What do chicken wings, Theodore Roosevelt, Cheerios, and the Erie Canal have in common? Explore New York’s second largest city and you’ll quickly find out. Visit the site where Theodore Roosevelt took the oath of office, then head to the heart of the city transformed by the Erie Canal in 1825. When the canal opened, Buffalo became the hub of transportation, immigration, and commerce. Today, a renaissance taking place at Canalside, Buffalo’s historic canal district, is making the waterfront one of western New York’s most vibrant places to explore and enjoy. Choose from boating, cycling, and hiking options to add active adventure to your journey.
Go Where the Buffalonians Roam
Visit Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site and the Erie Canal
Start Your Trip Here
Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site
641 Delaware Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14202
Immerse yourself in the sights, sounds and emotions surrounding the pivotal moment in our nation's history when in 1901 Theodore Roosevelt took the oath of office to become president of the United States. As governor of New York, T.R. championed modernization of the state’s waterways, leading to the canal system that we use today. As president, he pushed for construction of the Panama Canal between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Discover how the enduring legacy of one of America's greatest presidents affects our lives today. Note that visits are by guided tour only, starting at 9:30am weekdays and 12:30pm weekends (last tour is 3:30pm; except on Tuesdays- last tour at 7pm). If you are traveling with kids, be sure to pick up a Junior Ranger activity book.
44 Prime Street, Buffalo, NY 14202
Head to the waterfront for history, fun, and great recreation. The historic western terminus of the Erie Canal has become the centerpiece of waterfront revitalization in Buffalo. Stroll the site to see restored elements of the original Erie Canal Harbor, including "Central Wharf" and "Commercial Slip," the historic connection between the Erie Canal and the Great Lakes. Events, festivals, and boat tours are on tap throughout the summer season, while The Ice at Canalside offers skating, ice biking, hockey and curling in winter.
How far? Canalside is just two miles from Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural NHS. Consult your preferred map or map program for directions
Choose from these great options for active recreation in this area:
Cycle the Erie Canalway Trail- The western end of the 365-mile trail across New York begins in downtown Buffalo at Canalside (near the Naval & Military Park Museum). The route follows the Niagara River, with scenic views and park facilities, including picnic tables and rest rooms at Riverside Park, about five miles from Canalside. For a longer ride, cycle 13 miles to Tonawanda, where today’s Erie Canal connects with the Niagara River.
Paddle the Inner Harbor and Buffalo River- Launch your kayak, canoe, or standup paddle board at Canalside and paddle through “elevator alley,” where Buffalo’s giant historic grain elevators line the Buffalo River. Nowhere else will you get this unique perspective on Buffalo’s history as one of the nation’s busiest ports during the 1800s and 1900s. Rentals are available at:
- BFLO Harbor Kayak http://bfloharborkayak.com
- Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper http://bnriverkeeper.org; weekend bike, hike and paddle tours
Take a Cruise- Get on the water for a narrated tour:
300 Parkside Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14214
Great for kids. The zoo includes an Erie Canal exhibit with heritage breeds of domestic farm animals of the 1800s including, of course, a mule.
Frank Lloyd Wright's Darwin Martin House Complex
143 Jewett Parkway, Buffalo, New York 14214
Considered one of Frank Lloyd Wright's finest architectural achievements, this unique residential complex was built for Buffalo businessman Darwin D. Martin between 1903-05. Restored and open for tours. Reservations recommended.
Offers regular tours of Queen City architectural gems and neighborhoods throughout the city.
Best Bet Dining Options
Buffalo has lots of dining options. From Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural NHS, you can walk to Buffalo’s famous Anchor Bar, home of the original Buffalo chicken wing, or to the historic Allentown neighborhood, where you’ll find unique shops and restaurants. Bring a picnic or choose from several casual eateries at Canalside.
Find other adventures in the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor at www.eriecanalway.org
Last updated: March 25, 2015