Natural forces are constantly at work creating beauty: volcanic pressure causes Old Faithful to spout, and rainstorms sweeping across Mount Rushmore keep Teddy Roosevelt’s mustache neatly trimmed. Marvel at a natural phenomenon with this Groupon.
$18 for Two Encounter Niagara Passes ($36 Value)
Visitors head to the Niagara Falls State Park Visitor Center at Prospect Point to redeem their passes before plunging into five of the park’s exciting array of scenic activities. First, guests watch and wonder as Keith Merrill’s breathtaking camera work unfolds across the new IMAX theater’s 45-foot screen, exploring the history and height of the falls in Niagara: Legends of Adventure. After eyes have gone over the edge of the falls virtually, the rest of guests’ bodies hurry to catch up on the Caves of Wind tour, which starts with a 175-foot elevator ride into the heart of Niagara Gorge. A wooden walkway—called the Hurricane Deck—brings groups within less than 20 feet of Bridal Veil Falls’ mighty flow. Once trekkers emerge from the gorge with a freshly moistened souvenir rain poncho, they hop aboard vintage-style trolleys for a tour of the park’s top six attractions, such as a barrel made from the pieces of other barrels that have gone over the falls.
Families can submerge their senses in the river’s 12,000-year history at the Niagara Gorge Discovery Center, which features friendly interactive all-ages exhibits. After exploring the mighty river’s impact on its environment, guests can meet its denizens at the Niagara Falls Aquarium, just outside the park. The display tanks contain more than 1,500 aquatic animals from ecosystems in the Great Lakes, the coral reefs of Australia, and the winter condos frequented by amphibious Floridians.
Niagara Falls State Park USA
For all its might, Niagara Falls remains one of the world's youngest geological formations, carved by the melting of glaciers a mere 12,300 years ago. Its thunder power has fascinated humanity for the extent of documented North American history, from the Native Americans who lived in the region to the French priest Louis Hennepin, the first European to behold the cascade. That power also drew early captains of industry, who sought to harness the ferocious rush of liquid with water wheels, an idea so common it threatened to ruin the area's natural beauty. In 1885, some of the earliest ecological crusaders changed history—successfully pressuring the state government into designating the Falls and its surrounding lands as one of the United State's oldest State Parks.
Today, the Park serves as a popular destination for tourists in search of natural wonder, wedding parties and honeymooners seeking an unforgettable backdrop, and coopers seeking to market their barrels as recreational vehicles.