|Niagara Falls. I took this photo Sunday, May 19, 2013 from Horseshoe Falls, looking back towards American Falls. You can see part of Horseshoe Falls as well on the right.|
I believe every great class trip needs a couple of key elements. You've got to have some experience with culture and history of the place you're visiting. You want to visit the landmarks, the iconic symbols of the city or nation, if possible. You'll want to have an experience with the natural world, something outdoors. It's great to have a little time for shopping. I like to have a day "just for fun" too, though I've had many trips where we skipped the "amusement park" day for equally fun activities that fell into one of the other categories.
This year's trip to Ontario, Canada contained all the ingredients for another satisfying class trip, and it began with one of the wonders of the natural world, Niagara Falls.
|The view from our hotel room. Sunday morning, May 19, 2013|
|Another view from our hotel room, looking towards American Falls, appropriately named as they are on the American side of the border. That's Buffalo, New York across the river.|
|Two students check out American Falls on the walk to the Maid of the Mist|
|Looking back at Horseshoe Falls on the way to the Maid of the Mist|
|American Falls up close. Neither words or pictures come close to describing the awesome power of these falls. You have to experience it.|
|After "Niagara's Fury" the movie, we took one more pass at the real thing, from the very edge of Horseshoe Falls just outside the Welcome Center.|
|At the very edge. You can see one of the Maid of the Mist boats bobbing in the water below.|
Truthfully, we could probably have spent the entire class trip right there at Niagara Falls. There were certainly enough activities in the area to take up three or four days, from jet boat rides to helicopter tours to amusement parks and Marineland. But I don't like a trip that sounds only one note. It's one of the reasons I've never had much interest in taking the quintessential class trip to Washington D.C. There are so many must-see museums and monuments to see in our nation's capital, there's little room for anything else.
So, we completed our Niagara adventures by late afternoon, had a late lunch/early supper at an Applebees near our hotel and then drove on to Toronto, and the next stop on our Canadian adventure.