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New York: Majestic Niagara

November 8, 2009


Dividing the international border of Ontario,Canada and New York, USA are the voluminous waterfalls on the Niagara river more popularly known as Niagara Falls. The trip to the majestic falls was a break from the concrete jungle of Manhattan as we venture on the more laid back and small town America parts of New York.

Majestic Niagara

Majestic Niagara by Out On Vacation


To Tour or Not to Tour

Unless you brought your own car or you have someone to drive you around, the best way for a tourist to get to Niagara Falls is to get an overnight tour package. We got our tour package online via gotobus.com which was very convenient since you just pay via credit card and print your confirmation booking and show up on the meeting place on your departure day. If your planning to get other cities to tour in the east coast – there are several package tours being offered as well in http://www.gotobus.com


We got a buy 2 take 1 deal for about 180 USD as long as the third person will be sharing the hotel room.Inclusive in the payment are the bus service and overnight hotel stay in Niagara,NewYork.


Good Morning Chinatown
The tour starts early in the morning at around 8am and the pickup point is in Manhattan’s Chinatown. The tour agents are already in front of the building, we showed our confirmation email and was led to our bus.
If you are thinking of having blonde and blue eyed tour guides – well sorry to disappoint you we are in Chinatown which means the travel agents and tour guides are chinese.


The bus is a standard aircon tourist bus with an in-bus toilet but “heavy usage” is not allowed.No need to worry since there are several rest stops during the trip.


Roadtripping
On the way to Niagara Falls there were several rest stops and lunch and dinner stops, it will be better to bring some light snacks or chips and bottled water that can be consumed in between the food stops.
There is a stopover in Alexandra Bay for the Thousand Islands Tour (optional tour).The Thousand Islands tour is via an open deck tour boat that will take you on a cruise to view the island summer houses of the rich and famous of America.We opted not to join this tour so we just walked around and explored Alexandra Bay from it’s quaint shophouses to the tourist souvenir shops that line the streets.


We reached at about 10 pm at Niagara. First things first – right after we arrived we checked in into the hotel. We were given a few minutes to freshen before having our first look of the majestic falls in its night illumination. During evening the Canada side lights up the falls with multi-colored lights.We just spend about an hour admiring the illlumination and picture taking before heading back to the hotel to rest after a whole day of a very tiring roadtrip.


It was an early call the next morning since there is a tour schedule to be followed. In the morning we had another tour back to the falls to see it in all its glory on a bright and clear day. Then we were off to a close encounter with the falls as we take Maid of the Mist .Maid of the Mist is an open deck boat that will cruise along the river and takes you an up close encounter with the majesty of the Niagara Falls.Prepare to get wet though they provide a somewhat plastic ponchos but it is not enough to really protect you from the waters. Make sure to handle your cameras and other electronics gadget well.


We are back on the road at about 11am as we travel back to Manhattan. On the way back there is a stop over in the Corning Museum which is also an optional tour. If you are not going to take the museum tour there is cafeteria where you can grab some bite to or you can check out the glasswares for sale in their shop. The name ‘Corning’ might sound familiar since they are the makers of the famous ‘Corningware’.


We reached New York at 8pm and it was back to the hotel for a good night sleep.

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