Tumbling water falling end over end before becoming part of the lovely Niagara Falls. This is just one of the scenes my friend Rose Hammit and I saw at the American side of the Niagara Falls. Traveling to Syracuse, New York, we stopped along the way to view the magical falls.
We opted to stop at Niagara Falls State Park
Time was of the essence, we only had a day to spend at the falls. We stuck to the US side and opted to stop at the Niagara Falls State Park. I was quite excited about being so close to Lake Erie. I have been all about seeing more about the Great Lakes this summer.
There was a lot of placarding with history in the Visitor’s Center at the park. We purchased the $3.00 ticket to ride the trolley at the center because we thought that would allow us to tour the park. Then we could decide where to spend most of our precious time.
We learned that Niagara Falls State Park is the oldest state park in the U.S. Established in 1885 as the Niagara Reservation; it was the first of several such reservations that eventually became the cornerstones to the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Niagara Falls State Park stretches over 400 acres. They have close to 140 acres of those acres under water!
Bridal Veil Falls and American Falls & Horseshoe Falls
We were not on the trolley for very long before learning the three main falls are all pretty close together. After departing the trolley we took in the amazing view. We were mesmerized by the beauty of the falls. I was taken by the power of the water as is plunges at a rate of 32 feet per second!
We were not able to take part in the famous Maiden of the Mist Boat ride. The boat was not quite open when we arrived. I was truly disappointed not to be able to do this. Maybe next time! My husband Keith hasn’t been to the Niagara Falls, so I hope we will be able to go back again to see it.
Visiting with a friend yesterday, she said that on one of Timi’s Tours she visited the Falls on the Canadian side. They stayed in a hotel with windows open to a view of he falls. How cool is that!
History of Niagara Falls
The history of falls is quite interesting too. Native Americans were aware of the falls long before Western culture discovered it. A French priest, Father Louis Hennepin brought the Falls to European attention after seeing it in an expedition in 1678. Father Hennepin wrote a book about his experience. The book brought the first visitors to the area.
Water has been used for power since the dawn of time and taming the falls is no exception. The first full scale power usage in the falls was in 1895. This was when the world’s first large-scale hydroelectric generating station opened in Niagara Falls.
In 1896, electrical engineer Nikola Tesla proved he could transmit electric from Niagara Falls to Buffalo, New York, using his new alternating current (AC) induction motor. A statue of the man is part of the lure at the park. We saw many getting their picture taken by the statue.
There is a lot to do at Niagara Falls, there is an aquarium, a film in the Visitors Center, the trolley and much more. The town of Niagara was quite charming and offered several dining options as well.
We loved our stop, our only wish was for more time! Read more details about the visit in an upcoming article of Senior News & Times. If you enjoyed reading about New York, you might also like this story about Central Park!