If you’re stumbling upon this post, you’re probably a loyal reader, signed up for emails, or have spent your time wondering what you can do in Niagara Falls in one day.
Well, I recently returned from doing just that! Being a Jersey native, I dreamed of visiting the Falls one day. In my 22 years, I had never been and knew that it was time (now that I have time!) to head on up there.
The drive from New Jersey to Niagara Falls, New York took about 6 hours and 22 minutes. I went with my family in one car. It was a long drive to say the least, but we made it!
If you happen to be in the area for 24 hours, here are some suggestions on what you should do!
We drove to NY as I mentioned above. However, from the moment we parked the car at the hotel, we did not use it again for the entire trip. Everything is walkable. On the New York side there is a trolley that I totally recommend getting a pass for because it takes you all around the park and when your legs get tired, you’ll be wishing you had a way back to the Welcome Center.
We spent the night at the Wyndham Garden Hotel in Niagara Falls, New York. We were not sure what side of the border to stay on and after arriving there, we decided there were pros and cons to choosing to stay in New York.
Pros included being on the quieter side of the border with less lights and noise (perfect to sleep after a long drive). We were also steps away from the national park that is Niagara Falls. We were able to walk to the park at night and see the beautiful falls at night with less people around. This hotel was also a little bit cheaper because it was on the New York side.
The hotel itself was beautiful though! We reserved a two-queen bed room. It was spacious and clean. The staff was fantastic and the restaurant on the main floor was delicious for breakfast and a snack. It also has a Starbucks in there! If you can afford it, grab a window view (see the picture for the longer windows) because you have a great view of the falls and the fireworks at 10pm EST.
Cons: less dining options and less things to do.
This section will be brief simply because we chose pretty easy restaurants to dine at. We didn’t look for anything extravagant. By the time we arrived, we were starving so we went to none other than TGI Fridays near our hotel.
For breakfast and a snack, we hit the hotel’s restaurant. In front of the hotel there’s a little hot dog hut that serves chicken tenders, sandwiches, french fries, and obviously hot dogs. The people working there were fantastic. The name of the location was the Misty Dog Grill. There is seating there as well as to-go ordering – perfect for a quick meal.
THINGS TO DO-
- Follow this link to find out about the Adventure Pass on the USA side of the border. Based on age it ranges from 35-45 dollars and it’s a super sound investment! A huge money saver which includes the following:
- a pass to the trolley that I mentioned above
- the aquarium
- the Cave of the Winds
- and the Maid of the Mist.
- I will add that all of these activities can be done on the US side so if you don’t have the time to go to Canada or have any restriction that prevents you from crossing the US/Canada border, you can still have a good time!
Those are some of the things you must take advantage of while exploring the USA Niagara Falls Park. Make sure to also explore the small town! We found some pretty impressive murals while walking around.
There is so much to do in Canada! Being that we only had 24 hours to do both sides of the border, I will mention what we did, but know there is so much more that we didn’t get to. If you are on a budget or have a time restriction, just walking down the walkway where the falls are, is sufficient. There are photo ops everywhere!
- Niagara Falls Ferris Wheel
- You get an amazing view of both of the falls by riding this ferris wheel. I expected the person working the ride to only let us stay on for about 2 minutes but fortunately we got to go around 5 times.
- The tickets for the ferris wheel alone are about 11 USD per person but I totally recommend it. I rode it in the daytime but the views look spectacular at night when the falls have the rainbows lights shining on them.
- Skylon Tower Observation Deck
- Though I don’t recall the price of these tickets, they weren’t too pricey and the view was completely worth it!
- If you can get to do the Zipline or the Jet Ski definitely take advantage of that!
That’s all I was able to do in 24 hours! I will definitely go back and spend some more time in the area. It was gorgeous and a perfect getaway from the business of life.
Hope your trip is just as magical. The falls are truly a sight to see.