By: Alex Robinson
Waterfalls have been an awe-inspiring sight ever since the first man walked down river, peered over the edge, and then wildly exclaimed to his tribe-bros, "I think we can jump off of this!" So it's with the same passionate spirit of adventure and danger that we're proud to introduce the most treacherous, powerful, and enormous waterfalls that TLC would be wholly against chasing.
Zambezi River, bordering Zimbabwe and Zambia
Considered the largest waterfall in the world, Victoria Falls thunders obnoxiously in Southern Africa. A Scotsman named David Livingston "discovered" the falls around 1855 and named them after then-queen Victoria. When the locals told Livingston they'd known about the falls for years, calling it "the smoke that thunders," Livingston straight up preached about Christianity for about 20min and everyone just kinda walked away.
Credit: Flickr/Claudius Prößer
Aysén del General Carlos Ibáñez del Campo, Chile
In Spanish, "ventisquero" translates to a zone in a mountain where heavy snow accumulations occur. That's not really relevant to anything, but hey! The more you know! What makes this waterfall particularly unique isn't the fact that it's in Chile (try harder Chile), but that it flows from a 50,000-year-old freaking glacier. That's ablation, son!
Credit: Flickr/Wenjie Qiao
Pearl Shoal Waterfall
Sichuan Province, China
You can find this beaut in "Ngawa Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture", which is basically the Las Vegas of Sichuan Province (probably). Fun fact: the falls are located in the same area as Five Flower Lake, which appeared in the film Hero, and that was a badass movie.
Milford Sound, New Zealand
Named after what happens when Kiefer's had a few, and strongly resembling a Bob Ross painting, this magnificent water-fueled gravity-verifier pours out of a badass mountain lake at one of the South Island's most picturesque destinations. The falls extend 1,904ft, making this one of the tallest in the world (and one of the nicest in our hearts).
Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Helen Filatova
Niagara Gorge, Ontario, Canada
Niagara Falls looks like it used to be a giant lake, but then half the lake gave up and sunk, accepting that "this is just who I am now". The result is one of the most recognizable falls in the world. Consisting of three individual waterfalls (Horseshoe Falls, American Falls, and Bridal Veil Falls), Niagara has seen countless "daredevils" construct barrels for upwards of $30,000, only to plunge 165ft into the waters below. Which makes total sense when you look up the word 'idiot' in the dictionary.
Credit: Flickr/Michael Matti
Franklin/Whitman counties, Washington, USA
Dropping 198ft, Palouse Falls is part of the eponymous park located in the bear-infested state of Washington. The falls received a quick bout of fame after pro kayaker and all-around badass Tyler Bradt set a world record for the largest descent over a waterfall. This drop clocks in at 17ft higher than Niagara. Suck it, Canada!
Angel Falls is the world's highest waterfall, clocking it at 3,212ft, and is a UNESCO World Heritage site. It got its name from Jimmie Angel, the first person to fly over it and subsequently crash land on top of it. After Jim got out of his plane, he let out a big ol' "No way!" and walked for 11 days down to the bottom, where folks were fascinated by his story and decided to name the waterfall after him.
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