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Visiting Niagara Falls Canada in Winter: 31 Best Things to Do (2023)

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If you’re looking for the best things to do when visiting Niagara Falls Canada in winter, you’ve come to the right place!

I’ve lived in Canada for the last three years and have visited Niagara Falls Ontario many times.

The Niagara River is the perfect backdrop for a winter-season getaway. You’ll be astonished at how unique and beautiful it looks in the cold weather, with its view of the falls.

The summer months will never compare to being surrounded by snow-capped cliffs, icy waters, and glistening ice.

So here’s everything you need to know about visiting Niagara Falls Canada in the winter!

❄️ Make the most of Niagara Falls with this amazing winter tour of the falls and its history!

Frozen Niagara Falls in winter with an icicle in the foreground

Niagara Falls Winter Temperatures

Niagara Falls in November

Weather in November can be quite unpredictable, so it’s always best to be prepared with a warm coat and umbrella. In November, Niagara Falls, Canada, typically experiences temperatures between 0 °C and 8 °C throughout the month.

However, temperatures can drop to as low as -4 °C and reach highs of 15 °C. 

Niagara Falls in December

The winter season in Niagara Falls, Canada, is typically cold and snowy. Niagara Falls December temperatures usually range between -3 °C and 5 °C. However, temperatures can drop to as low as -10 °C and reach highs of 10 °C.

The American Falls and the Canadian Horseshoe Falls have the best view in December during winter, when there are a lot of icicles on the edges.

Niagara Falls in January

The Niagara Falls January weather is usually cold, with temperatures ranging from -7 °C to 5 °C. However, temperatures can drop to as low as -15 °C, with highs up to 12 °C.

The Falls are best viewed from the Canadian side during this time of year, as the view of the American Falls is usually obstructed by snow.

Niagara Falls in February

Niagara Falls February weather brings a slight rise in temperature as the winter months slowly come to an end. During February, temperatures usually range between -5 °C and 7 °C, with lows of -10 °C and highs of 10 °C also possible.

Is winter a good time to visit Niagara Falls?

Yes! Winter is a great time to experience the beauty of Niagara Falls. The winter season brings abundant snow, ice, and breathtaking views of the Falls.
Visitors can experience a number of winter activities like snowshoeing, skiing, and ice skating. They can also visit nearby wineries for wine tastings and shopping venues with fun souvenir shops.

Is Niagara Falls cold in the winter?

Yes, Niagara Falls Canada is cold in the winter. Temperatures typically range between -3 °C and 5 °C, with lows of -10 °C and highs of 10 °C. 

Visiting Niagara Falls Canada in Winter: Frozen Views

Can you go to Niagara Falls in winter?

Yes, you can visit Niagara Falls in winter. The winter season brings a unique beauty that must be experienced in person. The snow and ice make for stunning views of the Falls!

Is Niagara Falls pretty in the winter?

Yes, Niagara Falls is beautiful in the winter season. The snow and ice-covered cliffs make for a stunning backdrop, and the icicles on the falls provide a truly captivating sight. 
Visiting Niagara Falls during winter is an experience like no other!

Does Niagara Falls Ever Completely Freeze Over?

In reality, no. Niagara Falls never completely freezes. However, it might seem as if they have in extremely cold temperatures. 
This is due to the mist and spray crystallizing into the ice above the cascading water, creating an illusion that Niagara Falls has frozen over.

31 Things to Do in Winter in Niagara Falls

Frozen Horseshoe Falls in Niagara Falls Canada in winter with piles of snow alongside

1. View the Frozen Horseshoe Falls

One of the most breathtaking things you can do in winter is view the frozen Horseshoe Falls. With temperatures dropping below freezing and snow blanketing the ground, you will witness a picture-perfect winter wonderland during your visit. 

2. Journey Behind the Falls

Journey Behind the Falls is a unique experience in Niagara that allows visitors to experience the falls from behind. This tunnel takes you deep beneath the Horseshoe Falls, offering a unique perspective on the waterfalls and the Niagara River.

Check prices and dates here!

Can you go behind Niagara Falls in the winter?

Yes, you can go behind Niagara Falls in the winter. Journey Behind the Falls allows visitors to witness the beauty of the cascading water year-round.

Rainbow lights illuminating the Niagara Falls in winter

3. Watch the Nighttime Illumination Show on the Falls

The Illumination Show is a must-see for any Niagara Falls winter visitor. This nightly show starts at dusk and features a spectacular array of lights that dance and sparkle across the falls. 

The best place to see the show on the Canadian side is Queen Victoria Park.

Check prices here!

Does Niagara Falls light up in the winter?

Yes, it does! The dazzling, eye-catching Niagara Falls Illumination Show is a sight like no other. It illuminates the Falls with a vibrant light show that twinkles and glimmers across the water.

4. Watch the Fireworks

Niagara Falls Canada puts on a breathtaking fireworks display every Saturday night during the winter season. The show is best viewed from Queen Victoria Park, and the Falls’ mist provides a stunning backdrop for the colorful explosions. 

🎇 Watch the fireworks from the Niagara river here!

5. Niagara Parks Power Station

When you arrive at the Niagara Parks Power Station, you can find immersive exhibits, restored artifacts, and interactive storytelling that will take you back to when electricity was first generated at Niagara Falls. Guided or non-guided tours are available.

Check prices here!

6. Niagara Falls Butterfly Conservatory

Located in the Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens, the Niagara Falls Butterfly Conservatory houses over 2,000 tropical butterflies from all over the world. Wander through the lush gardens and observe the beautiful butterflies in their natural habitat.

7. Bird Kingdom

The Bird Kingdom Aviary is the world’s largest indoor free-flying aviary, open all year round. Visit during the winter and experience a stunning tropical oasis in the middle of Niagara.

This aviary is home to over 400 species of birds from around the world, many of which are endangered. Enjoy interactive experiences and educational talks that will teach you the importance of bird conservation.

8. Niagara Floral Show House

The Niagara Floral Show House is one of the most popular attractions in Niagara Falls. This beautiful oasis is open year-round. During the winter months, you can still find stunning, vibrant displays of exotic plants from around the world.

Niagara Falls skywheel Ferris wheel lit up at night

9. Niagara SkyWheel

The Niagara SkyWheel is another winter must-see in Niagara Falls. This giant Ferris Wheel stands 175 feet above the ground and offers unbeatable views of Niagara Falls, Niagara Parks, and the Niagara River. 

🎡 Check prices here!

10. Fallsview Casino

Built on a cliff overlooking Niagara Falls, this Niagara casino is Canada’s largest and most elegant gaming resort facility.

Enjoy state-of-the-art gaming with over 3,000 slot machines and 130 gaming tables. Take a break from the action and relax in one of the 374 luxury hotel rooms or enjoy a meal at one of the 20 dining options.

11. Fallsview Waterpark (Indoors)

Niagara Falls can be a great place to have some fun in the winter with a visit to the iconic Fallsview Indoor Waterpark. This 3-acre paradise is packed with 16 waterslides, a wave pool, an outdoor activity pool, a plunge bowl, and two oversized Jacuzzis.

Plus, there’s a beach club offering light snacks, private cabana rentals, and a huge Beach House Rain Fortress complete with a 1,000-gallon tipping bucket.

Check availability here!

12. Margaritaville Niagara Falls

End your Niagara Falls Canada in winter adventure with a stop at Niagara’s newest destination, Margaritaville Niagara Falls.

This vibrant, island-inspired Niagara Falls restaurant and entertainment complex is filled with fun activities for the whole family, including Niagara’s only year-round indoor mini golf.

13. Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center

Niagara Falls Canada is home to the Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center. This museum is dedicated to telling the stories of freedom seekers and abolitionists in Niagara Falls.

14. Skylon Tower

The Niagara Falls experience wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the iconic Skylon Tower, with the Summit Suite Buffet, the revolving restaurant at the top of the tower. This landmark stands 775 feet high and offers breathtaking views of Niagara Falls and Niagara Parks. 

Check prices here!

15. Clifton Hill

From Niagara Falls attractions to Niagara Falls restaurants, Clifton Hill Niagara Falls is the top destination for a winter getaway.

Take a ride on Niagara Speedway or Niagara SkyWheel, Niagara’s largest giant wheel. Enjoy a meal at one of the many restaurants on Clifton Hill, or take in some live music at one of Niagara’s hottest nightclubs. There is something for everyone!

Check prices here!

16. Ice Wine and Chocolate Tasting Tour

Experience Niagara’s World-Class Icewine and Sparkling Wine with a luxurious tasting tour at Niagara Falls. Start with Eric Brut Sparkling Wine served with aged cheddar cheese.

Treat your taste buds to the decadence of butter, toffee white chocolate, and almonds with a delightful Vidal Icewine. Then, savor the luscious finish of dried mango combined with an exquisite Riesling Icewine!

Check prices and availability here!

17. Learn About the Creation of the Falls at Niagara’s Fury

Journey through Niagara’s history with a visit to Niagara’s Fury. Step inside a 4D motion theatre and discover the ancient story of Niagara Falls in this multi-sensory simulation of the last Ice Age.

18. Cross the Border to the US

After you’ve explored Niagara Falls Canada in winter, cross the border and explore the Niagara Falls USA side.

Take a trip to Niagara State Park and enjoy the majestic views of Niagara Gorge, and be sure to visit Goat Island to see the three waterfalls that make Niagara Falls so spectacular.

Looking to get around via car? Find the cheapest car rentals here!

19. Helicopter Tour of Niagara Falls

Take a Niagara Falls helicopter tour for a truly unique Niagara Falls experience. See Niagara Falls from the air as you soar over the gorge and into Canada. Experience the thunder of Niagara Falls up close and then fly out over Niagara-on-the-Lake for incredible views of the vineyards. 

🚁 I recommend this helicopter tour for epic views of the Falls.

Frozen Niagara Falls with a hiking pathway alongside it for winter hiking

20. Hiking in Niagara

Take advantage of Niagara’s winter weather and explore the Niagara Parks trails. Bundle up and take a hike through Niagara Glen or Niagara River Recreational Trail. Keep an eye out for Niagara’s native wildlife including bears, beavers, and birds! 

Take a hiking tour in Niagara here!

21. Hunt for More Frozen Waterfalls

Lesser-known waterfalls like Beamer Falls, Ball’s Falls, Louth Falls, Rockway Falls, and DeCew Falls offer a chance to explore the natural beauty of Niagara Falls Canada in winter beyond just the famous falls themselves.

22. Snowshoeing in Niagara

Snowshoeing is a great way to explore Niagara’s winter landscape. Niagara Parks offers snowshoe rentals and guided tours of the Niagara Escarpment and Niagara Falls.

These are the snowshoes I use

23. Drive the Niagara Wine Trail

The Niagara Wine Trail is an excellent way to sample Niagara’s world-renowned wines. Take a self-guided tour through Niagara-on-the-Lake and Niagara Falls to visit Niagara’s over 70 wineries. Sample some award-winning wines while you’re at it!

Looking to get around via car? Find the cheapest car rentals here!

Sip beer at this Niagara tour

24. Sip Beer at the Niagara Brewing Company

If beer is more your style, Niagara Brewing Company offers Niagara-crafted beers and lagers. Enjoy a pint or a flight of Niagara’s best beers while soaking up Niagara’s winter atmosphere.

Take a Niagara brewery tour here!

25. Winter Festival of Lights in Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls is illuminated from November to January by the Niagara Parks Winter Festival of Lights. Enjoy eight kilometers of stunning light displays and enjoy Niagara’s winter beauty.

Check times here!

What is the Winter Festival of Lights in Niagara Falls?

The annual Winter Festival of Lights is one of Niagara Falls Canada’s most enchanting attractions and the largest FREE outdoor light festival.

26. Niagara Holiday Christmas Market

The Niagara Holiday Christmas Market is a great way to get into the holiday spirit. Enjoy delicious treats and local Niagara artisans at Niagara-on-the-Lake’s Niagara-on-the-Green.

27. Niagara Falls for Christmas

Niagara Falls offers a variety of festive activities for the whole family. Check out Niagara’s Santa Claus Parade of Lights, Niagara Falls Winter Festival of Lights, Niagara-on-the-Green Christmas Market, and Niagara Falls’ Icewine Festival!

28. New Year’s Eve at Niagara Falls

Ring in the New Year Niagara Falls style! Niagara offers a variety of events to celebrate the end of the year with fireworks and live entertainment. 

Celebrate Niagara Falls’ New Year’s Eve fireworks display from the Niagara State Park and take in Niagara’s winter scenery.

29. Niagara Icewine Festival

For a genuinely unique Niagara Falls adventure, don’t miss Niagara’s Icewine Festival. Celebrate Niagara’s world-famous icewine with Niagara’s best wineries at this one-of-a-kind event that takes place in Niagara-on-the-Lake each year.

30. Niagara Falls Santa Claus Parade

Bring the whole family to Niagara’s Santa Claus Parade of Lights! Enjoy the lights, music, and floats as Niagara Falls celebrates Christmas with a spectacular parade. Niagara Falls Santa Claus Parade is an annual event that takes place in Niagara Falls, Canada, during the winter.

31. The Annual Poinsettia Show

The Niagara Parks Niagara Falls Poinsettia Show is a great way to get in the holiday spirit. The Niagara Parks Greenhouse proudly displays over 4,000 poinsettias in a variety of shapes and sizes during Niagara’s Winter Festival of Lights.

Frozen Niagara Horseshoe Falls from the top with a view of the power center

Niagara Falls Winter Tours

If you’re planning a trip to Niagara Falls during the winter season, there are plenty of tours available that will allow you to experience the beauty and wonder of this natural wonderland.

The Niagara Falls Winter Wonderland American Tour is a really unique small-group off-season tour that allows you to experience the many sights of Niagara Falls without the summertime tourist crowds.

Enjoy round-trip transportation from your hotel to popular attractions, including Goat Island, Terrapin Point, and Cave of the Winds.

Learn about Niagara’s rich history with detailed commentary on each stop and take in the spectacular views from observation decks and viewpoints. With an all-inclusive off-season tour, Niagara Falls Canada in winter with be an unforgettable experience!

❄️ Check prices and availability for this tour!

Frozen lamp post alongside Niagara Falls in Canada with a garland and icicles hanging down in winter

Reasons to Visit Niagara Falls in Winter

1. Beat the Crowds

Winter is a great time to visit Niagara Falls as the crowds are much smaller, and you’ll get more out of your experience. With fewer people around, you’ll have plenty of space to explore Niagara Falls and its many attractions.

2. See the Frozen Falls

The Niagara River sometimes freezes over in winter, which is a rare and spectacular sight. You can see Niagara Falls partially or seemingly completely frozen during Niagara’s coldest months.

3. Hotel Deals

Winter is a great time to find hotel deals, as Niagara Falls sees fewer tourists during winter. Take advantage of Niagara’s winter discounts and enjoy Niagara’s winter attractions without breaking the bank.

4. Ice Wine Season

One of the most unique things about Niagara Falls Canada in winter is its ice wine! Niagara is world-famous for its Niagara Icewine, and Niagara-on-the-Lake offers a variety of ice wine festivals during the winter season.

5. Falls are Illuminated

Niagara Falls’ Winter Festival of Lights is an annual event that illuminates Niagara Falls in color and light. Enjoy 8 kilometers of lighting displays and Niagara’s iconic winter beauty.

What to Wear in Niagara Falls in Winter

As Niagara Falls is known for its cold weather, the proper clothing is essential to staying warm and comfortable during Niagara’s winter months.

Opt for layers and make sure also to pack a warm hat, scarf, and gloves. Waterproof boots are also crucial in Niagara Falls, as the area often gets lots of snow.

How do people dress for Niagara Falls in the winter?

Make sure to dress warmly with layers when visiting Niagara Falls in the winter. Layering with wool, fleece, and down will help keep you warm during Niagara’s cold temperatures.

Where to Stay in Niagara Falls Canada

When planning a Niagara Falls winter getaway, there are plenty of Niagara Falls Canada hotels to choose from.

Niagara’s Clifton Hill area is home to many Niagara Falls hotels that offer great deals on winter packages and accommodations. Great Wolf Lodge is a great family-friendly option!

Niagara-on-the-Lake also offers a variety of luxury hotels with stunning views of Niagara Falls.  Niagara Falls Canada hotels offer something for everyone, so be sure to find one that suits your budget and needs.

These are my three favourite hotels in the region:

Best Restaurants in Niagara Falls Canada

AG Inspired Cuisine is located in the Sterling Inn & Spa and offers a farm-to-table menu featuring locally sourced ingredients. The cozy atmosphere and delicious food make it a perfect spot for a winter meal.

If you’re in the mood for steak, Prime Steakhouse Niagara Falls is the place to go. It is located on Falls Avenue and offers stunning views of Niagara Falls and serves the best steaks in town.

Weinkeller is a German-inspired restaurant on Victoria Avenue that offers hearty dishes like schnitzel and sausages. The cozy interior and warm atmosphere make it a great spot to escape the cold.

The Flour Mill Scratch Kitchen Restaurant is located in an old flour mill and offers a unique dining experience with its rustic decor and delicious comfort food menu.

Taps On Queen is the place to go if you’re seeking a casual spot to grab some drinks and pub grub. They have an extensive beer list and offer classic pub fares like burgers, wings, and nachos.

Niagara Falls in December when the falls start to freeze. andthe water gets icey

Getting to Niagara Falls from Toronto

Niagara Falls is an easy day trip from Toronto, under 90 minutes away. You can easily get to Niagara Falls by car, bus, or train. The Niagara Falls train station is an easy walk to the Falls themselves.

Niagara’s bus and train services make Niagara Falls an easy destination to get to from Toronto, but driving yourself is also a good option.

Looking to get around via car? Find the cheapest car rentals here!

FAQS Niagara Falls During Winter

Is Niagara Falls worth visiting in winter?

Yes, Niagara Falls is worth visiting in winter. The area offers stunning views of Niagara Falls, no crowds, and unique seasonal attractions to enjoy, like ice wine festivals and the Winter Festival.

Is it a good idea to visit Niagara Falls in winter?

Yes, Niagara Falls is a great destination to visit in winter. The weather can be cold, but there are plenty of activities and attractions that make Niagara Falls a fun and unique winter getaway!

What is there to do during winter in Niagara Falls?

During Niagara’s winter months, you can explore the area’s ice wine festivals, Niagara Falls light displays, Niagara-on-the-Lake’s restaurants, and much more. Plus, Niagara Falls is an excellent destination for winter activities like skiing, snowmobiling, and snowshoeing.

Is Niagara Falls fun in the winter?

Yes, Niagara Falls is fun in the winter. Niagara offers a variety of unique attractions and activities that can’t be experienced anywhere else!

Is it fun to go to Niagara Falls in the winter?

Yes, Niagara Falls can be a fun and enjoyable winter getaway. The winter offers stunning views of Niagara Falls, few crowds, and plenty of unique activities.

What does Niagara Falls look like in the winter?

Niagara Falls in the winter is breathtaking and offers unique views. Lights illuminate Niagara Falls during the evenings, which can be seen from various vantage points. 
Niagara Falls is also surrounded by snow-covered streets and winter activities can be enjoyed in the area.

Can you tour Niagara Falls in the winter?

Yes, Niagara Falls can be toured in the winter. A variety of tour operators offer guided trips to Niagara Falls during the winter months.  Tour operators can provide you with the best views of Niagara Falls and offer interesting insights into Niagara’s history.

Is Niagara Falls busy in the winter?

No, Niagara Falls is not as busy in the winter. Niagara Falls can be enjoyed with fewer crowds during the winter months and offers unique seasonal attractions such as Niagara’s Icewine Festival, Niagara Falls light displays, and the Winter Festival of Lights.

Does Niagara Falls freeze every winter?

No, Niagara Falls does not freeze every winter. Niagara Falls typically does not freeze due to the constant flow of water and the fact that Niagara Falls is made up of three separate waterfalls.

Wrap Up: Visiting Niagara Falls Canada in Winter

Niagara Falls Canada in winter is a great place to explore, relax and have some winter fun. From frozen waterfalls to snowy wine trails, Niagara Falls has something to offer everyone during the winter months!

Niagara Falls is a beautiful and historic destination with many activities, attractions, and events. Niagara Falls Canada in winter is a great destination to beat the crowds and explore Niagara’s beauty!

So, if you’re looking for a unique winter experience, Niagara Falls is the place to go!

Canada Travel Planning Guide

🚑 Should I buy Canada travel insurance?

100% YES! — Canada has “free” healthcare but it’s only for citizens! Foreigners visiting need travel insurance in case anything happens on their visit. I recommend World Nomads – starting at just $5 a day!

💧Can you drink the water in Canada?

Yes — In all major cities in Canada, you can drink the tap water. There are very few, rural areas that you can’t. However, you should never drink river or lake water anywhere in the country! I recommend a Brita Water Bottle for long hikes and backcountry camping to stay safe and hydrated.

🚙💨 Is it safe to rent a car in Canada?

Yes Renting a car is a necessity in most of Canada! If you want to go on road trips or adventures outside of the major cities, you’ll need to rent a car. (Read more)

📲 Will my phone work in Canada?

Maybe — Some American companies work in Canada, but many will not. If your phone doesn’t work in Canada, I recommend getting a Canadian SIM card so you can get around and stay in contact with loved ones. We don’t have a lot of free WIFI in Canada, so you’ll need your phone for maps.

🏩 What’s the best way to book my Canada accommodations?

My go-to for Canadian hotels is Booking.com. For hostels, I use Hostel World. If you want a home-y feeling, check out VRBO (which is cheaper and safer than Airbnb).

Or get free accommodations with Trusted Housesitters!

✈️ What’s the best site to buy Canada flights?

For finding cheap Canadian flights, I recommend Skyscanner.

🎫 Do I need a visa for Canada?

Likely Not — US, UK, and EU passport holders don’t need Canadian visas. However, some other countries do (check here!). And if you plan to stay for more than 4 weeks (an average tourist visa length), you will need to look into visas to live in Canada.