Visitors to the Niagara Falls region enjoy the area for the spectacular falls, the Butterfly Conservatory, the Clifton Hill Movieland Wax Museum of the Stars and the Shaw Festival in nearby Niagara-on-the-Lake. A few beaches around the Niagara region and nearby along the shores of Lake Ontario and Lake Erie also lure vacationers for a day of swimming and relaxation.
On the southern shores of Lake Erie, Crystal Beach is a small town now part of Fort Erie (forterie.on.ca) and dates back to the 1800s. With its white sand beaches, Crystal Beach is a mix of cottage residences, antique shops and charming restaurants. Once the scene of historic boardwalks, boathouses and elegant hotels, Crystal Beach still attracts families on day trips looking for sun and surf.
Located about 20 minutes south of Niagara Falls on Lake Erie, Sherkston Shores (Sherkston.com) offers 560 acres of RV camping and a holiday park home-rental service for families to enjoy for a week or weekend. The area boasts two long beaches, several pools and hot tubs and a quarry beach. After a day at the beach, visitors can enjoy tennis courts, a baseball diamond, an arcade and several restaurants.
Lake Erie Gold Coast Beaches
Serious beachgoers might consider driving farther along Lake Erie to the "Gold Coast" beaches stretching from Port Dover to Long Point. Also dubbed the "Riviera of Ontario," the Gold Coast not only has long beaches with shallow, sand-bottom entry into the lake, but also the prospects of hiking and fishing. The Gold Coast name came from the more than 400 shipwrecks off the coast of Long Point. Another popular beach along Lake Erie is Port Stanley (portstanley.ca), with its Little Beach for children and Big Beach for teens and adults.
Lake Ontario Options
Along Lake Ontario and close to Niagara, several towns have public beaches for visitors, such as Fifty Point Conservation Beach and Grimsby Beach in Grimsby, Ontario (tourismniagara.com/grimsby) or Queens Royal Beach and Ryerson Beach Park in Niagara-on-the-Lake (niagaraonthelake.com). The Chippawa Creek Conservation Trail (ontariotrails.on.ca) on the Welland River has a man-made lake, Dils Lake, for boating and swimming.