There are few places that bring home the awesome power of Mother Nature quite like the breathtaking Niagara Falls. To give you some idea of the sheer power involved here, take into account that, every minute, 189,600 tons (tons!) of water flows over the Falls. That’s 750,000 gallons per second—which is why it has been a major energy source for both America and Canada for over half a century. In fact, Niagara Falls produces more electricity in New York State than any other source. Best of all, it’s clean hydroelectricity and kind to the environment.
The 400-acre Niagara Falls site is the United States’ oldest state park and has viewing platforms in both Canada and the U.S.A. And while 140 acres of the Park are under water, the other 260 benefited from the landscape design of Frederick Law Olmsted—otherwise known as the visionary who designed Manhattan’s also-world-famous Central Park. The Niagara State Park was planned with the idea of immersing visitors in nature as much as possible and therefore has a multitude of footpaths and trails—one of which grants access to the Niagara Gorge.
The three waterfalls that make up Niagara Falls have been popular destinations for marriage proposals and weddings for a century, as well as an incredibly inviting place to spend a honeymoon. This is probably why two of these magnificent feats of nature are named Bridal Veil Falls and Horseshoe Falls. Sadly, the beloved Honeymoon Bridge collapsed in 1938 because of ice build-up—but no amount of ice could freeze the free-flowing romance that takes place at this stunning destination. After your Niagara Falls visit, you can continue your travels on to Toronto, for a weekend in the big city. It’s just over the bridge, bring your passports!
The Niagara River Corridor is a place where both wildlife and plant life truly thrive. With 14 species of rare plants surviving here, as well as 600 flora species and 140 of 170 of New York’s native trees, Niagara is a place that belongs more to nature than to man. A fact emphasized by the populations of animals surviving here—including thousands of species of waterfowl and some protected birds and fish, including the American Bald Eagle and New York’s endangered Lake Sturgeon.