Get close enough to feel the spray on your face with one of these memorable boat tours of the mighty Niagara Falls.
Niagara Falls is among North America’s finest natural landmarks. Straddling the border between the US and Canada, Niagara is actually a group of three waterfalls: Horseshoe, American and Bridal Veil falls. There are boat tours available from both countries, with different types of boat – from standard passenger ferries to jet boats – offering a thrilling way to get up-close and personal to the raging torrents. Here are five of the best Niagara Falls boat tours. In all options, prepare to get wet!
Niagara-on-the-Lake Boat Tour from Toronto
On the Canadian side, Niagara-on-the-Lake is considered the main destination for boat tours of the falls. Other attractions nearby include the Floral Clock and views of Whirlpool Rapids, both of which you’ll experience on this nine-hour tour from Toronto. But the main event floats. Known as Voyage to the Falls, this cruise is a 20-minute cruise to Horseshoe Falls, which is the widest of the three. As with all options on this list, boat tours on both sides of the border only operate from April to early November (depending on ice conditions). From $101 per person.
Niagara Falls American Side Tour with Maid of the Mist Boat Ride
If you can make it to New York State’s Niagara Falls City, you can take this half-day tour, which starts off with a descent into Niagara Gorge to the Cave of the Winds observation deck; the walk passes within a few feet of the falls for a chance to appreciate the raw power of all that water. Then you’ll venture close up for a second pass of the falls, this time by water on the Maid of the Mist cruise. Cave of the Winds is open from early May to late December. From $130 per person.
Niagara Falls Evening Tour from Toronto with Boat Cruise
Another popular Niagara Falls experience from Toronto involves seeing the water in a different light. Not only does the sound of the falls feel more impactful at night, but the light show illuminating the water as it plunges over the crest creates a memorable spectacle where nature and human creativity combine. This tour, which includes a cruise aboard the Hornblower into the mists of the falls, runs four times a week. Exact days vary from one week to the next. From $156 per person.
Niagara Falls USA Half-Day Small-Group Sightseeing Tour
On the American side of Niagara Falls, the Maid of the Mist boat ride is the best-known US counterpart to Canada’s Voyage to the Falls. These electric catamarans are state-of-the-art, offering a zero-emission experience as you drift safely towards a wall made of many thousands of gallons of water. This four-hour adventure includes all admission fees for the boat ride, as well as to the Cave of the Winds, and the American Observation Tower, for yet another perspective on the waterfalls. From $159 per person.
Niagara Falls Canadian and American Deluxe Day Tour
Have it both ways on this Niagara Falls tour that encompasses the best of the Canadian and US sides of the border. You will take the Maid of the Mist, a zero emission boat tour on the US side, into the plunge pool of Bridal Veil Falls, before visiting many of the best viewpoints on either side for the best photos. These tours include hotel pickup and drop-off from hotels in Niagara Falls USA or Niagara-on-the-Lake in Canada. Tours run daily throughout the year, with alternative attractions replacing the boat cruises when they aren’t operating in winter. From $180 per person.