20 Spectacular Alberta Waterfalls in Canada You Must Visit!

Alberta boasts numerous waterfalls thanks to its diverse landscape characterized by mountains, glaciers, and rivers. The combination of these geographical features creates the perfect conditions for waterfall formation. Melting glaciers feed into rivers and streams, which carve through the rocky terrain, resulting in stunning waterfalls. But there are so many amazing Alberta waterfalls to choose from! So to make it easy for you we put together this complete guide with the 20 best Alberta waterfalls to visit in various National Parks in the province. 


Jasper National Park

Athabasca Falls 

Located in Jasper National Park, the Athabasca Falls are some of the most beautiful waterfalls in Alberta. Situated just off the Icefields Parkway and accessible via a short, paved trail, the Athabasca Falls are some of the easiest and safest Alberta waterfalls to access. 


Various viewpoints along the trail follow the canyon which has formed from the melting Athabasca glacier that flows into the Athabasca River and carved its way through the ancient limestone gorge. The 23-meter-tall Athabasca Falls is impressive to see, but so is the stunning canyon on the other side with dazzling blue water flowing through the narrow gorge.

For those interested in learning more about the geology and ecology of the area, interpretive displays and signage provide insightful information about the formation of the falls and the surrounding landscape.

Viewing platform Athabasca Falls

Sunwapta Falls 

The Sunwapta Falls is another spectacular waterfall in Jasper National Park and one of the most iconic Alberta waterfalls. What makes Sunwapta Falls so unique is its two main drops: the upper falls and the lower falls. The upper falls can be seen from the main viewpoint where you can see the Sunwapta River wrap around a small island with trees before it cascades forcefully over a ledge and in between the narrow canyon walls. The Lower Sunwapta Falls, while not as high, still impress with their wide and thunderous descent.


Maligne Canyon

Maligne Canyon is renowned for its stunning beauty, unique geological features, and several waterfalls cascading through the canyon. One of the most striking aspects of Maligne Canyon is its depth, with sections plunging over 50 meters (164 feet) into the earth with over 2 meters wide, making it one of the deepest canyons in the Canadian Rockies. 

The canyon was carved over thousands of years by the powerful flow of the Maligne River, which continues to shape and sculpt the landscape today. The Maligne Canyon trail forms a loop of a little more than 3 kilometers, and it’s simple to hike since the entire area is well-maintained.


Stanley Falls

The Stanley Falls is an off-the-beaten-path waterfall walk in Jasper National Park. A short hike along the Beauty Creek Trail takes you along a series of small waterfalls before getting to the picturesque Stanley Falls. 


Yoho National Park 

Takakkaw Falls 

While the Takakkaw Falls are officially not situated in Alberta province anymore, the short drive of 25 minutes to the Takakkaw Falls Parking Lot from Lake Louise is totally worth it. The spectacular Takakkaw Falls with its incredible height of approximately 373 meters (1,224 feet) is one of the tallest waterfalls in Canada. The waterfall is fed by meltwater from the Daly Glacier, which flows into the Yoho River before cascading over the rocky cliffs. A short 1.4 km round trip hike takes you to the base of the falls with beautiful scenery around you. 


Banff National Park 

Bow Glacier Falls 

The Bow Glacier Falls are fed by the melting waters of the Bow Glacier, which is part of the Wapta Icefield in the Canadian Rockies. With a total drop of approximately 120 meters (394 feet), it is a stunning sight to behold as the water cascades down the rocky cliffs and eventually feeds the nearby Bow Lake. The simple hike to get to Bow Glacier Falls passes picturesque alpine meadows and forests. Along the way, you are treated to stunning views of Bow Lake and the surrounding mountain scenery. During the summer months, when the glacier melt is at its peak, the waterfall is particularly impressive, with the rushing water creating a fine mist that fills the air.


Johnston Canyon Falls 

The Johnston Falls are some of the most visited waterfalls in Banff and are a great family-friendly hike. A well-maintained suspended steel walkway takes you through a limestone canyon, with scenic views of the Johnston Canyon falls and turquoise pools.


The great thing is that you can make Johnston Canyon hike as short or long as you want. Either walk until the spectacular Johnston Canyon Upper Falls with 5.3 km (3.3 miles) in length, or only visit the Johnston Canyon Lower Falls at 1.1 km (0.7 miles) in length.

Because the Johnston Canyon is one of the most popular hikes in Banff, I highly recommend to start this waterfall hike early.


Panther Falls

Right along the Icefields Parkway and before the border of Banff and Jasper National Park is Panther Falls located. This multi-tiered waterfall flows over several rocky ledges before plunging into a tranquil pool below. The Panther Falls are fed by meltwater from nearby glaciers and snowfields, making them particularly impressive during the summer months when water flow is at its peak. So the best time to visit this waterfall is between May and September, with June being the most ideal when the snowmelt is at its strongest. In the winter months, this waterfall changes into a spectacular sight with frozen falls. This is a very unique sight and a must-visit if you’re in Banff during the winter months. 


Bridal Veil Falls

The Bridal Veil Falls are just a short distance from the Panther Falls and resemble a bridal veil as the water gracefully descends over the rocky cliff. The falls are, just like the Panther Falls, fed by melting snow and glaciers. Therefore the peak season to see these falls are in late spring and the summer months, when the melting snow is at its strongest. 

Some people proclaim that the Bridal Veil Falls is the tallest waterfall in Alberta. But you wouldn’t tell because a big part of the falls are covered by lush forest. Nevertheless, it is a beautiful viewpoint and well worth the stop when driving the Icefield Parkway. 


Bow Falls 

While the Bow Falls aren’t the tallest waterfall on this list, it is a beautiful Banff waterfall to visit and very easy to get to. The waterfall stretches across the full width of the rushing Bow River and is one of the best things to visit in Banff. The Bow Falls viewpoint is reached at 1.5 km from Banff center, so it’s just an easy walk to stretch your legs. Along the way, you’ll have stunning views of the Bow Valley and surrounding mountains.


Mistaya Canyon

The Mistaya Canyon is a narrow gorge, carved out over thousands of years by the relentless force of the Mistaya River. The canyon walls, composed of limestone and shale, rise dramatically on either side, creating a dramatic and picturesque landscape. The short hike winds through a forested area before descending into the canyon where you are treated to stunning viewpoints that overlook the rushing waters below. During the summer months, when the river is at its peak flow, the canyon comes alive with the sound of rushing water and the sight of cascading waterfalls. Keep in mind that there is only a small parking lot at Mistaya Canyon, so in the summer months it can be busy so plan your visit as early as possible.  


Kananaskis Country

Troll Falls

Troll Falls is a small waterfall in Kananaskis Country. The 3.4 km round-trip hike takes you through a grove of aspens and follows a well-maintained trail through stunning forest. Although the waterfall isn’t the most spectacular of all Alberta falls, the lovely short hike makes it a great family-friendly activity in Kananaskis.  


Sheep River Falls

The Sheep River Falls are closely located to Calgary, making it a perfect day trip for locals. It’s one of the best waterfalls in Alberta to visit with only a short walk to the viewing platform. The 10-meter-high falls plunge over rugged cliffs into a rocky gorge below and offer stunning views of the surrounding Rocky Mountains.


Edworthy Falls

The Edworthy Falls are situated in the Elbow-Sheep Wildland Provincial Park and can be accessed via the 6.1-mile out-and-back Elbow Lake trail. The stunning backdrop and gracefully cascading water over the rocky ledges is a feast for the eye. 


Waterton Lakes National Park

Cameron Falls 

Situated in the southwestern part of Alberta province lies the Waterton Lakes National Park which is home to Cameron Falls. The 6-meter (about 20-foot) high waterfall is very accessible with its viewing platform right beside the parking area. 

A suspension bridge spans the river to get up close to the falls, and there are plenty of other trails to enjoy the surroundings and different perspectives of the waterfall. 


Lower Bertha Falls

Exploring the Lower Bertha Falls takes you along a 5.2-kilometer hiking trail with 175 meters of elevation gain to the middle of a lush forest. Here you can admire the stunning waterfall that flows over a series of rocky ledges into a tranquil pool below.

During the spring and early summer months, when snowmelt and rainfall are abundant, the Lower Bertha waterfall is particularly impressive, with the rushing water creating a thunderous roar and misty spray that fills the air.


Crescent Falls

Located along the David Thompson Highway in David Thompson Country, you can find this impressive Alberta waterfall. The Crescent Falls consist of two powerful waterfalls flowing between two natural pools. One of the most striking features of Crescent Falls is its unique shape, with water cascading over a series of rocky ledges in a crescent-like formation, hence its name. The falls are fed by the Bighorn River and flow into a picturesque canyon below with a total height of 27 meters. 

From the observation deck, you have impressive views of the top of the falls. But if you want to explore a bit further, then there is also a small trail leading down to the base of the waterfall. Here you can really take in the scale of these falls. 


Star Creek Falls

Star Creek Falls is a beautiful waterfall accessible by an easy trail. The 2.5 km hike takes you to a viewing point above the falls. From here you’ll have great views over the waterfall with mountains as a backdrop. In the winter months, this Alberta waterfall is well worth a visit as the waterfall freezes and creates a magical winter wonderland! 


Southern Alberta

Lundbreck Falls

The Lundbreck Falls is a 40-foot-tall twin waterfall located near the town of Lundbreck in southern Alberta. Because it’s a bit off the beaten path you will most likely have this waterfall for yourself, making it a hidden gem to explore. The unique horseshoe-shaped waterfall flows over a series of rocky ledges before plunging into the tranquil pool below. Here you can take a dip in the warmer summer months or have a lunch break at the picnic tables. This makes the Lundbreck Falls area an ideal spot for a leisurely lunch or a peaceful break amidst nature. 


What is the best time to visit the Alberta waterfalls?

Generally, the best time to see the waterfalls in Alberta in its full glory is in late spring and the summer months. The snowmelt is then at its strongest, making the Alberta waterfalls powerful and very impressive. In the spring and summer months, the landscape is also very lush and green with pleasant temperatures to explore. 

However, if you want to have a completely different experience with waterfalls, then the winter months can show you the magic of frozen waterfalls. Activities such as ice climbing and snowshoeing are possible. However, access to roads and trails may be closed or difficult to navigate during winter months.

More Canada travel inspiration

I hope you enjoyed this complete guide about the best Alberta waterfalls. For more travel inspiration about Alberta and British Columbia, head over to our other Canada travel guides. See below our Canada guides per National Park to prepare for your trip.

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