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Monday 21 January 2019
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Behind the Magnificent Niagara Falls

The moment I found out that there was an opportunity to go to Canada, like a true traveler I was constantly on my laptop engaging other travelers and wanderers about things to do, see and experience. Number 1 on the list was Niagara Falls, which confirmed my bias lol. There was a brief snow fall the night before, but I was determined to see Niagara Falls.

How would I come back to Namibia without visiting the famous falls? When I arrived at the train station, the cashier told me the train is leaving in 3mins or I could for an hour for the next train. I raced through the train station to the platform as the doors were about to close. I was super stoked, it was finally happening today I was to see “The Great Niagara Falls”.

On the way to visit Niagara Falls, I had been imagining a forest with many trails, rustic log-cabin restaurants, small town. I never expected this…mega tourist trap.

Three things you may not know about Niagara Falls…
• It is estimated that the Ni
agara Falls are about 12,000 years old
• There are three waterfalls in Niagara, that make up the Niagara Falls the Bridal Veil Falls, American Falls and the Canadian Horseshoe Falls.
• Niagara Falls, Ontario
has been known as the Honeymoon Capital of the world for the past 200 years

The three falls between the border of the United States of America and Canada are the second largest waterfalls in the world.

According to a local the word “Niagara” is derived from an Indian word “Onguiaahra” meaning “the channel or passage” but is famously known as “thundering noise”. When you stand adjacent to the falls, its mist and thunder a sense of wonder and awe envelope you immediately.

The height and the thunderous flow make the Niagara Falls truly exceptional.  You will get wet, but it does not matter. The falls in person are better than a postcard, iPhone picture or even a video.
Some tips when visiting the falls

•    Wear comfortable shoes as you will be walking a lot
•    Charge your Phone, you will run out of memory and power
•    Get the all-day bus pass

The allure of the falls is immediately removed from your mind as dusk begins to fall over the city of Niagara Falls (the city is named Niagara Falls).

Man-made attractions including Ripley’s Believe it or Not Museum, Marineland, Casino Niagara, IMAX Theatre completely transported me into a Las Vegas like state.

The scorching bright lights turned this awe-inspiring moment into a frivolous affair. I could not help feeling underwhelmed by the experience. It felt trivial and inauthentic in its quest to capture my wonder.

This had been one of my long-life dreams to see the great Niagara Falls. However, it was overshadowed by the trinkets of fleeting amusements. I would still highly recommend that anyone who has an opportunity to visit the falls do so. As for me unfortunately the falls were overshadowed by all the tourist garbage.

There are some cool activities especially for the more thrill seekers such as the zipline, boat and helicopter rides to name a few.

The Falls in their wondrous glory are ever enchanting as they remind us of our mortality. Equally they remind us of the brutality of men and his pursuit of capital.

Steven Bernardus Harageib




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