Ten Free Things to do at Niagara Falls
When coming to Niagara Falls in an RV, and you are cost conscious, there are great things to do that do not cost anything at all! That is what makes this such an amazing destination for those that do not need to spend money to have a good time! There are so many free things to do at Niagara Falls, it really took Pam and I by surprise.
We went for a weekend visit to Niagara Falls State Park while recently in western New York. We had such a great time in the two days we were there we returned the next weekend to do it again. We were unable to see and do it all the first visit as there were so many great things to do that don’t cost a cent!
RV Parks around the Niagara Falls area are not in close proximity to the Falls, and parking can be a problem when it is really busy. We visited Niagara Falls State Park in late August. We figured it might not be as busy as some of the U.S. public schools were already back in session. What we had not counted on were all the foreign tourists that were visiting too! No problem, though! We just had to be a little more creative with our picture taking in some areas of the park.
Anyway, given the fifty to eighty dollar a night RV park rates, we decided to research some free options in the area using some web sites that we utilize as we travel the country. We found Seneca Niagara Resort and Casino. Their information states the following regarding RV’s parking at their facility.
Parking for oversized vehicles, including RV’s, is available on a ‘first come, first serve’ basis in the huge parking lot on the east side of the property (Use ‘Falls Street’ entrance for your convenience). The Native American casino allows vehicles to park on the east side of the lot, by the fence, even though the lot surface area is not marked for oversized vehicles. Utility hookups are not available. The Casino is located about a mile from the entrance of Niagara Falls State Park.
It only took us about ten minutes to walk to Niagara Falls State Park from the casino parking lot. It is almost a straight shot west to reach the park entrance. Once you walk around to the front of the Casino you are on Falls Street which takes you directly there.
We stayed a total of five nights between our two visits and found it to be a perfect place to boondock! We were able to use our leveling jacks, put our slides out and use our generator as needed. As long as you have enough onboard storage for your water usage, you can enjoy a few days in this area without having to pay RV park fees!
The second of the free things to do at Niagara Falls is to walk around, enjoy the sights and sounds of the Falls, and learn the history of the Falls. There are numerous plaques spread around the grounds that describe different areas of interest. Some are historical and others state current facts.
One fact that I found amazing was that in just one second, seventy-five thousand gallons of water spill over the American Falls! We enjoyed walking miles around Niagara Falls State Park enjoying all the different views of both the American Falls and the Canadian Horseshoe Falls. All that water cascading down makes for spectacular sights and sounds!
The third free thing you can do while at Niagara Falls is to see the Falls at night! Every night after sunset the Falls are lit in a rainbow of colors. It is just spectacular! It was so enjoyable and relaxing to just sit, watch and listen to the sounds of the rushing water! There are many ways to catch this event photographically. Even pictures taken with my Samsung smartphone, at its lowest resolution setting for web use, captured the sites quite well during the night viewings.
The fourth free thing you can do at Niagara Falls State Park is to see the free fireworks show that occurs Friday and Sunday nights during the summer months. Now, this is not a really long fireworks display. I figured the display lasted about five minutes or so. The fireworks shot from the river bed light up the Falls in a unique and spectacular way!
The fifth thing you can do that does not cost you anything unless of course you choose to shop, is walk across the Rainbow Bridge into Canada. If you have the proper documentation it is a very easy thing to do. The walk across the bridge only takes a few minutes and there are more great views of both the American and Canadian falls.
Once you get through customs you are right near all the sights and sounds of southern Ontario. While we were there we saw beautiful gardens, water fountain displays, listened to free entertainment while enjoying the views of the falls. We enjoyed walking around checking out all the shops and arcades that are in abundance in the area.
We had such a good time just walking around, we made the journey into Canada twice during our stay. We figured the walk from the parking lot of the casino to the Horseshoe Falls in Canada was about two and a half miles. It was really quite easy and with a comfortable pair of walking shoes it is really no problem. With all the places to stop and enjoy the sites, it is really easy to take a break, if you need one.
Biking around the Niagara Falls area and the park is a great activity that does not cost you anything if you bring your own bicycle. If you don’t have one as there are rentals available, but then it is no longer a free activity. If it is really crowded it can be more difficult to bike around within Niagara State Park because the foreign tourists do not seem to understand sticking to the right when either walking or biking.
If you visit during a busy time of year you can bike along Robert Moses Parkway to avoid the crowds. One side of the street is an unused road that they have closed off for pedestrian traffic. You can bike for miles. This is not a scenic as being right around Niagara State Park, but if you want a good ride, this is certainly an option.
The seventh of the free things to do at Niagara Falls is to take your dog for a walk in the park. They can enjoy themselves as much as we humans! Lindsey had a great time being photogenic when we placed here on a pillar right by the Falls. After we took this photo we actually had a small crowd that had gathered while we were taking the numerous shots it required to get this one. She was very distracted with all the attention!
The eighth free thing you can do is to have a picnic at Niagara Falls State Park. There is plenty of open space to lay out a blanket, bring some food and enjoy a meal and the sights. If you just want to pick something up on Falls Street before you get to the park, there are several options to choose from.
We found Mario’s NY Style pizza! We really enjoyed the selection they had and the quality of their pizza. It has been a while since this native New Yorker had a good slice of New York style pizza!
When strolling up and down Falls Street you can enjoy the activities: games and music. There is an outside area right near the Econo Lodge that had large size game boards of chess and checkers. There were also ping pong tables and large Jenga blocks to play with. There was even a huge chalkboard where you can express your lifetime wishes to the world.
Lindsey decided she wanted to play chess, but none of the other fur-kids wanted to take her on. So, we just let her sit there and look cute for a while. She did get others to take her picture too!
The tenth of the free things to do at Niagara Falls is to take pictures while enjoying the area. There are so many great places to stop and enjoy the Falls while capturing their splendor from so many different angles and distances. There are numerous walkways where you can get up close and personal with the Falls.
If you enjoy getting wet, depending on which way the wind is blowing, you can partake of the mist created by the huge amounts of water cascading down. This also creates some great photographic opportunities. As I stated earlier, I was using my Samsung smartphone to capture the pictures I have displayed here. It did a fine job of capturing day and night shots while being very portable and easy to keep dry when that was necessary!
If you have a chance to bring your RV to the Niagara Falls area, be sure to enjoy some of these free activities! It is a great opportunity to relax, unwind and enjoy the beauty that is Niagara Falls!
Pam, Lindsey and I wish you blessed travels as you enjoy this great country of ours!! Let us know how your RV travels are going if you make it to this great location!
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