Buffalo isn't often a destination that appears on a traveler's must-visit list. But maybe it should be? It's the second-most populous city in New York State (following the City That Never Sleeps, of course). It's also less than an hour's drive south of breathtaking Niagara Falls, which does appear on many Americans' bucket lists.
However, we understand your hesitation: Buffalo's got a rep as being a gritty industrial town. But you might not know that when the French settled the area in the mid-18th century, they called it "Beau Fleuve" (Beautiful River). Perched at the confluence of Lake Erie and the Buffalo River, the city has a je ne sais quoi beauty about it, not to mention a number of exciting things to do. The restaurant scene is burgeoning, too — and by the way, they serve up more than just Buffalo wings. Plus, because Buffalo lacks the panache of other destinations, it's less likely to empty your pocketbook.
The best time to visit Buffalo is between June and August. Although summertime is the most crowded and the city's high season, the weather can't be beat: Average highs are in the upper 70s and lower 80s. The tourist crowds tend to wane a bit in the fall and spring, but these seasons can be pretty chilly. Wintertime in Buffalo can be downright dismal with temperatures at the freezing level or below, coupled with lots and lots of snow.
Data sourced from the National Climatic Data Center
Although the Iroquois American Indians settled the region long before anyone else, including the 17th-century French fur trappers, a Netherlands businessman is given the most credit for establishing the industrial course that Buffalo's history took. At the confluence of several waterways, Buffalo became an important transportation hub. However, the deindustrialization of the 20th century adversely affected the city.
Today, Buffalo is blue collar at its roots — and proud of it. The city is also on the upswing culturally, with the continuing restoration of gems like Shea's Performing Arts Center. And its neighborhoods are seeing a renewal of energy too — only head to Allentown to find proof.
There's more than just pizza and Buffalo wings in Buffalo, N.Y. Fancier restaurants like The Left Bank, which serves up an eclectic international menu, and the Italian-style Lombardo Ristorante are popular among foodies. If you want wings, you should try fan-favorites like Duff's Famous Wings, Anchor Bar or Gabriel's Gate. And if you're in the mood for pizza, head to Romeo & Juliet's Bakery & Café or Trattoria Aroma.
The best way to get around Buffalo is by car. Although the city offers both bus and train service, a car will be the most convenient option for getting to and from Buffalo hotels and the top things to do. If you'd rather take a taxi, you'll have to call one of the city's trusted companies; hailing a cab on the street isn't easy.
To get into the city, you can fly into Buffalo Niagara International Airport (BUF), which is located about 10 miles east of the city center. Alternatively, you can travel by Amtrak train, which drops passengers off near the city center, right off the Niagara Thruway.See details for Getting Around
Search for the best flight deals across Orbitz, Expedia, Kayak and more.
Dec 13, 2018
These tips can help you see the world at prices you can afford.
Dec 11, 2018
Create priceless honeymoon memories without breaking the bank.
Dec 04, 2018
You don't have to travel to a big city to experience nonstop Christmas fun.
Nov 26, 2018
These family-friendly mountain resorts offer exceptional snow sports and activities for all ages.
Nov 19, 2018
Get away to enjoy the views and activities at these properties around the world.
Nov 13, 2018
Find out which lines will help you save big on your next cruise vacation.
Nov 13, 2018
See how cruise lines are raising the bar with tech-savvy touches and improved luxury experiences.
Nov 13, 2018
Find out how taking a cruise can support your health, fitness and nutrition goals.
Nov 08, 2018
These tips can help you snap stunning and creative images without a fancy camera – or any experience.
Oct 22, 2018
Learn more about these accommodations and why they are so popular.