Jump to content
  TPR Home | Parks | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram 

Recommended Posts

We are going to be in Niagara Falls the last week of May (our first time), and are staying on the Ontario Side.

 

we have ~2 1/2 days on this trip, and although it's our 1st time, I can't imagine we'll need the full 2 days (tho the Casinos and Aquarium close by mean that we can easily stay near our Hotel and fill the days without ever leaving the area).

 

however, we DO have a car, since we're renting one in Buffalo to cross the border. So since Marineland will opening for the season just before we arrive. . is it worth the short trip to go visit?

 

seen really mixed reviews on this park, even here on TPR. . so wondering if it's worth taking even 1/2 day away from the "falls" activities to go check out this place.

 

opinions?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 54
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

We have been a couple of times as a family, my two cents (for what they are worth) is that it is OK but nothing spectacular. It certainly isn't a waste of a day although the Niagara falls area has SO much to do that I wouldn't' put it high on my list ( living in Toronto now I am spoiled with the closeness of the area).

 

I personally wouldn't do the aquarium when you are visiting (there are LOTS of better ones in the US of A, and a Ripleys in Toronto).

The Cave of the Winds, Maid of the Mist (US side), Hornblower (Canadian side), Journey behind the falls, white water walk (WELL Worth it!) and the whirlpool aero car would be the events that I would consider "must do" as a tourist.

They have opened one of those tree top rope course type thingys next to the whirlpool, and the view is pretty spectacular if you are able to get to the top! I can also recommend the "Whirlpool jetboat tours" which go from the Canadian side, especially as a coaster fan, they do some fun spins and turns (and dump a s*** load of water on you).

 

Hope you have a great time, we go to Niagara all the time (we are heading this weekend) as it is the number one place that my stream of British friends want to visit when over from Blighty. If we are down in May then I will drop you a PM and see if you are around (especially as I missed you in San Antonio at Fiesta Texas).

 

 

sheer brilliance of Dragon Mountain
. Again I wonder what British blood you have in your system. Edited by Married a Canadian
Link to post
Share on other sites

Regarding Dragon Mountain . . . .

 

For those who have ridden it . . . what's your take? Rough as any other Arrow looper?

 

I've watched POV's of it . . . . that Bowtie is impressive

Link to post
Share on other sites

No. It's perfectly smooth. I expected a horror show but I f*cking loved it. It's probably my favorite Arrow looper aside from Tennessee Tornado due to how weird it is and how well it rides. The station is great too. It's great, but really, really confusing.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It's like this: Are you comfortable with going to a zoo/aquatic facility that SeaWorld had to sue in order to get animals back from citing mistreatment? If "yes," go. If "no," don't.

Link to post
Share on other sites
We have been a couple of times as a family, my two cents (for what they are worth) is that it is OK but nothing spectacular. It certainly isn't a waste of a day although the Niagara falls area has SO much to do that I wouldn't' put it high on my list ( living in Toronto now I am spoiled with the closeness of the area).

 

I personally wouldn't do the aquarium when you are visiting (there are LOTS of better ones in the US of A, and a Ripleys in Toronto).

The Cave of the Winds, Maid of the Mist (US side), Hornblower (Canadian side), Journey behind the falls, white water walk (WELL Worth it!) and the whirlpool aero car would be the events that I would consider "must do" as a tourist.

They have opened one of those tree top rope course type thingys next to the whirlpool, and the view is pretty spectacular if you are able to get to the top! I can also recommend the "Whirlpool jetboat tours" which go from the Canadian side, especially as a coaster fan, they do some fun spins and turns (and dump a s*** load of water on you).

 

Hope you have a great time, we go to Niagara all the time (we are heading this weekend) as it is the number one place that my stream of British friends want to visit when over from Blighty. If we are down in May then I will drop you a PM and see if you are around (especially as I missed you in San Antonio at Fiesta Texas).

 

 

 

thanks for the input. Noted on the Aquarium. . we're big aquarium goers, but if there are better ones elsewhere, than we've seen better, and can skip. (our faves: Vancouver, Curacao, Maui, Atlanta).

 

my Spouse is terrified of heights, so the ropes course (as cool as it sounds) is not on the table, as I wouldn't do it without him.

but everything else you list is our our shortlist. Still, I think they can all be hit in 1 day, right?

 

we'll be there from 5/28 (late afternoon)-5/31 (morning). . so we have two FULL days to fill (Tues, 5/29 & Wed, 5/30). . so that's why was considering Marineland for Wed afternoon. Absolutely let me know if you'll be around in that timeframe, and maybe we can meet up.

Link to post
Share on other sites
It's like this: Are you comfortable with going to a zoo/aquatic facility that SeaWorld had to sue in order to get animals back from citing mistreatment? If "yes," go. If "no," don't.

 

hmm. . . that would factor in, as I would have to debate if I'm comfortable supporting a place that would mistreat it's animals. (especially as expensive as the tickets seem to be).

 

it also appears to be a LOT of walking. . very spread out from what I've seen (watched some "tour" videos on Youtube).. so it's all factoring in.

 

and of course, our main reason to go is for the falls.. . but as just noted, I'm thinking we'll have an afternoon free on Wed, so considering all options at the moment.

Link to post
Share on other sites
No. It's perfectly smooth. I expected a horror show but I f*cking loved it. It's probably my favorite Arrow looper aside from Tennessee Tornado due to how weird it is and how well it rides. The station is great too. It's great, but really, really confusing.

 

and this would be the main draw.. I could get Nick to ride it, by telling him it's similar to Loch Ness Monster (which he really liked). . so even tho not quite like that, I could sell the comparison to get him to ride.

 

likely the only thing he'd go on in the park, but he liked the animals at Seaworld, so would like the exhibits too here.. if the park isn't too bad. (what Dirkfunk posted is giving me pause too now).

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello,

 

I recently visited Niagara Falls and stopped by Marineland. It's definitely a half day experience. The S&S Sky Screamer offers great views of the falls if you get the right side. Be aware everything at this park is very spread out. Dragon Mountain is actually quite smooth for an Arrow coaster and very unique. There is a very rare Huss Magic at the park as well. I would say check the place out for sure.

 

Also, if you like haunted Houses, and "regular" ones don't cut it anymore... I would check out Nightmares Fear Factory. I have never been so terrified in my life in a maze. It is completely pitch black aside from the stairs, multiple floors, and you will leave exhausted with fear. You basically follow a trail of red LED lights and need to use your hands to feel your way through. Be warned, the red lights are designed to mess with you, you will follow one into a dead end, only to turn around and see a new light has turned on to bring you somewhere else. Highly recommended if you like those extra scary mazes.

Link to post
Share on other sites
It's definitely a half day experience.

 

You mean the walk up to the S&S tower?

 

Due to their short operating hours I think a full day is fine if you're into the animal stuff. We spent a full day there easily (mostly walking for miles to get to the next attraction).

Link to post
Share on other sites

It's not just their marine animals that get neglected. A bunch of us nicknamed their deer area after a concentration camp, it was very sad.

 

The coaster is fine, weird and interesting, but don't give them any more money than you have to.

Link to post
Share on other sites

There's a lot of stories about Marineland and it's owner, and many are very lurid (the Deer have a classic one associated with them). A lot of people will, at first glance, assume most are trumped up or ridiculous. Some he's been cleared of in court, though that doesn't necessarily mean he didn't "do" anything. However, the one thing that can absolutely be confirmed and is irrefutable is that SeaWorld sued him to get back Ikaika, an orca who now resides at Sea World San Diego, citing poor treatment for medical conditions, aggression, small pools, bad training methods, etc etc etc. And Marineland lost that case.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd say skip it, personally. It's expensive, the animals don't ever appear to be happy, and there isn't a whole bunch to do. Granted I have not been there in years but I doubt anything has changed. You have Darien Lake, Wonderland, and even Fantasy Island if you want rides. The animals aren't a huge draw IMO. Go to the Buffalo Zoo instead. One (subpar/decent) coaster does not make an amusement park.

 

If you do go, bring good shoes. lol.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I visited Marineland once in 2010 and felt absolutely no urge to return when I visited Niagara Falls in 2016. I honestly didn't even look if they were open. It's overpriced for the amount of attractions that they offer. Sky Screamer and Dragon Mountain are both good rides, but there's really nothing else worth riding. Despite the lack of rides, the park is beyond massive. You will see employees driving past you on golf karts. To get to the S&S tower, you have to climb a 100-150 foot hill and it's the only thing up there. And all of this is before even considering how the animals are treated...

 

Have you considered visiting Canada's Wonderland instead if you have a car? It's about 1-1.5 hours from Niagara Falls and is a far superior park. You have the two fantastic B&Ms, a good Arrow suspended, and some of the weirdest flat rides you'll find anywhere. It also appears to cost less than Marineland.

 

As for activities around the falls, I strongly recommend the Skylon Tower. It gives fantastic views of the falls. I did the Journey Behind the Falls walkthrough last time. While the walkways through the caves were boring (there was nothing to look at but the back of water in a musty hallway), the views at the base of the falls were worth it alone. I believe the Hornblower or Maid of the Mist tours would offer you similar views.

Link to post
Share on other sites
As for activities around the falls, I strongly recommend the Skylon Tower. It gives fantastic views of the falls.

 

Agreed, but I also strongly recommend NOT eating up there, especially not in the buffet place. I know it's about the experience and not the food, but holy sh*t their food sucks.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with others that Marineland is a very strange park.

 

The admission price is crazy high for what they offer, but Dragon Mountain is one of the best Arrow's left out there. It was about 90 degrees when Michael and I went there several years ago and while I wanted to ride Sky Screamer, there was no way in hell that we were hiking Pike's Peak to get up there in that heat!

 

I will let you know if we are going to be around at that time, Bert as we are only 1.5 hours from NF. We have plans for going away Memorial weekend and I would have to work on Tuesday/Wednesday, so it could prove difficult. But if plans fall out for that weekend, we could easily meet you up there for an afternoon.

 

As far as things to to do in the area? As others have mentioned, there is a ton of stuff to do on the Canadian side that is so cheesy that it will just make you laugh. You can walk Clifton Hill (where most of the cheesiness resides) and just take it all in and decide which silly attractions that you might want to do. They do offer a combo where you can get the ferris wheel and choose from like four other attractions for about $30 Canadian, if I recall. They have various kiosks for the combo tickets on Clifton Hill, but we got ours right at the giant ferris wheel.

 

The must do's are Maid Of The Mist (either side), Cave Of The Winds (American side), Whirlpool gorge just for the view (your hubby will likely sh%t when he sees the Spanish cable car. lol), & Journey Behind The Falls.

 

Cave Of The Winds is in Goat Island park, which is the crown jewel of the American side - this meaning, it's a nice state park and don't venture into downtown Niagara Falls, NY if you fear for your life. lol There is Casino Niagara nearby if you wish to try your luck on the American side. It's the biggest building with big rainbow lights on it, so you can't miss it.

 

Part of Goat Island park also has 3 Sister's Island, which has less tourists and will take you on a short, picturesque walking path right down to the rapids leading to the Horseshoe Falls.

 

The Whirlpool Jet Boat is probably one of my favorite attractions and as Married A Canadian said, it will get you soaked, but there are rain coats and burlap jackets that you can wear so you don't get hypothermia.

 

If you do venture up to where they do the speed boats, Niagara On The Lake is a nice little upscale village to park at and walk around out if you're into quaint specialty stores, wine tasting and cafes.

 

As others have mentioned, Fantasy Island is only about 15 minutes from the Falls on Grand Island and is a fun little park to spend a few hours at a reasonable price. I would actually recommend this park over Marineland to be honest with you.

 

If you are going to spend any time in the Buffalo area, let me know as I can recommend restaurants and a few things to do if you're interested. Not overly familiar with dining in the Falls as we normally don't dine there ($$$) and just drive back to Buffalo where it is cheaper for the most part.

 

While I didn't try the buffet in Skylon, Michael and I did go the fancy/expensive revolving restaurant the weekend that we first met. It's pricey, but you get to go up for free if you eat there. And I recall the food being quite good there, so if you're scared of the buffet, but want a nice romantic meal, you might want to check that place out.

Link to post
Share on other sites
As for activities around the falls, I strongly recommend the Skylon Tower. It gives fantastic views of the falls.

 

Agreed, but I also strongly recommend NOT eating up there, especially not in the buffet place. I know it's about the experience and not the food, but holy sh*t their food sucks.

 

Reminder. . I'm with someone who does NOT like heights. So most likely the Skylon Tower isn't gonna be an option (I couldn't even get him to go up the Stratosphere Tower with me in Vegas).

 

I had mentioned Marineland and Dragon Mountain to him on our lunch call, and that I had asked for advice on the park, and he came home all excited about the coaster (told you he LOVED LNM at BGW). It's still two months away, so I'm gonna do my best to steer him towards Canada's Wonderland (or maybe Fantasy Island).. but we might simply end up here because. . well. . he won't ride much, so if it's a thing he wants to ride in a place he's willing to go, I would likely lean towards going where he wants.

 

but he wasn't thrilled when I told him about the treatment of the Animals that has been brought up.

 

so we shall see!

 

appreciate all the input everyone.

Edited by bert425
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have to agree about going to Fantasy Land instead. It's close to the falls and has some fun rides. And it is very affordable compared to Marineland. And much more manageable in terms or park size. Not to mention the Silver Comet is a great wooden coaster.

 

The aquarium in Niagara Falls is small but still nice and they just opened their new renovated penguin exhibit. Definitely worth a visit if you at the Falls since it's literally right there, and I believe the American side attractions can be grouped together using a special attractions pass.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Obviously I am slightly biased as Canada's Wonderland is my home park, and it would be great if you were able to visit.

 

I will just say that driving to Toronto (like many US cities) is very much a "right time of day" thing as traffic is pretty brutal in and out of the city, and a visit to CW would have to take this into account (ie staying in Toronto for a night would be a good plan). Rush hour traffic is among the worst in North America (according to the news...which is always believable eh!)

The drive from Niagara to Toronto in "good traffic" is about an hour and 20 mins. This would also have to take into account your bridge border crossing times (I would presume you would cross either in Ft Erie or Niagara?). It is not an unreasonable trip to make, but does make for a logistical challenge for you, especially with so much to do and see in the Niagara area.

 

Second all the comments about the Skylon tower. I wouldn't worry about not doing it, and the restaurant at the top is SO overpriced anyway. If you want a nice meal with a view of the falls, then I would recommend the "Keg" steakhouse restaurant in the Embassy Suites by Hilton hotel. It is located right over the falls. A little bit pricier than a normal chain, but you are paying for the view and a not half bad "prime rib".

If you want to not have to eat for the entire holiday after one meal, then we as a family love going to "CopaCabana" on the Canadian side, which is one of those Brazillian steakhouse restaurants where they bring meat on a skewer and carve it up at your table. We digest for DAYS after that place!

 

Second all the "cheesy" comments about Clifton hill. They are just finishing up building a sort of SuperMario Kart go kart track at the top for spring (at least that is how they sort of advertise it) just to add to the cultural flair of the place!

Once you get out of Niagara itself and onwards down the gorge, it does become very picturesque. If you are into your wines, then there are some top notch vineyards in the area, which have been accepted by even the french themselves (seriously they love saying that!).

 

I will drop you a line and see if we can meet up. If you decide to come up to Toronto that will be easy to meet, and I can get my Leviathan fix for spring. I agree with people that the Arrow suspended (Vortex) is also top notch ride.

 

Good luck with your planning

Link to post
Share on other sites
...Second all the comments about the Skylon tower. I wouldn't worry about not doing it, and the restaurant at the top is SO overpriced anyway. If you want a nice meal with a view of the falls, then I would recommend the "Keg" steakhouse restaurant in the Embassy Suites by Hilton hotel. It is located right over the falls. A little bit pricier than a normal chain, but you are paying for the view and a not half bad "prime rib"...

 

I would second this advice, even though I never been to this one in the franchise.

 

But our local spots here in Vancouver, are always a nice dining experience, and we go back

every other month for a good carnivore hit! The Rib Eye is a BIG FAVE of mine.

TheKeg08.JPG.acaf88ab187280ac2c105d5d5c68a6e8.JPG

The last Rib Eye I had at The Keg, on Granville Island in Vancouver.

Link to post
Share on other sites

was at the fallsview Keg on Friday - the view is surreal, the steak while a bit overpriced due to the tourist area was pretty good. Most hotels in the area give a coupon for some dollars off meals.

 

Now back to Marineland - one fact to consider - probably the greatest Themepark theme song since Wallyworld.

 

 

There is a pavlovian reaction - whenever I hear that song I need to ride Dragon Mountain.

Link to post
Share on other sites
It's not just their marine animals that get neglected. A bunch of us nicknamed their deer area after a concentration camp, it was very sad.

 

The coaster is fine, weird and interesting, but don't give them any more money than you have to.

 

 

What do you call the area where they bury animals illegally?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.


×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use https://themeparkreview.com/forum/topic/116-terms-of-service-please-read/