We love road trips and we take them as often as possible. On a recent long weekend getaway, we headed to Niagara Falls. We drove from Southern New Jersey through New York and into Canada.
On the way, we stopped at Skaneateles Lake. A quaint, manicured town in the Finger Lakes, Skaneateles exudes classic Americana charm. Beautiful mansions straddle the shores, crystal clear water, lush landscapes and plenty of ice cream shops make this town a nice stop for the whole family. There are also some great restaurants with lots Finger Lake’s wines. Blue Water Grill, overlooking the picturesque lake is a great option for the whole family.
We spent the night at the Del Lago Resort and Casino near Rochester. While kids are not allowed in the casino, the hotel is beautiful, brand new, clean and centrally located. From here is took us about two hours to get to Niagara Falls.
Our first stop was the Niagara Falls State Park in New York. The town surrounding the park is not the nicest, but the park is beautiful. There are lots of trails to hike, an observation tower that overlooks the falls and the Maid of the Mist Boat Ride – you definitely should do this! Nature’s sheer power and force literally moves mountains and to see it actually happening is awesome!!
After you get your fill of the falls, cross the border to the Canadian side. We stayed at the Marriot which overlooks the falls. This was the view from our room…
Be prepared the whole Niagara region, is very touristy! The Canadian side is clean, filled with family entertainment, and lots to do. Monday through Friday there are fireworks over the falls at 10 p.m. This kids will also love the unending assortment of arcades, haunted houses, mini golf, mirror mazes and more.
However, knowing what I know now, I would probably have stopped for one night in Niagara Falls (for the little ones and make sure that it’s a Monday through Friday for the fireworks) then kept going to Niagara-on-the-Lake.
Niagara-on-the-Lake is a small town on Lake Ontario. It’s filled with seemingly perfect historical buildings, flowers for days, great boutiques, galleries, ice cream shops, toy stores and cafes. Jake bought his first piece of art and met the artist too at the Edward Spera Gallery.
Niagara-on-the-Lake is also in the heart of Canada’s Niagara wine region. We stopped at two great wineries. The very touristy Peller Estate where you can take tours and do a tasting.
But our favorite winery was Frog’s Pond Farm, an organic, family-run winery. We sat at a picnic table surrounded by farm life, drank delicious wine, ate cheese and just talked.
True to any great road trip on the way home through Buffalo, New York we sought out the best buffalo wings we could and found ourselves at Duff’s Famous Wings – definitely worth it.