These tips for visiting Niagara Falls Canada in winter will help you prepare for the weather conditions and have a great trip to the Canadian side of Niagara Falls.
A Niagara Falls winter season visit will have you seeing the falls like never before. With low crowds and lots of indoor and outdoor activities, guests will find lots of things to do in Niagara Falls in the winter.
Niagara Falls is one of the most popular destinations in North America. It is easily accessible from the United States.
We have visited Niagara Falls, NY many times and have had the opportunity to experience it during all seasons. Winter is one of my favorites because Niagara Falls is magical in the winter.
If you get really lucky you will see it covered in ice making it a winter wonderland. Typically this will happen around the month of February when the temps drop. If it is not frozen it is still a great time to visit.
Obviously the falls is the main attraction, but there are family friendly attractions around the area of Niagara Falls that make a winter visit to Niagara Falls Canada an awesome family trip.
Weather in Niagara Falls Canada in the Winter
The weather in Niagara Falls Canada in Winter will be cold. It is often colder as you get closer to the falls due to winds and the mist.
Dress in layers with hats and gloves to stay warm. The average winter temperatures are lows in the teens and highs in the 30s. (Farenheit)
Where to Stay in Niagara Falls Canada in Winter
There are so many places to stay in Niagara Falls Canada. We stayed at the Sheraton Fallsview Hotel and it had the best view of Niagara Falls and the Niagara River.
Sheraton Fallsview Hotel Overview
The Sheraton Fallsview Hotel is located at the bottom of Clifton Hill about a few miles from the USA-Canada border.
As we waited to go through customs we could see our hotel. I couldn’t wait to check in and see the view of the falls.
The Sheraton Fallsview Hotel is really great for families and I love that it is interconnected to so many places to explore.
It is a great perk when the temps drop, which they do, it can get really cold near the falls. We didn’t have to leave the hotel if we didn’t want to. It was the perfect place for our trip.
A few of the family friendly amenities are:
- Massimo’s Italian Fallsview Restaurant
- Prime Steakhouse Niagara Falls
- Fallsview Buffet
- Hard Rock Cafe Niagara Falls
- Sweet Jesus (Ice Cream)
- Niagara Brewing Company
- Rainforest Cafe
- Connected to Fallsview Indoor Waterpark
- Hotel Pool
- Connected to Adventure City (Arcade)
- Iwerks 4D Movie Thearter
- Hershey’s Chocolate World Niagara Falls
- Short Walk to Niagara Falls, Hornblower Boat Ride, Zipline Over the Falls, and the Cave of the Winds.
- Easy Access to Clifton Hill. Clifton Hill is an entertainment district that offers attractions, dining, and entertainment for people visiting Niagara Falls.
- Walking distance to Queen Victoria Park.
There is also a Great Wolf Lodge in Niagara Falls Ontario. This is not walking distance to the falls but may be a good option for your family.
What to Do in Niagara Falls Canada During the Winter Months
The most important thing to do when visiting Niagara Falls Canada during the winter will be to bundle up and walk to see the falls.
You will get a great view of the American Falls on the American side as well as the Canadian Horseshoe falls.
Viewing Niagara Falls in the winter is such a unique experience and it is beautiful, even when it is freezing out!
Winter can actually be the best time to visit Niagara Falls because you will have way less crowds then during the summer months. It is a unique experience that not many people get to do.
Winter is during the colder months but it can be a great time of year to visit. Niagara Falls Canada offers amazing views of the American Side of the falls as well as the Canadian Falls: the Horseshoe Falls.
Prepare yourself for the winter weather and you will be fine. Some of the best things to do in the Niagara region are listed below to help plan your visit.
- Check the events page of the Niagara Falls Winter Festival of Lights
- Explore Clifton Hill.
- Journey Behind the Falls: Open through winter with no access to lower observation deck.
- Skylon Tower: Dining and Observation Tower
- Bird Kingdom
- Niagara Falls History Museum
- Butterfly Conservatory: A short drive from Niagara Falls.
- The Tunnel at the Niagara Parks Power Station
- Helicopter Rides
If you are staying along the Niagara Parkway across from the falls you will be able to walk to many of the attractions along Clifton Hill.
Clifton Hill is an entertainment and dining area with lots of touristy attractions. There are haunted houses, wax museums, mini-golf, Niagara SkyWheel, arcades, and more.
It can be busy here but expect fewer crowds during winter Niagara Falls visits.
Tips for Your Visit to Niagara Falls in the Winter
Dress for the weather. Niagara Falls in the winter is cold and the mist from the falls can make it seem colder.
Prepare for the weather with layers and cold weather gear like hats, gloves, and warm coats.
A lot of people ask me about taking small children to Niagara Falls and if I was nervous. I have been visiting since I was a young child so I am comfortable taking the kids.
With that being keeping your children close and explaining they need to stay on the trails and behind the fencing.
On almost every visit I see people breaking the rules and climbing over fences. It is incredibly dangerous.
It is easy to get around Niagara Falls by car. There are parking locations throughout the state park and you can walk most of the stops if you would like.
Niagara Falls Canada Winter Itinerary
I like to share our exact Niagara Falls winter itinerary to help you plan out what your trip to Niagara Falls might look like.
Niagara Falls is about a 2 hour drive from our home in Rochester. We are so lucky to live close to such an amazing place and we try to take advantage of it by visiting often.
Although we visit a few times a year this was the first time we ever stayed the night.
I was looking forward to the short drive and relaxing weekend getaway. Little did I know if would take us much longer to arrive.
Without getting into to much detail, our car broke down about 20 minutes from home and we had to take it to a mechanic and switch out cars before we finally made our way to Canada via the Rainbow Bridge.
Our plan was to enjoy the indoor water park, walk around Clifton Hill, and take a walk down to the falls.
We didn’t want to spend a lot of money on activities and really just wanted some time away.
Arriving at the Sheraton Fallsview Hotel
We arrived a bit behind schedule due to our car issues, checked-in, and got ready to go to the Indoor Waterpark. When we made reservations we booked a water-park package.
The waterpark was nice and they did their best at keeping it clean. Unfortunately, we did not stay long because about 30 minutes after we arrived the wave pool was closed because they had to clean it.
The condition of the waterpark in no way changed my opinion of the hotel. I would highly recommend the Sheraton on the Falls, but would suggest enjoying all the other awesome amenities.
That being said-If you and your family love indoor waterparks, you will enjoy Fallsview. The wave pool closing is an issue all waterparks deal with and I was impressed overall with how it was handled.
Exploring Niagara Falls, Canada
When we arrived back to our room we all showered from our waterpark experience and relaxed as we got ready for dinner.
Our hotel room was perfect for relaxing. It offered a full floor to ceiling view of the falls and a gas fire place to stay warm as you relaxed.
I could have sat there all night but, the kids were hungry and we headed out to explore.
We didn’t have to walk far and ended up doing dinner at Hard Rock Cafe. It has been a while since I’ve eaten at a Hard Rock and it was good. Everyone liked the food and the service was great.
After dinner we headed to Hershey’s Chocolate World to pick up dessert. Hershey’s Chocolate World is a large Hershey gift shop.
It is much smaller than Hershey’s Chocolate World in Pennsylvania, but it has amazing desserts to try. We picked out a few brownies for dessert later in the evening.
The best part about visiting Niagara Falls during November and December is the Festival of Lights.
The event features different light exhibits throughout the Niagara Falls area. Most are drive thru, but there are few within walking distance from the Sheraton.
Fireworks Over Niagara Falls
At this point it was getting dark and chilly so we made our way back to the hotel. One of the main reasons I wanted a falls view room was to see the evening firework show.
Most evenings on the weekends there is a 9:00 pm fireworks display over the falls. With the location of the Sheraton we could easily enjoy the show from the comfort of our room.
The fireworks didn’t disappoint. It was awesome!
One Last Stop at New York State Power Authority Before We Go Home
We woke up and had a lazy morning of coffee, cartoons, and breakfast in our room before we packed up to go home. We weren’t quite ready to end our visit and decided to stop at the New York State Power Authority.
New York State Power Authority has an awesome hidden gem of a museum called the Niagara Power Vista. With free admission this is a must visit when you are nearby.
It is located in Lewiston, New York(USA). If you are visiting Niagara Falls NY check this out: Best Things to Do in Niagara Falls NY for Families
I wasn’t sure what to expect but thought it would be a fun place to check out, even for a short visit. What I found was so impressive and I was blown away but the quality of this family friendly destination.
Inside we learned all about electricity and how Niagara Falls helps power it. There were hands on exhibits and there was a lot to do for families. They even have a simulator experience but it was closed on our visit.
I was so happy we made a point to visit and we are looking forward to returning soon.
There is so much to see and do when visiting Niagara Falls Canada in Winter. It is a great winter destination for families.
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Leah has been traveling with her family of 5 since 2012 and sharing her expertise on planning family vacations and visiting theme parks since 2016. Leah has been featured in Visit Rochester, Undercover Tourist, and Home Publications. She has worked with brands like Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando, Hersheypark, Toyota, and various Tourism boards and destinations. Leah creates family travel itineraries based on real trip experiences with her family. Her guides and tips help others plan great family vacations. Learn more about Leah and Five for the Road.