About the World of Waterfalls

Julie admiring Haifoss in Iceland
The World of Waterfalls is a website that allows us to document and share our personal waterfalling experiences. It gives us a way to relive and engage in some of the most treasured moments of our lives while also providing a means for people like you to do the same!

Our interest in waterfalls and waterfall-themed travel grew from experiences we had when my wife, Julie, began taking me to local waterfalls in the Los Angeles area. It was a means of getting away from the stress of graduate school and our jobs.

Surprising both of us, a wish to see a few modestly-sized waterfalls quickly resulted in an addicting desire to see as many waterfalls as we could together. Soon local trips to places such as the Santa Monica Mountains, Angeles National Forest, and the San Bernardino Mountains became replaced with road trips to the mountains and coasts of Central and Northern California (including Yosemite National Park), as well as the deserts and canyons of Northern Arizona and Southern Utah.

Julie and Tahia walking amongst the overwater bungalows in Bora Bora However, we didn’t stop there. Our trips expanded to Yellowstone National Park, the Cascades in the Pacific Northwest, and Hawai’i. Yet eventually even these places started to feel "local."

Ultimately, we endeavored to collect waterfall sightings in destinations around the world - including North and South America, Europe, Asia, Oceania, and Africa among others - in addition to places closer to home. From our travels, we have learned much about the world and about ourselves. We've "re-discovered" our passion for nature and travel - constantly discovering and learning new things while expanding our horizons as we go.

We've come to the realization that waterfall-themed travel could very well be the most fulfilling way to explore the world independently. By using waterfalls as the excuse to explore places (regardless of whether they're off-the-beaten track or popular spots), we were still able to mix things up and visit non-waterfall sights that were famous as well as surprising. Plus, we're now able to bring our daughter along to share in our experiences while accelerating her learning well beyond the classroom.

Angkor Wat in Cambodia From such a different way of traveling, we have also better appreciated how locals have adapted to their environment and how that has influenced their culture. Add it all up, and we believe waterfalling the world yielded experiences that were uncontrived, immersive, diverse, surprising, memorable, deeply moving, and uniquely ours. Want to see which waterfalls we've been to so far? Check out this world map.

Indeed, we've taken to heart the expression that "variety is the spice of life." And what better way to do it than visiting waterfalls that come in all kinds of shapes, sizes, and colors.

While independent travel like this involves a bit more upfront research (as any customized, non-cookie-cutter trip would require), that's where our personal experiences shared through the World of Waterfalls can also be a useful resource to plan for your own life-changing waterfalling trip. We hope that you can gain from our knowledge as well as those of readers who have generously contributed their knowledge. And even if you're only interested in armchair traveling, we hope you'll find the content entertaining, educational, and enlightening.

Finally, I want to say that through this project, Julie and I have come to appreciate that even the act of waterfalling itself or just sharing the waterfalls that we love has managed to unify people from all walks of life. Regardless of ethnicity, political orientation, age, or gender, the love of waterfalls bridges our differences and brings out the best of what makes the world the wonderful and diverse place that it is.

So browse through these pages, go seek out waterfalls, and explore the best of your world - one waterfall at a time!

Johnny T. Cheng
Author/Webmaster of World of Waterfalls

PS: If you have any questions about our website or the topic of waterfalls, please do not hesitate to use the Contact Us form and let us know what's on your mind.

Just to give you an idea of how rewarding waterfall-themed travel can be, here's a gallery of random photos we've taken on our trips (all of which you can find sprinkled throughout this website)...

One of our longer trips was an around-the-world tour that included Victoria Falls on the Zambia/Zimbabwe border
Waterfalling in Africa also took us way off the beaten path such as the shores of Lake Tanganyika where we hiked to Kalambo Falls on the Tanzania/Zambia border
One of the more unique waterfalling experiences we've had was the chance to combine a wildlife safari with a waterfall at Murchison Falls in Uganda
Just because we're waterfalling doesn't mean we can't make detours to ancient sights like Abu Simbel in the Nile River Valley of Egypt
Our waterfalling adventures took us into the Narrows of Zion Canyon
Julie getting one of our more unique waterfalling experiences at Grand Falls - the so-called Chocolate Waterfall on the Little Colorado River in Arizona
Sometimes a waterfalling trip yields surprises like this scene of sun beams making their way into the dark depths of the Upper Antelope Canyon in Arizona
Julie checking out on of many Erawan Waterfalls in Kanchanaburi, Thailand; one of the more interactive waterfall experiences we've had
Not far from a waterfall in Guilin, China was the Reed Flute Cave where we were dazzled by its spacious and moody interior
Who knew that waterfalling in rural China would yield such surreal scenery like here in one of China's most beautiful natural spots at Jiuzhaigou in Sichuan Province?
Waterfalling in a country like Japan allowed us to mix history, culture, and nature as exemplified here where Julie passes through a series of torii in Kyoto
Waterfalling made us curious about a country like India, where we also watched the skies and the Taj Mahal change colors as the sun was setting
One of our most atmospheric waterfalling experiences was through a busy market en route to the Courtallam Main Falls in Tamil Nadu, India
Waterfalling in places as intense as India allowed us to better appreciate island paradises like here in one of the islands of the Maldives
On our first visit to Australia, we sought out waterfalls in the more remote areas of the Northern Territory and Western Australia, and surprised ourselves with places like Monkey Mia in WA, Australia
Here, Julie checks out Montezuma Falls in Tasmania from a harrowing swinging bridge suspended high above a gorge
One of our most adventurous waterfalling excursions that put us well out of our comfort zone took place at the remote Blencoe Falls in the outback of Queensland, Australia
Waterfalling has also been a family affair as shown here where my Mom made the scramble with me to the base of Peppermint Creek Falls in the Sequoia National Forest of California
One of our most memoralbe waterfall hikes was to the beach at the base of Alamere Falls in Point Reyes, California
Who knew that waterfalling in Canada could place us within the European charm of Quebec City?
One of our more surprising places to go waterfalling was to the Southeastern United States where Fall colors and sightings of places like Cumberland Falls in Kentucky left an impression on us
Another place where our waterfalling adventures took us was to New England where we also got to enjoy a lobster roll picnic with a view of the Portland Head Lighthouse in Maine
A second visit to Niagara Falls was very rewarding as we got to see Tahia's reaction to one of the Big 3 Waterfalls left in the world...
Another place where we made a re-visit for the benefit of enjoying it as a family was the Middle Falls of the Genesee River in Western New York
When we had to mix things up a bit (away from waterfalling), we managed to find a way to wander the mysterious paths in Oia, Santorini, Greece
While we were chasing waterfalls in a country as famous as France, we ended up being pleasantly surprised as we spent the night in the charming Annecy in the Haute-Savoie region
Thanks to mixing things up with waterfalls in a country like Italy, we not only prevented ourselves from historical fatigue, but we also discovered a place like Riva del Garda
Our waterfalling adventures on the Islands of Hawaii also led us to a spontaneous night hike that brought us close to lava on the Big Island
Waterfalls were plentiful in Iceland, but we were blown away by some of the scenery they stood in like the sea cliffs harboring the waterfall at Ketubjorg
Of course waterfall lovers like us had to make the adventure deep into the rainforests of Venezuela for the chance at seeing the world's tallest waterfall in Angel Falls
Without waterfalling, we might have never learned about a waterfall in a pristine part of earth such as Kaieteur Falls in Guyana
Julie and I quickly found our favorite waterfall in the world when we peered into the misty abyss at the Devil's Throat of Iguazu Falls on the border of Argentina and Brazil
Waterfalling also took us to the ends of the earth, such as Chilean Patagonia, where Julie and I challenged ourselves to the long hike to Las Torres del Paine
In our quest to see New Zealand's most spectacular waterfall in Sutherland Falls, we also managed to catch this surreal scene at the Milford Sound in New Zealand
Cathedral Cove was not far from our wedding site in Whitianga, New Zealand, when our waterfalling endeavors went international
Sometimes we had to go on an excursion where its success wasn't a sure thing like this hike to Valursfossen in Norway, where we took advantage of the long days to get here at 9pm!
Some of the waterfalls we encountered were fed by glaciers, and that meant we had opportunities to get close to some of them like the Briksdal Glacier in Norway
Our waterfalling adventures also took us to crazy beautiful scenes like this one at the head of the Eikesdal Valley in Norway where countless nameless waterfalls draped the valley
We've even been compelled to go waterfalling in Tahiti, which also included a visit to the beautiful lagoons of Bora Bora, French Polynesia
We've been to Yosemite Falls so many times that it seems like an old friend
When we went waterfalling in Yellowstone (specifically Fairy Falls), we managed to get this unorthodox view of the Grand Prismatic Spring
Waterfalling also compelled us to visit other lesser known waterfalls of the Columbia River Gorge in Oregon such as Elowah Falls
Because of our passion for waterfalls, we even went into remote jungles such as the Umphang Wildlife Sanctuary in Thailand for the Thi Lo Su Waterfall
Our waterfalling adventures took us into Japan's wildest region at Shiretoko National Park in Hokkaido
At Catarata Gocta in Northern Peru, we saw ancient fossils, Chachas ruins, and plenty of scenery on the waterfall trail that was previously unknown to non-locals until 2006
Our waterfalling passion also took us to Croatia and the Plitvice Lakes, which was a place we might have never even considered visiting if it wasn't for waterfalls
In Italy, we managed to mix up charm, history, food, and culture with waterfalls.  That kept us from falling prey to the Medieval fatigue and allowed us to better enjoy places like Venice...
Julie and I firmly believe that waterfalls are located in some of the most beautiful spots on earth, and this photo of Staubbach Falls in Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland confirms that claim!

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