I was stuck at a conference in Niagara Falls and needed to get out and see something real and natural, so I rented a bike and rode to NOTL and back on a very pleasant Saturday in mid-November. It was a wonderful break from the tourist hell that Niagara Falls is.
It is about 25 km each way (I didn't go north towards Fort Erie) and fairly easy riding if you are a regular rider - pretty flat except for the one big ride down the escarpment and then back up at Queenston Heights. There are lots of places to stop along the way for scenic views, but frankly most of time there are trees and forest beside you and you don't have views very much of the time.
The most unusual and unexpected stop was at a Buddhist Monastery just as you leave NF, that was very pleasant and serene and quite beautiful. I also had a very nice stop at Queenston Hieghts at the Brock Monument - about half way between NF and NOTL. You can also stop at the Butterfly Garden and other gardens, as well as wineries when you get closer to NOTL.
Another good idea is that you can leave NF early and spend time on the tourist walk before the crowds start to come and enjoy it before heading out.
There is a separate bike path almost the whole way though you have to cross the highway a couple of times. I did not see the path leaving Queenston Heights and took the road down, which really wasn't a problem, but coming back up I managed to find the path up so I didn't have to use the road, which would not have been fun. It really wasn't that big a deal to ride back up either, even after a sample of ice wine from a winery near the bottom.
I rented a hybrid bike from ZOOM Leisure bikes - they delivered and picked it up at my Hotel - it was a good enough bike, but it is never the same as riding your own.
There are a few places to use washrooms if you need, like at Queenston Heights or the wineries. There was very little car traffic, and they are respectful of my bike when I was on the road, but it was mid November and there would probably be much more traffic at other times of the year, both on the trail and on the roads.
There are a couple of nice parks along the river and lake in NOTL and they have very good gelato there for a snack.
So it is a great way to see the country side and get some fresh air and get out of NF for a day. However, it is not a stunning nature ride in the wilderness. But if a pleasant day of riding is your thing, it is a great way to send the day and tour around.
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