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Published: August 6th 2007
Niagra, unlike Viagra did live up to its reputation indeed !!!
A delightful and beautiful spectacle of nature on display awaits you if you decide to take the trip. I was in New york and took the short flight trip to Niagra. Flight leaves you in Baffalo the biggest city near the Canadian border. From Baffalo a short half hour drive to Niagra city.
The falls is the down pour of Niagra river which runs between two large lakes. The river forms the natual boundary between USA and Canada. The falls is interrupted by an island of land called Goat island which lies on the American side. So we Two different falls - American falls and the Canadian falls. Both are spectacular to look at. Canadian side horse shoe shaped falls is the biggest of two and also the most noisiest !
As we approached Niagra city the tour guide showed the city sky line from a distance - it was filled with white smoke rising as high as the 100mts up in the sky. Then she said thats not smoke but the mist arising out of this thundering falls, which was visible from 10 KM away.
That kind of set the tone and anticipation for the visit.
As we got closer we could see the Niagra river running wild forming dangerous grade 5 white water rapids. There is a visible white line streching across the river from where the rapids form, at which point if someone falls in it - it will be the point of no return and they will end up falling down the falls.
We first crossed over to Canada side to see the falls from that end. The whole falls including both the American and Canadian are better viewed from this side. You get a panoramic view if you go up the Sheraton hotel. We had lunch up on the 10 floor with spectacular and sumptuous views of the falls.
What hit me first was the panoramic view as we crossed the bridge to Canada side. Then as you go closer the noise of the thundering falls roars up like a subway train which is not stopping in your station. The sight and sound held me in awe and amazement - is it really true, can water really make that noise.... my mind refused to believe what I was
seeing. So much water tumbling down the precipice providing an amazing spectacle. What a great sight to behold.
There were two highlights of the whole trip- one was viewing Niagra from the 10th floor of the Sheraton hotel. The scenery is spectacular, sumptuous and mesmerizing. Having a cup of tea or a cold beer up there watching the panoramic views is really heartwarming and no wonder Niagra is one of the sought after honeymoon spots. Indeed we had a lovely couple from South Korea who had come for honeymoon. the bridegroom had already visited it once before so he decided to bring her beautiful wife to Niagra. That proved to be a great idea that his wife was so much taken up the experience that she looked captivated and dazed for the whole time.
The next highlight was to take the famous 'Maid of the Mist' boat ride. My goodness what ride it turned out to be. They gave us the polythene rain coats and boarded us up the open deck boat. First the boat took us to the American falls which tumbles down from a 50 mt height down to the rocky boulders strewn around the base.
As it strikes the boulders the water gets scattered all around which spills up on boat riders like a fervent drizzle on a tropical island. On a warm sunny day like the day we had, it was refreshing and thrilling to be so close the mighty falls. There were number of birds flying low frantically around the falls and kept diving for fish - it was a kind of a free for all mayhem - the birds, the mist and the boat riders, to soak up the atmosphere and the spectacle on show.
After the American falls the boat slowly edges up to the bigger horse-shoe falls on the Canadian sight. As we got closer and closer my heart started pounding due to sheer amazement. A great wall of slivery-white water all around you falling down 100 mts below is something one has see to believe it. The roaring noise scuffled the cries of excitement and amazement from the boat riders. The rising mist drenched us all like a heavy down pour and got us all soaked up in water - thank god for rain coats.
Taking photos was a challenge in all that mist - I had
a polythene cover over the camera to capture the show. But even then it was difficult to keep the camera dry. So I took few shots that I could and shut off the camera. The boat ride is only for half hour but its all worth it. Being up so close to the might falls was really humbling experience.
After the boat ride the tour guide us few minutes to walk about the Niagra town. What a little lovely town it is - Tulip gardens all bloomed up, all around the town was beautiful. There was a local band playing in the garden gathered up a crowd around them. The few skyscrapers lining the horizon was pleasing to look at and even the cut-outs of Spider-man and Green Hulk was interesting. Niagra city is a cute little town indeed.
We left the Canadian side and crossed the border again to return to the American side of the falls. That took us close to the Goat island. Goat island is called so because in the summer the farmers use to use the island for grazing for their goats. The park has big statue for an Slovakian inventor - I
am not sure what was his invention -something to do with electricity.
After about 4 hours we bid good bye to the beautiful Niagra and returned to Baffalo. It was an enjoyable, pleasing, amazing, humbling and sumptuous trip. Our tour guide Katuska made it even more enjoyable by her wonderful and cheerful attitude and an engaging personality. Katuska is the best tour guide I have ever come across.
I highly recommend a visit to Niagra especially for honeymooners. If you are visiting New york like me it is well worth the trip to take that short flight to Niagra.
Some facts of Niagra -
* the Canadian Horseshoe Falls plunges 52 metres (170 feet) into the Maid of the Mist Pool.
* at the American Falls the water's vertical descent ranges from 21 to 34 metres (70 to 110 feet) to the rock at the base of the Falls.
* the Niagara Gorge extends from the Falls for 11 kilometres (7 miles) downstream to the foot of the escarpment at Queenston.
* more than 168,000 cubic metres (6 million cubic feet) of water go over the crestline every minute during peak
daytime tourist hours.
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