15th Year Anniversary at Niagra Falls - Thursday, July 9, 2009

15th Year Anniversary at Niagra Falls - Thursday, July 9, 2009

We celebrated our 15th wedding anniversary in Niagra Falls!  We had an awesome day!!!! We woke up earlier and wasted no time sleeping.  Al went to pick up breakfast for all of us, and we had breakfast in the room looking at the lake spill over into the Falls. He picked up bagel and croissant sandwiches from Tim Horton's. It was yummy. The best coffee I've tasted in a long time.

We got ready, packed everything up and got ready for our move to Marriott. We walked to Murray St. by the large casino hotel. We walked around that area of the town. We took many photos and then walked back to the Center to do the tour behind the Falls. It was incredible as you walk through tunnels and experience the falls from the back view. There are moments when the water is raging so much that you get soaked. Jake got upset with us, because we were using his camera instead of ours and his was going to get damaged. Regardless, we took many photos and had a great time.

We left there and took the cable car up and went to check out of the Radisson. We packed the car with all the stuff and drove around for a bit because the Marriott room wasn't ready. We drove around the Clifton Hill area and then decided we wanted to drive over to the American side to see the falls from there. The view from Rainbow bridge was incredible. We decided we'd do the walk across later in the day and take pictures. It took forever to clear the border patrol. There were so many people and we got the patrol person to give us tourist information. We asked for passport stamps, but she said we could get them inside upon our return. We made a u-turn and went right back to Canada. We went to the Marriott and checked in. It is FABULOUS!!!!! We got a family suite with a view of the American Falls and Horseshoe Falls. It has two queen beds and a second area seperated by french doors with a sofa bed and a second tv with a picture window with the gorgeous Falls view. WE LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the hotel. WE don't even want to go out...we just want to stay and enjoy the luxuries and the view.

After we checked in, we had luch at the Visitor's center and took the 2-car bus to Maid of the Mist to see the falls up close. We had a great time. We got wet, but it wasn't horrible as you get more wet walking down the sidewalk earlier in the day. The kids enjoyed the boat ride, although Jake thought we should have gotten closer. After that we took the people mover again to the White Water Walk. It was nice, you walk on a boardwalk next to the ranging river. The setting is picturesque with all the trees and boulders.

We took the people mover again to Rainbow Bridge. We walked across to the US side. Our passports were stamped with the US stamp. We took a trolley around the park to the Cave of the Winds tour. WOW! WOW! WOW! This was incredible. It was the highlight of the day and possibly the trip. They have you put on their shoes and a raincoat. You can get as wet as you want beause it depends on how close you get to the falls. Basically, the tour consists of a series of steps and a boardwalk built around the two American Falls. We all got soaked! We got super close and took pictures as long as possible. There is a section where you can stand right under the Bridal Veil Falls and they call it the Hurricane deck. It truly feels like you are in the middle of a hurricane. The water came down with such force and it feels like it will take you away. I didn't do it as I did not want my daughter to do it as I really thought it would knock her down. My son, the brave one, went right under the falls and stood there getting wet.  He said it was an incredible experience and it made him feel truly part of the falls.

After that experience, we thought nothing could compare as it was amazing.  We took the trolley back to Canada and got our passports stamped. We had reservations for dinner at the Skylon Tower. We had to change them for 9 p.m. so that we could go shower and change.   We left the hotel around 9 p.m., drove in our own car to the tower and then went up together in the yellow elevator. The kids have been dying to do this and it was fun and the view was beautiful.

We arrived at the revolving dining room and sat right by the window. It was still daylight so we got to see the view both during the day and at night. I didn't think I could be impressed by the view, but again I was happily surprised. The restaurant was very pretty, the ambiance was pleasant and the view was perfect. We had a lovely dinner. I ordered a shiraz from the Niagara region, which was good. I had rack of lamb, Alex had a chicken entree with shrimp and french onion soup. The kids wanted $18.00 chicken fingers, but they were good, and they included fries, veggies and dessert. They were happy.

We had a beautiful anniversary day and evening. After dinner we went up to the observation deck. The view was even more breath-taking than from the restaurant,  We left because it was freezing up there, and none of us were dressed for it.  Al had convinced the kids to give us foot massages as part of our anniversary gift. The kids couldn't wait to go back to the hotel to do this.

They did a great job. Al fell asleep and I was comatose. My son wanted to put the beds together (as part of our tradition), Al said no, but when we fell asleep, he moved them. When we woke up the beds were together. I slept with my head toward the foot of the bed, so I could look at the falls everytime I woke up. Actually, I never woke up until morning. I was hoping to see them at sunrise, but was too tired!

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