What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of “Niagara”?
Niagara Falls of course, and it is magnificent – the sheer magnitude of the roaring water. So first up on the agenda when you visit Niagara is GO AND SEE THE FALLS.
I’ve seen it a hundred times and still find it awe-inspiring. People who are lucky enough to live in Niagara should never take it for granted or neglect to visit the falls at least twice a year – summer and winter.
This is Niagara Falls in winter – frozen. You can actually still see the Falls, roaring down in the back, but much of the water has frozen as fast as it can fall. This particular view is of the American side of Niagara Falls which spans the Canada-US border and as you can see it looks a lot like a glacier or an iceberg.
Niagara never disappoints, it’s beautiful in any weather!
NIAGARA’S FIRST WONDER OF THE WORLD
Niagara Falls in winter.
Niagara Falls in the Summer
NIAGARA’S SECOND WONDER OF THE WORLD
The Welland Canal
The Welland Canal shown above, is actually the last of four canals that were built.
The first one was built in 1829 and the one we see today was built in 1932.
It was ungraded and re-built over the years to accommodate more traffic and bigger ships.
The Welland Canal joins Lake Erie with lake Ontario.
Lake Erie is higher than Lake Ontario so the canal lets ships sail between them in steps – down to
Lake Ontario and back up again to Lake Erie.
There are also several rising bridges that go up and down to let large ships pass through and a tunnel
that goes underneath the canal for cars. It’s all very exciting, especially for the boys in your entourage.
See the little house set on top of the middle of the bridge in the picture below?
That’s where the bridge attendant sits and it goes up and down with the bridge.
Rising Bridge over the Welland Canal in Welland Ontario
You can learn all about the canal at the Welland Canal Museum in St. Catharines, which also has a great
viewing deck, picnic areas and benches, gift shop and snack stand. It’s a great place to have a picnic
with kids or grown-ups who have an interest in the canal. There’s also a great diorama of the canal.
NIAGARA’S THIRD WONDER OF THE WORLD
The Niagara Escarpment
“Niagara-Escarpment-Winter-IMG 0626” by Devastator at English Wikipedia.
Licensed under CC BY 3.0 via Commons
NIAGARA’S FOURTH WONDER OF THE WORLD
The Niagara River
The Niagara River flows north from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario. It forms part of the border between the Province of Ontario in Canada (on the west) and the State of New York in the United States (on the east). There are lots of beautiful parks, picnic areas and pathways along it’s edge, and Niagara On The Lake is located where the Niagara River runs into Lake Ontario.
The Niagara Parkway is a scenic road that runs on the Canadian side of the Niagara River from the town of Fort Erie to Niagara-on-the-Lake. The portion north of Niagara Falls is designated as an “Ontario Scenic Highway” but the entire parkway is beautiful.
Of course Niagara Falls is the most famous part of the Niagara River.
NIAGARA’S FIFTH WONDER OF THE WORLD
Lake Ontario is one of the five Great Lakes of North America. You can see Toronto in the distance
as you look over Lake Ontario from Port Dalhousie in St. Catharines. You will find beach-front
parks, a marina, various water activites, including the annual Henley Regatta, and a famous,
historical carousel in Port Dalhousie.
Here is the carousel in Lakeside Park where you can still have a ride for a nickle.
(yup, that’s 5 cents folks).
Royal Canadian Henley Regatta in progress.
Marina and historic lighthouse.
NIAGARA’S SIXTH WONDER OF THE WORLD
Lake Erie is the 4th largest of the Great Lakes. It’s where the Welland Canal and the Niagara River
both start, and it’s where you’ll find Port Colborne.
Port Colborne Canal Days Event
NIAGARA’S SEVENTH WONDER OF THE WORLD
The Niagara Carolinian Forest
The Carolinian forest is an area that has primarily deciduous (broad-leaf) trees. It’s special because of it’s
uniquely, moderate temperature that supports animal and plant species usually not found in other parts of Canada.
The Carolinian forest region extends from the Carolina’s in the U.S. into Southern Ontario in Canada.
One of the best-preserved examples of the Carolinian forest is the Niagara Glen Nature Reserve, near the
Niagara Whirlpool along the Canadian side of the Niagara River.
Well those are my picks for Niagara’s seven wonders of the world. I will have lots more to say about
each of them and the many things you can enjoy seeing and doing in Niagara.
There’s more to explore in Niagara and I’m looking forward to sharing it all with you!