Always keep a light water resistant jacket and an umbrella handy. It is definitely windy all the time and if it is not raining, it could be showers from the falls and rapids that can wet you. Keep checking for your camera as water droplets on the lens may get unnoticed and may destroy many of your pictures.
Besides, try to plan your trip on weekdays or on regular weekends. Avoid long weekends as the Park can get very crowded, especially in summers.
Like most towns and cities, there are some places you just don't need to be walking. For those of you who did what I did... fly in and didn't rent a car, you might be doing some walking.
According to the hotel staff, your 'safe zone' after dark is between the casino and the falls.
Since I like to take night photos, I ended up walking back from the Canadian side near mid-night several times. I kept my guard up, stayed in well lighted areas, and felt relatively safe. There are a fair amount of tourists still walking around until mid-night (when the falls turns off the lights). However I wouldn't suggest being out alone after mid-night.
Many people flying will arrive at the Buffalo airport.
Arriving was no problem, just your normal medium size airport. However leaving is a whole different story, allow more time than normal to check in and clear security.
I was a bit late arriving, because my cab had a flat. However since I like to leave early, I still should have had and extra 45 minutes. After checking in my bag, I discovered a very long line for security.
The lady who was checking boarding passes suggested using the alternate security station.... "Just go over the escalator, go down, look for the lady in blue, she will tell you where to go".
The lady in blue, "Go out the door, turn right, and go until you see a lady in black and white, she will tell you where to go".
The lady in black & white, "Go to the end of the building, turn right, walk across the parking lot and enter where you see the white canopy.
I finely made it to the other TSA security station, cleared only to find that I was a far away as you could get from my gate. I was at gate 1 and my plane was at gate 25!
From what I heard this is a common problem. If you gate is in the lower numbers and it isn't raining, and you don't mind the walk, the alternate location isn't bad. Other wise get there early!
Also double check your gates. I always check the board, my ticket said gate 23, the board said 23, but it ended up being gate 25. The board was never changed!
Just be careful when you plan to do the Cave of the Winds activity. Although the walkways/pathways are made of wood it was still too sliperry!. The walkways are wet and full of moss. Just hold on to the handrails and be careful.
While there are railings just about everywhere around the falls, it's still possible to fall into the Niagara River and plunge over the falls. In the past, many daredevils have tried going over the falls in a barrel; some succeeded, many died. Others have jumped over the falls to commit suicide. Only one person in the world has ever gone over the falls without a flotation device and survived. You shouldn't make the jump, but if you do... don't forget the barrel
Every time I hear about a car jacking, it's because a tourist parked on the wrong street, and then poof, gone.
However people don't hear about these things because the media covers it up. My friend got shot walking through a park and I didn't know because they never said anything about it.
3 people were shot at my job and I found out when I went to work.
I have uploaded some pictures for you to see that I'm not lying.
The streets you shouldn't go to are Peirce Avenue, and Linwood Avenue.
Highland is no longer a big problem.
There are also nice places here too, like Lasalle and Devoux (neighborhoods)
And Pine Avenue is nice too. A lot of restaurants and shops there.
A user from Buffalo posted:
Written on January 13, 2005.
AY SON WHO SAID NI FALLS IS DANGEROUS? COME TO BUFF"S EAST SIDE AND WE SHOW YOU WUSSUP. WE GOTS NO PROBLEM POPPIN THEM THANGS "
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I am going to try and do this as close to the rules as I can so that I can get this posted.
Nobody ever said anything about Buffalo. Everyone realizes Buffalo has a lot of crime. What you don't realize is, there is just as much crime in Niagara Falls, but for some odd reason nobody knows, or talks about it.
Here maybe this will help. This is a news article I found in the back of the Buffalo News.
I know for a fact that there have been plenty of shootings that nobody knows about, not even most of the residents of the Falls.
At my job there was a triple shooting (3 people) on January 1, 2006. (New Years Day)
The press was prohibited from reporting it. There have been many times that this has happened.
Here are some other news articles that talk about the criminal activity here.
Here is a website with pictures of gang tags taken within the city.
Here are websites with pictures of the slums
Unless you want to be screamed at by the guards, don't hang over the edge to get pictures like I did, LOL! I've been screamed at by guards at almost every place I've been to, trying to get the best shot for VT. I think I should keep a list with autographs of all the personal who have yelled at me! ;-) Believe it or not, people actually still try to go over the falls in barrels, personal floation devices or even sadly when trying to commit suicide. The water is far too rough for that kind of stuff, so don't be a showoff, just stay out of the water up top.
Please be sure to stay on this side of the rails and watch the little ones because they can get through very easily and it's a long drop! There are a lot of spots that are very close to the edge and due to the amount of mist it can be slippery at points.
Some people who visit Niagara Falls attempt to go over the falls in a barrel. Others attempt to go over it with nothing at all. This activity is generally frowned upon by authorities. I would strongly suggest that you refrain from jumping over the falls during your visit as you will probably be slapped with a $10,000 fine for Tresspassing on State Property.
If you are planning on Visiting Niagara Falls you need to know about the area. While the Canadian side is all ritzy the New York side is practically all housing projects. Just don't venture off Pine Avenue. Nobody knows about the situation for, who knows why. And the most dangerous street in the city is Highland Avenue. But don't be totally scared if you want a hotel then stay in one on Niagara Falls Boulevard between 57th and 101st. And there are a few hotels along the border. The American side has a brand new casino called Seneca Niagara, go ahead and visit. Don't worry about your car there is 24 hour police patrol now.
If you go on the Maid in the Mist boat ride, you will get wet, so if you have anything of value with you (re: cameras and video equipment) you will want to protect those things. The boat is slippery and you should be careful not to lose your balance, particularly on the top of the boat. The thin poncho you get as part of the ride will not keep you dry. Also, if you do ride on the Mist, be sure to get there early, as long lines were starting to form, even in the early morning hours when the boat rides were first starting. With the crowds, be sure to protect belongings from pickpockets. At peak tourist times, you will be rubbing shoulders and fenders with your newfound neighbors.
Don't go over the falls in a barrel! I think this would be a bad idea, not to mention illegal! Yeah, watch out for the water.. it's very quick-moving.
Oh, and in summer, there are LOTS of mosquitos flying around. Ick.
Niagara Falls is a very popular place. Millions of people visit Niagara Falls in a year. Needless to say, this area can get very crowded. This is one area you can not afford not to plan ahead. Summertime is the most crowded time at Niagara Falls. Some weekends in the fall can draw huge crowds as well. The best time of year to see the falls are in the winter and spring.
Not many people have survived going over the falls. Daredevils have tried it in barrels, and unfortunate people in boats who have got caught up in the current and swept over the falls. I think a few, but very few people have survived. But don't worry, because as a tourist, you will be safe, and observing, not participating in the falls!