We are proud to present what we believe to be the best 25 waterfalls in the United States! This list is directly based upon our personal visits and years of research. Each of these waterfalls is widely regarded to be one of most impressive waterfalls in America.

The list below is organized alphabetically by state. It is too hard for us to classify which ones are our absolute favorites because they are all so beautiful and each has its own distinct personality. Rest assured that every single one of these waterfalls is absolutely outstanding. We will tell you that the most extensive collections of remarkable waterfalls in the country can be found in (a) Yosemite National Park in California, (b) Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming, and (c) the Columbia River Gorge in Oregon and (d) the White Mountains of New Hampshire.


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HAVASU FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
AZ Havasupai-owned private land Backpacking, Horseback Riding or Helicopter
(no road access)
one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the world; requires advance permits and either a (a) 10-mile hike each way, (b) a horseback ride or (c) a helicopter ride; many campsites can be found just downstream of Havasu Falls (permits & reservations required); combined with Mooney Falls, these waterfalls offer one of the world's premier swimming hole destinations, if not the absolute best!

Havasu Falls, Arizona

MOONEY FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
AZ Havasupai-owned private land Backpacking Trip or Helicopter Day-Trip downstream from amazing Havasu Falls; requires advance permits and either a (a) 10-mile hike each way, (b) a horseback ride, or (c) a helicopter ride; any campsites can be found just upstream of the falls(permits & reservations required); combined with Havasu Falls, these waterfalls offer one of the world's premier swimming hole destinations, if not the absolute best!

Mooney Falls, Arizona

BRIDALVEIL FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
CA Yosemite National Park Roadside one of Yosemite's tallest and best waterfalls; 620 feet tall; this is a very popular attraction in Yosemite Valley; arrive early in the AM (before 8am or 9am) to snag one of the extremely limited parking spots; avoid weekends as they can be insanely busy

Bridal Veil Falls, California
Photo Credit: Tom Moore

FEATHER FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
CA Plumas National Forest Hiking Trail one of the tallest waterfalls in California; about 650 feet tall; consistently rated a "10" by guidebook authors

Feather Falls, California
Photo Credit: Leslie Phillips

MCWAY FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
CA Julia Pfiefer Burns State Park Short Walk not the most impressive of waterfalls since it is so slender and normally has very weak flow, but it is located in one of the most gorgeous coastal settings in the world; easy access off Route 1 / Pacific Coast Highway

McWay Falls, California

NEVADA FALL
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
CA Yosemite National Park Hiking Trail one of the most gorgeous waterfalls in the country; close to Vernal Fall; can be seen on a challenging hike trip to Half Dome by taking the Mist Trail from the Happy Isles trailhead; can also be done as part of moderate day hiking loop by combing with the John Muir Trail; avoid on weekends as this trail can be insanely busy; also, do NOT enter the water as dozens of people have died over the years

Nevada Fall, California

VERNAL FALL
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
CA Yosemite National Park Hiking Trail one of the most gorgeous waterfalls in the country; close to Nevada Fall; can be seen on a moderate day hike loop or as part of a a challenging hike trip to Half Dome; take the Mist Trail from the Happy Isles trailhead; can also be done as part of moderate day hiking loop by combing with the John Muir Trail; avoid on weekends as this trail can be insanely busy; also, do NOT enter the water as dozens of people have died over the years

Vernal Fall, California

YOSEMITE FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
CA Yosemite National Park Roadside/Hiking Trail probably the most famous waterfall in the USA; believed to be the tallest substantial waterfall in North America; a staggering 2,425 feet tall; best water flow is from May to June, but often keeps flowing through summer; a nice national park lodge exists near the base of the falls; a hiking trail leads to the top (be careful not to slip over the edge!)

Yosemite Falls, California

WAIMOKU FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
HI Haleakala National Park Hiking Trail Maui Island; 400-foot tall thin horsetail; fantastic photographs can be obtained from the base of the falls

Waimoku Falls, Hawaii
Photo Credit: Jason Underwood

SHOSHONE FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
ID Shoshone Falls Park Roadside 212-foot tall, 1000-foot wide massive waterfall; one of the most powerful waterfalls in the country; other good waterfalls are nearby

Shoshone Falls, Idaho
Photo Credit: Arnold Hansen

ARETHUSA FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
NH Crawford Notch State Park Hiking Trail the most dramatic waterfall in New England; 120-160ft tall (the actual height is quite contested); gorgeous horsetail accessed on moderate hiking trail; visit in winter to see ice climbers in action; can be combined with hike to Ripley Falls (also spectactular) and Frankenstein Cliff

Arethusa Falls, New Hampshire

NIAGARA FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
NY Niagara Falls State Park Roadside / Short Walk one of the world's most famous waterfalls; includes all the falls there (i.e. American Falls, Horseshoe Falls, etc.); Canadian side of falls is actually more interesting and has better views, however it is much, much more touristy; American side offers the Maid of the Mist boat tour and also a great trail that goes behind the falls

Niagara Falls (American side), New York

TAUGHANNOCK FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
NY Taughannock Falls State Park Roadside / Short Walk 215ft drop in spectacular setting; one of the tallest single-drop falls in the Northeast

Taughannock Falls, New York

LATOURELL FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
OR Guy W. Talbot State Park Short Walk stunning waterfall in high water; just down the street from Multnomah Falls; drops off overhanging basalt cliff; 249ft tall

Latourell Falls, Oregon

MULTNOMAH FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
OR Columbia Gorge Natural Scenic Area Roadside / Hiking Trail (optional) one of the best and most famous falls in North America; 620ft two-drop scenic falls separated by attractive bridge; one of dozens of outstanding waterfalls in the area

Multnomah Falls, Oregon

SOUTH FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
OR Silver Falls State Park Hiking Trail one of ten waterfalls on one single day hike; several waterfalls can be walked behind; one of the best waterfall infused day-hikes in the entire country

South Falls, Oregon
Photo Credit: Bill Boozer

FALL CREEK FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
TN Fall Creek Falls State Park Short Walk / Hiking Trail most famous waterfall in TN; 256-foot tall plunge with overhanging cliff in dramatic setting; about a million visitors each year; trail leads to base of falls

Fall Creek Falls, Tennessee

RUBY FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
TN privately owned Hiking Trail probably the best cave waterfall in the US; the 145ft drop can only be seen from within the cave itself; hundreds of thousands of visitors annually; entrance fee exists as property is privately owned; gift shop on site

Ruby Falls, Tennessee
Photo Credit: Chris Bowser

CALF CREEK FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
UT Grand Staircase-Escalante NM Hiking Trail the best waterfall in Utah and perhaps the best desert-waterfall in the southwest after Havasu Falls and Mooney Falls in Arizona; incredible desert-oasis setting; lower falls is the hightlight and it's a 126ft horsetail/plunge with a beautiful swimming hole at its base

Calf Creek Falls, Utah

THE CASCADES
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
VA Jefferson National Forest Hiking Trail considered by many to be the best waterfall in Virginia; 66ft tall; fantastic swimming hole in low/moderate water conditions; plunge falls turns into fan

The Cascades, Virginia
Photo Credit: Mason Sanders

COMET FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
WA Mt. Rainier National Park Hiking Trail 320 feet tall; several other waterfalls along the way; one of the most popular day hikes near Mt. Rainier



PALOUSE FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
WA Palouse Falls State Park Short Walk powerful and wild falls; nearly 200ft; a strong contender for best waterfall in Washington; extremely dramatic setting

Palouse Falls, Washington
Photo Credit: Kathleen Griffin

SNOQUALMIE FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
WA unknown
(privately owned?)
Roadside one of WA's most popular tourist attractions and easily its most popular waterfall; 270ft plunge with a lot of development near and above falls

Snoqualmie Falls, Washington
Photo Credit: Megan Bentley

LOWER FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
WY Yellowstone National Park Roadside / Short Walk one of the finest waterfalls in the world; gorgeous waterfalls surrounded by yellow rocks; 308 feet tall; several overlook trails; near "Canyon Village" in the eastern region of Yellowstone National Park; one of two major falls on the Yellowstone River

Lower Falls of the Yellowstone, Wyoming

UPPER FALLS
STATE
PARK
ACCESS
NOTES & HIGHLIGHTS
WY Yellowstone National Park Roadside / Short Walk not as popular as the world-famous Lower Falls downstream, but a classic destination in its own right; near "Canyon Village" in the eastern region of Yellowstone National Park; one of two major falls on the Yellowstone River

Upper Falls of the Yellowstone, Wyoming
Photo Credit: Michelle Butler

TOP 100 WATERFALLS OF THE US

Want to learn about more of the best waterfalls in the United States? Click here to see our comprehensive list of the top 100 waterfalls in the United States!

GUIDEBOOKS TO GET YOU THERE:

The following guidebooks are trusted resources to help lead you to the best waterfalls in the United States. Click on any book to read reviews and/or purchase the book on Amazon.com. I personally own (and love) nearly all of these guidebooks.








































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