I remember the first time I visited the temple of Abu Simbel in Upper Egypt (which is really Lower Egypt, but that is for another time). I felt so small. There, above me, stood towering, 68-foot-tall statues of Ramesses II, and it was so overwhelming that I was never able to forget that moment. It was the first time I had experienced such a strong reaction to a place. I felt it right in my gut, in my soul, and I touched one of the statues to make sure it was real. I had seen many other incredible places in my lifetime, both natural and manmade, and have seen many since; but nothing ever struck me quite as strongly again, until I witnessed the rushing waters of Niagara Falls. It was like thunder: pure power crashing down 50 meters, slamming, crushing, the mist rising up like a steady rain. At Abu Simbel, I saw what man could do, but also that humankind could never match the power of nature. Niagara Falls is something I can watch over and over again, and of which I’ll never tire. The region surrounding the falls, on both sides, has so much to offer. Niagara-on-the-Lake, north of the falls in Canada, is not to be missed for its wine and theater—nor is Buffalo, named “America’s Favorite City” by readers of Travel and Leisure.
— Eric J. Gordon, Founder, Beyond Times Square