My 13 yo daughter and I had a great time in NF last weekend! Just wanted to say thanks to the forum for all the tips, esp about the Marriott Courtyard. You may remember that I was anxious about our hotel choice. Not knowing the town, I was at the mercy of the hotel websites, which aren't always that accurate! We were so pleased with the Courtyard. It was a nice hotel and very clean, but the best part was the location. Close enough to walk to everything, but not right in the middle of all the craziness of Clifton Hill area. We lucked into the 10th floor (the top) and had a view of the parking lot, but beyond we could see the river and the mist from the falls. Room was large enough and incredibly comfy beds.
We had the 2-nite package which included buffet breakfast and a $45 dinner voucher for the Keg, which is attached to the hotel. After reading reviews here, I was careful to keep our Keg dinner to the $45, which I did, but the food was awful. My daughter's chicken fingers and fries were OK, but my Chicken Florentine was hard and dry, barely edible. The buffet breakfasts were standard fare, food sitting out too long, altho the omelet station was good. Truthfully, if I had been paying separately for the breakfast buffet, I wouldn't have returned the 2nd day.
Activities: Hits: Fireworks: fantastic show, only on Fri and Sun, 10pm sharp, don't be late or you'll miss it completely as it's only 5 min long! Great view from sitting in the park across the street from the general Table Rock area; Maid of the Mist, Skywheel (goes around 4 times with awesome view from the top), Ripley's (esp the wax mold of your hand), Louis Tussaud's Wax Museum, Skylon Tower.
Misses: Guinness (boring!); Movieland Wax Museum, altho the "horror" bit at the end was fun; Souvenir City which confounded us. It's called a "city" so we expected a complex of several boutiques, including the Rossi glass outlet. All it consists of is a cafeteria, 1 large souvenir store (typical stuff), and the Rossi studio. It was interesting to watch the glass pieces being made, but the Rossi outlet in town beside the IMAX theatre is just as good. So really see no need to go out to Souvenir city.
Just SO-SO was the IMAX theatre movie. Should have concentrated on the daredevils. What IMAX does best is give you the kind of fast-moving footage that gets you in the pit of the stomach and makes you feel like you're actually going down the falls or thru the rapids. There was just a few seconds of this at the end of the movie.
Wish we did: The Cave of the Winds, but daughter wasn't into it; Tour of the power plant: we passed this on our way out to see the Floral Clock. I pulled over to look at it. Very impressive looking and I saw a sign that said they offered tours. I would have loved it but would have bored my daughter silly. So maybe another time.
One more note on the hotel: They have an indoor and an outdoor pool with a slide, which look very inviting. We were looking forward to a swim and some sunning on Sat afternoon. But we found out the pools are only 4.5 ft deep and are chockful of toddlers at all hours of the day, even thru the dinner hours. So they'e perfect for families with toddlers, but if that's not you, forget the pool.
All in all, we had a lot of fun, lots of giggles and tons of pics of the falls and the complete wackiness of Clifton Hill. Thanks to all who helped advise us.
(This was the 2nd time I tried to post this trip report. First one didn't take. Just warning you in case it shows up one day and you're thinking, "Didn't I read this already?"