25th August – If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It

Originally this was going to be the last post from my trip, however once I started editing the photos I realised there was going to be way too many in one post. So this is actually the penultimate Travel Diaries post.

On the Monday Namu, her friend Darian (a girl I’ve met once before) and I had booked to take a bus trip up to Niagara Falls. When I was looking into going I didn’t actually realise that it’s actually an 8 hour drive, yet still in the same state as New York City! That really shows you just how vast the country is when one state is the size of England! Anyway, I was adamant that I wanted to go and since Namu didn’t really remember seeing the Falls and Darian had never been they agreed to come with me.

The bus departed from Bowery in Chinatown at 8am. From the website I’d convinced myself this was an all American tour, but in fact it was definitely more catered to Asians, especially those who can speak Mandarin, as it turned out that this was our tour guides first language, with English as their second making it often difficult to understand what she was talking about. For the price we paid, it was a good deal for the bus and hotel, however there were additional costs along the way that were a bit of a rip off. The bus as you can see below was provided by “Covered Wagon Tours” which did describe the bus perfectly as aside from aircon.. there were little other amenities, including no toilet. 8 hours in a bus was also incredibly uncomfortable, thankfully the sights we saw were so amazing, it was worth all the negative points (well, nearly all them!)

About half way up we stopped at a national park called Watkins Glen which gave us about an hour to stretch out legs, it was incredibly beautiful and the gorge was amazing. However we had to pay $10 to hike down which seemed a bit insane to walk through a park. I’m still glad I did it though as it a) it was great to have a break from the bus and b) it was definitely something I’m glad I saw on the trip. I’ve added some of the best photos I took, because lets face it, a picture is worth a thousand words!

After another four hours on the coach when I did finally manage to sleep we arrived at Niagara Falls, which is actually a little town as well as the falls themselves. We ended up getting really lucky in regards to the hotel as it was literally across the road from the falls! Sometimes if that hotel is full you end up in Buffalo! The hotel was a Days Inn, it wasn’t the cleanest of places (especially as no one had sorted our room when we arrived at 8pm!) but the location was so good I could over look it. Plus it had a Dennys! After we’d changed and made ourselves up we headed around the corner to the Hard Rock Cafe! As you all know I’m a huge fan of the chain and I was so psyched for some good food and cocktails! 
As we were so close to the falls, once we’d finished dinner we walked over to see the illuminations. At night Niagara Falls are lit up and it really is breath taking, especially when it’s the first time you’ve ever seen them. We spent ages standing taking photos and gasping at the amount of water pouring over onto the rocks below. I can’t even put into words how amazing it was, it left me speechless then and now and I feel so lucky to have seen them. Both during the evening and day. 
At midnight we headed back to the hotel, despite having plans to stay up all night we had the lights out by one knowing we had an early start the next day, and we all wanted a Dennys breakfast! 

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