Journey Behind the Falls: Get Up Close to and See Behind Niagara Falls

Made up of three waterfalls, Niagara Falls straddles the border between Canada and the United States, on the Niagara River that drains Lake Erie into Lake Ontario. Combined the Horseshoe Falls on the Canadian side, and the American and Bridal Veil Falls on the American side, have the highest flow rate of any waterfall in the world. The Horseshoe Falls, at a height of 167 ft (51 m) sees about 2.3 million liters fall per second, while the American and Bridal Veil Falls, at a height of 176 ft (54 m) see 567, 000 liters fall per second. That’s a lot of water!

Horseshoe Falls
Canadian Horseshoe Falls


American and Bridal Veil Falls


The Journey Behind the Falls is an attraction that promises visitors an unique view of the Falls from below and behind. While my Mom, the kiddo, and I have all visited the Falls before, L hadn’t and none of us had experienced the Falls from these vantage points so we decided this was a must-do for our day out in Niagara Falls.

I’m not sure if it was just me but I found the entrance a little hard to find. I guess it makes sense that it would be where it is – in the Visitors Center- but we figured there would be signs posted making it clearer. Maybe we missed them? If you’re headed here for a visit that’s where you’ll find the entrance. There is also parking across the street ($18 per day) and that’s really as good of a spot as any as we didn’t find any any less expensive than that.

The entrance fees offered us access to two tunnels down 150 ft (45 m) through the bedrock that lead to the Cataract Portal and the Great Falls Portal which are about one-third of the way around behind the falling water.


At this point, I must admit, we weren’t really impressed. We went to each of the portals and thought, “That’s it? Well this is just some water running off the edge of the wall.” Now granted it’s a lot of water gushing past you pretty quickly (65 km/hr in fact), and it is pretty loud down there, but it still didn’t seem worth the hubbub.

View at each of the portals.

After the portals though things got much better. We headed back through the tunnels and came out on the Upper Observation Deck (there are two levels to the deck) and from here we were right beside the rushing wall of water. Now this was cool! And wet! Of course being so close to the Falls the mist from them was almost like rain at times but we had on the very stylish bright yellow ponchos they gave us to wear on the way in. You’ll definitely be thankful for them and do be careful with your camera.


Back inside along the tunnels there are some signs posted telling you a little about the history of the Falls and the tunnels, and some stories of some famous people who have visited. The main attraction is definitely the Falls themselves though so I’ll leave you with a few more views of them today.



Photo by L


InformationIcon2 Open year round except Christmas Day. For information about their opening hours and admission fees, please click here.

Phone: 905-354-1554

If you’ll be visiting Niagara Falls for longer there is a “Wonder Pass” that includes entrance to Journey Behind the Falls, Niagara’s Fury, the Butterfly Conservatory, along with two days transportation on the WEGO Hop-on, Hop-off bus.

LocationIcon2Located at 6650 Niagara Parkway, Niagara Falls, ON L2G 0L0

For further directions and a map please click here.


  • Wow, your photos are amazing! I wish I can visit the Niagara Falls sometime (I had actually included them in my list of places to see during my 30s) and the tour through the tunnels sounds like a goof experience.

    I once went to the Rheinfell waterfalls, where the Rhine river is born, and I was really impressed by the thunderous noise that water made. And those were rather small in comparison with the Niagara Falls!
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    • Thanks Irene! Oh you will definitely make it there one day if you keep it on your list. The right opportunity will likely pop up when you least expect it.

      I haven’t heard of the Rheinfell waterfalls so had to just go and check them out. They look really pretty and I’ll have to keep them in mind if I make it to that area one day. I do love a good waterfall for sure. Another really great waterfall I’ve seen is Gullfoss in Iceland. One day (sooner than later I hope) I’ll be sharing my photos and stories from that trip.

  • Wow! I had no idea this was an option – for some reason I always thought it was from the top or by boat! I’ve been to Niagara Falls once before, but it was on a family trip during a college Spring Break. I may not have had the best adventurous attitude at the time (ahem) so I would love to go back again to see it with more appreciative eyes :) These photos are absolutely gorgeous & definitely inspirational!
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    • I didn’t realise it either until we started researching things to do for this trip and found it. I would love to take the boat ride but that wasn’t available this time of year so this was a good alternative. Yep, you should definitely take another visit and if you have time it’s worth taking a quick trip into the USA to see it from that side too.
      Thanks for the compliments on the photos. I was really feeling disappointed with them actually, especially since the day was so dreary. I even thought about digging out my old photos from my visit years ago since it was a bright sunny day but decided to stick with the ones from the day.

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