Snow. Wings. Sports (and probably sports curses). If Buffalo gets brought up in conversation, these are likely the first things you’ll hear about it. But if you ask a Buffalonian, they’ll almost certainly tell you that the city is much, much more than that. Buffalo has a distinct charm that you’ll only really understand if you’ve ever paid it a visit. After all, there has to be something special about a place that so many proudly call home despite it being one of the cloudiest and, yes, snowiest cities in the country.
Since its revival began back in the early 2000s, the downtown area—particularly the waterfront—has reclaimed its place as the epicenter of activity. If you’re lucky enough to spend a day or weekend in Buffalo, NY, there are a few things that you’ll want to add to your itinerary.
Head Down to the Waterfront
Found right on the northeastern tip of Lake Erie, Buffalo’s downtown waterfront is perfect for anything from a family outing to a romantic date night. There’s something for everyone to enjoy, no matter what season it is.
Kick Back at Canalside
Canalside is one of Buffalo’s most treasured destinations throughout the year. In wintertime, locals and tourists alike come in droves to Canalside’s lit-up ice rink. Patrons can rent out skates, ice bikes, and curling equipment.
If cold weather isn’t your thing, make sure to check out Canalside in late spring and summer for a stroll on the boardwalk. On the north end of the boardwalk, guests can find the Queen City Bike Ferry Landing. Operating from Memorial Day to Labor Day, bikers and pedestrians can ride the ferry down to the Outer Harbor and back for just a dollar. Opposite that, on the south end, is Canalside’s beach and playground area. In between, there are several grassy lawns and Adirondack chairs, perfect for watching kayakers and boaters on the water.
Get Active at the Outer Harbor
Further south from Canalside is the Outer Harbor, the more natural and nature-oriented side of the waterfront. With over 200 acres of open, green spaces, the Outer Harbor invites guests to walk, bike, and run in the fresh air. Wilkeson Pointe is a favorite spot among locals, as it has kayak and bicycle rentals, volleyball courts, beach access, and a community beer garden for refreshments.
Once at the Outer Harbor, the Greenway Nature Trail continues further south toward some of the area’s best outdoor hot spots. The first landmark is Hammock Grove, a somewhat secret with one of the best views of the waterfront. True to its name, this is a small grassy spot with several free-to-use hammocks along the trail. After stopping for a quick rest, the trail leads down to the Lakeside Bike Park, which features pump tracks and skill loops for riders of all ages.
Have a Blast at the Ballpark
After a day jam-packed with adventure and excitement, there’s nothing better to top it all off than a beautiful afternoon or evening at Sahlen Field, home of the Buffalo Bisons. Often called The Herd, this minor league team is a Triple-A affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays. The stadium is one of the biggest in minor league baseball and is well known for its “class retro” style. Home game tickets often include extra experiences, like fireworks shows and happy hour discounts.
Before the game starts, don’t forget to grab some pre-game grub at Pub at the Park. Located right on the mezzanine level of the first base side of Sahlen Field, Pub at the Park has great buffet deals for the whole crew and local craft beers for adults over 21. How can you beat all-you-can-eat Buffalo favorite eats and ice-cold beverages before the ball game?