Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Niagara Falls, NY: The Aquarium, The Falls, Lunch and camping.

Once we walked over the bridge, we were met with the Niagara Falls Aquarium. This is a small aquarium in comparison to several we have been in, and if your making your trip to Niagara Falls, I am quite sure you are not making it simply to visit this attraction, but it was fun.
Although it is small it has several fun exhibits to enjoy, and a host of beautifully decorated sculptures of fish, dolphins, and many sharks hang from the ceiling. There was also this beautiful mural painted on the outside.

 And these lovely tiles along the entrance.

I had the boys pose in the mock shark cages, as they waited an attack.

Besides the many art-like marine life, there were some actual living creatures as well.

These guys were sure cute.

And there were all kinds of tropical fish that seemed to illuminate in the water.

Hey look, I found Nemo!

There were some real live sharks as well. This guy would not corporate and let me get a good picture. I did get a nice one of the child viewing in the reflection.

There were a few smaller guys resting on the bottom that I missed. I was sure they were tiger sharks as they had cat like spots. Gavin assured me that Tiger sharks are much larger and more dangerous. Guess I was wrong.
At the touch table, the boys got a feel of the piranha teeth, while I inquired about the sharks teeth.  Do you see all those rows of teeth? There are at lest six rows on this guy. The staff member explained that they have infamous number being made all the time during their lifetime. Just the nature of the tooth, the shape and how they grip, cause them to fall out or break off easily. New teeth appear instantly. That would sure make dental case less costly for us. 

These guys are so cool. I tried to get them to puff up by taking several pictures. Apparently the flash was not enough to get this guy to blow himself up. They sure are neat looking. 

This Lion fish was pretty cool too. Apparently they are pretty deadly to other sea life. I always thought they were just beautiful. The caption read, there has been no human life loss to these guys, and I cant imagine what they do to KILL anything else. 

Another one of my favorites, the Sea Horse. They are so peaceful.

A few sea stars.
Upstairs the boys found a few fun activities and the both tested their ability to "hold their breath" and time it.
They both scored well into the 30's.
I had to get them in the cutouts, these things seemed to be all over the Niagara Falls attractions.

Directly in the center of the building is the seals. We didn't stay for the show, and the live demo located outside was closed due to construction, but we did enjoy them swimming about the tank.
These pictures are taken from above the tank. The water is so clean and inviting, I wanted to jump in and take a swim with them. Better not make a scene, just get some pictures.

A few facts about the seal.

We rounded out, (a nice play on words as the entire building is round) at the gift store. Gavin pleaded for a stuffed souvenir.

I don't care how cute you look. We are not getting another STUFFED animal.

We exited the Aquarium and went to wait for the next trolley. As we waited the boys played sword fights with peppers. Yep! Peppers, they were growing in a flower garden outside the Gorge Discovery center. We all thought it was odd.

I would have thought they were flowers had I not went to view them. They sure were a pretty color.

 We were all ready for some lunch and it was well after 1pm. Hard Rock Cafe won the battle for a good meal, so we made our way to the streets directly across from the Niagara Falls State Park. I got a better shot of the Niagara Falls sign this time, and I got the kids to pose at the Hard Rock Cafe sign as well.

Say cheese!
Lunch included; can you guess? Burgers and French Fries.
And a smile at the end.

Hard Rock is always cool because it has all this memorabilia on the walls. I got a shot of Jimmy Hendrix's jacket, and Janice Joplin's feather boa. This must be a 60's nostalgia, or a tragic overdose.

(i really do have to figure out how to rid my flash)

We had one more attraction on our passport, but a theater show was "boo'd" by the crowd, it was starting to get crowded, the dog were at the campsite un-caged, plus we would have to wait another 40 minutes till the next showing. Mark was dead set on going to the Casino just once, so we split up. He went to the Casino and the boys and I went to the shops, and did one last view of the American Falls and met up at the car.

History of the falls, and just one more cut out before we headed to the viewing of the America Falls.
A picture just before the falls begins to take it's amazing plunge. Canada in the background. The Fallsview hotel and Casino where Mark and I stayed some years ago. We had an amazing corner room with a view of both falls from the Jacuzzi tub.

The American Falls, with a tail end of the Horseshoe falls.

below the Maid of the Mist boat heads to the falls. We all remember that trip well.

Gavin helped me and made a video recording. He wasn't that serious about it, so it is not the best video ever, but I was really hoping more to catch the sounds and give a view of how fast the water rushes.

We stopped at the Maid of the Mist gift shop, and I got some magnets to add to my collection, the boys got Maid of the Mist punching balloons. (There was noting that was not labeled with Maid of the Mist in the store). I longed for this guy...isn't he cute, there is just something about ducks.....but if I said NO to Gavin at the Aquarium, I surly couldn't get this guy for myself.

After some time taking in the last views of the falls before we head back to the car to meet up with hubby, who walked much father to the casino then he anticipated we were off back to the AOA campground.
Here is the new Casino in downtown Niagara Falls, NY. I took them as we drove by. It really was quite a ride to get near them, I can only imagine the walk he had and in those stupid shoes they gave us at the cave of winds!  I guess we all have our MUST's and this was Marks.

It looks lovely.

Meanwhile back at the campground. The dogs survived, and there were no incidents or accidents!
The KOA was very nice. Here are some pictures of our beautiful deluxe cabin!

It was very nice and clean. It was everything away from home we could need. The park itself was nice as well. Unfortunately we missed the season so several of the activities were closed such as the pool. It also rained most of the weekend, but between the rain clouds, the kids were able to jump on the jumpy pillow and ride the banana bikes.

The boys had a great time on the banana bikes, and rode several times over the weekend. 
The dogs had a great time at the dog park.

There was a pool and water slide, paddle boats and the I bet the summer months are amazing. Located right next to the KOA is the theme Park Fantasy Island. You could see the top of the roller coaster from the KOA.

There was so much rain, that most of the campsites were in puddles and this small stream became a river. 

Despite the rain. We all had an incredibly good time.