Throughout a person’s lifetime there are very few moments that one can say are truly breathtaking. When planning your next trip, either local or abroad, take some time to consider and visit some of Mother Nature’s finest creations – waterfalls. Nothing will compare to the experience of hiking a trail, either in the middle of Yosemite National Park or in a jungle in Venezuela, and stumbling upon a beautiful waterfall. After combing the globe for the best of the best, here are five of our favorites.
1) Angel Falls (Venezuela):
Clocked at 3,212 ft., Angel Falls is the world’s highest waterfall and a UNESCO World Heritage sight. The name actually comes from Jimmie Angel, the first person to fly over it then subsequently crash land on top of it. Surviving the crash, and 11-day walk to the bottom, the locals decided to name the falls after him. These falls seemingly defy logic given their unique supply of water; it takes some dedication to get to this site, but well worth it in the end.
Photo courtesy | Tim Snell
2) Victoria Falls (The border of Zimbabwe and Zambia):
Also a UNISECO World Heritage site and ‘discovered’ in 1855 by a Scotsman named David Livingston, Victoria Falls is considered the largest waterfall in the world. Known as ‘the smoke that thunders’ by locals, visitors can take a guided tour to Devil’s Pool which involves swimming in a shallow section of water right at the edge of the falls (No, I’m not kidding, go look it up and see for yourself).
Photo courtesy | Mario Micklisch
3) Iguazu Falls (The border of Argentina and Brazil):
The world’s widest falls, Iguazu translates to ‘big water’. When first lady Eleanor Roosevelt visited the falls she quipped, “Poor Niagara!” Poor Niagara is right, have you seen these waterfalls? Consisting of 275 individual waterfalls and cascades, the site has catwalks for visitors to get up close and personal with ‘big water’ drop-offs. Designated a UNSECO World Heritage site in 1986, the biggest draw happens to be the Devil’s Throat (La Garganta del Diablo), a narrow horseshoe with the largest volume of water. It sits right on the border of Argentina and Brazil.
Photo courtesy | SF Brit
4) Gullfoss (Iceland):
Translated into ‘Golden Falls’, Gullfoss is one of Iceland’s most popular waterfall attractions. Today the falls are conserved by the state of Iceland, despite prior attempts to utilize it for hydroelectricity. Fun Fact: the site was used for a music video in the ‘90s in which a couple attempts to swim across the river that feeds the waterfalls to reach one another – yeah you read that right.
Photo courtesy | Tiffany Bailey
5) Yosemite Falls (California):
Nice and local for anyone looking to do some waterfall sight seeing. Yosemite National Park’s waterfall is one of the tallest in the world at 2,425 ft. While it may not be flowing year round, the site is one of the park’s main draws. Plus, the added allure of knowing that these views haven’t changed since Ansel Adams first took their picture is pretty outstanding.
Photo courtesy | Victor R. Ruiz