As romantic destinations go, Niagara Falls is often derided for its commercialization and banality. However, with 500,000 newlywed visitors a year, a list of 10 romantic places isn't complete without mentioning this self-proclaimed "Honeymoon Capital of the World" [source: Harvey].
As early as the mid-1800s, railroad lines brought newlyweds to the falls, prompting author Oscar Wilde to declare it, tongue-in-cheek, "the second biggest disappointment of American married life." The destination got a huge boost from the 1953 movie "Niagara," a tale of love, betrayal and murder that featured Marilyn Monroe.
Today, most visitors frequent the Canadian side of the falls, where lodging and dining options are more abundant and the views are more breathtaking. Unless your idea of romance involves sculptures of Jeffrey Dahmer and a Chinese man purportedly born with four eyeballs, you may want to avoid crowds at the numerous wax museums. Instead, think of going in the winter when visitation is down and frozen mist from the falls turns the attraction into a sparkling wonderland. Find a warm place to stay and enjoy a glass of "ice wine," a dessert wine native to the region. Look past the tourist traps, too, and enjoy the beauty of 6 million cubic feet (170,000 cubic meters) of water per minute falling 180 feet (55 meters) to the rocks below [source: Niagara Falls].