Here in the Niagara Region, we are blessed with many great natural wonders!
Nestled between two of the Great Lakes, Ontario and Erie, roars the mighty Niagara Falls. The Falls have been a sight to behold for centuries and have long been thought of as a magical, mythical place.
But not far away, created by the ice age, lies the Niagara Escarpment. It is here that the true beauty of Niagara can be experienced. Through the many hiking trails along the Bruce Trail that run from Niagara to Tobermory, are a mirad of water falls, cliffs, trails and wooded forests dotted with massive bolders and rocks.
And they are filled with Faery Magick!
The Niagara Gorge
The Niagara Glen is a unique spot of beauty deep in the Great Gorge that has been a designated Nature Reserve since 1992. Stairways lead to 4 km of paths 200 ft down that wind through a pristine pocket of Carolinian Forest, past boulders left behind as the Falls eroded through the area thousands of years ago.
There's lots of interesting geology and biology to explore.
The Niagara Glen overlooks the Niagara River Whirlpool, a unique natural phenomenon that you must see to believe! Thousands of years ago, as the Niagara River slowly eroded its way through the Niagara Escarpment, creating the Great Gorge, a right-angle turn in the river's path forced the rushing water into a deep counter-clockwise spin.
It is one of our favourite places to go and we spend many hours enjoying
Queenston Heights -Bruce Trail
Nestled high atop the Niagara Escarpment, this is the birthplace of Niagara Falls - garden and nature lovers, hikers and picnickers have used this park for generations.
Queenston Heights Park is also a terminus point of the Bruce Trail, which winds it way northward over several hundred kilometers to Tobermory.
This trail passes through the Niagara Escarpment, which has been recognized as a world biosphere by U.N.E.S.C.O.
Along the trail, just past the lime kilns, is the Faery Glen. This special area is sunken bowl below the trail on the edge of the escarpment. Surrounded by massive ice age boulders and covered in moss is this special and sacred meeting place for Fae Folk of all kinds. If you visit, and perch yourself upon a rock and sit very, very still and silent you might just be lucky enough to catch a glimspe of a faery or hear them sing!
Located 2kms south of the Falls, off of the Parkway, is a series of man-made islands called Dufferin Islands. Since the 1820’s this has been a popular spot with locals and tourists alike. It is a quiet oasis away from the hustle and bustle of the Falls District. It’s meandering paths, tranquil ponds are a great spot to picnic and enjoy the wide variety of wildlife that call the Islands home. It a favourite spot for bird watchers and on many occasion, the watchers have seen more than just birds among the ferns! Trolls and Will O’ the Wisps along with 4 generations of Elven folk have been spotted on many occasions!
Their mission statement is: "To build healthy children and communities who feel a deep connection to the natural world." That is just one of the many reasons we love Heartland Forest! They have a deep appreciation and understanding of the delicate balance of nature and need for education to teach respect and care so that future generations can enjoy the same unique experience only nature can provide. Preservation, education and accessibility form the foundation of Heartland Forest so it is no wonder the Wee Folk reside in abundance there! You can even see some of their homes from the paths that wind through the natural, undisturbed forest. We visit this 93 acre property as often as we can and hope to be working with them soon on something Faery special!
Balls Falls Nature trail
Ball's Falls Conservation Area offers spectacular scenery, natural beauty and a small historic village. Hike or stroll along the Cataract Trail as it winds its way along the banks of Twenty-Mile creek.
Visitors can explore the two spectacular upper and lower cataract falls that spill over the edge of the Niagara Escarpment. 50 species of migrant and 162 nesting birds can be seen here. As well as many speices of animals and reptiles, some of which are endangered. The Twenty Valley at Ball's Falls is incredibly breath taking and home to a unique rock known to be the site of annual faery ball! Although we've never been lucky enough to get an invite, you can feel the magic of the place vibrating in the air!