Last week I took my 8-year-old granddaughter Jordyn for a tour of the park. The weather was absolutely perfect when we started our day at 8:30 a.m. I parked my car (all day parking is only $5.00) at The Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens,7.5 kilometres north of the falls. As we wandered this 'I wish you were here' place, we discovered a magnificent Rose Garden, spectacular mature trees and a number of garden plots with various plants and vegetables, most of them had little tags telling not only the common name but also the botanical names of the plants. There was even a garden describing various poison plants! This is a unique spot of beauty for the nature lover.
When 10 a.m. rolled around we entered the Niagara Parks Butterfly Conservatory (Adults $15.00-Children 6-12 $9.75) located on the grounds of the Botanical Gardens. Jordyn was mesmerised by the 2,000 or so free-flying colourful butterflies, especially the large Blue Morpho’s. She managed to get a number of photos to show her friends. This is a deliciously peaceful place.
We then hopped on board a WEGO bus (Adults $7.00 for 24 hours and a child 6 to 12 years $4.00) which was to be our transportation for the day. What a great move this proved to be. For the next four hours we visited the Floral Clock, then headed south on another WEGO bus to the Whirlpool Aero Car (Adults $15.00-Children 6-12 $9.75) which crossed over the Niagara River Whirlpool. It’s been operating accident free since it opened in August of 1916. Jordyn couldn’t wait to take this thrilling ride. If you have a sense of adventure don’t pass this up.
We took another bus that took us south to the White Water Walk attraction (Adults $13.00 children 6-12 $8.45). Here’s where we took an elevator to a tunnel that lead to the edge of the treacherous Niagara River gorge. We took the board walk that ran beside the Class 6 white water rapids. What a thrill this was for both of us. At this time of our tour I was starting to wear down but Jordyn said with a big smile on her face, “come on Papa-Wapa we have more to see.” I forgot the energy that kids had at 8 years of age!
Back on the WEGO again we travelled south to the main WEGO terminal at Table Rock near the Canadian Horseshoe Falls.
We grabbed a drink and a snack at Tim Hortons found inside the Table Rock Welcome Centre then we went tunnelling just after we purchased tickets for the Journey Behind the Falls attraction (Adults $19.95 children 6-12 $13.00) then took an elevator to the base and behind the Canadian Horseshoe Falls. The sight and sound of the thundering waters of four Great Lakes come crashing over the falls will be hard to forget.
Up above, we went to the edge of the falls and squeezed ourselves with dozens of others to be fascinated once more with a view of the ferocious falls.
Okay, it was now close to 2:30 and I was beat. We walked over to the terminal and hopped aboard a WEGO to head north along the Niagara Parkway back to the Botanical Gardens and pick up my car.
I’ve visited these places many times in the past but this trip with my granddaughter but this tour was something special and one I’ll remember always -I think Jordyn feels the same.
There is no shortage of things to do for parents and grandparents and their children when you visit Niagara Falls.