Yes You Can! Take a Private Plane to Niagara Falls This Weekend

·Managing Editor
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(Photo: Jo Piazza)

There are some things you simply cannot replicate in pictures. One of those things is the complete awesomeness of Niagara Falls

Sure, it looks great on Instagram, but the falls are really best enjoyed in person, in order to fully soak (literally soak!) in the incredible natural beauty, the intense sounds and the fabulous kitschy souvenir shopping.

Most folks don’t realize just how far Niagara Falls actually is from New York City. 

"They’re both in New York," people tend to say. "We can do it in a day from Manhattan. We can do it in a day!!" Sure you can—if you factor in 16 hours of driving time. 

Without traffic the drive from NYC to Niagara is seven hours and with traffic can be as much as 10. Sure, there are plenty of lovely options for overnight accommodations (better on the Canadian side), but the truth is you don’t need much more than an afternoon in Niagara to do the falls.

So why not take a private jet to Niagara this weekend? Does that sounds crazy?

It isn’t that nuts. We swear. If you break down the cost of driving to Niagara and staying overnight, including gas, hotel rooms, dinners and tolls, it can end up getting pretty pricey. For $579 per person, Viator tours can get you in and out of the falls quickly and efficiently in about 12 hours. 

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(Photo: Jo Piazza)

Paula Froelich and I road tested their trip last weekend and we have to say it was a delight. 

The voyage began with two possible pick-up locations by in Midtown Manhattan, one at 45th Street and downtown on Canal Street. 

From there, we drove about 45 minutes to the Republic Executive Airport at Farmingdale,

The best thing about flying private is that you can mosey right on up to the 30-seater Embraer 120. No security, no check-in. A lovely lady just boards your plane, looks at your passport and then ushers you directly from the bus to the jet…..with a smile. 

After an hour in the air, we landed at the Niagara Falls International Airport to find a red carpet rolled out and a table filled with champagne. So fancy for 9 a.m.!

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(Photo: Jo Piazza)

From there you have your choice of visiting the American or the Canadian side of Niagara Falls. Both have their benefits and their perks, but in all fairness, Canada just lucked out with the better views. Both sides offer guided boat tours and the U.S. side has a great observation deck that ventures out over the rapids. 

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(Photo: Jo Piazza)

Viator gives you a full five hours to explore whichever side you choose. If you’re speedy then you can probably sneak across the Rainbow Bridge to do both. Fair warning: Cross the border on foot. Customs can have delays for cars.

Five hours is plenty of time to take a boat tour from Hornblower tours (Canada) or Maid in the Mist (USA!), sneak behind the falls, grab lunch and do some sweet, sweet shopping.

 

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(Photo: Jo Piazza)

Don’t forget to take a souvenir picture before you get on the boat. Trust us. You want the souvenir picture. 

Then it’s back to your plane, a quick flight over the falls for some final pics and then a quick and easy trip back to New York and a (hopefully) snappy bus ride back to the city. 

It’s expensive. We understand that and this option might not be for everyone. But if you don’t have the extra day to spare on the commute and Niagara is on your bucket list, a private jet is simply a civilized way to check this one off.