The majestic roaring of waterfalls, with columns of water crashing to earth at great speeds, are often the highlight of any trip. These are among the most breathtaking natural vistas the planet has to offer. The world is full of famous waterfalls that will help you in ‘falling’ love with the planet once again. Look at these simple cascades of water falling through the sky to understand why they are one of Earth’s most captivating natural wonders. While some of these famous waterfalls mentioned below will require quite a trek or a challenging hike, nothing can beat the spectacular feeling of fresh falling mist on the face while you are gazing at the pure majesty of the natural world. From the tallest waterfall in the world to the widest, from single plunge to multi-tiered there are so many types of waterfalls to witness. Check out these mesmerizing, awe-inspiring and most beautiful waterfalls in the world which are set deep in rainforests and thick jungle or set against backdrops of dramatic cliffs and mountains.
The Most Beautiful And Famous Waterfalls In The World
1. Iguazu Falls – Brazil And Argentina
Nearly 300 feet tall and more than 1.5 miles wide, the Iguazu Falls are located between Argentina and Brazil. The Iguazu River which forms the falls creates part of the boundary between the two countries. There are over 270 waterfalls in total, the tallest of which is called ‘Devil’s Throat’. Together, they form the largest waterfall system in the world. This dramatic system of waterfalls is among the most beautiful waterfalls in the world to witness. They were used in Marvel’s ‘Black Panther’ as Warrior Falls in the fictional African country of Wakanda.
Address: Misiones Province, Argentina
Height: 195 m
Best Time To Visit: The best months to see the Iguazu Falls are April (except Easter Days), May, September, and October.
2. Gullfoss (Golden Falls) — Iceland
The waterfalls, fed by the Hvítá river, cascade over 150 feet into a gaping gorge, and in the summer, the sun shines through the billowing spray, giving it a golden hue. This gives rise to the name Gullfoss (or golden falls). It is also one of the most iconic sights in Iceland and is part of the “Golden Circle” of tourist sites, which also includes the Þingvellir National Park, and the geothermal area in Haukadalur.
Address: It is located in the canyon of the Hvítá river in southwest Iceland.
Height: 32 m
Best Time To Visit: Any season will be great to visit the waterfalls. During winter months, some viewpoints will be closed, but the waterfall makes for a stunning photographic centrepiece! If you visit during the warmer months, you are able to walk to a viewpoint which will put you right on top of the waterfall.
Also Read: The Top Things To Do In Iceland
3. Niagara Falls — New York, USA And Ontario, Canada
Situated on the border of two countries, Niagra Falls is actually three large waterfalls that straddle the international border between the Canadian province Ontario and the American state of New York. More than 750,000 gallons of water flow through Niagra Falls every second. Each season brings something new to this popular attraction. In the summer there are various boat tours and the Clifton Hill SkyWheel at the Niagara Falls. In the winters, if you’re lucky, you might be able to see the Niagara Falls completely frozen.
Address: 6650 Niagara Parkway, Niagara Falls
Height: 51 m
Best Time To Visit: The best time to visit Niagara Falls is from June to August.
4. Victoria Falls — Zimbabwe And Zambia
At 350 feet, Victoria Falls is twice the height of North America’s Niagara Falls. Victoria Falls also possesses the world’s largest sheet of falling water. Located in southern Africa, Victoria Falls is on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe. Created by the Zambezi River, Victoria Falls is also one of the seven natural wonders of the world.
Address: Mosi-o-tunya Road, Livingstone, Zambia
Height: 108 m
Best Time To Visit: The best time to visit Victoria Falls is from February to May, directly after the region’s summer rains.
5. Yosemite Falls — Yosemite, California
The Yosemite Falls are made up of three separate falls that make a 2,425-foot drop, creating stunning lunar rainbows (called moonbows). Yosemite Falls are located in California’s Yosemite National Park which is home to five of the world’s highest waterfalls, as well as 300 lakes, meadows and sequoia forests.
Address: Yosemite Village, CA 95389, United States
Height: 739 m
Best Time To Visit: Late May and early June is the best time to view Yosemite Falls, roaring from freshly melted snow. The month of September offers cooler temperatures and is ideal for hiking at Yosemite Falls.
6. Plitvice Falls — Croatia
Plitvice Falls are not just one attraction, but a series The Plitvice Lakes National Park is known for its 16 terraced lakes and interconnected waterfalls. These lakes are divided into the Upper Lakes and the Lower Lakes, both with their own stunning sights. For adventure enthusiasts, this waterfall is also the perfect place to go kayaking, canoeing, hiking, and rafting.
Address: Plitvice Lakes National Park in Croatia
Height: 133 m
Best Time To Visit: The shoulder season (April, May, September, October) is best to visit when the weather will still be pleasant.
7. Nohkalikai Falls — Meghalaya, India
Tucked away in the northeastern Indian state of Meghalaya is the Nohkalikai Falls. Located in the Cherrapunji Hills (said to be one of the wettest places on earth) they are named after a woman called Likai, who jumped off the edge after she learned that her husband killed her daughter, the pond at the bottom of the 1,115-foot waterfall in Meghalaya turns green in the summer. It is the highest waterfall in India (the tallest waterfall in India of the plunge type).
Address: East Khasi Hills, Meghalaya, India
Height: 340 m
Best Time To Visit: Visit during the months of September and October when the skies are relatively clear.
8. Skogáfoss (Black Waterfalls) — Iceland
Located in the south of Iceland, Skógafoss is one of the biggest waterfalls in the country. It is situated on the Skogá River and was one part of the cliff-lined coast. When the coast moved seaward, the falls remained. According to legend, the Viking settler Þrasi Þórólfsson buried a treasure in a cave behind this waterfall.
Address: Locatedon the Skoga River in south Iceland.
Best Time To Visit: Skogafoss should be best visited during the summer.
9. Angel Falls — Venezuela
At a height of 3,200 feet, Angel Falls in Canaima National Park is the tallest waterfall in the world (uninterrupted) and also known as the highest waterfall in the world. This waterfall is also the largest in the world. It falls from the top of a majestic tabletop mountain and is named after Jimmie Angel, who was the first person to fly over the falls. Angel falls also inspired Paradise Falls from the Pixar movie ‘Up’.
Address: 8011, Bolívar, Venezuela
Height: 979 m
Best Time To Visit: The best time to visit Angel falls is in the rain season (from June until November or early December).
10. Mae Ya Waterfall — Chiang Mai, Thailand
Cascading off a 30-storey cliff, surrounded by a lush green forest, the magnificent triangular Mae Ya falls are among the most beautiful waterfalls in Thailand. Found in the Doi Inthanon National Park, about 45 kilometres from Chiang Mai. At the foot of the falls, there is also a natural pool where visitors can take a dip.
Address: Doi Inthanon National Park, Mae Chaem, Thailand
Height: 280 m
Best Time To Visit: Visit during the rainy season when the water will spread for about 100 metres before flowing to the below basin.
11. Sutherland Falls — New Zealand
With a drop of over 1,900 feet, Sutherland Falls is one of the highest in the world. Its water comes from Lake Quill, which is in the remote and beautiful Fiordland National Park on South Island in New Zealand. Located near the iconic Milford Sound, Sutherland Falls was named for Donald Sutherland, the Scottish settler who first discovered the falls in 1880.
Address: Southland 9679, New Zealand
Best Time To Visit: To avoid heavy rainfall, visit Sutherland Falls in the walking season from October through to April.
Also Read: 11 Things You Cannot Miss in New Zealand
12. Jog Falls — Karnataka, India
At Jog Falls, four different cascades – named Raja, Rani, Rover, and Rocket – thunder down the rocks from a height of 830 feet. Located in the Shivamogga district of Karnataka, they form one of the tallest waterfalls in India. Their once spectacular flow of water has unfortunately been reduced by hydroelectric projects further upstream. They are among the most famous waterfalls in India and also one of the most beautiful.
Address: Shimoga, Gokarna, Uttara Kannada, Karnataka
Height: 253 m
Best Time To Visit: The monsoon season (June till September) is the best season to visit Jog falls as the region witnesses heavy rainfall and the beauty of the place is enhanced.
13. Mealt Falls — The Isle Of Skye, Scotland
Located near the magnificent Kilt Rock on the Isle of Skye (the rock is said to look like a pleated kilt) is the stunning Mealt waterfall. Fed by the nearby Mealt Loch, this waterfall is over 180 feet high, and on windy days the water doesn’t even touch the ground. At the bottom lies the way into the Sound of Raasay which connects to the Atlantic Ocean.
Address: Portree IV51 9JE, United Kingdom
Best Time To Visit: Visit during the monsoon season (September and October) when the water is flowing at its heaviest.
14. Huangguoshu Waterfall — Guizhou Province, China
Literally meaning “Yellow Fruit Tree Waterfall,” Huangguoshu is one of the most famous waterfalls in China. At 255 feet high and 331 feet wide, the impressive Huangguoshu Waterfall is fed by the Baishui River. There are multiple observation points, each with a unique view of the falls. You can also explore the naturally formed Water-Curtain Cave (or Shuiliandong) set behind this waterfall itself. According to legend, it is said to be the abode of Sun Wukong, a character from the Buddhist work, ‘Journey to the West‘.
Address: Zhenning Buyei and Miao Autonomous County, Anshun, Guizhou, China
Height: 77.8 m
Best Time To Visit: Visit Huangguoshu waterfall from June to early October after the rains in summer and early autumn.
15. Thi Lo Su Waterfall — Tak, Thailand
Also known as the “Black Waterfall” this waterfall is widely regarded as the largest waterfall in Thailand. At 820 feet high and 1,480 feet wide, it has multiple tiers gushing down into the Umphang Wildlife Sanctuary. One of the most beautiful falls in Thailand, it is created by the Mae Klong River and despite its remote location, is incredibly popular among tourists.
Address: Mae Chan, Umphang District, Tak 63170, Thailand
Height: 300 m
Best Time To Visit: The best time to visit Thi Lor Su waterfalls is November to February.
Also Read: Top 7 Islands in Thailand You Must Visit
16. Tugela Falls — South Africa
At 3,110 feet, the Tugela Falls are amongst the highest waterfalls in the world. Located in the Drakensberg (Dragon’s Mountains) of Royal Natal National Park, there are actually a series of five cascades that change size with the season. And, in winter, the water turns into breathtaking pillars of ice.
Address: Royal Natal National Park, Giants Castle Game Reserve, South Africa
Height: 948 m
Best Time To Visit: During winter, the Tugela Falls dries up. There will be little to no water, therefore, the best time to visit would be March to April.
17. High Force — Durham, England
The fast-flowing High Force waterfall in County Durham make it one of the most spectacular and beautiful places in the UK. Here, the River Tees drops 71 feet, over a precipice (called Whin Sill), creating twin falls surrounded by a diverse range of flora and fauna. In the winter, the falls sometimes freeze over, creating stunning ice formations. The word “force” actually comes from the Norse for waterfall, fors which you can also see in the names of waterfalls in Norway and Iceland, such as Gullfoss and Langfoss.
Address: Alston Rd, Forest-in-Teesdale, Barnard Castle DL12 0XH, United Kingdom
Height: 29 m
Best Time To Visit: The falls is an incredible sight to see at any time of the year, however, the winter months can be when you are able to see it at its most powerful, especially after heavy rainfall when it flows with tremendous force.
Also Read: 44 Of The Most Beautiful Places In The UK
18. Nachi Falls — Wakayama Prefecture, Japan
Nachi Falls is one of the most famous waterfalls in Japan. Falling over 430 feet, it is also the tallest permanent waterfall in the country (some seasonal waterfall-like Hannoki Falls and Shomyo Falls are actually taller). At the top lies a famous Shinto shrine, and the 3-storey Sanjūdō Pagoda which displays many fascinating historical artefacts found at the base of the waterfall. Also near the falls is the Seiganto-ji Buddhist temple.
Address: Nachisan, Nachikatsuura, Higashimuro District, Wakayama 649-5301, Japan
Height: 133 m
Best Time To Visit: Any time of the day is fine as long as the weather is good with sunshine but if you go in spring, the scenery would be even better as you’ll get to see cherry blossoms.
19. Sgwd Yr Eira — Brecon Beacons, Wales
Sgwd Yr Eira is one of four spectacular waterfalls found in Mellte Valley of the Brecon Beacons. Literally meaning “fall of snow,” you can still walk behind the falling sheet of water created by the Hepste River, on a path carved by generations of sheep farmers. The other falls in the region include Sgwd Clun-Gwyn, Sgwd Isaf Clun-Gwyn, and Sgwd y Pannwr, all of which are on the Mellte River.
Address: River Hepste, United Kingdom
Best Time To Visit: The weather needs to be kind to enjoy the walk and the best time to go is the day after heavy rain.
Also Read: 11 Things to See and Do in Snowdonia, Wales
20. Kaieteur Falls — Kaieteur National Park, Guyana
At 741 feet tall and 370 feet wide this amazing waterfall is four times higher than Niagara Falls and twice as high as Victoria Falls. This combination of height and volume of water makes it one of the most powerful and famous waterfalls in the world. Located on the Potaro River in the Kaieteur National Park, it is also said to be the world’s largest single drop waterfall.
Address: Located on the Potaro River in central Guyana.
Height: 226 m
Best Time To Visit: The best time to visit the falls is during the rainy season when they will be most powerful but you will still get a spectacular view if you go in the dry season.
21. Langfoss — Hordaland, Norway
Norway is full of amazing waterfalls, but even amongst them, Langfoss stands out. Located in Hordaland county, it thunders down a towering mountain over 2,008 feet before flowing into the Åkrafjord at the base. Wild and free, it is one of the few waterfalls in Norway now used to generate hydroelectric power. It is also often cited as one of the best waterfalls in the world.
Address: E134 by the Åkrafjord, Etne Municipality, Norway
Height: 612 m
Best Time To Visit: Visit anytime to get the majestic views of the falls here in Norway.
22. Jim Jim Falls — Kakadu National Park, Australia
To the east of the Kakadu National Park hidden amidst colourful cliffs are the Jim Jim Falls (also called Barrkmalam). An awe-inspiring sight, these famous waterfalls plunge from a height of 660 feet and are at their most spectacular in the wet season.
Address: Jim Jim Falls Rd, Kakadu NT 0822, Australia
Height: 259 m
Best Time To Visit: It’s suggested to visit during the Wet Season, then the falls would flow spectacularly but it would only be seen from the air.
23. Reichenbach Falls — Switzerland
Best known for its association with Sherlock Holmes (being the site of his apparent death in the fight with his nemesis Professor Moriarty in ‘The Final Problem’. The famous waterfalls are located in the Bernese Oberland region of Switzerland, on the Rychenbach, a tributary of the Aare River. They fall over 820 feet over multiple tiers into the Haslital Valley.
Address: Hausenstrasse 34, 3860 Meiringen, Switzerland
Height: 200 m
Best Time To Visit: The Reichenbach Falls is of course always open but visit during mid-May to early October and you can also take a ride in the Reichenbach-Bahn funicular that only operates at this time.
Also Read: The Best Things in Switzerland Are Free
24. Gaping Gill — Yorkshire, England
Declared the highest waterfall (unbroken) in England, these falls have the unique distinction of being completely underground. They are located in the Gaping Gill, a large 630-foot deep natural cave in North Yorkshire. These famous waterfalls fall through the many underground chambers before disappearing into the floor and reemerging near Ingleborough Cave. These otherworldly falls can be accessed by a winch that drops down into the darkness of the cave.
Address: Clapdale Dr, Lancaster LA2 8EE, United Kingdom
Best Time To Visit: It is usually only accessible to cavers. However, for a week in May (with Bradford Caving Club) and a week in August (with Craven Pothole Club) members of the public are lowered to the bottom of Gaping Gill on a seat attached to a winch.
25. Yellowstone Falls — Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA
In Yellowstone National Park, the Yellowstone River leaves the Hayden Valley and creates two major waterfalls. The first is the Upper Yellowstone Falls, which are 109 feet high. Further downstream is the much larger (and more famous) Lower Yellowstone Falls. Around 308 feet high, gallons of water cascade from it into the deep the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone below.
Address: Located within the Yellowstone National Park.
Height: 94 m
Best Time To Visit: Usually May through August
So Which Of These Famous Waterfalls Is On Your Bucket List?
From Angel Falls to Jog Falls, there are several breathtaking, beautiful and famous waterfalls all around the world. Would you attempt to visit them all or are there some special or famous ones you simply feel you have to visit? And are there any famous waterfalls that you think should’ve been on this list? If so be sure to share them in the comments below.
FAQs For Famous Waterfalls In The World
Tugela Falls is the second-highest waterfall in the world. It has a drop of 3,110 feet (947.9m).
Khone Phapheng Falls is known as the widest waterfall in the world. Its width is 35,376-foot (35372.7m).
Victoria Falls is the most powerful waterfall in the world.
Iguazu Falls are considered as the most beautiful waterfall in the world.
Iceland is considered to have the best waterfalls.