If you're looking for the most beautiful waterfalls in Europe, along with the highest, widest, largest and most impressive- here's a list for you! We've also included a handy map so you can see where the best waterfalls are and plan them into your itinerary.
There's something about waterfalls that's just mesmerising. The way the water just keeps falling. And falling. And falling.
We love them- and plan our road trips to include as many as we can find near our route.
One of the good things about travelling in a motorhome is we've been able to park up overnight next to some breathtaking waterfalls all over the UK & Europe- the roar of the water lulling us to sleep and getting to enjoy the views without lots of tourists.
We've also asked some friends of ours to share their favourite waterfall in Europe. There's a huge range and variety- something for everyone. It does make it hard to crown the ‘best waterfall in Europe' but I hope you find something here to add to your bucket list.
Map of the best Waterfalls in Europe
There's nothing more annoying that a list of places without a map. How are you supposed to know where everything is?
So, to help, we put together a map of the most beautiful waterfalls in Europe. I hope you find it useful!
Which is the tallest waterfall in Europe?
Oh, you didn't think this was going to be easy, did you?
The problem is, there are different ‘criteria' for measuring which is the highest waterfall- do you measure single drop, or just overall height of the entire cascade or….??
Even more annoyingly, if you Google ‘tallest waterfall in Europe', you get the Rhine Falls (Rheinfall), in Switerzerland.
Which is wrong.
Unsurprisingly, the highest waterfalls in Europe are all in Norway.
The tallest single-drop waterfall in Europe is Mongefossen, in Norway, which plummets an incredible 773 metres (2,536 ft). If you go motorhoming in Norway, you can add it to your itinerary.
The others, which aren't single-drop but which are higher than Mongefossen, include:
- Vinnufossen – 860 metres (2,822 ft)
- Balåifossen – 850 metres (2,789 ft)
- Strupenfossen – 820 metres (2,690 ft)
- Ramnefjellsfossen – 818 metres (2,684 ft)
The trouble is, while these waterfalls are high… they're not always the most impressive. Or even that beautiful.
To make it on this list of the most beautiful waterfalls in Europe, there needs to be power. Or an incredible setting. Or… something which makes you go ‘wow'.
Otherwise, what's the point?!
So, let's get started on the wow!
Krimml Waterfalls- Central Europe's Highest Waterfalls
Address: 5743 Krimml, Austria
Height of waterfall: 1247ft (380m)
Best viewpoint: Wasserfallweg (Waterfall Trail
The Krimml waterfalls in Austria are widely regarded as Central Europe's highest waterfall and they definitely have the ‘wow' factor.
You are able to get to Krimml by road and there are plenty of car parks nearby. (Make sure you pay the parking fee)
You can also reach the waterfall trail by steam train from Zell to Krimml, then get a bus WasserWunderWelt and a few minutes of walking to the waterfalls.
Best vantage point
The best vantage point is on the waterfall trail- it takes about 1.5 hours (depending on how long you stop for photos!!) The trail is suitable for wheelchair users and pushchairs and costs around 4€ for adults. Be warned, it is quite steep in places. In peak season there is a taxi to take you back to the car park if you wish.
If you’re looking at staying nearby you can stay at Hotel Krimmlerfalle, which has casual lodging, dining and pools! Or you could stay at the Klockerhaus Hotel, Gathof Czerny GesmbH or the Landgasthof Kirchenwirt. These are the three closest hotels.
Gavarnie Falls, French Pyrenees
The Cirque de Gavarnie in the French Pyrenees is home to the highest waterfall in France- Gavarnie Falls. It's a bit of a hike to get to it, but the scenery is incredible.
Height (overall): 422m (1385ft)
Longest drop: 281m
READ MORE: Guide to visiting the Cirque de Gavarnie (by car or motorhome)
Powerful waterfalls in Europe
Dettifoss, Iceland- one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Europe
Constance | The Adventures of Panda Bear
Height of waterfall: 144ft (44m)
Not only is Dettifoss one of the best waterfalls to visit in Iceland, but it is also the most powerful waterfall in Europe. Dettifoss is located in northeastern Iceland along the Jökulsá á Fjöllum River carrying water from the Vatnajökull glacier. The waterfall is 330 feet wide and drops 144 feet into Jökulsárgljúfur canyon.
The waterfall is located approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes or 2 hours and 20 minutes from Akureyri depending on which route you take. If you aren't renting a motorhome in Iceland, Akureyri is the best place to base yourself.
Dettifoss is amazing to see in real life and the power of it is truly jaw dropping. Aside from the waterfall itself, Jökulsárgljúfur is a beautiful, rocky canyon that is definitely worth a visit and you can stop by a few other waterfalls on the way including Selfoss and Hafragilsfoss.
Best vantage point
Dettifoss can be seen from its west side or its east side and you should pick which side you plan on visiting depending upon the type of view you’d like to see. From the west side, you get a chance to see the full width of the waterfall. This viewpoint can be reached from Route 862, a paved road that is open year round.
On the east side, you’ll get the opportunity to gaze in awe at the sheer power of the waterfall. This side is reached from an older gravel road, Route 864, which is typically open during the summer and sometimes spring and fall depending upon the weather. The hike is a quick 10-minute walk from the parking lot to the viewing area.
Rhine Falls, Switzerland
Address: Rheinfallquai, 8212 Neuhausen am Rheinfall, Switzerland
The Rhine Falls are in northern Switzerland, on the Rhine river. They are about an hour from Zurich and can be reached by car, bike, train and motorhome pretty easily.
Some facts about the Rhine Falls:
- They are 23m (73ft) high
- The width is 150m
- The basin is 13m deep
- In summer around 600,000 litres EVERY SECOND go over the falls
- This drops to 250,000 litres in winter. (Seriously- that's still a LOT!)
- They are around 15,000 years old!
If you'd like to visit, check out our in-depth Rhine Falls visiting guide here
Vøringsfossen is a 182-metre tall waterfall cascading down from the edge of Hardangervidda plateau to the narrow gorge in Måbødalen valley. You can experience the waterfall from close range since it is easily accessible from a scenic road Hardangervidda.
Best place to view
There are two viewing platforms on each side of the waterfall. One is close to the hotel Fossli that was built in 1891 in Art Noveau-style. The other is close to the souvenir shop at Fossatromma. You should visit both of them! However, be extremely careful, at Fossatromma no rails or protection are preventing you from falling down the canyon. The waterfall is facing the west, therefore it is a perfect location for photography during the sunset.
At the end of summer 2020, there will be a new footbridge that will allow you to cross the river above the waterfall and offer even more spectacular views on the waterfall below. For those who have more time and are physically fit it is also possible to hike to the foot of the waterfall, where you can fully appreciate the raw power of Vøringsfossen. The hike is 3 kilometers long (out and back) and takes about 1,5 hours.
If you want to stay at a truly unique accommodation close to Vøringsfossen then I would highly recommend hotel Fossli.
Gullfoss, Iceland– one of the most powerful waterfalls in Europe
Iceland is full of impressive waterfalls. One of its mightiest is Gullfoss. Conveniently located about 1.5 hours from Reykjavik, Gullfoss is part of the Golden Circle – a scenic driving route that also includes Þingvellir National Park and Geysir geothermal area.
An easy day-trip from Reykjavik makes Gullfoss extremely popular with tourists. This surging waterfall is massive and breathtaking. From the parking lot near the falls, a marked trail provides an easy walk to different vantage points. The overlook closest to the falls offers a dramatic view from the top looking directly down. During the winter, however, this overlook is closed, so visit Gullfoss during the warmer months for the best viewing opportunities.
As you approach the waterfall you’ll likely hear the thunderous crashing water before you see it, as it’s partially hidden from view until you get close. Then prepare to be astounded by its vastness.
Water from the Hvita River flowing from the glacier, Langjökull, spectacularly plunges down this dramatic 2-tiered waterfall at an average of 130 cubic metres per second in the summertime. Viewing this stunning natural masterpiece from above is the only way to see it since it falls from an overall height of 32 metres to a deep gorge below.
Rain or shine Gullfoss is a must-see. If you’re lucky enough to be there on a sunny day, grab your camera to capture a beautiful rainbow that’s often seen hovering above the mist.
Strbacki Buk, Bosnia Herzegovina
Ellis | Backpack Adventures
Strbacki buk is one of the most spectacular waterfalls in Europe. It is located in Una National Park in the northwestern corner of Bosnia Herzegovina and is easy to reach by car from the nearby town of Bihac or from neighbouring Croatia.
Strbacki buk is a waterfall that anyone can visit. There is a parking place nearby and it's just a 3 minute walk to the observation platforms from where you can take excellent pictures. The best time to visit the area is spring and autumn when there is great weather and pleasant temperatures. Though winters are cold, it’s a unique experience to see the waterfall surrounded by a snow clad landscape.
What makes Strbacki Buk so special is the water thundering down from a set of travertine sections that lead to the Una river. Strbacki buk is the most beautiful waterfall in Una National Park, but not the only one. Una National Park is one of the newest and largest national parks in Bosnia and is characterized by its network of river streams, pools, white water rapids, canyons and waterfalls that are surrounded by lush forests with dense vegetation and limestone cliffs.
There are lots of things to see and do in Una National Park including rafting, fly fishing, exploring abandoned castles and visiting ancient monasteries. One can stay in the city of Bihac with all the facilities you need or even better, in a guesthouse in one of the rural villages in Una National Park itself.
Best Waterfalls in the UK
If you're planning a UK road trip, make sure you add some of these into your itinerary!
High Force, Teesdale
Sarah | A Social Nomad
England’s highest waterfall, High Force is located in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in the
north of Teesdale. The River Tees thunders over the Whin Sill rock formation that forms the force
on its route from its start high on the hills of Cross Fell to its exit into the North Sea.
Access to the 21-metre drop that is High Force is either via a short footpath from the High Force Hotel, 5 miles from the town of Middleton in Teesdale, or a longer path from the Bowlees Visitor Centre.
Access from the High Force Hotel will take you to the foot of the falls, the Bowlees route takes you to the head of the falls on the opposite side of the river. Parking is available at both start points for a small fee. We recommend the longer walk from Bowlees visitor centre, this route takes in the famous Wynch Bridge over the Tees, which gives a spectacular view of Low Force.
This walk is easy for all fitness levels and is flat, on well-formed and well-signposted trails and is about 3 kilometres one way. The walk from Bowlees also gives the best photo opportunities of High Force and Low Force and the path to these spots is well marked.
Best time to visit
While the falls are spectacular at any time of year, the approach is best on dry days in Spring and late Autumn, when there are fewer visitors and the trails are drier.
Accommodation is available at the High Force Hotel, or in villages throughout Teesdale. Most
visitors will make the 12th -century market town of Barnard Castle their base for a trip to High Force. The town has a castle, the world-renowned Bowes Museum, excellent cafes and local pubs and some great walks.
St Nectan's Glen, Cornwall- secret waterfall in the UK
If you’re looking for incredible, secret waterfalls in the UK, look no further than St Nectan’s Glen in Cornwall.
St Nectan’s Glen is located near Tintagel – really close to the famous Tintagel castle and Merlin’s cave from King Arthur’s legend.
But many people are unaware of the waterfall or the glen’s existence- so it’s a lot less crowded and ‘touristy’ than other places in the area- especially in summer.
This breathtaking series of waterfalls is nestled in a gorge and looks like something out of a fairytale. To get there, you walk through beautiful woodlands and follow the path of the river, before suddenly sighting the magnificent St Nectans Kieve.
St Nectan’s Kieve is a 60ft waterfall which falls through a hole in the rock. It used to be a basin, but the water eventually eroded it into what you see today.
For the best experience, arrive early in the morning and try to be first on the trail so you can experience St Nectan’s Kieve by yourself (and get the best photos!)
Want to explore more places in Cornwall? Check out our Cornwall road trip itinerary (with 40 places to visit and map!)
Powerscourt Waterfall, Ireland
Justine | Wanderers of the World
Powerscourt Waterfall is on the edge of Wicklow Mountains National Park in the Republic of Ireland, roughly an hour’s drive south of Dublin.
At over 121 metres high, Powerscourt is Ireland’s highest waterfall, and it’s a beautiful cascading waterfall leading to the River Dargle. There’s a reason why so many movies and TV shows have been filmed here including Excalibur and Vikings!
If you fancy it, there is a 1.5km scenic walk surrounding the waterfall. Or you can just grab a picnic and chill out in front of it on one of the benches.
Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for Irish red squirrels and Sika Deer too – they’ve been known to frequent these parts!
Although it’s possible to get a couple of buses to the waterfall from Dublin, it’s best to drive to it.
There’s plenty of parking on-site and you only need to walk for a couple of minutes to get up close to the waterfall. You need to pay to see the waterfall, but at €6.50 per adult, it’s not too expensive if you plan on spending an hour or so here.
Best vantage point
When we visited, we were allowed to climb on the rocks just in front of the falls, which was great for photographs!
Come in the morning or late afternoon and in the early spring, autumn or winter months to see it with fewer crowds around.
Best place to stay nearby
If you want to stay within Wicklow National Park itself, then Powerscourt Hotel on the estate is an incredible luxury hotel. Otherwise, I’d suggest staying in central Dublin and heading to the Powerscourt Estate and waterfall as a day trip.
While you’re here, a drive through the Wicklow Mountains is a must – just watch out for deer along the twists and turns of the road!
Catrigg Force, Yorkshire, UK
Anna| My Travel Scrapbook
My favourite waterfall in Europe is Catrigg Force in the Yorkshire Dales national park in England.
While it is neither the tallest nor the most popular waterfall in England its secret location makes it one of the best waterfalls in Europe!
The Yorkshire Dales is wonderful national park full of pretty villages, rolling hills and wild moorland. You can park in Settle or Stainforth before embarking on an easy walk across moorland to reach this secret waterfall. From Settle it will take around an hour to reach but it can be a little muddy so wear waterproof shoes!
After walking over barren moors you will see a little cluster of trees pop up out of nowhere. Within this little woodland is Catrigg Force. Go down into the woods and you will see one of the best waterfalls in Yorkshire!
Best photo spot
The best photo spot for Catrigg Force is at the bottom of the falls. You see the huge cascade tumble through a rocky gorge into a plunge pool. Bring a tripod for some lovely wispy waterfall photos. Given the geography of the place it tends to be dark all day but midday will give you the most light. Autumn is a particularly good time to visit as the colourful fall leaves frame the waterfall beautifully.
There are plenty more waterfalls near Catrigg Force and lots of other wonderful walks to go on. The market town of Settle is a great place to stay when visiting this Yorkshire waterfall.
Torc Waterfall in Ireland
Emer and Nils | Let’s Go Ireland
Torc Waterfall, situated in the picturesque Killarney National Park, is one of the highlights of the Ring of Kerry drive in County Kerry, Ireland. Located a short drive from the town of Killarney and the famous Muckross House and Gardens, this 20-metre cascade waterfall is a sight to behold, especially after it rains heavily.
Best photo point
Access to the base of the waterfall is along a short, 200 metre scenic woodland path from the nearby carpark. For the best photographs, you should follow the stone steps at the left side of the waterfall up to the higher vantage point where you will not only have a superb view of the waterfall, but also over the Lakes of Killarney. There is uneven ground along this path and (roughly about 100 steps), so comfortable shoes are a must. If you would like to do more hiking in the area, there are several different looped walks close by with a variety of difficulty levels.
This beautiful waterfall can become quite busy in peak season, especially the lower viewing point. Try to go early or late in the day to avoid the crowds and to have some of the best chance of seeing red deer which live in the woodlands. To finish off a perfect day of sightseeing, spend the night in The Killarney Park Hotel.
Most beautiful waterfalls in Europe
I know, I know. Beauty is subjective- and some of the waterfalls we've already featured are BREATHTAKING.
So maybe these should be ‘most instagrammable' waterfalls in Europe? Or just pretty places to visit.
Skogafoss, Iceland– often called the best waterfall in Europe
Maartje & Sebastiaan | The Orange Backpack (Add instagram)
The Skógafoss in Iceland is one of the best waterfalls in Europe. It’s easy to reach, 60 meters high and one of the most instagrammable places around the country.
One of the unique things about this Icelandic highlight is the veil of water covering the base of the waterfall. Strolling around the base makes you feel like walking inside a cloud. This mist also guarantees a beautiful rainbow on sunny days, a must-see for photographers. For a magnificent view of the waterfall and the coastline, climb the 500 steps of the stairs right next to the water.
The Skógafoss waterfall is located at the small town of Skogar in the south of Iceland, right next to the Ring Road around the island. From capital Reykjavik, it’s only a two-hour drive. I’d recommend you to visit the Skógafoss during a road trip to see the most beautiful waterfalls in Iceland– the Seljalandsfoss, Gljúrfrabúi and Kvernufoss – they are just a 30-minute drive apart.
There’s a parking lot close to the base of the waterfall, so there is no real hiking is involved with reaching the waterfall. But if you’d like to go for a hike, this is the start of a 25-kilometer hike along the Fimmvorduhals pass. It is a tough hike and requires at least a full day. The hike is only possible in summer.
Summer is the best time to visit the waterfall, although it’s a popular tourist attraction, so it can get crowded during the day. The long daylight hours during summer give you the option to head there very early or late without the crowds and even more beautiful light. There’s a camping spot close to the waterfall, which makes it easy to get there this early or late.
Pliva Waterfall in Jajce, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Emily | Wander-Lush
- How to get there/ is there parking nearby?: Bus or drive to the town of Jajce. Parking is available in Jajce.
- Tips for visiting: Best time of the day/ time of year etc.: The best time to visit the waterfall is in summer or spring.
- Best place for photographs: where to get the best shot: There are lookout points on the opposite side of the river (on Drugog zasjedanja).
Pliva Waterfall is a 22-metre high cascade in Jajce, central Bosnia and Herzegovina. What makes this waterfall so unique is the fact that it’s located right in the heart of the city. When viewed from afar, it looks as if Jajce, its stone belltower and hilltop fortress, could be carried away by the roaring torrent at any time.
Pliva Waterfall is the area’s main tourist attraction and made Jajce a popular holiday destination during Yugoslav times. The waterfall previously stood at 30 metres tall until an earthquake flooded part of the valley in the 1990s, diminishing its size by almost a third. The falls are still tall enough to host an annual cliff jumping festival in August, which attracts some of the top athletes from around Europe.
A concrete viewing platform has been erected for visitors beneath the waterfall, but the view from the opposite side of the gorge is just as spectacular – and it’s completely free to access. Downriver, the Pliva widens to form the picturesque Pliva Lakes where you’ll find a set of watermills built during the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
Val di Genova, Dolomites
Paul | Anywhere We Roam
Val di Genova in the Italian Dolomites is one of the most beautiful valleys in the alps. A 16 kilometre hiking trail winds through the dominate foliage of the area: larch and beech trees, mountain pine and birch trees. But apart from the beautiful vegetation, Val di Genova is also known as the valley of the waterfalls.
Several rivers formed from the glacial streams of Adamello and Presanella, criss-cross the forest path forming lush waterfalls that are often regarded as some of the best in Europe. Along the trail, roe deer, marmots and ibex dart between the trees causing the occasional scratch on the soundtrack that is the regular steady rhythm of water cascading beyond the trees.
Located in the eastern section of the Adamello Brenta Nature Park, Val di Genova is within easy access of the town of Madonna di Campiglio – the location of many incredible hikes in the Dolomites. There is a car park at the entrance to Val di Genova and the road continues for around 15 kilometres for those who don’t wish to walk the entire length of the trail.
The final kilometre of the trail is packed with atmospheric waterfalls hiding in the forest. The perfect time to visit is late afternoon when the golden light of the day fades through the trees creating an ethereal scene from the mist of the falls.
Beautiful waterfalls in Europe you can walk behind (or swim in!)
Cascada Grande de Maro, Spain
Visited by Paulina | Paulina on the Road
Cascada Grande de Maro (Great Cascade of Maro) is an incredibly beautiful waterfall which falls straight into the sea near Nerja, Spain.
It's possible to kayak or swim in the sea at the base of the waterfall- but be warned that the falls are pretty powerful- it's not for weak swimmers or the faint-hearted.
The water begins its journey at the great Caves of Nerja and passes through the Stream Sanguino, before cascading into the sea with a drop of about 15m. The entire area, with the falls, the sea and the mountains creates an incredible atmosphere.
Besides the waterfall, there are other things to do in Nerja. You could visit the Natural Park of the Acantilados de Maro-Cerro Gordo, which has the most amazing landscape- you won't quite believe it's real!
Steinsdalsfossen, Norway- one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Europe
This was one of our favourite places in Southern Norway- mainly because we got to walk behind it! Not only that, but we had it all to ourselves when visiting, which made it extra special.
There is parking very near and it's an easy walk to the base and then behind the falls. If you can, try to arrive VERY early- before the tour buses. You've a much higher chance of seeing it without crowds.
There are plenty of incredible angles to take the best photos, but you'll need to be a fair way away to be able to photograph the entire falls.
Near the base of the falls are a couple of cafes and shops- the perfect spot for breakfast after your early start!
READ MORE: Our full review of Steinsdalsfossen waterfall in Norway- the one you can walk behind!
Jeff| A Life of Y
Located on the coast of Iceland, on Ring Road One, between Reykjavik and Vik.
The best way to get to Seljalandsfoss is by car. The falls are 75km from Reykjavik and the journey is 1 hour 45 minutes drive. Parking is 700 ISK ($5/€4.5) There are also numerous tours available.
The trails around the falls are family friendly and easy to negotiate, as long as you wear appropriate footwear.
Seljalandsfoss can be visited all year round but the walk behind the falls will most likely be closed during winter for safety reasons. Make sure you wear waterproof clothing and protect your camera, especially for the walk behind the falls.
The most iconic shot of Seljalandsfoss is taken behind the waterfall itself although I prefer the angle of the falls taken from the path on the right.
Reykjavik has plenty of accommodation and most visitors stay in the capital. Vik is quite close to the falls and the town worth staying in.
If you drive from Reykjavik to Vik you'll be rewarded with some stunning natural beauty. Skogafoss is another unmissable waterfall. Eyjafjallajökull is the infamous volcano that caused the 2010 flight disruptions. Reynisfjara black beach, the seafront village of Vik and the Sólheimasandur plane wreck are all within driving distance.
Iceland has many incredible waterfalls but one of the most famous is Seljalandsfoss. The picturesque waterfall is easily accessed off Ring Road One making it one of the most visited in Iceland.
There are many walking trails around the falls but the highlight for most visitors is walking directly behind the 60 metres of falling water into a small cavern.
The river that flows into Seljalandsfoss originates from the Eyjafjallajökull volcano. The same volcano that erupted in 2010 and caused flight disruptions all over Europe!
The waterfall has even gained worldwide popularity after being featured in a Justin Bieber music video, but hopefully, that won't dissuade you from visiting these spectacular falls!
Edessa Waterfalls, Greece
Chrysoula | Athens and Beyond
The Edessa Waterfalls are a collection of falls including the tallest, Karanos Waterfall at 70m as well as Lamda Falls and the Edessa waterfall (aka Καταρράκτες της Έδεσσας). These falls are probably the best-known waterfalls in Greece and are well worth a visit if you’re in the area.
Edessa is known as the City of Water, so it's not surprising that the waterfalls are the main highlight. Formed in the 14th century, the water burst out of the basin to the west of the city and flowed through the town (as you can see when strolling among the many streams and waterways in town) and over the high rocks creating the Edessa Waterfalls.
This was simply a natural part of the city until the 19th century when the water flow was used for industry and the 20th century when the falls became a tourist attraction.
How to get there
The Edessa falls are located en route from Thessaloniki to Florina, around 90km from Thessaloniki, and 90km from Florina. There are signs to “waterfall” on the east of the city of Edessa that you'll need to follow to reach the parking and entrance to the park. Parking on-site and entrance to the falls are both free.
Tips for visiting:
When you set out from the car park, you'll simply need to follow the paths and signs to the various waterfalls on-site. The access to some of the falls is by stairs so visitors will need a certain level of mobility but the walk is fairly short and gentle and there are benches along the route. It's therefore a great site for all the family.
The highlight of any trip to Edessa is the fact that you can walk behind the main waterfall, hearing and feeling the power of the water as it flows in front of you.
If you have time, you may also want to enter the small cave located in the lower part of the falls which is beautiful inside and is of significant geological value. There is a small fee of just €1 to enter.
There is also a coffee shop on site that sells drinks and snacks.
The Edessa Waterfalls are a great place to visit in summer when you can refresh yourself with the spray of the falls during the heat of the day. However, the falls are also stunning in winter and early spring when the water flow is at its strongest making the waterfall even larger and more impressive.
Arguably the best time of day to visit the falls is early in the morning when the sun comes through the trees and catches the water creating a spectacular kaleidoscope of color.
Best place for photographs
The Edessa waterfalls are really photogenic so it’s difficult to take a bad shot, but if you want to perfect your angles, try to take a range of photos including ones from behind the falls, from the platform above the main waterfall and from inside the cave with the stalactites and stalagmites in full focus.
Where to stay nearby
Most people visit the Edessa waterfalls as a day trip from Thessaloniki, but you can also choose to stay nearby, perhaps at the four-star Aigai Hotel.
Other activities/ things to see nearby
The Edessa Falls are definitely the highlight of the area, but if you decide to stay nearby then you may also want to visit the open-air Water Museum which tells visitors the history of water-power in the area and the freshwater aquarium which features fish from Lake Agra-Niss.
Cascade d’Angon, France
Kirstie | Kirstie Will Travel (Follow on Instagram)
Part of Cascade d’Angon's charm comes from its beautiful views over Lake Annecy. You’ll be able to get glimpses of the water as you hike, but it’s not until you reach the top that you’re presented properly with the panoramic scenery.
The lake is gorgeous as it is but seeing it from a height is something else. The waterfall itself is very impressive. You’ll pass under a smaller waterfall and be able to see it from behind which is very cool. You can also get right up close to the main waterfall, to really see the power and height of it.
Annecy and the surrounding area is filled with hiking opportunities and climbing to Cascade d’Angon is a great way to get a taste of that. It’s also perfect if you’re around for just a few days and don’t have the time or equipment to do a proper mountain hike.
How to get there:
Park in Talloires on Angon and set off, or take the bus from Annecy to Talloires. Start Point Co-ordinates: 45°49'41.4″N 6°13'23.4″E
- Hike Length: ~3km round trip
- Accessibilty: Steep but not too difficult, slippery at the top. Not accessible for wheelchair users or those with mobility issues
- Tips for visiting: Avoid hiking in winter, and always go when there’s plenty of daylight left
- Best place for photographs: Before you reach the big waterfall – you can take photos of it in the distance, as well as beautiful shots of Lake Annecy
Sgwd Yr Eira, Wales
If you live in or are visiting the UK, you need to head to the Brecon Beacons in Wales. There are some incredible waterfalls there- including the infamous waterfall walk.
Sgwd Yr Eira (no, I do NOT know how to pronounce it) is the highlight of the walk- although all of it is pretty impressive! It's possible to walk behind the waterfall and, if you time it right, you can be there all by yourself.
We visited in May half term as part of our Wales Way driving trip and, although it was busy, it was not crowded and there was plenty of space to enjoy a picnic.
TOP TIP: There are NO facilities anywhere on the waterfall walk. No cafes, toilets, vending machines- nothing. Personally, I think they're missing a trick, but until they rectify this, make sure you bring your own drinks and snacks.
Planning a wales road trip? Here are 15 of the best wales road trip itineraries
Terme di Saturnia- Spa Waterfalls, Italy
Address: Follonata, 58014 Saturnia. Manciano – Grosseto
Parking is included in the entrance fee to the Thermal Park and Wellness Club.
By car – from the North
If you're on an Italy road trip, take the A1 Milan-Bologna-Florence motorway, exit at Florence Impruneta. Then follow the Siena-Grosseto-Scansano-Montemerano-Saturnia highway.
A1 Milan-Parma motorway, A 15 Parma-La Spezia, A 12 La Spezia-Livorno-Rosignano-Grosseto. From the Grosseto EST exit, follow the road Scansano-Montemerano-Saturnia.
By car – from the South
A12 Rome-Civitavecchia motorway, then the Aurelia SS1 main road to Montalto di Castro; at the junction of Vulci head towards Manciano-Saturnia.
Here there is a resort that you can stay at, you are able to fully experience and enjoy the water, the hot springs, spa and other activities the resort provides. It truly is full of ways to treat yourself and to allow yourself to relax, especially if you're campervanning in Italy and want a pamper break.
The Resort, the Natural Hot Spring, the Club, the Spa & Beauty Clinic and the restaurants will re-open on September 3rd, 2020. The Hot Spring Pools is open everyday from 9.30 am to 7.00 pm.
In terms of Spa & Beauty you have lots of options such as: Thermal treatments, hair salon, massage and wellness programs, aesthetic medicine. You can also go play golf and get a special Golfer Back massage after! Now, these can be quite pricey, for example the golfers back massage is €100 so you should take these prices into consideration when booking and planning your stay.
This resort is gorgeous, with the natural hot springs and other relaxing and self care facilities, it really allows you to relax. If you’re the type that’s always working and never really having a proper break then this is the place to go. The fact that it is natural spring water filled with therapeutic properties truly makes this amazing. Allowing yourself to enjoy nature in a glamorous and therapeutic way. This is also a great idea for you and the partner.
Samantha | Sam Sees World
Krka waterfall is one of the best and most beautiful waters in Europe, and one of the top places to visit in the Balkans. This stunning gem is located in Croatia just one hour from the city of Split. The waterfalls are located in Krka National Park and are one of the top attractions within the 109 km² the park spans. Krka National Park is an extremely well-preserved part of Croatia with stunning nature and thriving ecosystems all around.
The waterfalls in Krka do not look like your average waterfalls. There are 7 series of waterfalls which result in a unique and magical cascading look. The multiple dips and pools of water that makeup Krka are unlike any other waterfall in Europe giving it a beyond charming look. What’s even better about Krka waterfalls is that there is a huge pool of water around them that people are allowed to swim in. The water is fresh and a magical blue color and a dip in the water is perfect for cooling off after a warm day. Swimming in the water while admiring the cascading waterfalls as a backdrop is a bucket list experience.
The best way to get here is by taking a tour bus or the local bus to the town beside the national park called Skradin. The journey takes around 1.5 hours and once you are there you can either hike to the waterfalls or take a boat. Visiting in the summer is best if you are looking to swim and enjoy the falls fully, however, just know that they are extremely busy in the summer months. They are beautiful year-round so no matter when you visit you will not be disappointed.
Best waterfalls in winter
Gorzi Waterfall, Norway
Gorzi waterfall is located in the Kåfjorddalen valley in Northern Norway and it's one of the deepest waterfalls in Northern Europe. This epic waterfall plunges 140 metres in free fall into the depths and offers a unique perspective all year around.
It’s super easy to get there, you simply park at the free Gorsabrua parking area, and from there it’s a 1.8 km walk to the waterfall. The walk itself is pretty easy, and you won’t need a high fitness level but, if you visit in winter, remember to wear proper shoes & clothing as you’ll be walking through lots of snow.
You can visit this waterfall all year round as access is now easy thanks to an aluminium bridge which offers a great viewing platform for the waterfall and the chance to bungee jump off (not for the faint-hearted!)
For a unique experience, you should visit in the winter and see the waterfall frozen over. Frozen waterfalls are such a unique sight and because this is such a powerful waterfall, it looks fantastic when iced over.
If you want to get a cool shot, then walk out to the middle of the bridge. Again, be careful in winter as it can be quite slippery.
There are some local hotels and camping spots not far from this waterfall. For campervans, these is a campsite called “High North Camp Birtavarre” (you can rent rooms too!) and if you're lucky you will see the Northern Lights!
This is one of the most unique waterfalls in all of Europe, so if you’re seeking something beautifully different, then definitely visit this epic waterfall when it’s frozen over.
Of course, you’ll need to visit in the winter months to see snow, but if winter isn’t possible, then this is a really beautiful place to visit summer and spring too, especially if you want the chance to bungee jump! The fact that the waterfall and its surroundings are free to enter is a lovely bonus.
Ribeiro Bonita waterfall, Madeira
Roshni | The Wanderlust Within
The small Portuguese island of Madeira is home to the waterfall of Ribeiro Bonito. The remote waterfall is found within one of the world’s best-preserved Laurissilva forests, and isn't accessible by road.
It can only be reached via a 10km round trip hike along the Levada do Rei trail (PR18). The trail is part of a unique 16th century network of man-made water channels that irrigate the mountain slopes of the island. The levadas allow water to be carried long distances to feed the banana groves, vineyards and tropical gardens found throughout the island.
The Levada do Rei trail starts at ETAR de São Jorge, where there is a car park and a small shop for refreshments. The half-day hike is flat and easy and takes you through lush and exotic forests that are reminiscent of Jurassic Park. Halfway through the hike, you'll even have the opportunity to walk through a waterfall as it flows from above you.
The weather in Madeira is dubbed the eternal Spring so you can visit Ribeiro Bonita all year round- it's one of the warmest places in Europe in February. The best view of the waterfall is from above, so climb as high into the forest as you can.
The capital of the island, Funchal, makes the perfect base and the Vine Hotel is a favourite with its rooftop pool and central location. From here you can walk to the town centre, or drive to any of the start points for the activities on the island including canyoning, mountain biking and whale watching.
In the mood for more waterfall goodness? Check out these waterfall quotes.
Korouoma Canyon, Finland
Katalin | Our Life Our Travel
The Korouoma Frozen Waterfalls are one of the most spectacular places in Lapland that you must visit in the wintertime. The 20 km long valley has 14 waterfalls altogether, and you can easily visit three of them on a short, 5 km hike. We love this short circuit trail, as it gives a perfect overview of these falls from the top of the valley, and then later, when you descend, you can approach and admire them from a close distance.
You should allow at least 3 hours to complete the trail, as winter hiking requires more time than walking on the snow-free ground. Make sure you dress warmly, so you can take your time admiring these natural beauties.
The valley of the frozen waterfalls is about 2 hours of drive from Rovaniemi or Kuusamo. The parking lot is about 2 km away from the closest waterfalls
The shortest loop trail is 5 km long and requires an average fitness level, as the valley is about 100 m below the parking at Saukkovaara. There are more extended hiking options, but we recommend this relatively short trail.
The best time of the year to visit the frozen waterfalls is from late October till March when the temperature is below zero, and the waterfalls are frozen If you want to see them surrounded by a massive amount of snow, go in January or later.
Best place for photographs: where to get the best shot
You can walk up to three different waterfalls, they are a couple of tenth of meters away from the hiking trail, but even from the trail, you can take impressive photos. Our personal favorite is the Mammoth waterfall, which got its name after its remarkable size.
Where to stay nearby
The closest settlement with accommodation options is Posio, but we would recommend you stay in Rovaniemi, where there is a bigger variety of hotels and cabins.
Other activities/ things to see nearby
It is worth spending a couple of days in Rovaniemi where Santa Claus himself resides, or visit some of the nearby national parks, for example, the remote Oulanka National Park. This are is one of the best places in Europe to visit in winter.
Some more best and beautiful waterfalls in Europe
(I have a feeling this list will just keep growing. And growing…)
Here are some more incredible waterfalls to discover in Europe
Triberg is one of the highest waterfalls in Germany, with a drop of 163m- and it's beautiful too.
Address: Triberg Waterfalls: Schönwälder Str. 2, 78098 Triberg
The hike to the falls is fairly easy and children/ able-bodied adults should be able to do it without problem. The path is uneven in places, so wheelchairs/ pushchair users may find parts of it a struggle.
Entrance to the falls costs around 6€ and they are well worth a visit. There aren’t many facilities, so take a picnic or drink with you.
Once you return from the waterfall, be sure to check out the pretty town of Triberg. In the main high street, you’ll see another famous landmark in Germany- the world’s largest cuckoo clock!
This clock is 2 STOREYS high. Yep, the size of an actual building. And it works- during the hours of daylight, it chimes (with cuckoo and moveable bears) every 30 minutes.
There are many (many!) other cuckoo clocks in Triberg, including the world’s smallest cuckoo clock and the house of 1001 clocks.
Once you’ve enjoyed Triberg waterfall, be sure to enjoy a piece of authentic Black Forest Gateau cake (black cherries, chocolate sponge and whipped cream)- it’s worth every calorie!
Staubbach Falls, Switzerland
Anna Sherchand (solo female travel)
How to get there:
From the Lauterbrunnen train station, walk past the town of Lauterbrunnen it is right in front of you! It probably takes around 15 minutes to cover that part of town, but you'll probably take longer to appreciate the falls towering over the town itself.
Tips for visiting: You can climb some stairs to get closer to the Staubbach falls and get a feel of the water but the best view is from the village. On a clear day, you can spot paragliders and base jumpers soaring in the skies above and distant waterfalls flowing over the edge of the towering cliffs. Lauterbrunnen Valley is so insanely picture perfect that you’ll feel like you are standing in a real-life postcard!
Where to stay nearby: Hotel Staubbach or Hotel Horner and if you in budget, Valley hostel or Lauterbrunnen Backpackers.
Other activities/ things to see nearby: There are loads of hiking opportunities and waterfalls to see all around Lauterbrunnen.
Balea Waterfall, Romania
Sean | Living Outlau
Mainly known for its mysterious legend of Dracula and beautiful castles, Romania is simply not a country known for its waterfalls.
However, along the famous Transfăgărășan Road is Balea Waterfall. At over 60 metres high, it is the tallest stepping waterfall in all of Romania.
To visit this waterfall, it is best to have your own vehicle and stay in the nearby city of Sibiu. The drive from Sibiu to Balea Waterfall takes about an hour and 15 minutes to the parking area.
Visitors then have to hike for around 45 minutes along a well-marked trail to arrive at the Balea Waterfall. The trail is relatively easy, but certain sections of the path can be slippery.
So, that's our list of the best waterfalls in Europe (including tallest, widest and most powerful.) We hope you enjoyed looking at the pretty pictures! Is there a beautiful waterfall in Europe you feel we've missed? Let us know in the comments and we'll add it in.