Niagara Falls is one of the most beautiful sights in America. This 167 ft-high natural wonder is situated on the border of the USA state of New York and Ontario, Canada, approximately 16.78 mi north-northwest of Buffalo. The distance from New York City to Niagara Falls is about 311 mi, a drive that takes approximately 6.5 hours.
Where is Niagara Falls and How Much Water Flows Through It?
Niagara Falls is comprised of three parts. The Horseshoe Falls on the Canadian side and the American Falls are connected by Goat Island. The smaller Bridal Veil Falls is also located on American territory, separated by Luna Island.
The origin of Niagara Falls traces back to the Ice Age, about 10,000 years ago. Today, these most powerful waterfalls in North America are also harnessed for electricity generation, with an average of 168,000 m³ of water flowing over their edge every minute. The width of the falls, 2,592 ft at its widest point, is also notable.
The Falls are situated on the Niagara River, on the border between the USA state of New York and Ontario, Canada.
Fun Facts About Niagara Falls
The Niagara River is home to fish that ascend the falls’ elevation. It is said that up to 90% of them survive the 164 ft drop, thanks to the white foam that cushions their fall. If you find this hard to believe, consider visiting the Cave of the Winds. The admission per adult is $12.00, and children pay $9.00.
In 1901, 63-year-old schoolteacher Annie Edson Taylor secured herself in a wooden barrel and descended Niagara Falls. She was the first person to survive such a daring attempt, suffering only a concussion and minor lacerations to her head.
Niagara Falls does not freeze in the winter. The last time ice significantly affected the flow of the Niagara River was on March 29, 1848, when the flow was reduced to a minimum for a few hours due to ice accumulation.
A full fifth of the world’s freshwater supply is found in the Great Lakes: Michigan, Huron, Erie, and Ontario. All the water draining from these lakes flows through Niagara Falls.
One of the oldest surviving USA flags is displayed at Old Fort Niagara. It dates back to 1812 when it was captured by the British during the British-American War.
Tips for Visiting Niagara Falls
🚗 How to Get to Niagara Falls
The best way to get to Niagara Falls is by renting a car; the journey from New York City takes around 7 hours in total. Parking lots around Niagara Falls are plentiful, with prices for a day’s parking starting at $20.00.
You can also reach Niagara Falls by bus; Greyhound operates a direct line from New York City. The buses are equipped with free Wi-Fi and power outlets, and the cheapest tickets can be purchased several months in advance.
⏱️ Niagara Falls Opening Hours
The observation tower at Niagara Falls is open daily from 10:00 am to 4:30 pm.
The Rainbow International Bridge is open 24 hours a day. The toll to cross the bridge is $5.00 (as of March 2023).
⚓ Boat Tours Around Niagara Falls
From May to October, you can take a four-hour cruise around Niagara Falls every day. During the tour, you’ll experience a boat lift, see the Rainbow Bridge, American Falls and Bridal Veil Falls, as well as the Ontario Hydroelectric Power Station firsthand. More information
An alternative is a cruise around Niagara Falls from the Canadian side, which includes hotel pickup. A tour of the falls from Skylon Tower is included, and you’ll also see Canada’s Horseshoe Falls, through which 90% of Niagara’s water flows. More information
🏷️ Tickets to Niagara Falls
Among the attractions available are a grotto, information center, aquarium, and theater. For current ticket prices, including discounted passes, visit the park’s website.
ℹ️ What to Know Before Visiting Niagara Falls
The Canadian side offers a nicer view of the Falls, where the entire attraction is more commercial. You can cross the Rainbow Bridge without needing a permit to enter Canada.
Don’t forget to visit Niagara Falls after dark when they are beautifully lit up. Overall, you will need only half a day for the visit.
I recommend packing a waterproof jacket or raincoat in your backpack.
Photos of Niagara Falls