Genesee County Blog

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Experience “Life in the Past Lane” at Lockport Locks & Erie Canal Cruises

🎵Low bridge everybody down! Low bridge, ‘cause we’re coming to a town. 🎵

At Lockport Locks & Erie Canal Cruises, you’ll be singing and celebrating over a century of American history as you cruise down the Erie Canal. Located just outside Genesee County (just 15 minutes from Niagara Falls along historic Rt. 104) and headquartered in a renovated 1840 warehouse, Lockport Locks & Erie Canal Cruises offers a relaxing adventure and exciting take on history - with daily and charter cruises, lively narration, and private charters and event space.

Experience the Canal

History is, in fact, the main theme at Lockport Locks & Erie Canal Cruises. Experience “Life in the Past Lane" when you take a 2-hour scenic cruise down the Erie Canal and enjoy the sights and sounds of the waterway that changed the nation. From May through Octoberbook an experience that takes you through Locks 34 and 35, the only double set of locks on the Canal, and ride 50 feet up as it fills with over three million gallons of water in mere minutes. Pass under Lockport’s "Upside Down Bridge," Lockport's "Big Bridge" (the widest bridge in the U.S. at 299 feet wide), through the "deep rock cut" and under lift bridges (everybody down!). Cruise guides provide narration set to popular 1800s music – setting the scene and the mood as you navigate the canal.

Photo Courtesy of Dennis Steiner

Learn the History

Since 1987, Lockport Locks & Erie Canal Cruises has been a family owned business and community staple. From the boats to the building and event space, every detail has been carefully considered and immaculately preserved. The original stone walls are the remains of what was once Niagara Preserving Company, and the property was also at one time Western Block Company, a business that manufactured block and tackle for pulleys used on canal boats. Many of these artifacts can still be found throughout the spacious building.

Across the parking stands a 4-story stone building built in the 1840's. The building was once a flour mill that used the water from the Erie Canal as its main power source, and channeled its excess water down a spillway, which still carries water to the canal today. The building - preserved in its original condition - serves as the Lockport & Erie Canal Heritage Museum with hands-on canal related exhibits, a working model of a lock, and many interesting, and educational displays and artifacts.

Make a Memory that Lasts

But, Lockport Locks & Erie Canal Cruises is more than just a history lesson and a cruise along the canal. Each of its three vessels and spacious buildings can be rented out for private events, functions, and even weddings. Book time on a boat with food, drinks, music, and the opportunity to choose-your-own-adventure - we mean, route! Each has its own great atmosphere:

  • Lockview IV, a 48-passenger boat built to resemble the African Queen
  • Lockview V, a 125 passenger, double decker boat built for the Great Lakes
  • Lockview VI, a 150 passenger, double-deck Mississippi-style stern paddle wheel

Back on dry land, choose from one of three event spaces:

  • The Veranda Banquet Room has over 100 windows overlooking the Canal for stunning views from every angle.
  • The Meeting Room boasts a giant skylight and windows that overlook cobblestone walkways and the Canal for an atmosphere that will whisk you back in time.
  • The Canalside Grove has an enclosed shelter but puts your event outside directly on the canal. (And let’s not forget the 15-foot fully stocked bar available!)

So good are they at what they do, Lockport Locks & Erie Canal Cruises was recently entered into the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence Hall of Fame for earning a Certificate of Excellence every year for the past five years! With so many satisfied customers, you’re sure to be one too.