Niagara Falls is a popular vacation spot with families and it’s easy to see why. Kids of all ages will be thrilled to get up close to the world famous waterfall and then have fun filled days visiting the nearby aquarium and other attractions, and spectacular nights under a sky bursting with fireworks. The park can be pricy though, so here are some tips to help you get the most bang for your buck.
Buy a Discovery Pass for Cheaper Access to the Attractions
There’s no charge for simply visiting the park and admiring the falls from a distance, but to get close to the thundering water you’ll need to buy tickets. Like the falls, each attraction has its own entry fee but with a Discovery Pass you can save 32% on the cost of individual admission prices.
A Discovery Pass gives you access to the Maid of the Mist boat ride, Cave of the Winds, the Niagara Adventure Theater, the Niagara Aquarium and unlimited rides of the Scenic Trolley. The pass also gives you discounted admission and free gifts at other attractions in the area, including Old Fort Niagara, and the Niagara Power Project and Artpark.
You can buy your pass online in advance but you’ll be charged a processing fee, so it’s more economical to buy the pass once you arrive at the park.
The Discovery Pass is great value as it gives you access to the attractions for an entire season, which for 2017 runs from May 20th to October 22nd, meaning that you can take your time on your vacation instead of rushing to fit everything in. The only exception is the trolley, your pass includes a voucher to ride the trolley on one day only.
When you’re planning your trip, keep in mind that all children 5 and under get free admission to park attractions.
Attractions outside the state park open on their own schedule and many are open year round.
It’s More Cost Effective to Picnic Than to Eat at the Park Restaurants
A basic hamburger lunch at the park doesn’t come cheap and you can save plenty of vacation dollars if you pack a lunch in a cooler to eat at one of the many picnic spots. Since you can hop onto the trolley for an easy ride back to your car and then ride the trolley to a picnic spot, you aren’t looking at spending half an hour trudging back to your car or needing to lug the cooler around with you.
Drinks are expensive too, so take your own bottled water and stop to refill it at any of the water fountains around the park.
Saving money on your lunches frees up your budget so that you can take full advantage of eating dinner at some of the fabulous restaurants in the area.
Shop Around for Hotels
Your accommodation will undoubtedly be one of your biggest expenses on your trip to the falls, so it pays to do your research online and find yourself a deal on Niagara Falls hotels. You’ll find a huge number of hotels and inns in the area catering to all pockets, with Travelodge and Days Inn at the budget range of the scale and the 5 star Marriott at the luxury end, and plenty to choose from in-between. If you want to stay somewhere luxurious with your family, then consider checking out these st barts villas.
As with all vacation destinations, prices are higher at the peak of the season so if you haven’t booked your vacation days at work yet, play around with the trip dates and see how much you can shave off your vacation by visiting the area a little earlier or later.
Check Reviews Online for Area Attractions
Niagara Falls is a great tourist resort with plenty of sights to see and attractions to visit, but some are better than others and as you’ll have to pay to visit anything that isn’t covered by your inclusive Discovery Pass, you should check out reviews for attractions before you pay to go inside to avoid disappointment.
If you’re an adrenaline junkie, then you won’t want to miss the MistRider Zip Line which has great reviews. The zip line whizzes you along at 40mph over the Niagara River gorge to the Falls observation landing!
For those looking for a less heart stopping attraction, a visit to the Bird Kingdom is well worth your time, especially if you have little ones who would love to meet the brightly colored birds and reptiles that live at the kingdom.
Niagara Falls is a spectacular place to visit for young and old alike, and if you plan your trip in advance and take advantage of reduced prices on accommodation and attraction tickets, then it can be an affordable trip no matter what time of year you choose to go.