Niagara Falls is one of the great natural spectacles that everyone should have on their bucket list. This dramatic set of waterfalls has long since been a hotspot for honeymooning holidaymakers from across the globe, but the LGBT community are catching on fast. Despite not having a designated gay area in any of the three major towns surrounding the Falls (Niagara Falls, Niagara-on-the-Lake and St Catharines), there is plenty to see and do here, and certain regions are proving very popular with the community. Brock University in St Catharines and The Shaw Festival – which runs from April through to November – are both areas that are very LGBT friendly.
The Pride movement has a strong following in and around Niagara too, with Toronto only a short ride away. The WorldPride Festival was held in Toronto this year, putting the area on the LGBT map forever, along with other major cities such as Jerusalem, London and Rome. This celebration of diversity was supported by Pride Toronto. They have been hosting their own annual rally in early June that has been growing every year since it first took to the streets of the most populated city in Canada way back in 1981. During WorldPride 2014, the Falls themselves were illuminated by the Niagara Falls Illumination Board in the now synonymous rainbow colours to celebrate the event.
Obviously, events such as this only mark a tiny proportion of the year, so what else is there to do? Naturally, there’s the Falls themselves – beautiful, powerful and awe-inspiring, these really are a spectacle, even if you’re not big on this kind of thing. As you would imagine the vast majority of the regions tourism is built around these mystical waterfalls with attractions such as the Whirlpool Jetboat Tours, the White Water Walk and the Journey Behind the Falls, all high on most visitors list.
There is, however, a lot to do away from the Falls too. The famous Butterfly Conservatory is a wonderful way to while away an afternoon. Paths lead you through a manmade rainforest where over 2,000 tropical butterflies, made up of 45 different species, live freely amongst the exotic foliage. Only 10 minutes away from the Falls, located in the Niagara Parks Botanical Garden, this is a definite stop for any nature fans among you.
If shopping is more your thing, then a trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake and a visit to Queen Street should be high on your to-do list. With a wealth of retail choice you would be wise to set apart a day to explore all of the unique establishments that the area has to offer. Once you have shopped your heart out all day you can get some night-time fun in one of the two casinos that are situated around the Falls. You don’t have to be a gambler to enjoy what they have to offer as there are always an abundance of shows and live performances happening in both the Casino Niagara and the Niagara Fallsview Casino Resort.