Waterfalls around the World
There are thousands of different waterfalls on our planet. They are wide and narrow, high and low, famous and unknown, but every "cascade of water falling from a height" is unique in its own way. See it for yourself when you take our virtual tour over waterfalls from several continents.
Iguasu Falls, Argentina - Brazil
Famous Iguazu Falls of South America is located on the border of two countries: Brazil (the smaller part of the waterfall) and Argentina (the larger part of the waterfall). It is relatively short (up to 82 meters), but it is one the most powerful waterfalls in the world. Depending on the season, Iguazu Falls drop 1 to 3 million liters of water per second.
If Iguazu Falls were a continuous veil of falling water, it would be the widest waterfall in the world. But in fact Iguazu consists of about 270 separate waterfalls. Their combined width reaches almost 2700 meters. The largest waterfall of the cascade has a frightening name "Devil's Throat" and is located right on the border of Brazil and Argentina. The width of the "Throat" is 150 meters; its length is 700 meters. The shape of the Devil's Throat resembles a horseshoe with 14 powerful water streams.
Stretched across the border, National Iguazu Falls Parks were added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1984-1986. In 2011 Iguazu Falls won the "New 7 Wonders of Nature" international contest claiming its rightful place among others.
Victoria Falls, Zambia - Zimbabwe
Another waterfall that lies on the border of two countries is Victoria Falls between Zambia and Zimbabwe. It is the widest waterfall in the world (1800 meters wide). Fed by Zambezi River, the water drops into a narrow gorge about 100 meters wide. The sound of falling water carries 40 kilometers across the land, while the spray from the falls rises to a height of over 400 meters and is visible from up to 50-kilometer distance. Even local rainbows are unique: refraction of the moonlight creates a "Moonbow" that can be seen in the mist.
Islands at the edge of the gorge break the waterfall in four parts. On top of the waterfall, there is also a naturally formed pool of water about 10-meter wide, which is called the Devil's Pool. Between September and December the pool water is relatively calm allowing adventure lovers to splash around at the point where the water cascades over the falls.
Angel Falls, Venezuela
Angel Falls, the highest waterfall in the world is hidden in the tropical forest of Venezuela on the territory of Canaima Natioanl Park. Its combined height is 979 meters. Angel Falls were named after Jimmie Angel, a pilot, who was the first person to notice the falls during his flight.
The continuous drop of water is so long (807 meters) that water breaks into smallest particles before reaching the ground turning into a heavy mist. On a gloomy day clouds cover the top of Angel Falls and it looks like the water is falling right from the sky. In a certain way it is correct. Unlike other waterfalls fed by melting snow, glaciers, and lakes, Angel Falls get their water from tropical rains falling over the top of the mountain.
Angel Falls and Canaima Natioanl Park have been a part of UNESCO World Heritage since 1994.
There are many other waterfalls in Canaima National Park of Venezuela. The smallest of them Churún-Merú is only about 400 meters high. And this is not the only misfortune of Churún-Merú: located in a very hard-to-reach narrow canyon, it was discovered last, and even its height is still just an approximation.
But the worst part is the name. Time to time people call Angel Falls "Churún-Merú" because (a) it is located in the Basin of Churun River, and (b) some locals are unhappy that the main landmark of Venezuela is named after a US aviator. This is why tiny Churún-Merú waterfall lives in the shadow of its "big brother".
Ho However, the pristine beauty of the canyon makes us rightfully think of Churún-Merú waterfall; one of the most picturesque waterfalls of all.
Niagara Falls, USA - Canada
Niagara Falls, on the contrary, is probably the most famous waterfall of the world. It doesn't hide in a jungle or in a scary canyon. Instead, it proudly stands between two countries: USA and Canada. Niagara Falls have been known since 17 century, and have begun receiving tourists since 19 century.
On a world scale it is not that high - only 53 meters. However, its width (792 meters) puts Niagara Falls among widest waterfalls on the planet. Niagara Falls are result of shifting of an ice shield that moved down from the Eastern Canada territory over 10 thousand years ago. The glacier dramatically changed the landscape on its way. By the way, layers of soil are still shifting, and during past centuries Niagara Falls have moved 11 kilometers south.
Location and position of Niagara Falls doesn't allow a group view of all the waterfalls from one spot. This is why our virtual tour will give you the most detailed and correct picture of the famous landmark of USA and Canada from a bird's eye view.
Waterfalls are probably the most breathtaking phenomenon of Iceland's nature. Svartifoss also know as Black Fall, is one of the most interesting sights. Located in the Skaftafell in Vatnajökull National Park, it is surrounded by unusual hexagonal columns of black lava that gave Svartifoss its name. These basalt columns inspired a great number of Icelandic architects to create magnificent masterpieces of modern architecture. Despite the relatively small size, it is a very beautiful waterfall. The panoramic photo that we shot near this waterfall took the Second Prize at the 2012 Epson International Pano Awards.
Purakaunui Falls, New Zealand
And on the other side of the world, there is the Purakaunui Falls, a cascading three-tiered waterfall on the Purakaunui River hidden in a quiet, subtropical forest of the Catlins Forest Park (South Island, New Zealand). Even though the waterfall is not very high (only 20 meters), it breaks the water into thousands of little streams that cascade down several terraces. The Purakaunui Falls is especially beautiful during rainy season. The iconic image of the Purakaunui Falls is one of the most featured images on New Zealand postage stamps.
You can see our best panoramas of waterfalls around the world here, in one virtual tour. If you want to see more of every of these waterfalls, you can do it here:
2 May 2014