Many of the contrived attractions at Niagara Falls are overhyped and disappointing , though Niagara Falls travel is still quite popular and still the largest producer of electricity in the state of New York

Niagara Falls ranks only 51st among the world’s waterfalls in height

Go from the American dock. Not only is the wait likely to be shorter, but at the end of the ride, you can hang on to your flimsy slicker (included in the fee) and take a wet but exhilarating hike to the base of the American Falls.

Maid of the mist

The Maid of the Mist tour boatshave been satisfying customers since 1846 and became a symbol of Niagara as the falls themselves .It is the oldest tourist attraction in North America 

Aboard the Maid of the Mist boat at Niagara Falls

I must say , it’s an unbelievable adventure , just being on this historic boat , hearing the thundering of the falls crashing into the river. Wondering if this boat is safe – of course it’s perfectly safe , it’s a very precise work to navigate this boat : it has to stay precisely in the middle where the outgoing stream is, because the back eddy close to the Canadian shore could suck it into the falls. The captain appears very calm ,he takes this trip 22 times a day . He guides the boat past the base of the American and Bridal Veil Falls and into the heart of the Horseshoe Falls. You can feel the rocking of the boat as its 250-horsepower engines fight for control in the current. And you are. huddled next to the other passengers , wearing their rubber slickers , wondering whether it’s the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen or whether the work s coming to an end , so strong is the sound of the Falls .

Once the captain gets close to the heart of the Horseshoe Falls , the spray blowing Ito the boat is so think , it feels more like the watery end of the world than the most beautiful thing you’ve ever encountered . It’s so powerful , your poncho is inflated like a balloon , and you can barely stand up .

Imagine running past a fire hydrant ? That’s about what it feels like . And it’s a blast .

Maid of the Mist boats leave every 15 minutes, starting at 9:15 A.M., from Memorial Day to Labor Day, and every 30 minutes, starting at 10, from Labor Day to Oct. 24, when they stop for the season

Maid of the Mist boats, leaving every 15 minutes from the American and Canadian banks, operate from late May when the ice clears through mid-October,

Cave of the winds

The Niagara Falls travel highlight

The most intense way to see the Niagara Falls is to get to the heart of it – and here you can get as close to the Falls as possible .

This is the wettest attraction you’d ever try . Even with protective poncho , there is just no way to stay dry . It is a lot of fun , but you should consider the outside temperature , or have a change of clothes handy .

Your tour begins with a long elevator ride -you descend 175-feet into the gorge on an elevator, down through the rock into Niagara Gorge, at the basin of Niagara Falls. Before ascending the stairs into the mist, you’ll receive a recyclable, yellow rain poncho .

Tip : if you are wearing long pants , roll them up as high as you can .

Hurricane Deck is drenched in water and is the highlight of the trip . You are right at the epicenter thundering waters of Bridal VeilFalls. braced ourselves against the onslaught of wind and water . It is one of the best spots to experience the power of the Falls , you are literally standing within 20 feet of the Bridal Veil Falls

It’s called the Hurricane deck not by chance , the winds can reach the level of a Category 1 hurricane and the water rains down continually.

It was definitely the most beautiful thing to see . And to hear .

Did you know ? Cave of the winds is torn down every year and reconstructed

Tip : if you are wearing long pants , roll them up as high as you can .

Cave of the Winds, on Goat Island, is open 9 A.M. to 8 P.M. Memorial Day to Labor Day, 10 to 5 Labor Day to mid-October, when it closes for the season.

The view of the gorge from below is incredible , truly the highlight Niagara Falls travel To feel the pounding water and hear the roar as it broke over the rocks was simply incredible.

Cave of the winds is open May through October from 9:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m

Take waterproof camera bag

souvenir rain poncho and sandals ( provided)

From high on the bank, 180 feet up, it looks inspiring and somewhat incongruous: All those tourists, dressed in black raincoats, resemble convicts going out to Alcatraz. But aboard at that second, when you’re holding right in the center of the shoe, it’s more than visual. 

The spectacle is outside, especially during those four or five minutes when the torrents of water are cascading all around, the spray is blinding and everybody’s screaming with pure delight.

You can walk along the shore above the Horseshoe Falls and see the water as it begins to speed along its northerly route.

The deadly beauty

When Niagara Falls travel goes wrong

Niagara Falls and San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge are the most popular place to end life in the US . They say there is something mystic about the falls , something that is just pulling people in .Every year , approximately 40 suicides are recorded . The number of Niagara suicides rises through the summer and peaks in September. Niagara Falls travel sometimes goes wrong.

Best free place to view Niagara Falls 

To complete you Niagara Falls travel with pro advice , visit Table Rock Welcome Centre.

Walking back down river, you come to Table Rock House, traditionally the ideal place to view the falls. The building itself was named for the large, flat rock that once stood at that site and supported early spectators. Situated at the edge of the Horseshoe Falls and directly across from the two American falls, its first section fell into the river in 1750, the second in 1818, and the last in 1850.

The waters of the gorge churn just 25 feet below, the mist billowing into great clouds before you. When the sun is out, the rainbow is spectacular.

When to go

With the exception of the Maid of the Mist and Cave of the Winds, most attractions are open year round , but at reduced hours.

Festival of Lights, held this year from Nov. 23 to Jan. 12, when thousands of colored lights shine from trees, walkways and animated displays.