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15 Amazing Waterfalls In Vancouver BC And Surroundings

Ah, Vancouver! The bustling city in British Columbia (BC) that has perfected the balance between urban development and breathtaking nature.

You just have to go beyond Downtown Vancouver to find incredible natural landscapes.

From whale-watching to beautiful hikes and delicious seafood, Vancouver promises an unforgettable experience for all who visit.

In particular, the waterfalls in Vancouver (and nearby surroundings) have earned a name for themselves.

There are many waterfalls to be found in Vancouver’s national parks. But where do you start? The wider-Vancouver area has introduced me to some of the most amazing waterfalls I have ever seen.

If you’re wondering which of the waterfalls near Vancouver, BC to choose, here’s a list of 18 of the most breathtaking.

Brandywine Falls, one of the best waterfalls around Vancouver

Brandywine Falls, one of the best waterfalls around Vancouver

How to experience Vancouver waterfalls

In most cases, experiencing these waterfalls goes hand-in-hand with a hike. With this in mind, you’ll want to make sure that you plan your trip accordingly.

Pack your comfortable hiking gear and plan your visit when the climate is moderate. Keeping the Vancouver climate in mind, the summer months are from June to August and promise the best weather.

The easiest, cheapest and most effective way to get from Vancouver to all these waterfalls is by car.

Renting a car gives you the flexibility of coming and going whenever you want, without having to wait for public transport, and will also be cheaper than getting taxis every time.

Shannon Falls on the Sea to Sky Highway, Canada

Shannon Falls

Best waterfalls near Vancouver

Without further ado, here are 18 amazing hikes near Vancouver that bring you face-to-face with breathtaking waterfalls.

Bridal Veil Falls

If you want to be blown away by getting up close to a huge waterfall, then you need to add Bridal Veil Falls to your Vancouver itinerary. The immense size of the waterfall really makes you appreciate the power of nature.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Bridal Veil Falls Provincial Park, 1,5 hours from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 15 minutes, 800 meters
  • Best time to visit: May – October
Getting up close to Bridal Veil Falls

Getting up close to Bridal Veil Falls

Twin Falls

Located in North Vancouver, the popular waterfall is easily accessed by a short hike. The route crosses the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge and loops past the beautiful, cascading water.

This spot treats you to not only one waterfall but two – hence its name.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Lynn Canyon Park, 30 minutes from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 1 hour, 1,5 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: All year

Kennedy Falls

Although you need to hike a fair distance to access this waterfall, the elevation is mild. This makes the adventure a great one for the family. Kennedy Falls is gorgeous to view and the sight is a great reward after a couple of hours on the trail.

While on the trail, make sure that you keep your eyes open for the 600-year-old cedar tree.

  • Difficulty: Intermediate
  • Where: Accessed from Mount Fromme or Lynn Headwaters Regional Park, 30 minutes from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 5 hours, 10 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: All year

Sawblade Falls

The Woodland Walk Trail leads you directly to the beautiful Sawblade Falls. Expect the short, steep climb to get your heart racing, and the sight of the falls to calm it down again.

The waterfall displays a beautiful scene as it cascades 40-feet down. The west-coast rainforest is also well-known for bird watching and hiking.

  • Difficulty: Intermediate
  • Where: Burke Mountain in Pinecone Burke Provincial Park, 45 minutes from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 3 hours, 8 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: March – October

Shannon Falls

Reaching a height of roughly 335 meters, Shannon Falls is one of the tallest waterfalls in British Columbia. The sight of the veil of water falling down the rockface is something truly spectacular.

The waterfall is close to a major highway and can be easily accessed by a choice of gentle trails.

One of the best ways to experience the waterfall is with a Shannon Falls and Whistler tour as it allows you to experience Mother Nature in an engaging way.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Shannon Falls Provincial Park, 45 minutes from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 45 minutes, 1,2 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: April – November
Taking a break from driving from Vancouver to Whistler and admiring Shannon Falls

Admiring Shannon Falls

Norvan Falls

Norvan Falls is found in the lush green forests of Lynn Headwaters Regional Park. You’ll hear the sound of the rushing water before you see it.

The best view of the falls is along the rocky edge of Norvan Creek where you can stop and have lunch. Norvan Falls is still considered a “hidden gem” in North Vancouver.

While it becomes more popular every day, you can still enjoy being connected with nature without large crowds.

  • Difficulty: Intermediate
  • Where: Lynn Headwaters Regional Park, 30 minutes from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 5 hours, 14 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: All year

https://www.instagram.com/p/BRPHyqaAsVv/

Crooked Falls

If you’re looking for Squamish waterfalls to enjoy, then Crooked Falls should be on the top of your list. The spectacular waterfall is located in the Upper Squamish Valley and promises beautiful views.

The falls get their names from the “crooked” angle that they tumble down the mountain which is quite a sight to behold.

  • Difficulty: Intermediate
  • Where: Squamish, 1 hour from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 3 hours, 6 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: April – November

Lower Myra Falls

Lower Myra Falls is found along an easy trail that can be explored by the whole family. The breathtaking view of the falls makes it one of the best waterfalls in BC.

Cascading water sweeps over the wide rock form to enter the turquoise water of the creek. If you’re up for a bit more of a challenge, then you can also tackle the moderate route to Upper Myra Falls which are equally as mesmerizing.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Strathcona Provincial Park, 4,5 hours from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 45 minutes, 1,5 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: All year

Rainbow Falls

If you follow the trail to Rainbow Lake, you’ll be treated with a sighting of Rainbow Falls. The route is one of the best waterfall hikes Vancouver has to offer.

Rainbow Falls are near the beginning of the trail, but I’d suggest continuing on the route to the pristine alpine lake.

  • Difficulty: Intermediate
  • Where: Whistler, 1,5 hours from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 6 hours, 16 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: July – September

Brandywine Falls

Although closer to Whistler, Brandywine Falls is considered one of the best waterfalls in BC. Especially if you’re looking for a quick and easy escape in nature. You can easily visit Brandywine Falls while on a road trip to Whistler.

Access to the falls is along an easy path to the magnificent waterfall. The view is quite surreal and makes for the perfect pit-stop on a BC road trip.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Brandywine Falls Provincial Park, 1,5 hours from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 30 minutes, 1 kilometre
  • Best time to visit: All year
Brandywine Falls on the drive from Vancouver to Whistler, Canada

Brandywine Falls on the drive from Vancouver to Whistler

Cascade Falls

The jaw-dropping Cascade Falls can be viewed from a suspension bridge after a short walk uphill. The walk itself is through a lush forest, and the wooden platform after the bridge gets you as close as you could wish for.

The easy route and gravel trail make a visit to Cascade Falls fun for people of all fitness levels and ages.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Cascade Falls Regional Park, 1,5 hours from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 30 minutes, 750 meters
  • Best time to visit: April – November

Alexander Falls

If you’re feeling a little lazy, this is the perfect Vancouver waterfall to visit as there’s no hiking involved. There’s a viewing platform for the Alexander Falls located just off the Sea to Sky highway in the Callaghan Valley.

It’s a tiered waterfall surrounded by beautiful forest making it yet another picture-perfect scene.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Callaghan Valley, 112 kilometres from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: No hiking is required
  • Best time to visit: All year

Nairn Falls

Enjoy the short walk along a well-groomed path to get to the gorgeous waterfall. There are upper and lower falls that are viewable from two different platforms at the end of the path.

Set aside an hour and a half for this hike so that you have plenty of time to sit back and admire the majestic flow of cascading water. You’ll also need some time to snap a few photographs of the beauty before you.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Nairn Falls Park, 150 kilometres from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 1,5 hours, 3 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: All year
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Fun walk in the rain

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Tsusiat Falls

Are you up for a challenge? Falling over a 10-meter cliff, Tsusiat Falls create the perfect swimming hole for adventurers energetic enough to hike the long West Coast Trail.

The waterfall is one of many highlights along the 75-kilometre trail and a fantastic spot to take a dip.

  • Difficulty: Difficult
  • Where: Port Renfrew, 4,5 hours from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 7 days, 75 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: May – September

Cliff Falls

Also known as Kanaka Creek Falls, the wide waterfall is loved as one of the “best-kept secrets in Maple Ridge”.

They say that seeing is believing, and the opportunity to see this waterfall, in reality, is easily done. Considered one of the most tranquil waterfalls near Vancouver, BC, Cliff Falls is a must-visit.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Kanaka Creek Regional Park, 1 hour from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 2 hours, 4 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: All year

Gold Creek Falls

If you’re looking for a list of Vancouver hiking trails with waterfalls, then Gold Creek Falls is sure to pop up.

The fat, powerful flow of water is a beautiful contrast to its serene surroundings and makes for a memorable experience.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Golden Ears Provincial Park, 1 hour from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 2 hours, 5,5 kilometres
  • Best time to visit: All year

Elk Falls

Elk Falls is a stunning waterfall but is a bit of a drive from Vancouver. The drive becomes worth it when you stand on the suspension bridge that hangs above the falls. The spot makes for the perfect viewing platform.

Get ready to take some awesome photos of the waterfall as you make your way over the suspension bridge. The hiking route loops further if you want to follow Canyon View Loop Trail or the Millennium Trail.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Where: Elk Falls National Parks, 236 kilometres from Vancouver
  • Overall distance and time: 30 minutes, 800 metres
  • Best time to visit: Best in summer

Where to stay in Vancouver

There are lots of cool places to stay in Vancouver, from which you can then easily go waterfall hunting. I’ve listed below some accommodation options for every budget.

Luxury: EXchange Vancouver Hotel is one of the fancier hotels in Downtown Vancouver. It’s perfect for those looking for a little luxury to spice up their holiday.

Click here to book your stay at EXchange Vancouver Hotel!

Mid-range: O Canada House Bed & Breakfast is the perfect accommodation option for those looking for a home away from home. The rooms are elegantly decorated and have stunning views of the city.

Check out the latest prices and availability at O Canada House Bed & Breakfast!

Budget: Cambie Hostel Gastown is located in the heart of Downtown Vancouver. It has spacious dorms with a cool interior decor, as well as big communal spaces to socialise with other travellers.

Click here to see the latest prices and availability at Cambie Hostel Gastown!

The Vancouver city skyline and beach - Photo by Shaylen Anita on Scopio

The Vancouver city skyline and beach – Photo by Shaylen Anita on Scopio

Final thoughts on the Waterfalls in & near Vancouver, BC

There are plenty of amazing waterfalls in British Columbia, and these are just a few.

Canada is one of those places that had been on my bucket list for ages, and discovering so many stunning waterfalls and natural landscapes exceeded even my already high expectations.

If you love hiking and enjoying the beauty that nature has to offer, then picking a Vancouver trail with a waterfall along the route ticks both boxes.

Have you visited any of these beautiful spots? And if so, which one was your favourite? I hope you find this compilation useful in planning your Vancouver waterfall chasing adventures!

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Collage of Brandywine Falls and Shannon Falls with text overlay saying "the best waterfalls in Vancouver"

Collage of Brandywine Falls, Shannon Falls and Bridal Veil Falls with text overlay saying "15 best waterfalls in Vancouver"

Carah

Wednesday 21st of July 2021

You showed a picture of people up at bridal falls but the thing is they’re not supposed to be that close. they’re signs all over showing they’re not supposed to be up there. When suggesting where people should go maybe you should also share photos that show the proper way to hike these falls.

Carah

Wednesday 21st of July 2021

Uou showed a picture of people up at bridal falls but the thing is they're not supposed to be that close. they're signs all over showing they're not supposed to be up there. When suggesting where people should go maybe you should also share photos that show the proper way to hike these falls.