Stunning waterfalls around the world
by Caitlin McCormack
A waterfall can make for an awe-inspiring hike destination or a perfect place to set up a picnic. Here are 20 of the most stunning waterfalls around the world.
Iguazu Falls — Brazil/Argentina
Located along the Brazil/Argentina border, Iguazu Falls is composed of some 275 individual waterfalls along a nearly three-kilometre (1.8-mile) span. Surrounded by rainforest on either side, the falls are protected in a national park.
Columbia River Gorge — Oregon, USA
The Columbia River Gorge boasts hundreds of kilometres of public trails for nature lovers of all skill levels, as well as dozens of awe-inspiring waterfalls. Perhaps the most stunning ones are the Multnomah Falls crossed by the Benson Bridge.
Fall Creek Falls — Tennessee, USA
The highest freefall waterfall east of the Mississippi River, Fall Creek Falls stands an impressive 78 metres (256 feet) tall. Located within Fall Creek Falls State Park, it is surrounded by several other beautiful waterfalls to explore, such as Piney Falls, Cane Creek Falls, and Cane Creek Cascades.
Victoria Falls — Zimbabwe/Zambia
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Victoria Falls is located along the border of Zimbabwe and Zambia. Known locally as “The Smoke that Thunders,” it provides visitors with a majestic opportunity to swim in Devil’s Pool, located at the top of the falls on the Zambian side.
Tahquamenon Falls — Michigan, USA
Composed of upper and lower tiers, Tahquamenon Falls is one of the largest waterfalls east of the Mississippi. The river it flows into is a rich amber colour due to the tannins leached from the surrounding trees.
Gullfoss — Iceland
In a country known for its many waterfalls, Gullfoss is one of Iceland’s most famous. Known as the Golden Falls due to sediment in the water which turns it a golden hue in the sun, the 32-metre (105-foot) waterfall crashes down in two stages.
Shoshone Falls — Idaho, USA
Dubbed the “Niagara of the West,” Shoshone Falls in Twin Falls, Idaho, boasts a width of 274 m (900 ft.) and falls some 65 m (212 ft.). Set in a deep basalt canyon, the falls are some of the most accessible-friendly in the world.
Angel Falls — Venezuela
Located within Canaima National Park, Angel Falls is the tallest waterfall in the world at a staggering 979 m (3,212 ft.). Reaching the falls involves a plane or boat ride over multiple days.
Bridalveil Fall — California, USA
Bridalveil Fall is so named because it recalls the appearance of a bridal veil. Located within Yosemite National Park, it’s over 189 m (620 ft.) tall.
Tukad Cepung Waterfall — Bali, Indonesia
Perfect for those wanting an Instagram-worthy capture, Tukad Cepung Waterfall in Bali is easily accessed with a 15-minute hike. There’s even a natural pool surrounding the waterfall for swimming.
Dudhsagar Falls — India
Located in India’s Goa state inside the Bhagwan Mahaveer Wildlife Sanctuary, Dudhsagar Falls boasts an impressive size with a 310-metre (1,017-foot) drop, in four tiers that are nearly 30 m (100 ft.) wide. There are a few trains that pass through the waterfalls, with a spectacular view.
Havasu Falls — Arizona, USA
You can be forgiven for thinking you were in a tropical lagoon and not the Arizona desert at Havasu Falls. The falls, part of the Havasupai Indian Reservation, are famous for their blue-green hue, which is due to minerals in the water. Visiting this waterfall involves some serious planning — it’s a 25-kilometre (15.5-mile) hike round-trip.
Weeping Wall — Kauai, USA
Located on the island of Kauai, the Weeping Wall is known for being one of the wettest spots on Earth. It is a series of narrow waterfalls cascading down the 1,569-metre-high (5,148-foot) Mount Waialeale.
Kaieteur Falls — Guyana
Hidden deep within the Amazon rainforest in Guyana, Kaieteur Falls holds the honour of being the world’s highest single drop waterfall at 226 m (741 ft.). It is roughly four times the height of Niagara Falls.
Ruby Falls — Tennessee, USA
Known for being the United States’ tallest and deepest underground waterfall, Ruby Falls is located within Lookout Mountain. It reaches 44 m (145 ft.) in height, and is accessed via a glass-front elevator.
Palouse Falls — Washington, USA
Palouse Falls, the official Washington State waterfall, is sure to take your breath away with its 61-metre (200-foot) steep drop into a circular pool below. There are several trails around this legacy from the Ice Age, so you can enjoy the view from multiple angles.
Plitvice Waterfalls — Croatia
Nestled in Plitvice Lakes National Park, Plitvice Waterfalls are made up of 16 cascading lakes that boast distinct shades of blues and greens. They almost look like a page right out of a fairy tale, but are 100% real.
Lower Calf Creek Falls — Utah, USA
Lower Calf Creek Falls is a 65-metre-high (214-foot) waterfall that cascades into crystal-clear water below, and is a popular stop within the Grand Staircase-Escalante area of Capitol Reef National Park in Utah. Visitors and hikers can enjoy the swimming area located beneath the falls.
Kawasan Falls — Cebu Island, Philippines
Feeding into a stunning blue lagoon, Kawasan Falls on Cebu Island in the Philippines makes a stunning backdrop for those looking for the picture-perfect social media snap.
Niagara Falls — Canada/United States
You can’t talk about stunning waterfalls without talking about Niagara Falls, with an impressive flow rate of 3,160 tons of water every second. Straddling the border between Canada and the United States, Niagara Falls is actually composed of three waterfalls, the largest of which is Horseshoe Falls.