The Daily Post’s Challenge on the word ‘Motion’ got me thinking. What is always in motion?
The first thing that came to mind was, waterfalls.
I’ve seen a number of waterfalls in my life but I don’t seem to have many photographs of them! And I don’t even remember their names! Yup! Shame on me!
I was digging through my digital collection of photographs and found this at least. It was taken in Australia while I was studying there.
One of my “sisters” came to visit me and we visited my old hood – Gold Coast. We decided to join a nature walk tour and was brought to Springbrook National Park. We had hiked for what seemed like days when really it was just close to 3 hours.
While I don’t know the name of this waterfall, I know we enjoyed this view while on the Twin Falls Circuit.
In my defense, I wasn’t big on the whole travel and lifestyle blogging thing then. I now know better.
But this challenge and this vague memory has prompted me to seek out must-see waterfalls to put on my bucket list. And here’s what I came up with.
(PS: These photos do not belong to me)
#1 ‘Akaka Falls, USA
ʻAkaka means “split, separation, or crack” in Hawaiian. And the ‘Akaka Falls can be found on Honomu, The Big Island of Hawaii. And if you do the full loop walk, you’ll also get the chance to see Kahuna Falls, also situated in the ‘Akaka Falls State Park.
#2 Alamere Falls, USA
Alamere is a tidefall, a waterfall that flows directly into the ocean. Head to Point Reyes National Seashore, Marin County, California to catch this rare waterfall. There aren’t many such waterfalls in the world; only 1 in South America, 3 in Asia and Africa, 5 in the US, 6 in Europe, and 7 in Oceania. In fact, Mealt Falls, also a tidefall located in the Isle of Skye is also in this list.
#3 Angel Falls, Venezuela
The world’s highest uninterrupted waterfall is situated in Venezuela. Angel Falls drops over the edge of the Auyantepui mountain in the Canaima National Park and is not easy to get to as it is situated in an isolated jungle. You’ll have to take a flight from Puerto Ordaz or Ciudad Bolívar to get to Canaima camp, the starting point for river trips to the base of the falls. The best time to go on one of these river trips is from June to December, when the rivers are deep enough for the wooden curiaras used by the Pemon guides. That and the fact that, during the dry season from December to March, there is less water.
#4 Augrabies Falls, South Africa
The original residents, the Khoi people, called it ‘Aukoerebis’, or place of Great Noise. Today, we know it as Augrabies Falls. The best time to visit Augrabies Falls is from March to May, when the temperatures are slightly cooler and the river is at its maximum flow.
#5 Baatara Gorge Falls, Lebanon
Affectionately known as the “Cave of the Three Bridges,” Baatara Gorge Falls is given its name because of the natural bridges. Go in March and April when the ice melts and runs down Mount Lebanon. This is when the falls looks the most impressive.
#6 Ban Gioc–Detian Falls, Vietnam & China
Called Ban Gioc by the Vietnamese and Detian by the Chinese, the border region around this waterfall has long been disputed, so I’ve read that crossing between the countries here is not easy. That said, there are boats that head towards the falls that allow tourists to get a better view of the falls.
#7 Caracol Falls, Brazil
Head to Rio Grande do Sul Brazil and see the Caracol Falls, a waterfall that overhangs a basalt cliff ledge. Climb the park’s 100-foot observation tower for a view of the falls, or travel directly over the cascading waters in one of the park’s cable cars. Getting to the base of the waterfall is a task not for the faint hearted. To get to the bottom of the falls, you’ll have to take more than 900 steps. Do bear in mind that the only way to return to the park entrance is to go back the same way.
#8 Gullfoss Falls, Iceland
Also known as Golden Falls, the Gullfoss Falls can be found in the canyon of the Hvítá river in Iceland. The river looks like it just vanishes into the earth because you won’t be able to see the 32m deep crevice until you’re closer to the edge.
#9 Havasu Falls, USA
Located within Havasupai tribal lands in Arizona, it’s more than a 10 mile hike to get to the Havasu Falls. To see this waterfall, you’ll have to get to the Havasupai Indian Reservation in the tiny village of Supai. Interestingly, Supai is the only city in America where the U.S. Postal Service still delivers mail by horseback. Cool eh!
#10 Helmcken Falls, Canada
I think a visit to Helmcken Falls in both summer and winter is a must. I’ve read that the ice cone at the base grows to 50 m tall and sometimes even higher, reaching halfway up the falls. That would be an awesome sight to behold. To see the Helmcken Falls in all it’s winter glory, go from late January to the end of February.
#11 Iguazu Falls, Argentina & Brazil
Situated on the border of the Argentina province of Misiones and the Brazilian state of Paraná, the falls are said to look like an inverted J. I think to truly enjoy the magnificence of waterfalls, one needs to view it from up above. But if you want to take a helicopter ride to view Iguazu Falls, you can only do so from Brazil. Argentina has does not allow any helicopter tours because of the adverse environmental impact on the flora and fauna of the falls.
#12 Kaieteur Falls, Guyana
Being a coffee lover, Kaieteur Falls caught my eye because it looks like coffee spilling over the edge of a cliff. I’d love to head out to the protruding table rock in front of Kaieteur Falls and peep over the precipice to get a glimpse of the water crashing down.
#13 Kilt Rock & Mealt Falls, Scotland
Located on Scotland’s second largest island, the Isle of Skye, there is cliff named Kilt Rock. It is named so because it resembles a pleated kilt. From the top of its cliffs, Mealt Falls plummets into the Sound of Raasay below. I am a bit of a fan of Scotland right now because of the TV series Outlander, so when I do make it there, Kilt Rock and Mealt Falls is definitely on my list.
#14 Manawaiopuna Falls, USA
I am of the mind that waterfalls are best seen from a distance or up above. With the Manawaiopuna Falls, you have little choice but to take a helicopter tour to view them. Also known as Jurassic Falls, it gets its nickname from the movie Jurassic Park. Why? Because this is the same waterfall used in the film. The jungle surrounding the falls was also a film location of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. I love visiting actual filming sites, and have visited sites like Pompeii and Verona, so it’s no-brainer that this waterfall is on my list. This once secret waterfall sits on private lands in Hanapepe Valley of the Hawaiian Islands. Located on Kauai Island, you can now view the falls from the air and land near the waterfall and walk up to Manawaiopuna Falls.
#15 Niagara Falls, Canada & USA
A combination of 3 waterfalls, Niagara Falls can be found on the border of Ontario, Canada and New York, USA. The largest of the 3 waterfalls is Horseshoe Falls, then you have the American Falls. And the smallest of the 3 is called the Bridal Veil Falls. Apparently my parents went to Niagara Falls for their honeymoon. And if for some strange reason you’re wondering, I was not created there.
#16 Plitvice Falls, Croatia
Located in the Plitvice Lakes National Park, the national park is known for its sixteen cascading lakes inter-connected by a series of waterfalls. I love the turquoise-coloured lakes but I’ve read that the colours of the lakes range from azure to green, grey or blue. The colors change depending on the quantity of minerals or organisms in the water and the angle of sunlight. Nature is so fascinating!
#17 Salto del Agrio, Argentina
Situated in the town of Caviahue in Argentina, Salto del Agrio is also known as Agrio Falls. The Agrio River waters contain sulphuric acid and plunges into a small green pool surrounded by yellow and red basaltic rocks. The colours of this waterfall really makes it stand out from most others I’ve seen.
#18 Seljalandsfoss, Iceland
I love that you can view the waterfall from a footpath behind it! This waterfall in Iceland was also featured in Season 6 of The Amazing Race. Just take a look at the Instagram photos taken with Seljalandsfoss, you’ll end up wanting to go there as well. Trust me.
#19 Sutherland Falls, New Zealand
Fed by a small circular lake named Lake Quill, Sutherland Falls is situated in New Zealand’s Fiordland National Park. I think this waterfall is best seen from a distance and from above. I’d love to take in the view of the snow capped mountains behind Lake Quill and a single waterfall making its way down a near-vertical mountain-wall into a valley like the one shown below.
#20 Victoria Falls, Zambia & Zimbabwe
Victoria Falls is the largest curtain of water in the world. Found at the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe, the falls is also known as Mosi-oa-Tunya in Tokaleya Tonga. This translates to English as “The Smoke That Thunders.” There is a naturally formed feature called the “Armchair” or “Devil’s Pool” near the edge of the falls on Livingstone Island on the Zambian side. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can actually swim near the edge of the falls. However, you do so at your own risk. There have been occasional deaths at the “Devil’s Pool” when people slip over the natural rock barrier.
#21 Wai’ale’ale Weeping Wall, USA
The best way to view the Wai’ale’ale Weeping Wall is by helicopter as the water falls down the exceedingly steepWai’ale’ale. Found on the island of Kauai, I’ve read that there is almost a constant cloud cover which prevents you from truly enjoying the view of the Wai’ale’ale Weeping Wall. There are only 20 days of clear weather that allows one to view Mount Wai’ale’ale and the Weeping Falls. Best pray for good weather I suppose.
#22 Yosemite Falls, USA
Located in the Sierra Nevada of California, Yosemite Falls is the highest waterfall in Yosemite National Park. The Yellowstone Caldera at the Yesemite National Park was created by a massive volcanic eruption approximately 640,000 years ago. Some scientists consider Yellowstone to be a “supervolcano,” but scientists monitoring the volcano say that an eruption is very unlikely in the next thousand or even 10,000 years. But still, I should bump the Yosemite Falls up my list methinks. Just in case.
I’m feeling inspired to hop on a plane and a helicopter if necessary to view these amazing waterfalls. What about you? For now I’ll just contend with being inspired by other travellers’ instagram posts.
What do you think?
Have you seen any of these waterfalls up close? Which is your favourite waterfall in the world and why? Did I miss out a waterfall you think I absolutely should put on my list of falls to see?
- The Top 10 Best Waterfalls of the World (world-of-waterfalls.com)
- The breathtaking waterfalls that every traveller must see (dailymail.co.uk)
- 9 Waterfalls you must see before you die (pohtecktoes.com)
- Top 10 Most Beautiful Waterfalls in the World (placestoseeinyourlifetime.com)
- 10 Greatest Waterfalls in the World (touropia.com)
- The world’s 10 best waterfalls – and how to see them (telegraph.co.uk)
- 20 of the World’s Most Beautiful Waterfalls to Visit (tripstodiscover.com)
- Top Waterfalls in the World (worldtoptop.com)
- The 5 biggest and best waterfalls around the world (globetrottergirls.com)
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