Buffalo & Niagara Falls


Buffalo, NY in early April is not the place to be. But we were there anyways and made the most of it despite the cold and extremely windy weather. Rarely did the sky open up.

On the day of arrival a winter storm was coming through with gusts of wind up to 60-70 miles per hour. Neither of us ever experienced such a turbulence on the plane - I’ve even ended up looking for a throw up bag for the first time ever (my seat didn’t have any already apparently). Ended up lucky and not needing it, but quite a few others weren’t so lucky, as we saw when debarking.

Downtown has quite a few interesting buildings including quite a few Gothic cathedrals which were a welcome surprise. The miserable gusts of wind that were brutal to even walk against, never mind the cold, were not so welcome. Reminded me of trying to step out when the hurricane is coming through (Florida living, eh?).

Anyways nearby the hotel were some cool sights, so we explored as much as the weather permitted.

City hall was quite an imposing building. Didn’t make it to the top since it was closed on the weekend.

Some kind of bank with a golden cupola. Beginning to snow.

So lit!

Weather was cooperating a bit on our second morning, so we ventured out to the Naval Park.

We both love military stuff, so it wasn’t a hard sell. Getting out of the cold inside the ships & the submarine was a nice bonus.

Hi, guys! Also the black bulk of the sub is in the back.

Nuclear missiles. They had me at nuclear!

The main ship had a crew of 1400 people - the museum is quite large and it took us a couple hours to explore all three ships.

The most dramatic prisoner mannequin ready to burst into a poetic battle!

By the time we came outside the weather spoiled and it was blizzard time!

Loved the museum. So much machinery and complexity inside. Also all the doorways on the sub are tiny.

Poked around downtown some more, before heading back to the hotel for the day.

Catching pretty reflections and ornate walls.

Extremely sinister building. Can’t remember what it was.

Next day we were planning on heading to the Niagara Falls.

This was the view out of room at 9 am. We decided to wait it out a bit…

By 10 am it was much worse.

By noon it cleared out to some extent, so we found the bus station and took the 1 hr bus ride to Niagara Falls. I was touched that the visitor center had Russian right after English.

The falls are quite loud and it was awesome following the river, knowing they’re coming up yet not visible yet. Ice everywhere added to the wow factor (especially since most folks won’t see it in the cold and made the crap weather more bearable).

I’ve been reading quite a bit about national parks and how the Niagara was built out before the entire conservation really took off - the casinos definitely spoil the views.

The roar and vibrations were epic. It’s also incredible how low the fence is and how close to the falls you can get.

Onwards to the observation tower (which is free in off season).

Even the sun came out for 5 minutes. Incredible!

Obviously we couldn’t ride the Maiden of the Mist since the river was frozen, but the bridge to Canadia was nearby and I love to use my fresh American passport at any opportunity (so much easier to travel as a US citizen than a Russian one!)

I’m used to a bunch of squirrels everywhere in Florida, but the park near the Falls had the densest squirrel populations I’ve ever seen. There were at least 20 visible at once in a small area next to the visitor center.

Beautiful manicured gardens on the Canada side.

No idea what that square building was in the pic above (right under the teal Observation tower), but it had a very cool crest on it.

Weather was spoiling and rain started up while on our walk to the Horseshoe Falls…

So we ended up at the Hershey’s Chocolate World on our way back.

Back to the USA!


Another stunning Gothic cathedral opposite the bus station near the Visitor center. Time to go back to Buffalo.

Great little trip. Happy to have a chance to visit Niagara Falls. Cold as hell for this Floridian, but that’s what gloves and pizza are for!

Leo SoubbotinetravelComment