail, just share a few pictures and let you know my five strongest memories after one year.

  1. Like I said in the opening paragraph the journey from the city of New York to Niagara State Park was wonderful. I drove most of the way so my eyes were on the road, but I noticed the that the hills and valleys broke up the monotony of driving for eight hours. And when we finally arrived at our destination we could see that the planning, upkeep, and layout of the Niagara State Park showed that the people of New York took tourism seriously. So both the journey and the destination were worth the money.
  2. Once we arrived at the Niagara Falls State Park Visitor Center I was impressed by how organised and polite the tour operators were. The fellow even said that if we wanted a dip in the river he could arrange it, that was below the rapids of course.


 

3.  The Maid of the Mist boat ride with all that thundering roar of the ancient river, that spray and rainbow. To ride in a boat so near to the roar. Somehow when the boat circled I felt that i was for a moment on the Canadian side. To see the tourists on the Canadian side wearing blue or yellow raincoats as well. You know you were in another world, a world called Niagara.

4,  Cave of the Winds with all that fury at the Hurricane Deck. I was so concerned for my son and tried to hold on to him as much as possible, but the safety measures, the fence, as well as how we were guided made me feel well relatively secure. Having been through three hurricanes I can say it was really a Hurricane Deck. My son enjoyed the thrill of the hurricane winds from the American Falls.

5.  Scary, scary, scary, is how I describe the view from atop the Observation Tower as well as the too near to the falls view at Terrapin Point. Scary scary scary. And I was concerned the top of the falls wasn't screened off from tourist more. Nervous. Scary.

I will add to this article as I remember more or do a part 2 but do your family a favour, take them to Niagara falls.

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