Waterfalls are awe-inspiring forces of nature. People travel all over the world to experience these incredible natural wonders. Waterfalls are some of nature's most magical creations; they remind us just how powerful the natural world is.
There are almost too many waterfalls in the world to count, some are more hidden than others. While visitors may have to embark on a more difficult journey to get there, they will be rewarded with incomparable beauty after these challenging treks.
The most beautiful waterfalls are not always the tallest and widest. Plitvice Waterfalls, for example, displays 16 lakes falling into one another, creating a series of waterfalls and cascades, while Hjalparfoss is situated in the lava fields of southern Iceland and shows off impressive views of striking basalt rock formations around the falls.
Experience the natural beauty and fairytale feel of a secluded waterfall. Continue reading for the coolest hidden waterfalls in the world.
McWay Falls, California
McWay Falls, located in Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, is one of the most majestic sights in California. It's an 80-foot waterfall that continuously flows all year round from McWay Creek. Hike the trail for an up-close view of the spectacular falls as it tumbles into the Pacific Ocean.
Taranaki Falls, New Zealand
Located in Tongariro National Park, this is one of the most impressive waterfalls in New Zealand. Taranaki Falls plummets 65 feet over the edge of a large lava flow into a boulder-ringed pool. Make sure to check out the stunning views into the water-worn gorges of the Wairere Stream from below the falls.
Waipoo Falls, Hawaii
Located in Waimea Canyon, Hawaii, this 800-foot waterfall can be seen best at the Waimea Canyon Overlook on Highway 550 and by hiking the moderate 3.2-mile Waipoo Falls Trail. The trail takes you to the top of the falls, where you will be rewarded with spectacular views of the canyon. Along the way you will trek through rain forests and canyon rims.
Fairy Pools, Scotland
Scotland is home to this natural waterfall phenomenon. Visitors can take a 20-minute walk to the Fairy Pools from the Glen Brittle car park. Daring swimmers who don't mind the chilly water temperature will be ecstatic to explore the stunningly crystal-clear blue and green pools on the River Brittle.
Rio Celeste Waterfall, Costa Rica
Hidden within the forests of Tenorio National Park, the Rio Celeste Waterfall is a natural wonder that will blow you away. The stunning blue waterfall gets its hue from a chemical reaction caused by volcanic minerals. It's located off the beaten path. The base of the waterfall is accessed by descending 250 steep steps.
Havasu Falls, Arizona
Found on Havasu Creek, the Havasu Falls is one of the most stunning attractions in Arizona. Avid hikers will enjoy a 10-mile stroll each way to the falls. Choose to take the hike alone or experience it with a guided tour. The stunning falls, located within the Havasupai Indian Reservation in Arizona, attracts thousands of visitors each year.
Taughannock Falls, New York
Taughannock Falls State Park is home to the most incredible single-drop waterfall east of the Rocky Mountains. The 215-foot waterfall offers some of the best views in New York state. Visitors can get the best view of the falls from above by hiking spectacular rim and gorge trails.
Hali'I Falls, Hawaii
Located deep in the jungle of Kauai is the secluded Hali'I Falls. The only way to reach the multifaceted waterfall is by hiking through bamboo forests and marshes. If a scenic hike isn't enough to soothe your adrenaline, you will want to jump on the opportunity to zip line over the waterfalls.
Gullfoss Waterfalls, Iceland
Gullfoss, also known as "Golden Falls," is fed by Langjökull, Iceland's second largest glacier. The incredible falls, which are part of Iceland's "Golden Circle" of geological wonders, was designated as a nature reserve in 1979. Watch the water as it crashes down into an incredible canyon. Visitors to Gulfoss when the sun is shining may catch a glimpse of a beautiful rainbow.
Fairy Falls, New Zealand
Fairy Falls is located in Waitakere Ranges Regional Park. It consists of a variation of upper and lower falls. Walk around the falls on a hot summer day and even go for a swim. When you're done, explore the subtropical rainforest, black-sand beaches and scenic coastline. Also visit, Kitekite Falls and Karekare Falls.
Kuang Si Falls, Laos
This waterfall is the largest in the Luang Prabang area; it consists of three tiers which lead to a 164-foot drop that travels down through a serious of stunning blue pools into the river. The pools start out smaller toward the top and then gradually get larger toward the bottom. Locals and visitors enjoy swimming and jumping in and out of the water.
Kilt Rock/Mealt Waterfall, Scotland
Make your way to the Trotternish Peninsula on the Isle of Skye for spectacular views of Kilt Rock and Mealt waterfall. The Kilt Rock resembles a Scottish kilt, and Mealt Falls was named after Loch Mealt, the freshwater lake it feeds. View the stunning waterfall as it drains vertically into the sea from 170 feet above.
Sekumpul Falls, Bali
Bali is known for its abundance of stunning waterfalls, but nothing compares to this one. The Sekumpul Falls is a cluster of six cascades. You will approach Sekumpul Falls at the end of a four-hour hike through forests, rice paddies and coffee plantations that takes hikers theough an elevation change of 330 feet.
Tinago Falls, Philippines
Located on the Agus River within the city of Iligan, Philippines, also known as the "city of majestic waterfalls," you will find the gorgeous Tinago Falls. Hidden in a deep ravine, the hike up the high falls can be difficult, and there are approximately 500 descending steps to get back. Once you reach the falls make sure to enter the small cave where you can listen to the rumbling water.
Also known as "Black Falls," Svartifoss can be seen in Vatnajökull National Park. Tumbling 80 feet over a cliff, ice-cold water from the Svinagellsjokull glacier feeds this waterfall. The mile-long trail from the Skaftafell visitors center will also reward you with views of three other waterfalls before reaching Svartifoss.
Cummins Falls, Tennessee
Located in Cummins Falls State Park is one of Tennessee's most popular waterfalls, Cummins Falls. It's 75 feet high and Tennessee's eighth largest waterfall in volume. Tourists and locals enjoy jumping in the water at the base of the falls. The gorge and waterfall can only be accessed by foot along a steep, one-mile hike.
Fumacinha Falls, Brazil
If you're looking for a secluded waterfall in Brazil, look no further. This is an intense hike - 6 miles - and can be difficult for visitors. Once you reach the end of your journey you will be rewarded with views of Fumacinha Falls and its majestic, dark-colored pool.
Agrio Falls, Argentina
Nestled in the heart of a forest in Caviahue, Argentina, Agrio Falls is incredible. Make sure you bring your camera with you; there are three lookouts around the falls that each provide spectacular views of the falls as they plunge into colorful basalt rock.
Waterfall Country, Wales
Located in the southern region of Brecon Beacons National Park in Wales is one of the most stunning sites in the world, Waterfall Country. A leisurely walk through Waterfall Country offers various views of several waterfalls, one of the most popular being Sgwd yr Eira, also known as "fall of snow." It is located in the heart of Waterfall Country and is famous among tourists because it offers the opportunity to walk behind the falls.
Sipi Falls, Uganda
Located on the edge of Mount Elgon National Park in Eastern Uganda, Sipi Falls is a series of three tall waterfalls formed by the Sipi River. Visitors will enjoy the peaceful ambiance and gentle walks on the surrounding hills. While hikers will undergo a tough trek, they will be rewarded with some of the most spectacular sights Africa has to offer.
Marmore Falls, Italy
Immersed in natural scenery, the 541-foot Marmore Falls - the highest in Europe - flows into the riverbed of the Nera River. The cascading water is floodlit during summer evenings. Make sure to explore the Nera Valley while you are there; it's rich in history, nature and culture.
Jean Larose Falls, Canada
If you're visiting Beaupre, Quebec, the Larose Falls are a must-see. It is a wild 196-foot waterfall that is best admired during the summer months. Make sure to bring your hiking gear; the hike to the falls may not be long, but it is strenuous. Be prepared to climb more than 400 stairs. Along the way down make sure to stop at the two viewing platforms for spectacular views.
Hanakapiai Falls, Hawaii
This waterfall is difficult to get to, but worth the trip. Start off with a 2-mile trek on the Hanakapiai trail toward Hanakapiai Beach. Once you get there, hike 2 more strenuous miles upstream towards the stunning falls. Be careful during the first mile; the trail can be muddy and slippery.
Kaieteur Waterfalls, Guyana
Known as one of the world's tallest and most powerful single-drop waterfall, the pristine Kaieteur Waterfalls continue to draw tourists despite the undeveloped nature. Standing approximately four times higher than Niagara Falls, the 822-foot-tall waterfall is set in the center of the Amazon rainforest in Kaieteur National Park.
Burney Falls, California
President Theodore Roosevelt once described Burney Falls as the "eighth wonder of the world." The 129-foot falls is located in Shasta County, California, within McArthur-Burney Falls Memorial State Park. It is a National Natural Landmark. Take a walk along the 1.3-mile trail that circles the falls for incredible views.
Snoqualmie Falls, Washington
Just a short drive out of Seattle is Snoqualmie Falls, one of the most popular attractions in Washington state. The 270-foot waterfall can be seen from a couple of different vantage points; view the falls from above at the famous observation deck or hike along a short trail to the base of the falls.
Cattail Falls, Texas
Getting to this waterfall in Big Bend National Park can be a difficult task, but it's well worth it. Seasoned hikers will have an easier time overcoming the steep climbs. However, inexperienced hikers can still marvel at the views by hiking the lowest section of the canyon on the 1.5-mile Cattail Falls Trail. There you will find yourself admiring in the beauty of the flowing streams and series of pools at the base of the 80-foot waterfall.
Alamere Falls, California
Head to the Point Reyes National Seashore in California for views of this rare tidal fall. The Alamere Falls, which are fed by the Alamere Creek, cascade over a 30-foot-tall cliff and empty directly into the ocean. You can reach the falls on a 13-mile round-trip hike. Along the way you will be rewarded with stunning views of the ocean and backcountry lakes.
Ouzel Falls, Colorado
The Ouzel Falls are spectacular, but the journey to get there is an incredible experience in itself. An easy 5.5-mile round-trip hike from the Wild Basin Trailhead will take you past multiple waterfalls, including Copeland Falls and Calypso Cascades, on your way to Ouzel Falls. You will hear the falls before you see it - this waterfall positively roars.
Pewit's Nest, Wisconsin
Also known as "Peewee's Nest," this spectacular Wisconsin waterfall is sure to take your breath away. The natural gorge - between 30 and 40 feet deep - is cut by a small stream. It was formed during the retreat of a glacier at the end of the last ice age. Getting there isn't extremely difficult, but it can be dangerous, as the trails are not maintained well. Take caution when walking over the deep gorge - there are no railings.
Plitvice Waterfalls, Croatia
The Plitvice Waterfalls are located in one of the largest and oldest national parks in Croatia, Plitvice Lakes National Park. You can walk on foot or ride in one of the park's free boats to get there. Once you're there, you will be rewarded with the site of 16 lakes falling into one another, creating a series of waterfalls and cascades.
Located off the main tourist route, Hjalparfoss is situated in the lava fields of southern Iceland. It takes approximately two hours to drive there from Reykjavik. Make sure to bring your camera to capture the impressive views of the striking basalt rock formations around the falls. The falls drop into a large plunge pool below.
Rainbow Falls, Tennessee
The 5.4-mile round-trip hike on Tennessee's Rainbow Falls Trail takes you to this breathtaking waterfall. Make sure to bring your camera because the mist from this 80-foot-high waterfall creates a gorgeous rainbow. During the winter months, remarkable ice formations can be seen around the falls.
Tukad Cepung, Bali
Tucked inside of a cave is Bali's hidden treasure, Tukad Cepung. This unique waterfall is located in the Tembuku village of Bangli and can be accessed by car or motorbike. You will have to descend a flight of stairs to get to this waterfall. The view of the waterfall mixed with the surrounding high rocks and incoming sunlight makes you feel like you are in a cave.
Jurassic Falls, Hawaii
Also known as Manawaiopuna Falls, this Hawaiian site was featured in the popular 1993 Blockbuster film, Jurassic Park, and is famous among many fans of the movie. The only way to get to the falls is to embark on a helicopter tour that will take you to the base of the 400-foot falls.
Wangi Falls, Australia
Wangi Falls is the most popular attraction in Australia's Litchfield National Park. It's a segmented waterfall that descends from an elevation of approximately 276 feet. Go swimming at the base of the falls or climb up to discover the hidden plunge pool that you can go swimming in when the water levels are high enough.
Makapipi Falls, Hawaii
If you're taking a road trip on the Hana Highway, make sure to stop and view the falls under the bridge. Stand right above Makapipi Falls and look down for incredible views of the water cascading into a pristine volcanic pool. Adventure seekers can also hike down to the pool for an up-close view. Makapipi Falls is just one of many incredible Hawaiian destinations that will take your breath away.
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