A Barrel Full of Facts: 8 Fun Facts about Niagara Falls

by Gavin Darvell

Nature can be a powerful thing: winds, heat, and water. One place that emphasises the power of nature is Niagara Falls. The power of the water flowing over into the continuing river below. The almighty roar and force of the water is enough to make you gaze upon it in awe. Such an inspiring and strikingly beautiful place needs to be respected, especially if you are visiting there for a first glimpse.

Niagara Falls has been attracting people to view, capture in pictures and videos, even survive it, think barrel rolls, for years. But what do you know about this popular attraction?

Armed with the following facts, you’ll be the envy of your partner, family, or group the next time you visit. Pen and paper at the ready as we give you 8 fun facts about Niagara Falls.




1. On and on the river flows

I’ve mentioned its power, well the supply comes from the following lakes. Lake Superior, Michigan, Huron and Erie. They all drain into the Niagara River before making its journey via the falls to Lake Ontario. No wonder it’s a force to be reckoned with, and the world’s largest freshwater system.


2. Who knew a waterfall was so popular?

They visit from far and wide to see it. In fact, around 8 million visitor’s head there each year.


3. Roll out the barrel

I also mentioned about going over the falls in a barrel. The first person to do so was Annie Edson Taylor, a 63-year-old schoolteacher. Slight concussion and a minor cut to the head followed her fall! There have been many attempts since, with at least 12 having survived. Many others, though, have lost their life. Don’t even think about it! It’s illegal and can include jail time. Best to just enjoy the views and the sounds.


4. It’s tall but not the tallest

Put a measuring tape vertically and you are looking at 176 ft in some sections of the falls. But it’s not the USA’s tallest waterfall. That accolade goes to Yosemite Falls which is 2,425ft! It’s horizontally where Niagara has the edge. Over 700,000 gallons of water flow over it per second! At a speed of 25 miles per hour. So it’s the largest by width and volume.


5. Not as old as you think

The Niagara Falls are relatively speaking, quite young! They date back to the end of the last ice age, so around 12,000 years ago. It’s a powerful baby!


6. Three into one

There are actually three Falls, two on the American side (the American Falls and Lacy Bridal Veil Falls), and one on the Canadian side, The Horseshoe Falls. Although at least half of that is on the American side.



Photo by Bianca Ackermann on Unsplash


7. A place fit for anyone

That most famous of Frenchmen Napoleon Bonaparte’s brother visited the falls on his honeymoon. Jerome, that’s his name, came up from New Orleans.


8. It’s heading south!

Like with everything, the falls are actually heading south! About one foot per year. Give it around 50,000 years and it’ll be Lake Erie and will have vanished from the travel map. Better hurry and visit it now!


There we are, 8 fun facts about the Niagara Falls to ensure that you are the person to turn to when your travelling companions ask a question. This most famous of attractions still enthrals and delights those that visit. Enjoy the beauty of nature, there’s nothing better.

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