More a Theme Park than a Natural Wonder

Trip Start May 10, 2011
Trip End Jul 04, 2011

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Where I stayed
The Tower Hotel Niagara Falls
Read my review - 4/5 stars

Flag of Canada  , Ontario,
Friday, June 17, 2011

It was a late start after the unpleasant previous day, but a coffee at Starbucks on the way helped to boost the spirits and energy level sufficiently to walk on to the river and to view the American falls and the Horseshoe Falls. Near the Horseshoe Falls are the tunnels that are reached via a lift and give access to platforms quite close to the water, where the water spray soaks everything despite being provided with a plastic poncho.  Above the tunnels is the film show that gives some geological history of the area in a children's cartoon format, but the highlight of the show is at the end of the film when the audience is moved into a second room equipped with a tilting and vibrating floor, water spray jets, and a 360 degree screen.  Here, the power of the water to form the landscape is simulated.  It is quite well done, but the 360 degree screen needs to be deeper to dominate the visual senses.  Something similar, but without the water jets, in Disneyland, California, 40 years before gave a more realistic experience.

The next experience was the boat trip up to the Horseshoe Falls on the Maid of the Mist.  Again, it was very wet, but quite fun.

Above the Maid of the Mist terminal there was lunch at a noodle shop, but just horrible.

The park bus along the river runs at half hour intervals and connects all the main attractions.  The next stop was at the whirlpool, which is not a whirlpool in the true sense of the word, but is a current that seems to trap debris into a never ending circular eddy in the middle of the channel, including some intrepid adventurers in the past who lost their lives there.

Back in the town, the main street has clearly lost all sense of subtlety and given itself over entirely to Americana in the most extreme way.  It’s fun to see, even better to leave behind.

It was a gloomy day, but with little sun it was not too hot.
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