Scenic Drive

Rainbow Bridge - Niagara with rocks

Your Fall for Niagara day tour includes a beautiful drive following the Niagara River to Lake Ontario.  There are four photo stops on the Niagara Parkway which include the Queenston Heights, hydroelectric dams, Floral Clock and Whirlpool rapids.

  • Queenston Heights
    Overlooking the Niagara River from the elevated Niagara Escarpment, the Queenston Heights is where Niagara Falls started approximately 12,000 years ago at the foot of the escarpment. The Falls are now located 11km (7 miles) upriver. They eroded back at a rate of 1 meter (3 feet) per year until 1954. At that time, with the construction of the International Control Dam above Niagara Falls, water began being diverted for hydro-electric generation. With less water going over the Falls since then, the erosion rate has slowed down to 3 cm (1 inch) per year.
    On your Chariots of Fire bus tour, you will have a photo stop overlooking the Niagara River from the top of the escarpment. Here on the Queenston Heights is a monument of British General Sir Isaac Brock, who was killed in a battle with invading Americans on October 13, 1812. Constructed in 1856, Brock’s monument is Canada’s tallest at 50 meters (164 ft.)
  • Hydro-electric Dams
    A popular place for pictures, your fall for Niagara bus tour takes you to the two hydroelectric dams. You will see the Robert Moses power station on the U.S. side, completed in 1963 and the Sir Adam Beck hydroelectric station on the Canadian side, finished in 1957. These power plants are located a distance down river from Niagara Falls where the drop in elevation of the river of gorge is even greater than the Falls itself. Using this location as well, they don’t distract from the natural beauty of the Falls.
  • Floral Clock
    Sir Adam Beck was the government minister who had the vision for this big power station on the Canadian side of the Niagara River and oversaw its design and development. He also had the Floral Clock designed and built behind the power dam in 1950. One of the world’s largest, it consists of over 15,000 small plants imbedded close together and changed twice a year during the growing season by the students of the Niagara Parks Horticultural School. Your Chariots of Fire Niagara Falls tour stops at this location for photos.
  • Whirlpool Rapids
    There are many waterfalls in the world but only one Whirlpool. Located downriver from Niagara Falls, the river water flows through the narrow Great Gorge at 40 km (25 miles) per hour with class 6 rapids (the highest rating). With the 90° bend in the river, the water enters the Whirlpool at high speed and generally flows counter-clockwise. When it meets the oncoming stream it goes down and under, causing the Whirlpool vortex. During the winter months, from November to March, there is less water flowing through this part of the river because more is diverted above Niagara Falls for electrical power generation. This slower flow results in a clockwise direction of water moving in the Whirlpool, known as the Reversal Phenomenon. Your Fall for Niagara licensed tour guide will provide a commentary on the Whirlpool Rapids during your tour.