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14 of the Best Waterfalls in Arizona to Visit, Hike and Enjoy

By | Last Updated : 29th July 2020

Arizona, a southwestern state in the USA, is home to some of the most picturesque waterfalls in the country. Although the state is known for its dry, rocky landscape, thousands of people flock to these stunning falls to take in their beauty. Since Arizona remains mostly warm and dry, the waterfalls provide you with a fantastic opportunity for swimming and cooling off, especially during the summer.

Arizona Waterfalls

Most Famous Falls in Arizona

1. Cibecue Falls

Cibecue Falls in Arizona

The Cibecue Falls, situated in Gila County in the central part of Arizona, attracts thousands of tourists and locals each year, especially those who love canyoning. You can get to the trailhead by driving all the way past cliffs, through narrow roads, along the Salt River, and over the Cibecue Creek. The hike to this 30-feet-high waterfall gives you an extended workout and also offers a captivating view of the surrounding landscape.

Nearest City: 88 miles from Mesa and 89 miles from Scottsdale

Hiking & Other Activities: The 4-mile-hike with an elevation gain of 220 feet is moderately tricky; the Cibecue Creek Trail is the primary hiking trail for walking, running, and sightseeing.

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2. Fossil Creek Falls

Fossil Creek Falls in Arizona

Situated in Pine, this 25-feet-high waterfall with its deep pool beneath has one of the most naturally refreshing waters in Arizona. Since the waterfall is located in an isolated place and not within a park, it can be visited without paying any entry fees. It boasts multiple crystal-clear swimming holes while offering several picturesque sights so that you can relax and enjoy it. The area is open to the public during the day and can be visited by obtaining a reserved permit.

Nearest City: 17.5 miles from Camp Verde

Hiking & Other Activities: The waterfall and the creek can be reached via the 1.5-mile Fossil Creek Waterfall Trail (remains open from April-October); cliff jumping is allowed, but be careful about the water level.

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3. Grand Falls

Grand Falls in Arizona

The Grand Falls, situated in Coconino County, is one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the state. This waterfall, characterized by muddy, opaque chocolate water flowing at the height of 181 feet, is surrounded by several terraces. It is best seen after heavy rain or during the snowmelt when the water reaches its highest level. This magnificent waterfall system is located on the Navajo Nation, which is the reason why you need to get permission to visit the place.

Nearest City: 38 miles from Flagstaff

Hiking & Other Activities: Grand Falls View Trail is used for hiking throughout the year and provides intriguing views of the cliffs.

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4. Seven Falls

Seven Falls in Arizona

The waterfall, located in Sabino Canyon in the Catalina Foothills, is a small piece of lush landscape in the middle of the arid terrain of Tucson. The 2.5 miles long Seven Falls Trail leads you through the Bear Canyon before reaching the fantastic set of waterfalls. Aside from experiencing the mesmerizing views, you can explore the fantastic American sycamores as well as the other flora. You can end your hike with a pleasantly refreshing swim in one of the clear pools formed by the cascading waterfall.

Nearest City: 16.5 miles from Tucson

Hiking & Other Activities: The Seven Falls Trail, with an elevation gain of more than 900 feet, has a moderate difficulty level; the hikers can swim in the pools to cool off.

Directions

5. Havasu Falls

Havasu Falls in Arizona

This natural waterfall system, also famous as Havasupai Falls, is situated within the Havasupai Indian Reservation. Adventure-seekers, nature lovers, and hikers all love going there because of the overwhelming beauty of the place. Although the hiking trail is quite long, the blue-green water is alluring enough to make it worth visiting. The 98-feet-high waterfall lies hidden in the Grand Canyon, which means you can sit and relax on the Supai Hilltop and enjoy the stunning view of the rocky landscape.

Nearest City: 65 miles from Peach Springs

Hiking & Other Activities: The moderately difficult hike along the 10-mile-long Havasupai Falls Trail takes you to the waterfall; swimming and camping are allowed, but you need to reserve campground spaces in advance.

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6. Mooney Falls

Mooney Falls in Arizona

Another gorgeous waterfall in the Havasupai Indian Reservation area is the Mooney Falls. This cascading waterfall is known for its height, with an incredible plunge of 200 feet. Getting there is quite hard because you will have to hike through some of the steepest cliffs. You need to gain experience before trying to go along unpaved trails and tunnels or climb ladders and cliffs to reach the waterfall’s base. Since the place is difficult to access, avoid going there in winter.

Nearest City: 3 miles from Supai Village

Hiking & Other Activities: The 6-mile-long round-trip hiking trail is difficult to access, and you need chains and ladders to go to the falls; facilities for camping are available at the Havasupai Campground

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7. Navajo Falls

Navajo Falls in Arizona

Although the terrain is difficult to trek, tourists flock to the site throughout the year. Located on the Havasupai Indian Reservation, the Navajo Falls formed after the landscape was changed by the flash floods that occurred in 2008. To reach both the Upper and Lower Navajo Falls, you need to go along the 0.5-mile-long unpaved hike. The best time to visit this beautiful waterfall system is during spring and fall.

Nearest City: 64 miles from Peach Springs

Hiking & Other Activities: The hiking trail, with an elevation gain of around 500 feet, is 1.2 miles long from the Havasupai Campgrounds; you can swim in the large pool at the bottom of the Upper Navajo Falls.

Directions

8. Beaver Falls

Beaver Falls in Arizona

While you are in Supai, one of the most beautiful waterfalls that you could visit is Beaver Falls. It is a meandering waterfall with turquoise water, cascading over limestone terraces. The place has chains, bolts, and ladders to aid in your descent. On your way to this waterfall, you will pass through the burial site for the tribal people of Havasupai. Before visiting Beaver Falls, make sure to reserve a place at the Havasu Campgrounds with the local tourism office.

Nearest City: 1.8 miles from Supai Village and 65 miles from Peach Springs

Hiking & Other Activities: The hiking trail from Havasupai Campground is 3.5 miles long and is moderately difficult; a round-trip hike via the Mooney Falls Trail is about 7 miles long; you can relax and enjoy the breathtaking view or go for a refreshing swim.

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9. Ribbon Falls

Ribbon Falls in Arizona

Located in a secluded part of the Grand Canyon National Park, the Ribbon Falls creates a remote garden-like vibe, adding to the mystery of this moderately trafficked side of the canyon. The mineral-rich water from this 100-feet-high waterfall has created a colossal limestone spire just below it. You can even walk behind the waterfall system and experience the column of water pouring down right in front of your eyes.

Nearest City: 1.2 miles from North Rim

Hiking & Other Activities: The round-trip hike to the waterfall via the North Kaibab Trail is 16.8 miles long, and it has an elevation gain of 4,521 feet, making it moderately difficult to reach; you can take a dip in the pool to cool off in a warm summer afternoon; camping facilities available at Bright Angel Campground.

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10. Sycamore Falls

Sycamore Falls in Arizona

The Sycamore Falls, lying hidden in the pine forest of Sycamore Canyon south of the city of Williams, is a popular tourist destination even when the water is not flowing during dry times. Water flows seasonally, especially after storms or snowmelts, and drops from a height of about 70 feet into a deep pool below. To reach the falls, you need to pass through fragrant woodlands and sunlit meadows, with the trail offering enticing views into the Sycamore Canyon.

Nearest City: 15.5 miles from Williams

Hiking & Other Activities: You can reach the falls through the 11-mile-long Sycamore Rim Trail (open during spring, summer, and fall), which could be quite strenuous for the visitors; when the weather is dry, it becomes a popular spot for rock climbing.

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11. Tanque Verde Falls

Tanque Verde Falls in Arizona

The Tanque Verde, located in Tanque Verde Canyon east of Tucson, is a beautiful fall with an 80-feet drop into the pool below. You can reach there with a short trip, during which you will come across several smaller waterfalls as well as swimming holes where you can stop and relax. Once you reach the creek, you will have to move along the creek bed in order to get to the falls. The beauty of the landscape is best seen in spring, fall, and summer.

Nearest City: 21.2 miles from Tucson

Hiking & Other Activities: You can reach there with a 1.6-mile hike through the Lower Tanque Verde Falls Trailhead; swimming and cliff jumping are allowed, but you should be cautious about the slippery granite rocks and strong water current.

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‘Hidden’ or ‘Secret’ Waterfalls in Arizona

Many people are not aware that there are some stunning falls in Arizona, which are hidden within forests or canyons. If you are traveling to Arizona, make sure to include the following ‘awe-inspiring’ natural wonders in your bucket list.

1. Bridal Wreath Falls

Bridal Wreath Falls in Arizona

The Bridal Wreath Falls is situated at a distance of 2.8 miles from the Douglas Spring Trailhead in the Saguaro National Park. The 25-feet-tall waterfall has a small pool below where you can take a dip to cool off. While hiking on the Bridal Wreath Falls Trail, use caution because you will have to navigate through stones and boulders.

2. Cheyava Falls

Cheyava Falls

Located deep in the Grand Canyon, the 800-feet-high Cheyava Falls is the tallest waterfall system in Arizona that can be accessed by backpacking. To reach the fall, you will have to move through the 18-mile-long Clear Creek Trail, which is classified as a moderately strenuous hike.

3. Deer Creek Falls

Deer Creek Falls in Arizona

It is a stunning 180-feet-tall waterfall with the water being spilled into the Colorado River. You will need a camping reservation if you want to get there on a backpacking adventure. The remote location is also accessible by white water rafting. Whether you are searching for a secluded and scenic getaway or looking to beat the summer heat, the diverse landscape of Arizona with all its breathtaking natural waterfall systems more than delivers, thereby making it the perfect destination for all your adventures.

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