The best waterfalls to visit in Canada


Is it just me, or do the mountains, lakes, and wildlife that Canada offers tend to overshadow our amazing waterfalls? For example, other than Hamilton’s born and bred, who knew that the Ontario steel town is actually the waterfall capital of the world? With more than 100 waterfalls in an area just over 1000 square kilometres, it’s kind of a big deal. So if you thought Niagara Falls was the greatest natural water feature that Canada had to offer, prepare to have your mind blown—below are nine other incredible Canadian waterfalls.

Albion Falls – Hamilton, Ontario

Albion Falls
Photo courtesy of cityofwaterfalls.ca

At the southern tip of Hamilton’s King’s Forest Park is the kind of waterfall that looks like it would only exist in movies. With staircase-like rocks piled 19-metres high and two man-made viewing platforms, Albion Falls is one of the best in Southern Ontario.

Athabasca Falls – Jasper National Park, Alberta

Athabasca Falls
Photo courtesy of mtrobson.com

Jasper National Park is the hotbed of unbelievable Canadian landscapes. Athabasca Falls is just one example of Alberta’s beautiful falls, which sweep aqua-blue water through forests, valleys, and mountain ranges during the summer months. Worried you’re running out of waterfall-viewing time? If you’re into rock climbing, it’s time to get ready for ice climbing. These falls often freeze over completely, leaving some epic climbing missions behind.

Montmorency Falls – Quebec City, Quebec

Photo courtesy of tripstance.com

Just outside of Quebec City is the gorgeously large Montmorency Falls, which clocks in with a drop 30 meters higher than Niagara Falls. For the athletic viewers there is a wooden staircase to reach the viewpoint, while others can opt to take in the sights while riding a cliffside rail car. There’s also a suspension bridge that provides a bird’s eye view of the falls, nestled between foliage-covered rocks, and a sweeping view of the St. Lawrence River.

Niagara Falls – Ontario

Niagara Falls
Photo courtesy of greatcanadianadventuretour.com

Yeah, yeah, yeah, you’ve heard of this one before. Made up of three falls that span the border of two countries, Niagara Falls may not be the most secluded option from Ontario’s apparently vast waterfall collection. Still, they are one of the largest, the most popular, and not to brag, but the view from the lush and garden-surrounded Canadian side is far superior to the American side. One of the three contributing falls, Horseshoe Falls, is actually the most powerful in North America.

Maligne Canyon – Jasper National Park, Alberta

Maligne Canyon
Photo courtesy of travelandescape.ca

With a vertical drop of 50 metres, this waterfall and gorge is surrounded by tall trees and limestone walls. The canyon is one of Canada’s most popular for ice climbing, and is quite possibly even more breathtaking in the winter months than in the summer.

Helmcken Falls – Wells Gray Provincial Park, British Columbia

Photo by Doreen Huggins

These majestically tall, high-volume falls look like they belong in a time before man touched Earth. With hiking trails and bridges surrounding them, that obviously isn’t the case, but it is worth noting that Wells Gray Provincial Park was primarily created to protect and preserve Helmcken Falls. The powerful water actually created its own cove at the base, which turns into the “World’s Wildest Ice Cave” in the winter. We suggest hiking the surrounding trails, which provides breathtaking views of the park, falls, and water-carved canyon beneath.

Pissing Mare Falls – Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland 

Photo courtesy of wendeh/Flickr.com

The ancient lush landscape of Gros Morne National Park is reminiscent of when Vikings roamed Newfoundland, and Pissing Mare Falls (named in true Newfie fashion) is no exception. With billion-year-old cliffs and some of the greenest hills you’ll ever see, a trip to the falls is perfect for a quiet retreat. Pissing Mare Falls sits on Western Brook Pond and is only accessible by boat, which means they’re relatively untouched.

Virginia Falls (Nailicho) – Nahanni National Park Reserve, Northwest Territories

Virginia Falls
Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Nailicho literally means “big river falling” in the local language, and is the perfect description of this massive waterfall found in Northern Canada. Virginia Falls, as they are technically named, are spectacular because of their location. In an area of Canada where not many people live, or travel, the falls live a humble life and only see around 1000 spectators a year. The remote location also means that the falls are only accessible by canoe or floatplane.

Takakkaw Falls – Yoho National Park, British Columbia 

Takakkaw Falls
Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Takakkaw Falls is another spot-on name—the Cree definition of takakkaw roughly translates to “the magnificent.” From a distance, the falls appear as a mass of white emerging from mountains, eventually dispersing into thin streams that run through lush forests at mountain’s base. Glaciers are the water source, so spring is the best time of year to witness its true power. It’s probably better to plan your trip earlier in the year anyway—winter conditions have the road to Takakkaw Falls closed from mid-October to May.

Della Falls – Strathcona Provincial Park, Vancouver Island, British Columbia 

Della Falls
Photo courtesy of geog.uvic.ca

For anyone who has read this far and still thinks Niagara Falls is the biggest and best, there’s Delta Falls. Delta Falls is widely regarded as the tallest in Canada at 440 metres. Ranking 16th in the world by vertical drop, the falls are so lofty that, in most pictures, they appears as a thin line of snow down the middle of a forested mountain. But height isn’t the only draw; Nearby Port Alberni offers some smaller, yet still stunning water features as well.