Buffalo + Western New York Summer Bucket List — 11 Tourist Spots to Hit
The Buffalo Zoo, the Botanical Gardens, the Erie Canal, kayaking and canoeing at Canalside, outdoor concerts, Niagara Falls, Darien Lake, Letchworth State Park aka the Grand Canyon of the East and more -- summer is Buffalo is nonstop! What's on your summer Buffalo + Western New York bucket list?
Exotic and domestic animals in naturalistic habitats. The Rainforest Falls features a 25-foot waterfall and exotic creatures including ocelots, poison dart frogs, colorful free-flight birds, squirrel monkeys and a giant anaconda.
It's the oldest lighted parimutuel harness track in North America with live harness racing, gaming, dining and entertainment.
Designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the outdoor Victorian gardens and 1897 glass-domed conservatory houses exotic tropical plants and a 27-foot waterfall. The Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens is Designated as One of Six Elite Proven Winners Signature Gardens in the country.
From the Cave of Winds, which takes you on a tour over a series of wooden walkways to the famous Hurricane Deck, 20 feet from the rushing waters of Bridal Veil Falls, to Maid of the Mist which takes you to the base of the falls, there is a variety of ways to experience Niagara Falls. What's your favorite?
The Today Show recently named the park one of the Top 10 Most Beautiful Spots in America. Narrated trolley tour from the Visitors Center stops at scenic vistas.
With more than 100 rides (including the newly opened Rolling Thunder as well as shows and attractions and 20,000-seat performing arts center Darien Lake is New York's largest theme park!
Follow up the theme park with a stop at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, which brings some of hottest summer concert tours -- Fall Out Boy, Toby Keith, Tim McGraw, Florida Georgia Line, Jason Aldean, Darius Rucker, Luke Bryan, Def Leppard, Vans Warped Tour, Kelly Clarkson, Nickelback, Kid Rock and more.
Letchworth State Park, the "Grand Canyon of the East", was voted USA Today's Readers' Choice Award for Best State Park in the U.S.
The Genesee River roars through the 17-mile gorge over three waterfalls, between cliffs as high as 600 feet.
Explore the Lockport Erie Canal locks in a new way, from underground. The tour takes visitors on a 70-minute tour, ending with a boat ride through a cave beneath the locks. See stalactites and other geological wonders.
Narrated tours offer history and water views of the city's architecture and shoreline.
Performances in the historic park designed by Frederick Law Olmsted have been a summer tradition since 1976.
The performing arts center is a 150-acre state park beside the Niagara River Gorge and includes a long list of entertainment throughout the season, including concerts, movie night, family events, plays, orchestra performances and more.
With over 800 events and activities, including Story of Buffalo performances, Music at the Ruins, Shakespeare at Canalside, Saturday Artisan Market and the UB Archaeological Dig as well as hands-on activities for children, live music and theatrical performances.
Events include Buffalo Irish Festival, Annual Pride Festival, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and The Ride for Roswell as well as 15th Annual “Buffalo Place Rocks the Harbor” and “Thursday at Canalside” Concert Series.
Walking, biking, boating and kayaking tours are also available.
There are also two eateries at Canalside, Clinton’s Dish and The Liberty Hound at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park.