Toronto to Niagara Falls Day Trip

Public Transit is the cheapest way to get to Niagara Falls from Toronto - A family of 5 can save over $300 compared to private tours.

Updated on May, 17 2018
Canadian Horseshoe Falls viewed from Skylon Tower
Canadian Horseshoe Falls viewed from Skylon Tower

Niagara falls, one of the world's top ten tourist attractions, is closely associated with Toronto by virtue of its proximity. If you have never seen Niagara Falls in person and you are vacationing in Toronto, we would highly recommend a Niagara falls day trip to experience this natural wonder.

Pictures and videos simply don't do justice to the awesome sense of power and grandeur one experiences by being there. When visiting Niagara Falls we also recommend going up to the Skylon Tower Observation Deck which will provide you with a spectacular overview of the falls and the surrounding areas. On a clear day you can make out the Toronto Skyline far across Lake Ontario. We also recommend a ride on the Hornblower catamaran (formerly Maid of the Mist) which will take you on a breathtaking (and wet) ride to the base Horseshoe Falls.

Numerous tour operators offer package tours from downtown Toronto to Niagara Falls and many include the Hornblower Voyage To The Falls cruise in their price. While these tours are great, they are more restrictive time-wise and cost considerably more than using public transport. The Go Train/Bus and local bus service, by far the cheapest way to get to Niagara Falls from Toronto.

Getting from Union Station to Niagara Falls on public transit

Throughout the year you can travel from Union Station in Downtown Toronto to Niagara Falls via the Go Train to Burlington Station, transferring to a Go Bus that will be waiting at the station to take you on to Niagara Falls. This trip takes about 2½ hours with several departure times available daily. See Niagara Falls Go Train and Bus Schedules for exact times.

On Friday, Saturday and Sunday during the peak visitor season, Go Trains run both directions between Toronto and Niagara Falls multiple times each day with no need to transfer to the Go Bus in Burlington. These seasonal trains take about 2 hours each way.

Go Trains and Buses terminate at the Via Rail Station in Niagara Falls. From there you can walk along River Road to the falls in about 40 minutes or take a Niagara Falls WEGO bus which provides transporatation to the park and other popular attractions in the area. For more information about Niagara Falls see the Official Website: Niagara Falls Tourism.

Cost Comparisons of a Toronto to Niagara Falls Day Trip using Public Transportation versus Private Tours

The round trip cost per adult from Union Station in Downtown Toronto is $38.60* for Go Transit plus $8.00 for a day pass on the Niagara Falls Shuttle, a total of $46.60. If you add $25.95 to include the Hornblower Cruise the total per adult is about $73. This compares favourably to the starting rate of about $118 plus tax for a private Tour Bus | Hornblower Voyage To The Falls tour. If you are travelling with children your savings will be much higher - Go Transit $19.30* / Falls Shuttle - $5.00 (Free if under 6) / Hornblower Voyage To The Falls $15.95, a total of $40.25 compared to an average of about $96 including tax for a similar package tour. A family of 2 Adults and 2 Children can save over $200 compared to a similar tour bus package.

Besides the considerable savings over private tours, you'll enjoy more departure and return times, providing up to 9 hours to explore Niagara Falls on Weekdays and up to nearly 12 hours on weekends. Most package tours only give you 2-3 hours of free time at the Falls. Niagara Falls Weekend Go Trains are scheduled so you can also enjoy a late afternoon departure, spend the evening at the Falls and still get a train back to Toronto.

Save even more with the new $30 Weekend Getaway to Niagara Falls Package

If your schedule allows you to visit Niagara Falls on the weekend (Fri, Sat and Sunday), you can enjoy an incredible $30 per adult or $60 per family package deal on round-trip transportation between Union Station in downtown Toronto and Niagara Falls. For Seniors (65+) the rate is only $22.02 and for Children (6-12) it is only $16.02. A Family rate is also available for up to 5 family members for just $60.

Niagara Parks has partnered with Go Transit Niagara seasonal train service and the WEGO hop-on hop-off bus service to provide these exceptional rates. You save almost $17 per adult compared to purchasing the fares individually. The savings for a family of 5 can exceed $300 compared to the lowest priced private tours and more than $100 compared to purchasing the Go Train and WEGO fares individually.

This package is perfect for a day trip, it is also great for those who would like to stay for one or two nights as you can return on a different day and the included WEGO bus pass is valid for the entire weekend. Scroll down for some great weekend rates on hotels in Niagara Falls.

To take advantage of these low rates you must book your tickets online on Niagara Parks website. The only downside is the tickets are not refundable, so be sure your travel plans are not likely to change before placing your order.

See the table below for train times.

Toronto to Niagara Falls Weekend Go Train Schedule

The Toronto to Niagara Falls Go weekend Go Train runs May 18–21, weekends and holiday Mondays from June 22 through September 3, and October 5–8.

To Niagara Falls

Days Union Exhibition Port Credit Oakville Burlington St. Catharines Niagara Falls
Fri 18:20 18:26 18:36 18:49 19:00 19:58 20:24
Sat, Sun, Hol 09:00 09:06 09:18 09:29 09:40 10:38 11:04
Sat, Sun, Hol 16:18 16:24 16:36 16:47 16:58 17:56 18:22
Sat, Sun, Hol 20:10 20:16 20:28 20:39 20:50 21:48 22:14

Return to Toronto

Days Niagara Falls St. Catharines Burlington Oakville Port Credit Exhibition Union
Fri 20:40 21:05 22:03 22:15 22:24 22:34 22:44
Sat, Sun, Hol 08:30 08:55 09:53 10:05 10:14 10:24 10:34
Sat, Sun, Hol 11:30 11:55 12:53 13:05 13:14 13:24 13:34
Sat, Sun, Hol 19:20 19:45 20:43 20:55 21:04 21:14 21:24
Sat, Sun, Hol 23:00 23:25 00:23 00:35 00:44 00:54 01:04

*HOL = Holiday Mondays

Weekend Hotel Deals in Niagara Falls. Prices are for a 2 Night Stay.

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Package Tours to Niagara Falls: Added Value

If you would prefer an all-in-one package tour, both tours below provide added and convenience.

Tour depiction

Recommended Tour

Niagara Falls Day Tour from Toronto

Rating 3.5 Star Rating

From: $92.15 CAD...May vary slightly due to currency fluctuations

Experience the excitement and beauty of Niagara Falls on a Toronto to Niagara Falls Tour! Feel the Thunder of the Falls, enjoy a leisurely drive along the scenic Niagara River, take in the charming sights at Niagara-on-the-Lake, and top off your day with complimentary wine tasting.

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Tour depiction

Recommended Tour

Niagara Falls Small-Group Day Tour from Toronto

Rating 5 Star Rating

From: $103.15 CAD...May vary slightly due to currency fluctuations

Enjoy a "must-do" small-group 9 hour guided tour of Niagara Falls from Toronto. Your day starts with pick up from one of our many Downtown Toronto hotels and locations, from Mississauga or from Pearson Airport (weekend only). Depart early in the morning (around 7:30am) to avoid traffic and long lines in Niagara Falls. This tour runs in partnership with Tourism Toronto, the Niagara Falls Tourism Association and Destination Ontario.Enjoy free time in Niagara Falls to explore and participate in optional activities like the "Voyage to the Falls" boat ride across the Falls and more. Explore the flashy neighbourhood of Clifton Hill. Visit a famous local country market to try local snacks or buy souvenirs. Stop for photo opportunities at the Niagara Whirlpool Rapids and other seasonal sights. Enjoy a scenic and narrated drive across the Niagara Parkway and Niagara-on-the-Lake. Sample local wines including icewine. Return around 5pm to enjoy a full evening in Toronto.

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Facts For Your Visit

Official Website: Niagara Falls

Fee: No, Niagara falls is a public park, however, there are admission fees for some of the area attractions.

Category: Landmarks & Historical Buildings

Address: 332 Prospect St
Niagara Falls, NY 14303

Phone: (716) 278-1796

Reviews

Yelp Rating:
4.5 out of 5 4.5 Star Rating
Based on 523 Reviews.

See all reviews on Yelp

5 Star Rating I grew up right by The Falls yet I've never taken for granted the spectacle of one of nature's great Seven Wonders of the World. With the Robert E. Moses... Read More

Jennifer O. Jul-21-2021

1 Star Rating Sheraton falls view, big name with nothing in it. My stay for two nights is very very bad. 1- I booked falls view and I can't see the falls unless I stick... Read More

Saher G. Jul-22-2021

5 Star Rating The natural beauty of the falls is so breath-taking and many don't realize all it has to offer. I lived here all my life and we try to go 2-3 times a year.... Read More

Connie P. Jul-05-2021

Accommodations near Niagara Falls:

Directions

Go Transit Line Nearest Station Walking Time
Yonge-University-SpadinaUnion Station40 Minutes (0 Minutes with Falls Shuttle)

How to get to Niagara Falls by Go Transit

From Union Station take the Lakeshore West Go Train to Burlington GO Station where you will immediately transfer onto a Go Bus to continue to the Niagara Falls Via Station (On Saturday and Sunday from late in May thru late September there is one train in the morning going right through to Niagara Falls eliminating the bus transfer). From, there you can purchase a 24 hour pass for the WEGO bus, has a stop right in front of the Via Station and will take you right to the falls.

Go Transit Fares each way between Toronto and Niagara Falls
Adults 12 years and up$19.30
Children 5-11 years$9.65
Infant under 5 years (one per adult)Free
Day Pass on the Niagara Falls Wego Bus
Adults 13 years and up$8.00
Children 6-12$5.00
Under 6Free

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Niagara Falls takes on a whole new perspective during the winter as you can see from this video we made after our own winter day trip to the falls. If the weather is reasonable, we would highly recommend a winter visit.

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