The Glen is an enclosed stretch of forested land within the Great Gorge, between Niagara Falls and the Botanical Gardens. It’s a living and breathing example of the type of forest that once covered much of the Niagara region, and is rich in both flora and fauna. Nature enthusiasts and hikers will find no better place in Niagara to spend a day.
The Niagara River and the constant force of the water flowing from the Great Lakes has been shaping the land for thousands of years. The constantly changing shape of the Niagara Gorge and the river have left pockets of land rich in natural growth – including the reserve known as the Niagara Glen.
It’s rugged terrain, with elevation changes ranging to 60 metres, well-maintained paths and the Niagara Glen Nature Centre, which is easily accessible. The centre features local art and wood carvings as well as serving as a service point for supplies, permits and general information. Guided tours also regularly depart from the centre to cover the major locations within the Glen.
The Glen stretches along the current course of the river, and features 4 kilometres of trails and paths to explore. There are plenty of vantage points along the way to see the rapids that characterize this stretch of water, as well as pristine Carolinian Forest, and geological formations that are prehistoric. The Great Gorge has forced the water into a right-angle turn here, creating the Niagara Whirlpool – a centrepiece of the natural variety the area has to offer. The Whirlpool jet boats travel the rapids along the Glen’s share of the river, offering thrill-seekers the change to experience the rapids up close.
Aside from hiking and admiring the scenery, the Glen offers other activities to visitors. Permits for bouldering are available from the Nature Centre, and tree-planting and geocaching is also allowed with permission and consultation with Niagara Parks workers.
The Glen is a bastion of Niagara biodiversity that is rarely found in the modern age. Much of the plant and animal life in the Glen as classified as ‘at risk’ – so attendants, as long as they are mindful of respecting the park’s rules and requirements for preserving the natural landscape, will experience a rarer and more unique look at Niagara than most experience.
After spending a few exhilarating hours in the Niagara Glen, head on back to the highly rated four star Marriott on the Falls Hotel. Combine our best rates with valuable add-ons with one of our: