Wondering where you can get your waterfall fix?
From mighty cascades like Niagara and Victoria Falls to secluded Balinese secrets, we’ve hand-picked the planet’s most beautiful waterfalls to grace your Instagram grid.
Niagara Falls, USA/Canada
If you’re looking for a monumental natural spectacle, head to Niagara Falls. On the border between Canada and the USA, it’s the North American continent’s most powerful waterfall. A permanent tall plume of mist rises into the sky as water thunders down the 51m sheer drop.
Find out more here.
Iguazú Falls, Argentina/Brazil
Iguazú Falls is the world’s widest waterfall at 2.7 km (twice as wide as Niagara Falls). It’s set on the border between Argentina and Brazil and can be viewed from national parks in either country. More than 275 cascades combine to become an immense, semi-circular chain of falls surrounded by emerald rainforest.
Explore visiting options from Brazil or Argentina.
Formed when flash floods forced open cracks in layers of volcanic lava rock, dramatic Gullfoss is one of Iceland’s most iconic sights. Raw and powerful, its waters cascade down two tiers (combined height 32m) into a deep gorge. On a sunny day, it takes on a golden hue thanks to the high volume of glacial sediment.
Learn more here.
Victoria Falls, Zambia/Zimbabwe
On the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe, Victoria Falls is known locally as “Mosi-Oa- Tunya” (“The Smoke that Thunders”) due to the fact that it can be heard up to 40 km away. Up close, it’s equally awe-inspiring: at 1,708 m wide and 108 m tall, it’s the largest unbroken sheet of falling water on Earth.
Read more here.
If you’ve ever Googled images of Iceland, you’ve probably seen pictures of Skógafoss waterfall, in the south of the country. A thick ribbon of water curving over what was once a coastal cliff, it plunges dramatically down a 60m drop to explode into rainbow-tinged spray on the rocks below.
Learn more at Visit South Iceland.
Yosemite Falls, USA
Yosemite National Park in California is riddled with dramatic glacier-carved waterfalls. Yosemite Falls, a slim, stepped cascade tumbling over a hanging valley, is the jewel in its crown. With a total height of 739 m, the waterfall is one of the world’s tallest.
Explore Yosemite National Park here.
Another South Iceland wonder, Seljalandsfoss is one of the only waterfalls in the world which visitors can completely encircle: a path leads right around the fall, through the wide cavern behind. At night the flow is illuminated by floodlights on either side.
Read more at Visit South Iceland.
Havasu Falls, USA
As if Arizona’s Grand Canyon wasn’t spectacular enough, this rocky region is also home to Havasu Falls. The waterfall is located in Havasupai tribal lands, which you’ll need an advance-booked campground reservation to access (day hiking isn’t permitted, and the nearest road is 16 km away). It’s worth the extra planning required to see water gushing over the red desert rock into startlingly pale blue pools.
Plan your visit on the Havasupai site.
Bagni san Filippo, Italy
Head to Italy to visit magical Bagni san Filippo, where calcium deposits create fairytale frozen waterfalls. The largest (and most famous) of these is known as the ‘White Whale’. It’s possible to bathe in its opaque, ice-blue pools all year round, thanks to natural hot thermal springs.
Read more at Visit Tuscany.
Marmore Falls, Italy
At 165 metres, Marmore Falls is the world’s highest man-made waterfall: an even more impressive achievement when you consider that it was built by the Ancient Romans in the 3rd century. It’s surrounded by glorious Umbrian countryside around 8 km from Terni.
Read more at Umbria Experience.
Angel Falls, Venezuela
Angel Falls plunges a dizzyingly-high 979 m from the top of a plateau, making it the tallest uninterrupted waterfall on Earth. It’s just as spectacular as it sounds, with the added bonus that reaching the falls involves a boat journey through the Venezuelan jungle.
Explore Angel Falls tours here.
Kaieteur Falls, Guyana
One of the world’s largest waterfalls by volume of water, Kaieteur Falls is set deep in lush Amazon rainforest. It’s so remote that to get here, you’ll need to book onto a private plane and fly to the park’s tiny jungle airstrip.
Read more at the Guyana Tourism Authority site.
Sekumpul Falls, Bali
For Balinese magic, look no further: Sekumpul Falls is made up of seven tall waterfalls, which cascade 80 metres down steep green cliffs into thick jungle wreathed with mist. Cool off after the 1 km trek to the falls with a dip in the river below.
Read more about Bali on the official tourist site.
Please note that there are currently travel restrictions in place due to COVID-19. Points of interest and attractions may be closed. Always check websites and government advice before you travel.