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The most spectacular waterfalls in the world

The waterfalls are among the most exciting spectacles of nature. Almost every nation on Earth has waterfalls. There are waterfalls of a few meters high up to waterfalls that approach the kilometer in height. A waterfall is formed when the water of a river falls from a drop. Waterfalls are dynamic systems that vary in their flow with the seasons and over the years. They change appearance and erode the rock, although this is only visible on a geological scale. The waterfalls have different shapes which are determined by the volume of the water, the height of the fall, the width of the bed and the different rocks along which the water flows. In this article we will take a short trip to discover the most spectacular waterfalls in the world.

THE HIGHEST WATERFALL IN THE WORLD IS IN VENEZUELA

The highest waterfall in the world, Salto Ángel (Angel Falls), is located in a remote area of the jungle of Venezuela. In this waterfall the water falls continuously for 979 meters. The waterfall falls from the edge of the Auyantepui mountain, located in the Canaima National Park in the Gran Sabana region in southeastern Venezuela. The waterfall was only discovered in the first half of the 20th century (November 18, 1933) by an American aviator named Jimmie Angel, who was the first person to spot and fly over the falls.

Angel Falls is now one of Venezuela’s main tourist attractions. Although, even today, it is not easy to reach the area where the falls are located. The best time to visit the waterfalls is that of intense rains, between June and December, when the water of the waterfalls reaches its greatest flow. During the dry season, from December to March, the water level is lower and the falls are less spectacular.

THE MOST SPECTACULAR AND BEAUTIFUL WATERFALLS IN THE WORLD ARE ON THE BORDER BETWEEN BRAZIL AND ARGENTINA

Also in South America there are what are considered the most impressive waterfalls on the planet, the Iguazu Falls (Spanish: Cataratas del Iguazú, Portuguese: Cataratas do Iguaçu). These waterfalls are located along the border between Brazil and Argentina. The falls are 23 kilometers upstream from the confluence of the Iguazu River with the Paraná River. The Iguazu falls are made up of about 150 – 300 waterfalls, depending on the water level, which fall on a 2.7 km front and vary between 60 and 82 meters in height.

These waterfalls are the largest waterfall system in the world. The most spectacular point of the Iguazu falls is the so-called Devil’s Throat (Garganta del Diablo in Spanish or Garganta do Diabo in Portuguese). At this point about half of the river flow falls from a height of 82 meters in this narrow and long U-shaped chasm. The first European to record the existence of the Iguazu falls was the Spanish conquistador Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca in 1541.

Garganta del Diablo, Iguazú Falls, Brazil-Argentina. Author and Copyright Marco Ramerini
Garganta del Diablo, Iguazú Falls, Brazil-Argentina. Author and Copyright Marco Ramerini

THE MOST IMPORTANT WATERFALLS BY VOLUME OF WATER ON A SINGLE WATERFALL IN THE WORLD ARE IN GUYANA

In the Guyana jungle, along the Potaro river, there are the wild Kaieteur waterfalls which are the most impressive waterfalls in the world by volume of water on a single waterfall. These waterfalls have a height of over 250 meters.

IN AFRICA THERE ARE WATERFALLS THAT RIVAL WITH THE MOST SPECTACULAR AND BEAUTIFUL WATERFALLS IN THE WORLD

In Africa, without a doubt, the most spectacular waterfalls are the famous Victoria Falls which characterize the course of the Zambezi River on the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe. The Victoria Falls are the only ones in the world that can rival the Iguazu Falls, they extend over a front of 1,708 meters and fall from a height of 108 meters.

The waterfalls are spectacular for the scenario in which they are located and for the deep gorge in which the water of the Zambezi River falls. The first European to visit the falls was the famous Scottish missionary and explorer, David Livingstone, who visited them on November 16, 1855. Livingstone called the Victoria Falls in honor of Queen Victoria of Great Britain, but the indigenous name is “Mosi-oa- Tunya” which means “The smoke that thunders”.

AFRICA IS RICH IN BEAUTIFUL WATERFALLS

Other spectacular African waterfalls are found in Angola, Uganda, Ethiopia and South Africa. In Uganda there are the Murchison Falls, also known as Kabalega Falls, located along the White Nile between Lake Kyoga and Lake Alberto. At the top of Murchison Falls, the Nile makes its way through a crack in the rock, which is only 7 meters wide, and falls 43 meters, before flowing westward into Lake Albert.

In Angola, the Kalandula Falls are very beautiful, known in the past as the Duque de Bragança waterfalls, which are located about 300 km east of Luanda. These waterfalls are formed by the Lucala river and extend for 400 meters making a jump of 105 meters. Close to Lake Tana, in Ethiopia there are the Blue Nile waterfalls which extend in the rainy season for about 400 meters and make a jump of about 40 meters. In South Africa, among the most spectacular waterfalls, we find the Augrabies Falls along the Orange River which fall from a height of about 50 meters.

THE MOST FAMOUS WATERFALLS OF NORTH AMERICA ARE THOSE OF NIAGARA

In North America the most famous waterfalls are those of Niagara (Niagara Falls) which are located at the turn of the border between Canada and the United States, between the province of Ontario and the state of New York. These waterfalls are located along the Niagara River, which drains the waters of Lake Erie into Lake Ontario. The waterfalls that stretch over a front of more than 1 km are made up of three distinct waterfalls: the Horseshoe Falls, the American Falls and the Bridal Veil Falls. The highest waterfalls are the Horseshoe Falls which fall 57 meters.

Other spectacular North American waterfalls are Yellowstone Falls in Wyoming, Yosemite Falls in California and Takkakaw Falls in Canada. In Mexico, the most beautiful are the Agua Azul waterfalls in Chiapas.

ALSO IN ASIA AND IN EUROPE THERE ARE WONDERFUL WATERFALLS

In Asia there are numerous and beautiful waterfalls. Among the most spectacular in China, in southern China in the province of Guizhou, along the Baishui River, there are the Huangguoshu Waterfalls that fall from a height of 67 meters to a front of 83 meters. Further south on the border between China and Vietnam are the Ban Gioc – Detian Falls which fall from about 50 meters high and extend for 300 meters. In India, among the most spectacular, we find the Jog Falls also known by the name of Gerosoppa Falls, these waterfalls extend on a front of 472 meters and fall from a height of 253 meters.

In Europe, Iceland’s waterfalls are very beautiful, such as Skógafoss, Goðafoss, Gullfoss and Dettifoss to name just a few. Also in Norway and in the alpine areas there are waterfalls of great beauty. In Oceania there are beautiful waterfalls in the islands of Hawaii, Samoa, New Zealand and Australia. I hope you enjoyed this trip through the most spectacular waterfalls in the world.

This post is also available in: German

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