Top Things to do in Niagara Falls with your Kids (Locally Approved)
We’re ready to share all of our <locally approved> secrets. First, with our ‘All the Fun Things to do in Niagara Falls this Summer’ tips and now we’re ready to let you in on the ‘Fun Things to do in Niagara Falls with your Kids’. As you know, when our kids are happy and having fun, we’re happy too.
Tourist for a Day
Every now and then we (locals) like to play tourist with our families. Whether it’s sharing our natural wonder with family visiting from out of town or just because we really like our city and love recreating memories with our kids. It’s a lot of fun to bring ourselves back to our inner child days.
The Street of Fun, a.k.a “Clifton Hill” has evolved so much since many of us were kids in the 70’s, 80’s or even 90’s. HOCO Fun by the Falls is every child’s dream. From the SkyWheel to the Dino Adventure Golf, Zombie Attack and we cannot forget the Great Canadian Midway (70,000 square feet of F-U-N). Over 300 games – old favourites like Skee-Ball and new hits like Super 21 and Deal or No Deal. There’s also the Wild West Coaster, Ghost Blasters Dark Ride, and Strike Rock N’ Roll Ball. And the sheer excitement of our kids cashing in their tickets to see what kind of prize they’ve won (that might be the best part).
This is an incredible attraction for the whole family to enjoy. What we love about the Bird Kingdom is that you can literally spend hours exploring the multi-levels of this magical aviary. After all, it is the World’s Largest Free-Flying Indoor Aviary. First, you’ll be greeted by the oh-so-friendly, Cowboy Colin. He’ll definitely give you the lay of the land.
Ready for Layers of Fun?
LEVEL TWO. “Animal Encounters” Area. This is the place where you can explore all things reptiles (tortoises, snakes, chameleons, bearded dragons) and lots of friendly and fabulous birds. Over the years, we’ve gotten to know some of these beautiful creatures. There’s “Jackie,” the blue and gold macaw and “Arthur,” the military macaw and we can’t forget “Mango,” the green winged macaw. With the guidance of some of their well-trained staff, your kids will love that they’ll get to know the personalities of these feathered friends.
Also, on the second level is the Museum, with tons of interesting facts from Niagara Falls daredevils to world-renowned Egyptian artefacts. Fun Fact: The Niagara Falls Museum (before it was the Bird Kingdom) was home to the actual mummy of King Ramesses I for over 140 years. Unfortunately for the museum, this wasn’t discovered until the museum closed and the mummy was safely returned back to Egypt in 2003.
LEVEL THREE. When you walk up just a few steps after exploring the Animal Encounters area, you’ll see the Small Bird Aviary, where you’ll get to experience over 40 different species of birds flying free and living their best life.
Also on the third level, get ready to get nocturnal in the “Night Jungle” which is home to many night-loving creatures (bats, owls and frogs). The “Night Jungle" will lead you into the Main Aviary, featuring hundreds of beautiful birds flying free in a rainforest type environment. On this level, there is so much to experience in this 50,000 multi-level rainforest setting including the magnificent waterfall. There are approximately 400 birds representing nearly 80 species from around the world as well as an interactive Lorikeet feeding area, where you can get up-close-and personal with these lovely birds.
Within the jungle lies a rare Javanese House from the 1800s, the only one of its kind in all of North America. There's nothing like a little history lesson for the kids over the summer (right parents)?
One of the most cost effective ways to experience the Bird Kingdom is by getting an annual membership.
Children (3-15 years): $25.00+HST
Adults (16+ years): $35.00+HST
- What we love about this annual membership is that all of the local zoos are working together. With this annual membership, you’ll also get to enjoy 50% off regular priced admission at Toronto Zoo, Buffalo Zoo and Safari Niagara.
This is definitely a "must-try" attraction, plus the price point is pretty awesome too. With this attraction, you'll get to choose your own adventure (Classic, Extreme, What's to Fear Jump or the Kid's Course).
Picture fun obstacles suspended up to 5 metres (16 feet high), including a dozen cool games and Bumble ziplines. The minimum age to join in the fun is 5 years old.
The Classic Course is just that, an obstacle course that includes ladders, nets, ropes, logs, bridges and a few surprises. The minimum age to join in is 7 years old.
Extreme Course Take the classic course and add more challenging everything. The minimum age to participate is 12 years old and they must be accompanied by a chaperone.
We promise, this is an attraction that will get two thumbs up from the kiddos.
Safari Niagara is another family favourite. Purchasing either a membership through the Bird Kingdom or through Safari Niagara at the beginning of the season is your best bet when it comes to savings.
There is something so special about Safari Niagara. All of the animals are so well taken care of (you can just feel it when you see the trainers come with their scheduled feedings). They are so knowledgeable and so passionate about what they do.
Safari Niagara is home to more than 1000 animals (native and exotic mammals, reptiles and birds). There is 150 acres to explore and that’s why this Niagara attraction is one of our favourites because you can literally spend the whole day exploring. From the splash pad to the petting zoo, playground area and of course the exploration of all the animals, this is a day well spent with the family.
You’ve Got to Eat Here
After your stop at Safari Niagara, Nigh’s Chocolate is a must stop for you and the kids. This quaint chocolate shop is very reminiscent of Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. So much deliciousness to try and they often give a free sample of a cute animal to those coming from Safari Niagara.
We mentioned this in our last post, but the Supper Markets are really quite fun! There are two super markets in Niagara that are perfect for the whole fam jam. The Port Dalhousie Market on Tuesday night starting at 4:30pm to dusk. On Wednesday, there’s the Wednesday Night Supper Market in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Both have food truck favs, however they are both completely different experiences. The Port Dalhousie one is right on Lake Ontario and also has an amazing carousel to experience (it's only 5 cents to ride) and the other is in a beautiful open field. Kids love these type of events (and parents too) because there’s literally something tasty for everyone.
Harvest Barn and Picnicking
Who doesn’t love a picnic? There are a ton of great spots in Niagara-on-the-Lake – either right along the parkway or right by the water to "cop-a-squat" with your picnic essentials. If you don’t have a traditional picnic basket, once of the favourite hot spots is the Harvest Barn on Niagara Stone Road. They have this amazing salad bar with fruits, veggies and salads, plus on-the-go sandwiches and cookies. What kid doesn’t love making their own lunch and choosing their favourites? After the Harvest Barn, you can drive into the quaint town of Niagara-on-the-Lake, where you’ll find the perfect place to picnic. Plus, there are a few great ice cream shops and a retro candy store, where you can grab your favourite sweets (and there might be a few shops for mom to explore too).
These are just a few hidden gems that we as locals love to do with our kiddos over the summer.
And if you need a place to rest your head, you know that the Courtyard Marriott is one of the most fun-filled Niagara Falls hotels <wink, wink>.
Stay tuned for more fun tips for the Fall.