Home of cool Niagara Falls, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Martin House, Buffalo & Erie County Naval and Military Park and amazing of things to do in Buffalo on Memorial Day. We've compiled some of the best activities to do in Buffalo on this Memorial Day holiday.
One of the Earth’s most awe-inspiring natural wonders, Niagara Falls lies just half an hour’s drive to the north of Buffalo. Straddling the border between Canada and the US, it makes for one of the most spectacular sights imaginable. Phenomenal views, photos and boat trips can all be enjoyed at the wonderful waterfall.
Impressively stretching over 3,200 feet in length, the famous fall is actually made up of three different ones, the largest of which is Horseshoe Falls. Next to it you can see both American Falls and Bridal Veil Falls with the humongous waterfall reaching up to 165 feet in height at its highest point.
Due to its staggering size and scale, Niagara Falls is not to be missed when in town during Memorial Day. Its endless wall of water makes for some fantastic photos with unforgettable boat trips to be had at the foot of the falls.
To the east of Delaware Park is yet another of Buffalo’s must-see tourist attractions: the marvelous Martin House. Designed by the world-famous Frank Lloyd Wright, the complex showcases some stunning Prairie School architecture and is regularly ranked among his most important and impressive works.
Built between 1902 and 1905, Martin House is undoubtedly the complex’s standout sight due to its unusually large size, open plan layout and its intricate details and design. Named after businessman Darwin Martin who commissioned the whole project, it is connected to various other buildings on the property, such as a conservatory, carriage house, and gardener’s cottage.
Now a National Historic Landmark, the complex is lovely to tour around with arresting architecture, fabulous furnishing, and gorgeous gardens wherever you go on Memorial Day visit.
Lying on the shores of Lake Erie, the brilliant Buffalo & Erie County Naval and Military Park can be found just a short stroll from the center. Besides decommissioned US Naval vessels, the museum has interesting artifacts and exhibits for you to explore on the history of the American Navy.
First opened to the public in 1979, it now contains a captivating collection of vessels, vehicles, and aircraft with uniforms and equipment, medals, and military memorabilia on show. While its displays are very well done, the highlight is of course exploring its former Naval vessels that include the USS Little Rock, the USS The Sullivans and the USS Croaker.
On top of wandering about the inside of the cruiser, destroyer and submarine, guests can visit its moving Monuments Garden with an awesome Maritime Simulator experience also on offer on Memorial Day.
Exhibiting exquisite Art Deco-style architecture, the breathtaking Buffalo City Hall rises dramatically above downtown far below. The city’s standout symbol and sight, it is a treat to tour around with beautiful features to be found both inside and out.
One of the largest and tallest municipal buildings in the States, it was erected in 1931 and towers to a staggering 396 feet in height. Its enormous exterior’s geometric design and decorative statues and friezes make for a striking sight, while its interior also boasts refined council chambers and a gorgeous stained-glass window ceiling.
In addition to visiting on Memorial Day, the mayor’s office and seeing some of the fine features that coat its thirty-two floors, guests can venture out onto its observation deck that offers divine views of the city with Niagara Falls to be spotted far off in the distance.
At the other end of Delaware Park you can find the magnificent Buffalo Zoo, which has long been one of the city’s most popular tourist attractions. Opened in 1875, it contains all kinds of incredible animals with everything from rhinos and tigers to sloths, sea lions, and spectacled bears on show.
A firm favorite with families, its spacious enclosures and educational exhibits contain over a thousand mammals and birds, reptiles, and amphibians. You’ll learn all about the animals’ natural habitats and behavior in the wild through informative displays and zookeeper demonstrations.
Besides scenic sections, such as Rainforest Falls and Otter Creek, the nation’s third-oldest zoo also offers amazing animal encounters where you can meet, feed and photograph your favorite furry friend during Memorial Day weekend.
Home to an astounding array of impressive artworks, the excellent Albright-Knox Art Gallery can be found just ten minutes drive north of the center. Popular with locals and tourists alike on Memorial Day, its endless art-filled galleries lie at the western end of Delaware Park amid lush grounds and gardens.
One of the oldest public arts institutions in the country, it was established in 1862 with its huge collection now occupying a massive and majestic Greek Revival-style building. In total, it displays over 6,500 works with everything from abstract expressionism and pop art to cubist, surrealist, and post-impressionist styles on show.
Just a short stroll southeast of the center you can find the splendid Pierce-Arrow Museum. Home to classic cars, artifacts and exhibits, it offers a fascinating look at the important role Buffalo played in the early days of the automotive industry.
Founded in 1997, the museum now occupies several buildings downtown with countless shiny cars, vintage bicycles, and amazing old motorcycles scattered about its showroom. While most are from the Pierce-Arrow Motor Car Company, many other makes and models are displayed alongside interesting exhibits on the history and evolution of the automobile industry.
The highlight is certainly its full scale replica of a 1927 filling station designed by renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright himself.
Another popular thing to do when in Buffalo on Memorial Day is to catch a scintillating show at Shea’s Performing Arts Center. Located right in the heart of town, its campus now has three fabulous theaters for you to check out that put on brilliant Broadway productions, plays, and more by a whole host of local and internationally renowned theater companies.
The crown jewel of both the campus and the city’s Theater District is undoubtedly Shea’s Buffalo Theater which first opened in 1926 and showed silent movies. Wonderfully well-preserved, it boasts a grand marble-clad lobby with an enormous and elegant balcony, ornate chandeliers, and a richly decorated ceiling overlooking its lavish stage and seating areas.
While watching a show here makes for a memorable experience, both Shea’s Smith and the 710 Theatre put on awesome spectacles with unforgettable stand-up comedy nights, dance shows, and theater performances.