Thailand is known for many attractions among savvy tourists, from its beaches to its food and nightlife. But the country’s incredible nature has a way of surprising and delighting visitors time and again. While its wildlife and national parks understandably receive a lot of attention, its countless beautiful waterfalls (or nam tok in Thai) are equally deserving. So why not chase some on your next trip around the country? Allow us to showcase what we think are the best waterfalls in Thailand.
1. Thi Lo Su Waterfall
Often described as the highest waterfall in Thailand and the largest by volume, Thi Lo Su Waterfall is an impressive force of nature that is definitely worth the trip. Found within the Umphang Wildlife Sanctuary in central Thailand, this majestic waterfall is incredibly photogenic thanks to its three separate tiers. Estimates say that this waterfall, fed by the Mae Klong River, is between 250 and 400 meters tall and around 450 meters wide. There is a 90-minute return walk to explore each of its tiers. Visitors can also cool off and swim in the pools at the bottom of the falls.
2. Erawan Falls
It’s fair to say that Erawan Falls are not only the best known waterfalls in Thailand but also one of Thailand’s best waterfalls. They are a favorite spot for tourists visiting Erawan National Park in Kanchanaburi. Photographers and sightseers as well as those wanting to beat the heat flock here. Flowing straight through the jungle down seven tiers with stunning emerald green ponds between each cascade, the falls are simply magical to look at. It helps that they feature many pools of cool, crystal-clear water that provide welcome relief from the hot weather.
3. Bua Thong Waterfalls (Sticky Waterfalls)
While it may not be the largest waterfall you’ll come across in Thailand, Bua Thong Waterfalls are nevertheless extremely distinctive and interesting to visit. Also known as the Sticky Waterfalls, this curious sight lies just an hour and a half north of Chiang Mai. It earns its nickname due to the coarse limestone surface that it flows over, allowing visitors to comfortably walk through it and even up its five tiers. Just know that while the water here is refreshingly cold, there are no pools or swimming spots at the waterfall itself.
4. Mae Surin Waterfall
It says a lot that Mae Surin Waterfall is considered the highlight of a trip to Namtok Mae Surin National Park. But see it surrounded by the park’s thick forest and mountains in Thailand’s far northwest and you’ll understand why it’s often considered one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Thailand. This single-step horsetail waterfall seems to almost come out of nowhere to drop 100 meters down the mountainside and onto the rocks below, creating a captivating sight that draws international and local visitors alike. The popularity of Mae Surin Waterfall means there are viewpoints all along the trail that leads to the bottom of the falls.
5. Pha Charoen Waterfall
Running down 97 limestone steps, Pha Charoen Waterfall is a graceful and soothing sight to behold. Situated among the mountains of Namtok Pha Charoen National Park in Thailand’s northwest, the waterfall looks like a grand staircase elegantly flowing through the surrounding forest. It’s quite easy to get the best view of the waterfall by taking a very short walk from the road, but there are also trails that bring you further up along its many levels. The good news is that it’s just one of many waterfalls in Thailand along the so-called “Death Highway” between Mae Sot and Umphang by the Myanmar border.
6. Koh Luang Waterfall
For a peaceful cascade hidden away in the Thai wilderness, it’s hard to beat Koh Luang Waterfall. Situated deep in the wilds of Mae Ping National Park in northern Thailand, this scenic waterfall cascades down limestone rock into a vivid emerald pond that is truly beautiful. Spanning around 20 meters in height and surrounded by rocky cliffs, Koh Luang Waterfall almost makes it look like the rock is cascading rather than the water. Although it’s just one of the attractions in Mae Ping National Park, this waterfall is a firm favorite with locals, and it’s easy to see why.
7. Mae Ya Waterfall
Thanks to its isolated location, the mighty Mae Ya Waterfall is often relatively free from visitors despite being one of the most jaw-dropping waterfalls in Thailand. Located in Doi Inthanon National Park in the country’s northern Chiang Mai Province, this natural wonder doesn’t get many visitors, as it’s not really close to much else of interest to tourists. Those who make the effort are sure to be delighted with the sight of this 260-meter tall waterfall as it plummets down the ridges of a massive, staggered cliffside.
8. Wachirathan Waterfall
Elsewhere in Doi Inthanon National Park, closer to Thailand’s highest peak, lies the seriously stunning Wachirathan Waterfall. Through the forceful mist that it pushes out, which is known to create the odd rainbow, visitors can admire Wachirathan Waterfall and its cumulative 80 meter drop in all its glory. Since this waterfall is clearly signposted and features a dedicated viewing terrace at the bottom of the falls a short walk from the road, you should have no trouble finding and appreciating its raw power. It can get slippery there, so watch your step, and bring some protection if you don’t want to get wet.
9. Khun Korn Waterfall
Deep in far north Thailand just east of Chiang Rai, Khun Korn Waterfall is a powerful and picturesque horsetail waterfall. It is found within the dense and atmospheric bamboo forest of Khun Korn Forest Park, along a gentle and enjoyable walking trail. Follow the track and you’ll eventually hear the sound then see this towering 70-meter-high waterfall as it races down the rocky hillside leaving a cloud of mist over the small pool below. As such, it’s best to come prepared — unless you don’t mind getting wet.
10. Khlong Lan Waterfall
Set within lush forest and mountains of Khlong Lan National Park, Khlong Lan Waterfall is not to be missed. Plunging down 100 meters over a rugged cliff and rippling off rocks much of the way down, this dramatic waterfall in central Thailand makes a dazzling first impression. One of its nice aspects is its accessibility, with a suitable viewpoint for the falls just a few minutes walk down a gentle trail from the park office. Khlong Lan National Park is home to a number of other sights, including historic ruins and Khlong Nam Lai Waterfall.
11. Haew Narok Waterfall
Khao Yai National Park is one of the most impressive national parks in Thailand, in part thanks to the beauty of Haew Narok Waterfall. Although the falls cover a cumulative 150 meters in height, the main view point only shows its topmost three tiers. After a considerable hike up stairs, you’ll get to see this 30-meter-high section flow down into a large pool at its base. With thick jungle all around, Haew Narok Waterfall really feels like a hidden treasure that only the lucky and determined get to experience.
12. Haew Suwat Waterfall
Another special waterfall found in Khao Yai National Park is the phenomenal Haew Suwat Waterfall. This is probably the easiest of the waterfalls to get to in Khao Yai, one reason it’s also the park’s best known. Another reason Haew Suwat Waterfall is so popular, though, is because it featured in the iconic film The Beach, in the scene where Leonardo Di Caprio jumped from the cliff into the water below. Haew Suwat Waterfall is roughly 20 meters in height and offers a large pool where many visitors choose to swim and relax.
13. Khlong Phlu Waterfall
To see the most wonderful waterfall on the island of Koh Chang, head for the popular Khlong Phlu Waterfall. Located just within Mu Ko Chang National Park, this three-tier waterfall is a highlight of a visit to the national park. Although still visible during the dry season, it is at its most striking following the rainy season when it rages off its high cliff. Having seen the waterfall, many visitors linger to take a swim in its refreshing pool that’s home to plenty of fish.
14. Bang Pae Waterfall
Phuket is home to all sorts of places for visitors to go, with several pleasant waterfalls like Bang Pae Waterfall providing a nice change of pace from the beaches and nightlife. Found within Khao Phra Thaeo National Park in the island’s northeast, Bang Pae is a great retreat from Phuket’s busier spots. The waterfall is a favorite place for locals to cool off during hotter weather thanks to its small pools that flow with cool, fresh water. Bang Pae Waterfall is rather modest compared to some on this list, though, only measuring around 10 meters in height.
15. Sri Dit Waterfall
Rather than being a mighty waterfall that impresses you with its scale, Sri Dit Waterfall offers visitors a gentle, relaxing atmosphere. This small block waterfall is situated just outside Khao Kho National Park in northern Thailand. The drop from this single-tier waterfall isn’t very high, but the constant curtain of water that fills the large pool below makes it a great place to swim and unwind. The simplicity of the waterfall and a view clear of obstructions make Sri Dit Waterfall a popular photography spot as well.
16. Soi Sawan Waterfall
Located just shy of the Mekong River and Laos border, Soi Sawan Waterfall is sure to impress those who make the journey to reach it. This classic waterfall is located in Ubon Ratchathani in Thailand’s far east and provides some stunning scenery, with its rock pools and fascinating rock formations. If you visit Soi Sawan Waterfall,you’re unlikely to see many other tourists about, meaning you can admire this small plunge waterfall in peace. Afterwards, take the time to soak in the small rock pools or climb around the canyon above the falls.
17. Ton Nga Chang Waterfall
Offering superb scenery and a variety of ponds to cool off in, Ton Nga Chang Waterfall is a must-see while down in Hat Yai province in southern Thailand. Also known as Elephant’s Tusks Waterfall, this seven-tier cascade owes its nickname to the way it splits on its third tier. While you can get a good look at the lower parts from the first level, it’s worth walking up the trail beside the falls to see how different each of the levels are and get a more complete view.
18. Khlong Chak Waterfall
Remote in all the best kinds of ways, Khlong Chak Waterfall is a secluded sight that can be quite pretty in the right circumstances. Located near the southern tip of the island of Koh Lanta, reaching it requires a decent hike through local rainforest. Bear in mind that this waterfall is seasonal, meaning you really need to be there in the rainy season to get the full effect. That said, the surroundings and the hike itself are delightful no matter when you go.
19. Hin Lat Waterfall
One of many waterfalls worth checking out within the hilly forests in the interior of Koh Samui is Hin Lat Waterfall. A walking trail leads from a local Buddhist shrine up to the waterfall. It requires a decent hike to reach, but the effort is worth it. Hin Lat Waterfall carves its way down over sharp rocks to pools where you can swim and paddle about. Thanks to its isolated location and blissful natural surroundings, this Thai waterfall is the perfect place to visit if you’re looking for peace and quiet.
20. Pi Tu Gro Waterfall
Since visiting the gorgeous Pi Tu Gro Waterfall requires an overnight hike, you’d hope for the view to be worth the effort. The good news is that this picture-postcard waterfall most definitely merits the trek through the forest in Umphang District by the Myanmar border. Often described as the Heart Waterfall due to its shape, Pi Tu Gro Waterfall provides awe-inspiring scenery that few ever get to see in person. All of this makes it special in every sense of the word.
Map of the Best Waterfalls in Thailand
There you go, proof that there are loads of wonderful waterfalls in Thailand just waiting to be explored. It’ll take a massive effort to see all of them, but it sounds like a pretty fun way to spend your trip, right?