Vietnam, a treasure trove of biodiversity, captivates visitors with its stunning caves, pristine beaches, lush forests, and majestic highlands. Among these gems, the waterfalls of Vietnam sparkle as the embodiment of nature’s beauty, intertwined with legends and myths that add to their allure.
So “water” we waiting for? Let’s take the plunge and embark on a thrilling exploration of the best-known as well as the very best waterfalls in Vietnam.
Thac Bac: The Tallest Waterfall in Vietnam?
While there is no officially recognized tallest waterfall in Vietnam, Thac Bac, or the “Silver Waterfall,” is undoubtedly a top contender. Nestled in the breathtaking mountainous region of Sa Pa in Lao Cai, Thac Bac captivates with its 656-foot plummet down tiered cliffs. Surrounded by lush wilderness and steep rocky cliffs, the sparkling waters glisten like silver, giving the waterfall its poetic name.
Ban Gioc–Detian Falls
The renowned Ban Gioc–Detian Falls is not only one of Vietnam’s best waterfalls but also an international wonder straddling the border between China and Vietnam. Towering approximately 98 feet high and stretching 984 feet wide, this magnificent waterfall claims the title of the fourth largest along a national border, following Iguazu, Victoria, and Niagara Falls. Composed of two distinct falls that merge into one during summer rains, the Vietnamese revere this awe-inspiring cascade as a single entity divided as “thac chinh” and “thác phu”, meaning the main and subordinate falls.
Datanla, which means “water under the leaves,” is a charming series of Vietnamese waterfalls nestled within the forest. Located in Dalat City, Lam Dong province, Datanla boasts seven falls meandering through a rocky 66-foot descent.
Thac Tac Tinh
Diving almost 400 feet down a densely forested peak in Hoang Lien Sapa National Park, Thac Tac Tinh is one of Vietnam’s best waterfalls and certainly one of its most dramatic. Its name, which literally translates as the “love waterfall”, is a reference to a legendary love story between the son of a god and a fairy. Such an enchanting tale befits the beauty of Tac Tinh as well as its setting in the mountainous province of Lao Cai. Not only does the majestic cataract share this important biosphere with Vietnam’s tallest mountain, but it’s also fed by it.
Located in the Central Highlands near Dalat, the small village of Nam Ban is home to the colossal cascade of Elephant Falls or Thác Voi. One of the best known waterfalls in Vietnam, its name derives from the massive rock formation at its base, which is said to bear a striking resemblance to the animal. The vast, towering curtain of water that forms Elephant Waterfall is surrounded by mossy, mountainous, and wooded areas.
The Ba or “Lady” Waterfall is located in Ong Mountain nature reserve in Binh Thuan. Fed by a deep lake, it splits into nine falls, which is why it’s often called 9-Storey Falls. As with many waterfalls in Vietnam, it’s linked to legend, specifically about its namesake “lady”. The story goes that a woman transformed into the waterfall after she died waiting for her husband’s return. Heartbroken on discovering her death, her husband became Ong Mountain.
Dray Nur Waterfall
Part of a trio of cascades along the Serepok River in Daklak Province, Dray Nur is a frothy wall of water stretched some 820 feet across. It flows approximately 98 feet down the rugged cliffs of the central highlands and into a pool of almost luminescent turquoise waters. As if this spectacle wasn’t enough, a hidden cave behind the falls is brimming with stalactites and stalagmites.
Mua Bay Waterfall
Surrounded by black rock cliffs and jungle foliage, Mua Bay waterfall in Binh Thuan’s Tanh Linh district features a 131-foot drop, often veiled in mist from the tumbling waters. Nearby cascades include Truot TaPua and Buffalo Head.
Situated in Lam Dong, Pongour Waterfall captivates with its 131-foot drop and 328-foot width. This multi-tiered cascade widens as it falls, creating an enchanting scene.
The province of Hoa Binh is best known as the cradle of Vietnamese culture, but it’s also home to some of Vietnam’s best waterfalls. Located around 90 miles from Ha Noi, this mountainous region is where one finds the bucolic Mu Waterfall plunging approximately 328 feet amidst dense woodlands.
The Waterfalls of Vietnam
With their fairytale settings and grandeur, it’s little wonder that the waterfalls of Vietnam are so often linked with myth and legend. From cascading tiers to ferocious falls shrouded in mist, each waterfall has a story to tell.