The Most Stunning Waterfalls to Visit in Sri Lanka

As beautiful as it is useful, Laxapana Falls doubles as a local power source
As beautiful as it is useful, Laxapana Falls doubles as a local power source | © Nuwan Liyanage / Alamy Stock Photo

Sri Lanka Hub Writer

Sri Lanka is a country with a lot of waterfalls: more than 400, in fact. Some have natural pools to bathe in, while others are more rugged and can only be seen from a distance. Here’s a list of the most stunning ones across the entire island.

This colourful island has far more to offer than just waterfalls – let Culture Trip do the work for you with our 12-day trip taking in Sri Lanka’s stunning ancient temples and unique wildlife.

1. Laxapana

Natural Feature, Hiking Trail

Laxapana is a hugely important waterfall. It’s an energy source for the water plant of the same name. Quite easy to get to by car with only a short hike needed afterwards, it’s a misty wonder over a deep base pool. As it’s in the highlands, the weather here is a bit cooler than the coast.

2. Baker's Falls

Natural Feature, Hiking Trail

Sri Lanka, Horton Plains National Park, Baker?s falls
© Vito Arcomano / Alamy Stock Photo
Baker’s Falls could be the widest waterfall in Sri Lanka, consisting of many little streams rushing down a rock face. Only a bit of a hike away from Horton Plains, this is an easy waterfall to visit. The nearby greenery is stunning, full of ferns and rhododendrons, but know that when it’s rained the entire area becomes very slippery.

3. Bambarakanda Falls

Natural Feature, Hiking Trail

Sri Lanka, Sabaragamuwa Province, Belihul Oya, Bambarakanda Falls
© Dorling Kindersley ltd / Alamy Stock Photo
Bambarakanda is the tallest waterfall in Sri Lanka, towering at 263m (863ft) over the base pool. There’s no access to the pool but the downpour can be seen from a little road that climbs up the hill. Bambarakanda looks most impressive after the rains but is even harder to get to due to the mud.

4. Bopath Ella

Natural Feature, Hiking Trail

Bopath Ella is a local standout with a very unique shape. It resembles (and is named after) a Bo leaf, with a thin, short stream that opens up to a wider fall towards the bottom. Bopath Ella is quite easy to visit, too; it’s in the vicinity of a village close to the mining town of Rathnapura. It’s possible to swim in the base pool.

5. Ravana Falls

Natural Feature, Hiking Trail

Ravana Falls, Ella, Sri Lanka, Asia
© Joana Kruse / Alamy Stock Photo
Ravana Falls is among the biggest tourist attractions in Ella, a country town in the central highlands. There’s lots of hiking in the area, including Adam’s Peak and Horton Plains. Ravana Falls is easy to see and is most beautiful in the rainy season. There’s also a cave close by that can be visited.

6. Kirindi Ella

Natural Feature, Hiking Trail

Vertical view of Ravana Falls in Ella, Sri Lanka.
© Anne-Marie Palmer / Alamy Stock Photo
In the middle of the Bambarakotuwa Jungle, Kirindi Ella falls is a towering waterfall that splashes into a big base pool. Local legend says that there’s treasure at the bottom, but many droughts and dry seasons have cast doubt on that. Visiting Kirindi Ella is easy from Ratnapura or Pelmadulla. There are paths that take visitors to a viewing platform, the base and also the top of the waterfall.

7. St. Clairs Waterfall

Natural Feature, Hiking Trail

St. Clairs Falls is one of the widest waterfalls in Sri Lanka and is commonly known as the Little Niagara of Sri Lanka
© Nuwan Liyanage / Alamy Stock Photo
This waterfall located in Nuwara Eliya is set between tea plantations, making it incredibly photogenic. As a result, St. Claire’s waterfall is a local favorite.

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