Family Travel to Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls is a great place to visit with small kids. While small children near giant waterfalls may feel a little nerve-wracking, the barriers around the falls are safe, so it’s actually pretty easy to keep them from trying to find a barrel and rolling on down. Other pros:

  • The falls themselves, obviously, are beautiful and impressive. Even small children can appreciate that.
  • Clifton Hill is a big, ridiculous tourist trap, but it’s super fun for kids. There are rides that the whole family can enjoy. There’s an awesome Jurassic Park mini-golf place and a race track. Plus, there’s tons of silly souvenirs that they can choose from that will give them a little something to remember their trip without costing an arm and a leg.
  • We loved the Sky Wheel. I loved the view, I loved watching everyone’s excitement, and I loved the fact that our family could be in our own little clear pod where no one else could be bothered by my kids’ disregard for personal space or the weird comments they’re always making about poop and nipples.
  • There’s plenty to do, but it’s not overwhelmingly large. 4-5 days is just right. Early June is a pleasant time of year and the crowds weren’t bad at all, although there was a pretty big increase on the weekend. Later into the summer crowds can be an issue.
  • Journey Under the Falls gives you a poncho, but you don’t actually get drenched. This is important when traveling with a baby. You’ll get sprayed a little, like you might in a very light rain, but nothing crazy. It’s lovely.
  • Prices are reasonable. You just have to remember everything looks a little more expensive because it’s in Canadian Dollars. (I’m just going to assume you’re going to the Canada side here, because who doesn’t love Canada?)
  • The Butterfly Conservatory was cool for most of our family. My boundless optimism prevented me from predicting that my brilliant but sensory-atypical son would be like, the only kid ever to be scared of butterflies.  Fortunately, I found a solution in giving him my cell phone and asking him to take pictures of them. Somehow looking at them through the camera transformed them from fluttering specters into digital game pieces.

So don’t forget your passports, and have a great time! The Canadian Border is easy to get through, with little waiting. The trip is very drivable from the Mid-Atlantic Region, and I would recommend driving if you can. (This is mainly because we flew, and ended up missing our original flight and spending a lot of time in the airport, getting their 14 hours after we started, when we could have driven in 8). Road-tripping with little ones can be much less stressful than flying if you do it right, so hit the road and enjoy!

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