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Driving Vacation w/ 4 kids - Maine to Niagara Falls

Driving Vacation w/ 4 kids - Maine to Niagara Falls

Old Jun 22nd, 2010, 07:24 AM
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Driving Vacation w/ 4 kids - Maine to Niagara Falls

A friend & I are driving w/ our 4 kids from Maine to Niagara Falls. We have Maine pretty much figured out and have a week to spend in Salem, Boston & Niagara Falls.

We plan on spending 2 days in Boston, driving 5 hours and stopping (We need a safe city to stop in and spend the night before we head to Niagara Falls. Suggestions?) then carrying on to Niagara Falls the next day.

Since neither of us have taken this trip before we'd really like to know what are the MUST SEEs.

The week doesn't include the time it will take driving back. Also any fun places we must take the kids would be appreciated as well.

Thanks in advance.
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Old Jun 22nd, 2010, 07:48 AM
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How old are the kids?
yk is offline  
Old Jun 22nd, 2010, 09:13 AM
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You could stop in Herkimer NY and visit the Herkimer Diamond mines (dig for your own quartz crystals). Howe Caverns (in Howes Cave NY) is also a fun place to visit, but maybe a little out of your way.

Small towns on the north end of the Finger Lakes would also be a good bet -- consider Skaneateles, Seneca Falls, or Geneva.

Syracuse the right distance and could be fine, but I don't know it well enough to make recommendations. Are you just looking for a chain hotel next to the highway, or something to really visit?

My only Niagara suggestion: The price of the Maid of the Mist trip may seem daunting, but do it anyway. It is a once-in-a-lifetime kind of experience.
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Old Jun 22nd, 2010, 09:57 AM
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Will you be going to Niagara Falls on the American side or the Canadian side?

We stayed overnight in Corning NY in May. We visited the Corning Glass Museum. Your children may like stopping there depending upon their age.

We stayed in Buffalo and drove to the falls from there at the Marriott Res Inn Cheektowaga. They have larger rooms - we had 2 bedrooms, small living room, small kitchen - there were 3 tvs. Also, you have breakfast and they serve a light dinner - included in the rate. We had pasta, salad, breadsticks, drinks for the dinner.
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Old Jun 22nd, 2010, 09:58 AM
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Niagara Falls on the American side is not a nice place to stay. I wouldn't recommend it. Perhaps someone else has a different opinion of it. But other than the falls I wouldn't want to do anything there.
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Old Jun 22nd, 2010, 10:15 AM
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I live in Niagara Falls, on the Canadian side, so I can only offer suggestions for that part of your trip. The previous poster is right, the American side is not very nice. They have not developed their tourist potential like the Canadian side. I don't know of any nice hotels there and the neighbourhoods around the border are kind of scary. Keep in mind though, that in order to cross over the border, all vehicle occupants will require a passport.

If you do come to Canada, there are many great things to see and lots for kids to do. The park system along the river is beautiful and has a walking trail. The Maid of the Mist is indeed a great attraction. Obviously, seeing the falls is a must. Marineland is a big draw for kids. There is also a nice butterfly conservatory where the butterflies land on you - kids would probably like that. Clifton Hill is a very busy, quite tacky, street, full of museums, arcade type places, food and drink. Kids seem to love it. I don't know what hotel to recommend as I don't know your budget. The big hotels tend to be expensive, but sometimes there are deals online. There are lots of little motels around as well. Niagara on the Lake (20 minutes down the river parkway) is a nice little town to walk around - has lots of little shops and is on the waterfront. There is a fort there too (another kid suggestion). Good luck!
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