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Niagara Falls Frugal Travel Guide

Category North America
A US and Canadian shared natural resource, these beautiful water falls are a favorite vacation destination. This page is a Niagra Falls frugal travel guide.


Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
March 10, 2010

I am finally going to Niagara Falls and the "I Love Lucy" museum. I am 47 and this is where I have always wanted to go. I know it is kitch and touristy, anyway got any ideas or tips on cheap eating? Cheaper anything would be appreciated. I figure we will take drinks and dry cereal, etc.

By Sandy from Baltimore, MD

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
March 15, 20100 found this helpful
Best Answer

I was disappointed at the "Bollywood" atmosphere of the American side. Also the poverty of the town of Buffalo in general. We stayed on the Canadian side. If you go off season things are cheaper and the view of the falls is much better from that side. I am sure you want to at least get your money's worth and I think the Canadian side will do you better.

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March 18, 20100 found this helpful
Best Answer

Definitely go to the Canadian side, and do go before Labor Day--that's when they shut down the amount of water going over the Falls. As you stand by the railing, you can feel the pressure of the water hitting your chest and it makes a much larger impact. After Labor Day, you fail to get the same sensation. I realize this sounds silly, but experiencing the falls is much more than just seeing a nice view.

On top of the hill, across from the rides is a Dominos Pizza--cheap lunch or dinner. Usually casinos have great food prices, but I never went into the one at the falls to know if theirs are cheap. Personally, I'd start a walking program now, it's the best way to get around the tourist area, which is large, and if you're out of shape can be difficult. On top of the hill, there is the Skylon tower, that you can go up and get a wonderful view of the area--it is worth the price. The IMAX theater is educational-- they give an interesting history of the falls.

We always visit a tourist information center on the way there. They will give you a map of the area, help you plan what you might like to see, give you lots of information, and discount tickets. They even called around to find hotels for us. Definitely plan to drive north of the falls. There is a wonderful town named Niagara on the Lake. Close to it is Fort George.

On the way there (west side of the road) is a great fruit stand/orchard/vinyard where you can buy fresh fruit to eat, gourmet jams and jellies, and homemade sandwiches on crusty french bread and cookies to eat. On the way, you'll also pass the botanical gardens (I believe this is where the butterfly conservatory is) and you can see a magnificent floral clock. On the drive north of the falls, you'll pass a small turn-around on the east side of the road, that you'll want to pull into. It is actually where the Aerocar (trolley that goes over the falls) turns around, and is a nice place to see an unspoiled view of the river, not to mention it is free.

Personally, I like to see the tourist museums--they give an interesting feel to the entire experience. If you decide to ride the Maid-of-the-Mist (you really should), do it exactly at noon. The boats are usually packed, but the one at noon is half empty, allowing you to walk around freely. I like to go straight to the front as soon as I get on--you get the best view by far. You will get soaked.

The Journey behind the falls is also nice, but don't be in a hurry. You can get some great pictures down on the platform near the base of the falls. Do be prepared to get wet. Driving south on the Niagara River Parkway, you will see an old barge that got stuck on the rocks and has been sitting there for years. If it ever breaks loose, it will probably go over the falls. You also will see the old water power plants. See as much and do as much as you possibly can, or you'll regret it. This is a wonderful place to go. It absolutely leaves one in awe. Wish I was joining you.

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March 10, 20100 found this helpful

My huband and I visit Niagara every year. The Flying Saucer Restaurant has a .99 breakfast but you have to get there before 9:00 am but I will check with him for sure. It is really cheap. Try to stay away from any restaurants on Clifton Hill, the main attraction area, because cost is high for meals. They are good meals but very expensive. Check online because I see all the time coupons for Niagara falls. I will get some more ideas for you and message you back. I am drawing a blank but my husband is the EXPERT on this. There are plenty of nice nature trails too if you are interested in that type of thing. One thing I may suggest is the White Water Walk. Depending on what time of the year you are going, I don't know if it is only a summer thing. I hope you enjoyed this help and I will get back to you soon.

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Share on ThriftyFunCheck out these photos. Click at right to share your own photo in this guide.

By 22 found this helpful
January 11, 2011

My husband and I visited Niagara Falls in September, 2010. This photo was taken from the closest point one can stand at the Journey Behind the Falls attraction in Niagara, Ontario, Canada. It was tremendous! The roar, the mist, the sight of millions of gallons of water spilling over that edge where you can almost reach out and touch the flow.

By Leslie

Horseshoe Falls (Niagara, Ontario, Canada)

Comment Like this photo? 22
January 16, 20110 found this helpful

I have been to the Falls (on the Canadian side) at least a dozen times since I was in my teens (I'm now 53), and I never cease to be amazed at this grand force of Mother Nature!

I posted this photo in December 2010. The Horseshoe Falls are on the other side of the building:

http://www.thri  4222804.tip.html

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February 7, 2012

This picture was taken at Niagara Falls.

By coville123 from Brockville, Ontario

Niagara Falls

Comment Like this photo? 2
February 8, 20120 found this helpful

That is so amazing! This is a very beautiful picture!

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December 9, 2010

I took this photo in late October of the American Falls and the Rainbow Bridge in the distance. It was taken from the walkway bridge over the Parkway that goes between Table Rock, and where the Incline Railway is located.

By Maryeileen

Niagara Falls (Canada)

Comment Like this photo? 6
December 10, 20100 found this helpful

Great shot, I know the exact spot you were standing. I was there about 2 weeks before you!

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By 12 found this helpful
November 11, 2010

These beautiful pictures were taken when my daughter Lisa and my grandbaby Emma Grace went to the park with me, right in our own neighborhood. We went to have Emmy frolic in the leaves, look at the beautiful falls, foliage and ducks. It was a wonderful time for all us.

Three generations, myself, my daughter and her daughter who is two years old. It was a beautiful relaxing fall day here in Williamsville, New York!

By Koren

Comment Like this photo? 12

April 16, 2012

Rainbow Over the Falls! (Niagara Falls, NY)

CommentPin It! Like this photo? 2

We celebrated 37 years of marriage by going to Niagara Falls, NY. It was a beautiful sunny day and we took a picture of the fall. We visit this site every year on "our" day. We were amazed at the two rainbows!


By 2 found this helpful
March 12, 2012

Wildlife: Gull (Niagara Falls, Canada)

CommentPin It! Like this photo? 2

Caught a picture of this gull at Niagara Falls.

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