Compiled By NAN Travel Editor
News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. July 29, 2016: There is no doubt that the Caribbean is blessed with an abundance of nature and that includes amazing waterfalls. Here are 10 of the best water falls in the Caribbean you should know.
1: Guyana Kaiteur Falls
Guyana’s Kaieteur Falls is the world’s widest single drop waterfall and definitely an experience of a lifetime and clearly the best falls in the Caribbean. It is a single drop waterfall that is about four times higher than the Niagara Falls, on the border between Canada and the United States, and about twice the height of the Victoria Falls, on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe in Africa. Located on the Potaro River in the Kaieteur National Park, in Essequibo, Guyana, it is 226 metres (741 ft) high when measured from its plunge over a sandstone and conglomerate cliff to the first break. It then flows over a series of steep cascades that, when included in the measurements, bring the total height to 251 metres (822 ft). Kaieteur is among the most powerful waterfalls in the world with an average flow rate of 663 cubic metres per second (23,400 cubic feet per second). And while you cannot bathe in the fall, you can definitely view it as there are frequent flights between the falls airstrip and Ogle Airport and Cheddi Jagan International Airport in Georgetown to the rain forest of Guyana.
2: Jamaica’s Dunns River Falls
Dunn’s River Falls is another famous waterfall in the Caribbean you must see. Located near Ocho Rios, Jamaica it is a major Caribbean tourist attraction that receives thousands of visitors each year. At only about 180 feet (55 m) high and 600 feet (180 m) long, the waterfalls are terraced like giant natural stairs though some incorporate man-made improvements. Several small lagoons are interspersed among the vertical sections of the falls making it great to climb and soak in. The falls empty into the Caribbean Sea at the western end of an attractive white-sand beach and is fed by spring water, which is rich with calcium carbonate. It takes about 1-1.5 hours to climb.
3: Dominica: Emerald Pool Falls
Another must see Caribbean water fall is Dominica’s gorgeous Emerald Pool that is fed by a 50-foot waterfall. It’s an easy 20-minute walk through the Morne Trois Pitons National Park. You can soak in this fall but beware: the water can be chilly!
4: St. Vincent: Belaine Falls
The Falls of Baleine in St. Vincent is also another amazing Caribbean waterfall. This 60 foot waterfall tumbles into a rock-lined pool. It is difficult to reach, especially in heavy swells and is usually visited by a Boat Tour, but can also be accessed by a long and exposed coastal trail from the settlement of Fancy.
5: Grenada: Concord Falls
Grenada’s Concord Falls also must make it into the top 10 list. They are actually three separate waterfalls. If you like to hike, then this is a treat as the falls are situated on the edge of the forest reserve on the western side of the island. The water is crystal clear and ice cold. The trail goes through a nutmeg plantation and is readily marked, so a guide is not absolutely necessary. However, if you would like a guided tour with someone who can show you the different types of cultivated plants and their uses, then a guide is a must.
6: Puerto Rico: La Mina Falls
La Mina Falls in Puerto Rico is at six on our list. It is located El Yunque National Forest and can be accessed by either of two trails: La Mina trail or Big Tree trail. These are both beautiful trails, but different in many ways. The La Mina trail is the shortest trail to get to the falls (0.7 miles) and is accessible directly from the main Ranger Station – Palo Colorado. The water cascades over a cliff into a pool which can fill up with people but beware – the water can be cold.
7: Saint Lucia: Diamond Falls
The Diamond Falls are consistently described as one of the natural wonders of St Lucia.
The Diamond Falls is located in a Botanical Gardens in Soufriere. It is a six acre multi-award winning tourism site in St. Lucia and is another Caribbean must see falls. This beautiful waterfall is approximately 17 metres in height and is a mixture of rainwater and volcanism fed by the Sulphur Springs. The flow of water varies at different times of year but is always spectacular.
It is arguably the most colorful waterfall in the Caribbean – less than a mile east of Soufriere town center. What makes this waterfall stand out is that its waters are laced with minerals as its stream emanated from rainwater mixed with volcanism giving the falls a rather colorful appearance that seems to change often. The flow of water varies at different times of year but is always spectacular.The water is laced with minerals, sulphur, copper sulphate, magnesium, iron, manganese and calcium, all contributing to the kaleidoscope of colours that adjourn the rock face behind the falls.
8: Charcos: Dominican Republic
The north coast of the Dominican Republic is an adventure traveler’s paradise and located here is a complex of waterfalls called 27 Charcos. Located a few miles from Puerto Plata this is a waterfall adventure indeed. Meaning 27 waterfalls in Spanish, this adventure tour is getting popular, but is still fairly unknown and not often crowded. Carved out of limestone by the Rio Damajagua, the falls flow into the ocean and you literally adventure through the 27 waterfalls accompanied by guides and a few, although minimal, climbing ladders, ropes and the like.
9: Maracas Falls: Trinidad
Also making our top 10 list is the Maracas Falls in the upper part of the Maracas valley Trinidad. It is the tallest falls in Trinidad & Tobago – some 298 feet high and located on the northeast corner of the island — not far from Port of Spain. From the trailhead, it’s a moderate 45-minute climb to the base of the waterfall. There is a car park where security and tours are provided by the participants of the National Service program under the Forestry Division of the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Marine Resources. From the car park on Waterfall Road it is a further 2.4 km. to the waterfall. A track on the right leads to three tiers of mini waterfalls with two large pools that are suitable for swimming. A further 20 minutes of walking leads to the main waterfall. There is no pool for bathing at the base of this waterfall. The water flow on the Maracas Waterfall is more spectacular during the rainy season but even in the dry season it is a wonderful sight.
10: El Nicho Falls: Cuba
Rounding out the top 10 is the El Nicho complex of falls near Cienfuegos, Cuba. It is located midway along the south coast in a well-cared-for national park. This fall is the perfect example of Cuba’s natural wonders and is must-see attraction that will take you through the Sierra del Escambray Mountain Range where the Hanabanilla River meanders through lush vegetation before cascading into the emerald rock pools of the El Nicho Waterfalls. Do not forget your swimming clothes as you really do not want to miss out on the opportunity to take a dip in the crystal clear waters! There’s a small entrance fee that must be paid in CUC (the currency the government issues to tourists at exchange rate fixed at 1 CUC to $1 USD) and tour guides are available.