If you’re on the lookout for a refreshing escape, visiting a few of the best waterfalls in Texas is always a good idea!
From the stunning Gorman Falls at Colorado Bend State Park to the magical Hamilton Pool Preserve, Texas has an abundance of natural beauty to explore.
Whether you’re looking for a challenging hike or a relaxing swim, there’s a waterfall in Texas for everyone.
- The Best Waterfalls in Texas
- 1. Hamilton Pool Preserve
- 2. Krause Springs
- 3. McKinney Falls
- 4. Window Trail
- 5. Twin Falls
- 6. Spicewood Springs
- 7. Capote Falls
- 8. Gorman Falls
- 9. Rio Vista Falls
- 10. Madrid Waterfalls – Tallest waterfall in Texas accessible to the public
- 11. Pedernales Falls
- 12. The Falls in Lucy Park
- 13. Cattail Falls
- Where Can You Find the Best Waterfalls in Texas?
- What State Parks Have the Best Waterfalls in Texas?
- Colorado Bend State Park
- Pedernales Falls State Park
- McKinney Falls State Park
- Lost Maples State Natural Area
- Palmetto State Park
- Best Time to See Waterfalls in Texas
- FAQs About the Best Waterfalls in Texas
- What is the biggest waterfall in Texas?
- Where in Texas are there waterfalls?
- What is the second-tallest waterfall in Texas?
- Conclusion: Best Waterfalls in Texas
The Best Waterfalls in Texas
1. Hamilton Pool Preserve
Hamilton Pool Preserve is one of the best waterfalls in Texas, especially if a swim is what you’re after.
Located in Dripping Springs, just outside of Austin, Hamilton Pool offers a stunning 50ft plunge waterfall by a deep grotto.
The water is a beautiful blueish-green color, which makes for a mesmerizing and relaxing sight.
One thing to keep in mind is that the popularity of Hamilton Pool has limited its access.
Reservations are now required to swim, and you should check the park’s website before heading to the pool, even after you’ve booked a time slot.
This is because the pool may close from time to time when water levels are low due to high amounts of bacteria.
The section of trail that goes underneath the overhanging cliff at the pool is currently closed for safety concerns.
Visitors can still access the beach, but cannot walk all the way around the pool to below the waterfall.
Rocks have been falling from the cliffs above the trail, so it’s important to be cautious and follow all safety guidelines.
2. Krause Springs
If you’re looking for a refreshing swim in the Texas heat, Krause Springs is the perfect destination.
Located in Spicewood, Texas, about 30 miles west of Austin, Krause Springs is a well-known camping and swimming site in the beautiful Hill Country.
On the property, you’ll find 32 natural springs, with several feeding the man-made pool and the natural pool that flows into Lake Travis.
The natural pool is particularly popular, with its crystal-clear water and the surrounding lush greenery creating a serene atmosphere.
In addition to swimming, Krause Springs also offers hiking trails that allow you to explore the natural beauty of the area.
The Butterfly Garden and the Grotto are two popular spots that are definitely worth checking out.
If you’re planning to camp at Krause Springs, there are 24 RV sites and 34 tent sites available.
The camping area is shaded by towering trees, making it a comfortable place to stay even during the hottest months.
3. McKinney Falls
Located in Austin, this park offers two of the best waterfalls in Texas: the Upper and Lower Falls, which are both easy and family-friendly hikes.
The Upper Falls can be found on the 2.8-mile Onion Creek Hike & Bike Trail, while the Lower Falls is at the end of the short-and-sweet, .5-mile picnic trail.
Both hikes offer stunning views of the falls and are great for a quick afternoon adventure.
Aside from hiking, McKinney Falls State Park also offers fishing, biking, bouldering, and camping at tent/RV sites and newly-remodeled cabins.
You can also explore the ruins of the homestead where Thomas McKinney, an influential pioneer after whom the park is named, lived in the mid-1800s.
Swimming is allowed in Onion Creek, but be sure to keep the creek clean by not bringing food, snacks, alcohol, glass, coolers, ice chests, or thermal bags to the Upper and Lower Falls areas.
4. Window Trail
If you’re looking for a moderate hike with a stunning waterfall at the end, the Window Trail in Big Bend National Park is a must-visit.
This 5.2-mile out-and-back trail takes you through a narrow canyon and ends at a breathtaking overlook with panoramic views of the Chisos Basin.
The trail starts at the Chisos Basin parking lot and descends gradually through a rocky canyon.
Along the way, you’ll pass by tall cliffs and interesting rock formations.
Keep an eye out for wildlife, as the area is home to a variety of animals, including deer, javelinas, and even black bears.
As you approach the end of the trail, you’ll hear the sound of rushing water.
The Window Pour-off, a seasonal waterfall, cascades down a 220-foot drop into the Chisos Basin.
The view from the overlook is simply stunning, especially at sunset when the colors of the sky reflect off the water.
It’s important to note that the Window Trail can be dangerous during rainy periods, as flash floods can occur in the narrow canyon.
5. Twin Falls
If you’re looking for a beautiful waterfall hike in Texas, Twin Falls is a must-visit destination.
Located in Pedernales Falls State Park, this waterfall is a hidden gem that’s worth the effort to find.
The Twin Falls Nature Trail is a short hike that will take you to the stunning waterfall.
The trail is shaded and easy to navigate, making it perfect for families and beginners.
Once you arrive at the falls, you’ll be greeted by a beautiful cascade of water that’s perfect for taking photos or just enjoying the scenery.
If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also explore the surrounding area. The Barton Creek Greenbelt Trail is nearby and offers a variety of hiking options.
Sculpture Falls is another popular destination that’s worth checking out.
6. Spicewood Springs
Spicewood Springs is a hidden gem that you won’t want to miss as it is home to one of the best waterfalls in Texas.
Located in the Hill Country, this tropical oasis is surrounded by lush greenery and features a beautiful waterfall that cascades into the clear blue water.
To access Spicewood Springs, you’ll need to hike the Spicewood Springs Trail, a 3.8-mile loop that takes you through the scenic Colorado Bend State Park.
The trail is considered moderately challenging, with an elevation gain of 291 feet, but the stunning views along the way make it well worth the effort.
Once you reach Spicewood Springs, you can take a dip in the cool water, relax on the rocky shore, or even climb up to the top of the waterfall for a thrilling view.
7. Capote Falls
Capote Falls is a must-visit destination for waterfall lovers in Texas.
Located in western Presidio County, Capote Falls is the tallest waterfall in Texas, with a drop of 175 feet.
The waterfall is fed by Capote Creek, and it’s a scenic spring-fed waterfall that offers a breathtaking view.
Unfortunately, Capote Falls is located on private property, so you need permission to visit.
If you are determined to see this West Texas waterfall, you can ask permission from the landowner or take a helicopter tour from the town of Marfa.
If you are looking for a unique and adventurous waterfall view, then taking a helicopter ride to get a bird’s eye view is the way to go.
8. Gorman Falls
If you’re looking for a waterfall that’s worth the hike, Gorman Falls in Colorado Bend State Park is a must-visit.
This 70-foot cascading waterfall is considered one of the most beautiful in Texas, and for good reason.
To get to the falls, you’ll need to hike the 3-mile round-trip Gorman Falls Trail.
The trail is moderately difficult, with some steep and rocky sections, so wear sturdy shoes and be prepared for a workout.
Along the way, you’ll see stunning views of the Colorado River and pass by Gorman Springs, another natural wonder in the park.
Once you reach the falls, you’ll be rewarded with a breathtaking sight.
The water cascades down the limestone cliffs, creating a misty spray that surrounds you.
You can’t swim in the falls, as the area is protected due to its fragile environment, but you can take plenty of photos and soak in the natural beauty.
If you’re planning to visit Gorman Falls, keep in mind that the falls and the springs can be seasonal and depend on the drought in the area. Check the park’s website for updates before you go.
9. Rio Vista Falls
Located on the San Marcos River, this natural waterslide is a favorite among locals and tourists alike.
The falls consist of three unassuming waterfalls that are actually slides, providing a thrilling ride for those who dare to take on the current.
You can rent tubes from Lions Club and start your journey upstream, where you’ll eventually reach Rio Vista Falls and experience the excitement of sliding down a waterfall.
But Rio Vista Falls isn’t just about the adrenaline rush.
The area is also a beautiful spot for a picnic or to relax in the shade of the pretty trees surrounding the river.
It’s worth noting that Rio Vista Falls can get crowded on weekends and holidays, so plan accordingly.
10. Madrid Waterfalls – Tallest waterfall in Texas accessible to the public
Madrid Falls in Big Bend Ranch State Park should be at the top of your list when it comes to choosing the best waterfalls in Texas.
Little known to most, Madrid Falls is the highest waterfall in Texas accessible to the public, standing at 100 feet tall.
It lies deep in the heart of Big Bend Ranch State Park, nestled in a valley and surrounded by the Chihuahuan Desert, the driest region in the state.
To reach Madrid Falls, you’ll need to be prepared for a hike. The trail to the falls is not easy, but the reward is worth it.
The hike is about 3 miles round trip, and it’s recommended that you bring plenty of water and wear sturdy hiking shoes.
Along the way, you’ll encounter stunning views of the surrounding desert landscape, and you might even spot some wildlife.
Once you reach the falls, you’ll be greeted by a breathtaking sight. The water cascades down the rocks, creating a misty spray in the air.
You can take a dip in the pool at the base of the falls, but be warned that the water can be chilly, even in the height of summer.
11. Pedernales Falls
If you’re looking for a waterfall experience that’s gentle and peaceful, Pedernales Falls is the perfect choice.
Located inside the Pedernales Falls State Park, these falls are unique in that they cascade down the Pedernales River from pool to pool, without any huge drops.
The crystal-clear river and limestone rock formations make for a beautiful backdrop, and there are plenty of activities to enjoy in the park.
You can camp, hike, mountain bike, picnic, geocache, bird watch, and ride horses. On the river, you can swim, wade, tube, or fish.
This makes Pedernales Falls one of the best waterfalls in Texas for activities.
If you’re interested in hiking, the park offers some great trails.
The Wolf Mountain Trailhead provides access to a 7.5-mile trail that offers beautiful river views from the east side of Wolf Mountain.
The Jones Spring portion of the trail is mainly along a single-track trail.
Pedernales Falls State Park is located just an hour outside of Austin, making it a great day trip destination.
12. The Falls in Lucy Park
Wichita Falls is a city that boasts plenty of natural beauty, including the Falls in Lucy Park.
The Falls in Lucy Park is a triple waterfall that is located in the middle of a city park. The waterfalls are formed by an abrupt change in the Wichita River’s elevation.
The waterfalls are surrounded by lush vegetation, making it a popular spot for picnicking and hiking.
To get to The Falls in Lucy Park, you can take the Wichita River Trail, which is a 1.7-mile loop trail.
The trail is easy to navigate and offers scenic views of the river.
The trail is perfect for hikers of all skill levels and is a great way to enjoy the beauty of the park.
13. Cattail Falls
If you’re looking for a hidden gem in the middle of the Texas desert, Cattail Falls in Big Bend National Park is a must-see.
This seasonal waterfall is best visited after heavy spring rain, but even if no more than a trickle is cascading down the rugged canyon walls, it’s worth your while.
To get to Cattail Falls, you’ll park at the trailhead for Sam Nail Ranch.
The road leading to the trailhead is prone to flooding after heavy rainfall, so be sure to check with the National Park Service before heading out.
The trail to Cattail Falls is a 5.7-mile out-and-back hike that is rated as moderate.
Along the way, you’ll enjoy stunning views of the surrounding desert landscape.
The trail is well-marked and easy to follow, but be sure to bring plenty of water and wear sturdy hiking shoes.
Once you reach Cattail Falls, you’ll be rewarded with a beautifully blue pool of water that is perfect for cooling off on a hot Texas day.
If you stand under the falls, you can get a view of the pool below, which is a lovely little oasis in the middle of the desert.
Where Can You Find the Best Waterfalls in Texas?
If you’re looking for some of the best waterfalls in Texas, you’re in luck!
The state is home to a variety of beautiful waterfalls that are perfect for exploring and taking in the natural beauty of the area.
Here are some of the best places to find waterfalls in Texas:
Texas Hill Country
The Texas Hill Country is known for its rolling hills, scenic views, and natural beauty. It’s also home to some of the best waterfalls in Texas.
Some of the best waterfalls in Texas Hill Country include:
- Pedernales Falls: This waterfall is located in Pedernales Falls State Park and is a popular spot for hiking and swimming.
- Gorman Falls: Located in Colorado Bend State Park, Gorman Falls is a stunning waterfall that is well worth the hike to get there.
- Hamilton Pool Preserve: This natural pool and waterfall is located just outside of Austin and is a popular spot for swimming and hiking.
West Texas may not be the first place you think of when it comes to waterfalls, but there are actually some beautiful waterfalls to be found in this part of the state.
Some of the best waterfalls in West Texas include:
- McKittrick Canyon: This canyon is located in Guadalupe Mountains National Park and is home to a beautiful waterfall that is surrounded by colorful fall foliage.
- Davis Mountains State Park: This park is home to several small waterfalls that are perfect for exploring on a hot summer day.
If you’re looking for waterfalls in East Texas, you won’t be disappointed.
This part of the state is home to some of the most beautiful waterfalls in Texas, including:
- Caddo Lake State Park: This park is home to several small waterfalls that are perfect for exploring by kayak or canoe.
- Tyler State Park: This park is home to a beautiful waterfall that is surrounded by lush greenery and is perfect for a picnic or hike.
What State Parks Have the Best Waterfalls in Texas?
If you’re looking for the best waterfalls in Texas, you’ll want to check out some of the state parks in the area.
Here are a few of the best state parks to visit if you want to see some stunning waterfalls:
Colorado Bend State Park
Colorado Bend State Park is home to one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Texas, Gorman Falls.
The hike to see Gorman Falls requires a three-mile round trip.
Much of the terrain leading to the falls is rocky and without shade, and the trail can be slippery and muddy after rain, but the view of the 70-foot waterfall is worth the hike.
Pedernales Falls State Park
Pedernales Falls is one of the most popular state parks in Texas, and for good reason.
It’s a geological wonder with fast-flowing, crystal-clear river water cascading down a series of ancient limestone rocks, complete with the beguiling 50-foot Pedernales Falls.
The park offers a variety of activities, including hiking, biking, fishing, and camping.
McKinney Falls State Park
McKinney Falls State Park is a beautiful park located just outside of Austin.
The park is home to two waterfalls: Upper McKinney Falls and Lower McKinney Falls.
The falls are not very tall, but they are still beautiful and worth a visit. The park also offers hiking, biking, fishing, and camping.
Lost Maples State Natural Area
Lost Maples State Natural Area is a beautiful park located in the Texas Hill Country.
The park is home to several waterfalls, including the stunning Maple Falls.
The hike to Maple Falls is about 4 miles round trip and can be challenging, but the view of the waterfall is worth it.
Palmetto State Park
Palmetto State Park is a small park located near Gonzales.
The park is home to Palmetto Falls, a small but beautiful waterfall that is perfect for a quick hike or picnic.
The park also offers fishing, camping, and hiking.
These state parks are just a few of the many places in Texas where you can see beautiful waterfalls.
Whether you’re an avid hiker or just looking for a relaxing day trip, these parks are definitely worth a visit to see some of the best waterfalls in Texas.
Best Time to See Waterfalls in Texas
If you’re planning a trip to see the waterfalls in Texas, timing is everything.
The best time to see waterfalls in Texas is during the rainy season, which typically runs from late fall to early spring.
During this time, the waterfalls in Texas are at their fullest and most impressive.
However, it’s important to note that Texas is known for its unpredictable weather patterns.
Even during the rainy season, there may be periods of drought or low rainfall, which can impact the water levels of the falls.
It’s always a good idea to check the weather forecast before heading out to see the falls.
In addition to rainfall, the time of day can also impact your waterfall viewing experience.
Many waterfalls in Texas are best viewed during the early morning or late afternoon when the sun is low in the sky.
This can create beautiful lighting and shadows that enhance the natural beauty of the falls.
Finally, it’s important to consider the popularity of the falls when planning your visit.
Some of the more best waterfalls in Texas, such as Hamilton Pool and Pedernales Falls, can get crowded during peak season.
To avoid the crowds, consider visiting during the off-season or on a weekday.
FAQs About the Best Waterfalls in Texas
What is the biggest waterfall in Texas?
The Madrid Falls in Big Bend Ranch State Park is widely considered to be the tallest waterfall in Texas.
However, it is relatively undiscovered and not a favorite among tourists.
So, if you’re looking for a more popular waterfall, you may want to check out Gorman Falls or Hamilton Pool Preserve.
Where in Texas are there waterfalls?
Waterfalls in Texas are a somewhat rare sight to see. In a state so big, only a handful of waterfalls cascade throughout Texas.
However, you can find some of the best waterfalls in Texas in the following locations:
- Colorado Bend State Park
- Hamilton Pool Preserve
- Pedernales Falls State Park
- Krause Springs
- Westcave Preserve
What is the second-tallest waterfall in Texas?
After Madrid Falls, the second tallest waterfall in Texas is located in Colorado Bend State Park.
Gorman Falls is widely considered to be one of the most popular Texas waterfalls.
Its incredible width paired with its height makes Gorman Falls incredibly striking.
So, if you’re planning a trip to Texas and want to explore some of the state’s natural beauty, be sure to check out some of these amazing waterfalls.
Whether you’re an experienced hiker or just looking for a scenic spot to relax, Texas has something for everyone.
Conclusion: Best Waterfalls in Texas
Texas is home to some of the most beautiful waterfalls in the United States.
From the stunning Hamilton Pool Preserve to the breathtaking Gorman Falls, each waterfall has its own unique charm and beauty.
Whether you’re a nature lover or a photographer looking for the perfect shot, these waterfalls in Texas are guaranteed to please.