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Sunday, 21 September 2014

An ALL DAY Visit to Clifton Hill – NIAGARA FALLS (40+ Photos)



Next up on my continuing exploration of the Niagara Region is Clifton Hill – “The Fun At the Falls” street.  It’s the most exciting stretch of street and one of the most famous in the Niagara Region, (and possibly the world), which I rarely get a chance to visit but when I do, I always get all giddy and excited like a child heading to an amusement park for the first time. It’s always so busy and bustling with tourists and attractions ANY time of the year and once there, I always feel like I’ve just entered another dimension.





Everything is just so darn colourful and larger-than-life…
















… and the buildings are all so uniquely designed with their related theme attractions, some with interesting, attention-grabbing, animatronic displays like this guy scaling the wall of Ripley’s Believe it or Not! Museum






But he was not! Check him out in action in this short video…



There are so many themed attractions, (among other things), that you just don’t know where to start first and this has always been a problem for me the few times I’ve been here. Once we arrived at Clifton Hill on this particular day, I was like, “Let’s go for a ride on Niagara’s SkyWheel





…no. Wait a minute! What’s that down yonder? …




Ah! It’s the House of Frankenstein! Oh! And there’s Ripley’s Moving Theater. I want to go on that one… I mean in that one! It’s 4-D, not 3-D… let’s all go in that one!…




… Oh look! It’s the Criminals Hall of Fame Wax Museum. Maybe we should check that one out first, no?



**Update: The museum, created in 1977 was eventually closed in late 2014 :( 




Hold on a sec! Look at that! Oh. My. God. Check out those HUGE dinosaurs.” “Dinosaurs are usually huge mom,” my son retorted. “I don’t care! Check them out! Oh my God! Ah! It’s the Dinosaur Adventure Golf place. Let’s head back over that way and check it out more!…














By the time I was done deciding what I wanted to do first, I practically gave everyone including myself a headache and we ended up having something to eat before venturing out again. There were not only attractions everywhere, but there were people, food and lodging as far as the eyes could see…







There was live music playing outside some eateries…



And everyone was just having a good time…





Then before you knew it…
..it was night time and it felt like once again, I’ve stepped into yet another dimension…














By this time, there was quadruple the amount of people. There were so many people we were literally getting pushed along and sometimes, it was impossible for me to stop and get a good shot, but I tried…




Soon it was time to eat again.

Overall, it was a great experience and we’d go back again in a heart beat but next time we’ll be staying over night as there was just too many things to see and do in just one day!



Clifton Hill Niagara Falls
4946 Clifton Hill
Niagara Falls, L2E 6S8
(905) 358-3601

Clifton Hill is one of the major tourist promenades in Niagara Falls, Ontario. The street, close to Niagara Falls and the Niagara River, leads from River Road on the Niagara Parkway to intersect with Victoria Avenue. The street contains a number of gift shops, wax museums, haunted houses, video arcades, restaurants, hotels and themed attractions. For visitors, particularly families and teenagers, it is a major amusement area and centre for night life.

Over the years, the various properties on the hill have been bought, sold and renamed frequently. The street is divided between two primary property owners: the Harry Oakes Company (HOCO) and the Niagara Clifton Group.

Prominent attractions on the street include the Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum and 4D Moving Theater, the Guinness World Records Museum, the Niagara SkyWheel Ferris wheel, and the nearby Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks (which also operates under Ripley’s).


Did You Know…

  • There are five haunted houses on and around Clifton Hill: The House of Frankenstein (which is located next to the Ripley’s 4D Moving Theater), Dracula’s Haunted Castle (located next to Brick City), and The Haunted House (near the bottom of Clifton Hill) are on Clifton Hill, while Screamers House of Horrors and Nightmares Fear Factory are along Victoria Avenue.
  • The Dinosaur Adventure Golf contains 50 astonishingly realistic and life-sized dinosaurs — many which loom over 30 feet high.
  • The Boston Pizza located at Clifton Hill is the biggest of all the Boston Pizza locations in Canada. There are many other restaurants located on or nearby Clifton Hill notably, Kelsey’s, Ruby Tuesday, Dairy Queen, Wendy’s, Burger King, Tim Hortons, Montana’s Cookhouse,  Rainforest Cafe, Mama Mia’s, Hard Rock Cafe Niagara, Planet Hollywood, a Pizza Pizza take-out joint, a Subway, and the privately owned “Clifton Hill Family Restaurant“.
  • The Great Canadian Midway (shown earlier), is the largest of three prominent video arcades on Clifton Hill which has hundreds of video games where players can redeem earned tickets for prizes at the ticket counter.
  • The land where Clifton Hill now occupies was acquired by the Phillip Bender family in 1782 as part of a United Empire Loyalist land grant. In 1832 the property was purchased byBritish Army officer Captain Ogden Creighton, a half-pay officer who had served in the 70th and 81st Regiments and had served in the Far East. Creighton laid out streets and building lots on the land, naming the future settlement Clifton, presumably after Clifton on the gorge of the River Avon in Bristol, England. The officer built his residence, Clifton Cottage, on the edge of a high bank facing the American Falls (where the present-day Quality Inn is located).
  • The street now called Clifton Hill was then Ferry Road, named due to its proximity to the rowboat transportation system that ferried people across the Niagara River between Canada and the USA prior to the completion of the Niagara Falls Suspension Bridge. Ferry Road provided access to the Niagara Gorge where the boats docked. In 1833 the first Clifton Hotel was built at the base of the street by Harmanus Crysler. Following in 1842, financier Samuel Zimmerman created a 52-acre (210,000 m2) estate property along the south side of the road. Dubbed Clifton Place, Zimmerman planned to create many gardens, large fountains and a mansion that was to be his residence. The estate occupied the entire south side of what is now Clifton Hill, bounded by the Niagara River, Murray Hill and Ferry Road. Among the buildings constructed were four large gatehouses (the last was completed in 1856) and a $18,000 stable constructed of imported English yellow brick. In addition a fountain was created in the centre of the property.Zimmerman was killed on March 12, 1857 in the Desjardins Canal railway accident. He only lived to see the foundation for his $175,000 “Clifton Place” mansion built. Only the fountain remains to this day, located at the northern end of Queen Victoria Park.

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