From Toronto, there are a variety of tours offering excursions to Niagara Falls. Usually these tours are combined with a visit to the quaint town of Niagara-on-the-Lake. Some tours also offer a chance to see the falls lit up at night, either staying overnight or returning after dark. One of the most popular tours is the Niagara Falls Small-Group Tour from Toronto. This is a full-day trip with pickup and drop-off at Toronto hotels, and includes transportation, a Hornblower cruise to the base of the falls, optional lunch, free time to explore the town and falls, and a stop at Niagara-on-the-Lake on the return drive.
For visitors driving themselves, pay parking is available at the falls, near the water’s edge. The town, the falls, and many of the various attractions are all within walking distance of the car parking area.
This lovely historic town, once the capital of Upper Canada, is one of Southern Ontario’s small treasures. All of the structures are either from the 18th century, built following the destruction that occurred during the War of 1812, or designed to look as if they were built during that time period (1815-1859). As a result, the town is a National Historic Site of Canada. Although it is very small, Niagara-on-the-Lake is a full-on tourist town, with horse-drawn carriage rides, souvenir and tourist shops, and a beautiful decked-out main street, always decorated in season. The historic Prince of Wales Hotel, on the main street, is one of the town’s prime attractions.
Just 20 minutes from Niagara Falls and one hour from Toronto, Niagara-on-the-Lake is often visited in conjunction with a trip to the falls. The scenic Niagara Parkway follows the Niagara River from Niagara Falls to Niagara-on-the-Lake, on the shores of Lake Ontario, at the mouth of the river. For those looking to get a little exercise, a paved pathway runs beside the Niagara Parkway for most of the route between Niagara Falls and Niagara-on-the-Lake. Biking the parkway during the warm weather months is a popular activity. The ride is mostly downhill from the falls to the town.