Clifton Hill, Niagara Falls
This area is in Niagara because it is too tacky for Las Vegas :)
It is the worst 'Tousist' area on earth.
All the beauty of nature, and slap in the middle of it we have wax museums, a 'believe it or not ' museum, junk souvenir shops etc. all with their gaudy neon signs.
I didn't stay long enough to take a photo.
Unique Suggestions: Have a burger and go.
Fun Alternatives: Look at what Niagara is famous for - the water.
Clifton Hill is easily one of the most tacky and tasteless places I've ever been in my life. I felt like I was in a combination of Las Vegas and Disney Land. Do yourself a favor and stay as far away from this area of town as possible.
Clifton Hill is not an awful tourist trap. It's a fun place to go and see things you wouldn't normally see. You can get away from all the tour groups pushing and shoving to see the falls and get away from screaming children who are terrified of the falls. It's a place for people who do not take themselves too seriously to enjoy a tacky good time. As an child and adult, Clifton Hill has always made Niagara Falls more than just water.
Granted, Clifton Hill can be an entertaining place, but most of the attractions seem to be gaudy and expensive. There are a ton of overly-priced haunted houses and 3D rides.
Unique Suggestions: Younger adults may enjoy some of the night clubs, and I personally think some of the restaurants are good such as Rainforest Cafe and Kelseys.
Located a block from Casino Niagara and walking distance to the Falls, the strip, along with a stretch of Victoria Avenue, features such attractions as the Alien Encounter, Guinness World Of Records Museum, Adventure Dome, Louis Tussaud's Waxworks, and Ripley's Believe It Or Not! Museum.
Prices of t-shirts here cost 10 CAD (made in china!) , shot glass at 12 CAD (also mad in china), postcards at 2 CAD each, paperwieghts at 20 CAD, etc.
Unique Suggestions: rices of souvenirs here are fixed and they don't allow haggling hence it is better for you to buy the souvenirs in St. Catherines or in Niagara Falls City Proper or in the other side streets beside clifton hill since they tend to be cheaper.
Fun Alternatives: Buy at St Catherine's or Niagara City Proper!
Let's face it.... Clifton Hill is your typical tourist trap. The prices are high, and the attractions are tacky. But for some reason we keep going back. What gives? The lights, sounds, excitement (especially the haunted houses and wax museums) and the energy are what make this street fun and worth the visit. You CAN enjoy Clifton Hill without spending alot of money.
Unique Suggestions: Pick your destinations ahead of time - research the prices on the internet. Don't visit the same ones year after year (that was my mistake). Skip the restaurants and souvenir shops. Go with a friend or two and take lots of goofy photos, especially in front of the wacky museums. Visit the Karoke Bar at the Beer Gardens for a good laugh.
Fun Alternatives: Eat at restaurants on Lundy's Lane. The same fast food joints like Burger King and Subway are twice the price on Clifton Hill. Shop at souvenir stores closer to the top of Clifton Hill and on Victoria Ave. Many of these shops have the same souvenirs ie. Maid Of The Mist as the actual attractions do, and for cheaper prices.
If you go with your significant other, enjoy the moment - Niagara Falls is a hot spot for romantic vacations! Check out some of the smaller bar and grills, sit back and have a drink while you people watch.
Take time to relax and unwind along the Niagara waters and parks. I found that after experiencing all of the hype on Clifton Hill, it was the best thing to journey on down to the waters and see what Niagara Falls is REALLY all about!
There's a lot of tackiness on the Canadian side, especially on Clifton Hill. You walk down the main street and your kids will be screaming at you because of the blinking lights, talking statues and general pandemonium.
Luckily, this garbage has been kept away from the main attraction, and it's very possible to just see and enjoy the falls and not have to deal with any of it, except when parking and walking to the car (so park close!).
Unique Suggestions: There was a Marvel Comics thing that didn't look too bad and might be good for kids interested in comics. Don't know the admission costs though.
Fun Alternatives: Just seeing the falls is great. Your kids may get bored, but I could have just stared at Horseshoe Falls for hours.
Somehow when my family visited Niagara Falls we ended up wandering onto this busy street from hell on our walk back to the hotel. I was not expecting to see something like this at all, and for me it was out of place and ruined the atmosphere of the trip. Very tacky, carnival like... which is not bad in itself but not at all what I personally came to Niagara to see.
Since we were there and didn't know any better or have anything else planned for the day we decided to pick one thing to do. The street as a whole was extremely busy when I went. Places like the Ripley's museum had a line up so long there was no point in even looking in that direction.
I ended up picking the Guinness Book of Records Museum for us, out of personal interest and also because it wasn't very busy compared to some other places. The Guinness museum could have been a lot worse than it was, so I think I made a good choice compared to some of the other 'attractions' I peeked into there, however I would still not recommend spending money on anything on this street.
Unless of course cheap thrills and tolerating screaming, overstimulated children is your thing.
Half way through the 'museum' there was a hole in the wall where you could see into the next building. It was some kind of badly designed maze for children... I don't even think if I were a kid I would have enjoyed it. It looked pretty worn out and lame.
If I had children I would not even bring them here for fear of rotting their brains with the fumes of cheap plastic coming out of the gift shops and midway buildings. The gift shops have nothing to do with the 'museums'. It's basically stuff you could get from a dollar store. AVOID!
Unique Suggestions: Bring earplugs, and your own lunch.
You can't miss Clifton Hill at night, neon signs scream out at you, the crowds shuffle at a frustratingly slow pace from the fireworks back up to Clifton Hill. Every shlocky tourist trap you can think of can be found here, fast food restaurants, Louis Tussaud's Wax Museum, Ripley's Believe it or Not, haunted houses, overpriced carnival rides, fudge shops, candy stores, ugh! I couldn't get out of this area fast enough, needless to say, my wallet wasn't opened once along this whole stretch
Unique Suggestions: If you feel you must join the throngs trudging up this street, there are a multitude of coupon booklets littering every hotel and attraction with discounts mostly on the places you will find here. At least you can save a couple of bucks while spending all your money.
Fun Alternatives: Niagara Falls, at least for me, should be about an amazing natural wonder. Spend your time and money enjoying what Mother Nature has provided
If you hop on the Skywheel expecting great views and great pictures, think again.
We tried it one night, and our view of the falls was not only inferior to what we could see by walking along the river, it was generally poor altogether. The only good views we had were of the Clifton Hill lights and dinosaur mini-golf -- which is OK if your vacation is focused on the attractions on Clifton Hill, but not so much if you want to see the falls from up high. Not only that, but the windows were very dirty (perhaps because we were there near the end of the day?), which made for bad photos, even when shooting the nearby attractions.
Unless you are a Ferris wheel enthusiast, I would recommend skipping the Skywheel altogether.
Fun Alternatives: We didn't go up the Skylon Tower, but I can't imagine the views there could be any worse than at the Skywheel.
Okay, this where you can do just about anything fun you can think of. You can play arcade games, minuature golf, go to different wax museums, and ride 3D rides.
Unique Suggestions: If you happen to stumble up here, there are a few things I recommend that you see. The Great Canadian Midway, where you can play all sorts of arcade games, go bowling, play pool, or even ride a few 3D rides. Try going into every shop on the hill. You'll get an array of things that you just can't do without(just kidding). And go into at least one of the many wax museums.
Clifton Hill is most certainly a place a traveller can avoid and not be disappointed. Niagara Falls is not Clifton Hill ... here you'll find high priced fast food and loud "muesums" like believe it or not places and wax museums. Go see the falls -- Niagara on the Lake -- the butterflies -- but avoid Clifton Hill.
Unique Suggestions: If you have to go here -- just park here. It's a pretty good deal to park at a hotel and walk to the falls.
That is how I describe Clifton Hill, well at least the top half of it with all the tacky tourist shops and wierd shows
I think it spoils the beauty and majesty of Niagara Falls.
Fun Alternatives: Just stay down the bottom end of the hill, and see the falls, the lovely park and gardens
Full of wax museums, fast food joints and souvenir shops, this place is depressing but lively.
Unique Suggestions: Grab a coffee and find a window to people watch.
Fun Alternatives: It's not to be avoided but don't spend too much time here after you visit the Falls. Move on to another area instead...Niagara on the Lake is supposed to be nice...
the clifton hill area is full of hotels, restaurants, shops and attractions, but many of the attractions cost quite a bit and frankly just aren't worth it. the various "museums"(and i use that term loosely) are pretty much a five minute in and out thing, but you've dropped a big chunk of change for your family to see them. if cheesy stuff is your thing or money is no object, then go for it otherwise forget it
Unique Suggestions: the best (and cheapest) way to enjoy clifton hill is to just walk up and down and see it all. buy a few souvenirs and a Hard Rock Cafe t-shirt. take in all the sights, particularly at night when the lights make it stimulating visually
Fun Alternatives: if you want to spend money on something good- ride the maid of the mist (april-october)or ride to the top of the skylon tower and take in the views. the journey behind the falls looks exciting although i've never done it