If you’re not traveling this spring break, Buffalo has some awesome day trips


Spring break can be a dream. Imagine a whole week off to relax at a sunny beach somewhere in Florida. There’s no schoolwork, no having to walk through a blizzard to get to your class, and most importantly, a lot of partying.

Well, hopefully.

But if you’re staying put this spring break, fear not! Buffalo can be really fun, even in the middle of winter. Buffalo is a super lively city and there’s always something to do. Between indoor attractions like rock climbing, outdoor activities like hiking and Canada so close to us, staying local this spring break isn’t so horrible.

It may not be your No. 1 choice but if you have a few hundred dollars to spend during spring break, Buffalo is a fun place to be. Here are our top five picks for a Buffalo “staycation” during spring break.

Niagara Climbing Center, 1333 Strad Ave., North Tonawanda

Niagara Climbing Center is the perfect place to let out all the energy you’ve saved up during the semester. Whether you’re an experienced climber or a first timer, Niagara Climbing Center is the perfect place to go.

With over 6000 square feet of climbing terrain and 30 rope stations, you could climb for a whole day and not even cover half of what the center has to offer. The center has beginner walls with easy obstacles, intermediate courses with bulges and some upside-down sections. For anyone skilled and daring enough, there are “roof” courses. Yes, there is a rock wall on their roof.

If this is your first time tackling a rock wall, don’t worry – you can dive right in and start to figure everything out on your own. You don’t have to embarrass yourself or get assessed by one of the workers before you can climb. Overall the atmosphere is really chill. The staff is welcoming, friendly and always available to help you improve your climbing skills. An all-day pass is only $12 with your student ID.

Fallsview Indoor Waterpark, 5685 Falls Ave., Niagara Falls, Canada

A quick day trip across the border to visit the mighty Niagara Falls is one of your best options for a “staycation.” While you’re there, check out North America’s largest indoor water park, located right next to the falls and the famous Clifton Hill entertainment area.

Fallsview Indoor Waterpark covers three acres and has 16 fun slides. This is the perfect place to go if you want to feel like you’re on vacation but not travel too far. The park also includes various pools, hot tubs, an arcade and other attractions, which will keep you busy all day.

The waterpark currently has a March break sale offering cheaper day passes and packages for the park and one of their resorts, if you feel like staying for more than one day. If you get bored of the slides, the Fallsview Casino is right down the street.

Eternal Flame Falls, 6121 Chestnut Ridge Rd., Orchard Park

Chestnut Ridge State Park is located about 30 minutes away from UB North Campus. There are tons of great hiking trails that will certainly be accessible come spring break. Arguably the most famous trail is that which leads to the Eternal Flame Falls.

The small waterfalls are a part of the Shale Creek Preserve. Within a grotto in the falls is a source of natural gas, which stays lit and accessible nearly year round. The trail to the falls is fairly easy, and not too long.

The park is totally free and open from 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. during weekdays. If you’re a lover of the outdoors or someone who just needs to kill some time, the Eternal Flame can be a fun journey in some of Western New York’s most beautiful outdoors.

The Buffalo Zoo, 300 Parkside Ave., Buffalo

Who doesn’t love animals? With over 1,200 exotic animals from around the globe, the Buffalo Zoo is a great day trip only a few minutes away from campus.

The Buffalo Zoo is the third oldest zoo in the United States and a Buffalo landmark. Their most recent attraction, The Arctic Edge Exhibit features Luna, a young polar bear who’s enjoying this snowy Buffalo winter. You can see her and other animals like elephants, lions, and crocodiles from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. every day for only $12.

It’s always fun to take a step back from all the schoolwork and enjoy the zoo with the same childish wonder you had as a kid. Taking your significant other with you can also be a great date.

Canal Side, 44 Prime St., Buffalo

There are so many things to do downtown it’s hard to keep track. Canal Side has proven to be one of Buffalo’s favorite places for their fun and affordable daily activities.

Activities include outdoor ice skating for only $6 from 3-7p.m., free concerts every Thursday and various vendors selling art, craft beers, loaded fries and other delicious treats.

You could have the perfect day downtown. Go skating and eat lunch at 716, one of Buffalo’s popular sports bars. At night see a free concert and top it off with a Buffalo Sabres game.

Don’t feel bad of you’re not spending hundreds of dollars to travel somewhere this spring break. The Buffalo area offers so many activities and attractions, including great places to eat and awesome concerts and performances.

Enjoy your spring break doing fun things in such a great city.

Max Kalnitz is an arts staff writer and can be reached at arts@ubspectrum.com