Do you have visitors coming to town, but zero plans in mind for when they get here? We get it. As locals it is easy to forget about all the fun things our region has to offer; hence the reason we at Step Out Buffalo are here to remind you! With summer weather still in full affect, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the outdoors and give your friends and family a trip they’ll remember. Check out our picks below!
1. Hit the rapids on a jet boat tour
- Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour – 55 River Frontage Rd, Queenston, ON / Website
- Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour – 115 S. Water St, Lewiston, NY / Website
- Niagara Jet City Cruises – 555 Water St, Youngstown, NY / Website
If you’ve never been on one of the jet boat tours along the lower Niagara, this is a must visit for thrill-seekers. Perfect for large groups, this hour-long ride will have you face-to-face with class 5 whirlpool rapids with quick turns and 360º spins. Depending on how wet you’re looking to get, they offer both open-air and enclosed boat options.
2. Tackle an obstacle course with Sky High Adventure Park at Holiday Valley
6773 Holiday Valley Rd, Ellicottville, NY / More Info
Head down to the Southern Tier for a day spent in Ellicottville. While the region alone is a beautiful place to visit, for adventurists, check out the Sky High Adventure Park at Holiday Valley. The largest in NYS, Sky High will have you navigating platforms, obstacles, bridges and ziplines, all varying in levels of difficulty. You’ll also find there are opportunities for gem mining, chairlift rides, mountain biking, or riding the mountain coaster!
3. Visit a U-pick farm
In the summer months, u-pick farms are a fun way to spend some time with your visitors while enjoying nature. Whether you’re looking for a photo opportunity among sun flowers or a whimsical experience within the wooded area of The Blueberry Treehouse Farm, WNY is full of all sorts of u-pick farms worth checking out. Here’s our Guide to U-Pick Farms for all the inspiration you need.
4. Get up close and personal with Niagara Falls
If you have guests in town and they’ve never been to Niagara Falls, this has to be on your list of things to do! Seeing tons of water cascading down the river is something we locals are pretty used to but there’s a reason this is a major tourist attraction. For family-friendly fun, grab a poncho and set sail on the Maid of the Mist or get an even closer look at the falls with a Cave of the Winds tour. Check out all of the Niagara Falls State Park attractions or book through Niagara Falls Adventure Tours for all-inclusive access.
5. Explore the Lockport Cave Tour and Niagara Ripper
5 Gooding St, Lockport, NY / More Info
Lockport holds a lot of history when it comes to the building of the Erie Canal. For history buffs, the Lockport Cave & Underground Boat Ride offers a unique experience to travel through the eerie waters and walk through a 2100 foot water power tunnel. After the tour, try out the Niagara Zipper for a chance to zip across the Erie Canal.
6. Hunt for murals around Buffalo
Buffalo is quickly becoming a major scene for street art. In fact, we have multiple neighborhood guides for locating murals around the region. If you have visitors in town, this is the perfect opportunity to strike a pose with some pretty cool creations.
7. Party by land or water with Buffalo Pedal Tours
212 Ohio Street Buffalo, NY / More Info
For the party people, this is for you! Buffalo Pedal Tours offers a fun way to see the Buffalo region whether that be by land or water. Bar hop around Buffalo on a land tour or cruise around the waterfront with a water tour. Depending on what your guests are in town for, this tour is great for birthdays, bachelorette parties, group outings, and more.
8. See a movie at the drive-in
WNY happens to be home to a few drive-in theaters. From the newest Marvel movies to retro favorites, planning a night at the drive-in is a summer activity you can’t skip out on. Pack your car, grab a pizza, and you’ve got yourself a cheap, yet fun way to spend time with your visitors.
9. Head to Six Flags Darien Lake or Fantasy Island for theme park fun
- Six Flags Darien Lake – 9993 Alleghany Rd, Darien Center, NY / More Info
- Niagara Amusement Park & Splash World – 2400 Grand Island Blvd, Grand Island, NY / More Info
Amusement parks are basically the epitome of summer. Roller coasters, water rides, carnival games, fried food, etc., it’s all the goodness we could ask for. Luckily, WNY happens to be home to Six Flags Darien Lake and Niagara Amusement Park & Splash World. Both are great for providing entertainment to people of all ages.
10. Grab drinks on a rooftop patio
For a laid-back activity with out-of-towners, WNY just so happens to have spectacular sunset views over Lake Erie. Head to a rooftop patio or bar for evening drinks and a panoramic look over the city.