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- 22 Jun 2021, 3 nights
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Rushing into a jewel-green river and straddling the border between Canada and the United States, Niagara Falls is a globally renowned natural wonder. While the biggest draw in town is the incredible waterfall, there's plenty of other entertainment catering to the many travellers who visit every year, from quirky museums to 24-hour casinos. You'll even be within easy reach of a laid-back beach destination: the clear water and sandy shore of Lake Erie's Crystal Beach is a 30-minute drive away.
Hostels in Niagara Falls are characterised by their friendly staff. Look out for places that organise backyard barbecues in the warmer months and have bike rental to take you to the falls or the area's vineyards. If you're coming by bus or train, you can choose a Niagara Falls hostel near the stations to keep things simple. On a road trip? Pick a place that comes with free parking and has a games room where you can unwind after a long drive.
Lundy's Lane on the Canadian side of Niagara Town is gloriously kitsch, with its brightly coloured amusement arcades, gift shops and restaurants. Clifton Hill is the entertainment district, home of the Greg Frewin Theatre for magic shows and tribute bands. You'll also find fun museums like Ripley's for oddball artefacts and Louis Tussaud's for celebrity waxworks. Over in Fallsview Boulevard, there's everything from IMAX cinema showings to paint balling.
The main thing to do in Niagara is to catch a glimpse of the waterfall. You can head straight from town to the pathway next the crashing water for all-encompassing views of both Niagara and Horseshoe waterfalls. On the US side, you can get a little nearer to the roar of the water. Want to go even closer? In the summer months the Maid of the Mist boat tour floats right alongside the falls.
Niagara's centre is small enough to walk around, but you can also use the WeGo bus for longer trips, like to characterful Niagara-on-the-Lake village. Pick up a 24-hour pass if you're planning on making several journeys. There are also city buses, and you can get to and from places like St Catharines and Old Fort Erie on the Niagara Region Transit Service. Just make sure to have the exact fare. It takes about 2.5 hours to reach Niagara on the bus from Toronto.