Las Vegas, Nevada is home to casinos, extravagant shows, wild creatures, and music. This city that never sleeps is not where one typically goes in search of waterfalls.
If you do go to Las Vegas and want to catch a glimpse of a waterfall there are numerous natural and man-made sights to see. Red Rock Canyon is a very popular recreation area just outside of Las Vegas. Here you will see several waterfalls that flow in the desert, at least part of the year. This area can be a welcome retreat after a night of exploring the strip.
In addition to natural areas like Red Rock Canyon, there are many casinos that have water features and falls integrated into their unique gardens, lakes, and attractions. The Mirage and Bellagio are two such hotels that have water at the heart of their attractions.
Whether you are planning on taking time away from the strip or sticking to it during your stay in Las Vegas there is a waterfall for you. Some are natural. Some are created by man. All of them are special and alluring in their own way and will be highlights to your next trip to Las Vegas.
1. First Creek Falls
First Creek Falls is a lovely waterfall found in the Red Rock Canyon area near Las Vegas. It’s a four-mile hiking trip total to visit this waterfall, in the desert.
Cottonwood trees and willows line the trail to the falls. This a very well-maintained trail. The course to the falls and back is an out and back trail.
First Creek Falls often runs dry, due to the lack of rain and snowpack in the area. It is open year-round. Birding, hiking, and trail running are all popular in the region, even when the waterfall is dry.
Dogs are allowed on the trail. This makes it a great waterfall to hike to with your furry friends. The hike is easy enough for kids to complete as well.
Some trail hazards include flies, bugs, and rattlesnakes. Be aware of these critters if you choose to visit First Creek Falls. Flash floods are a concern when it rains.
This 18-foot waterfall runs best in the late spring, after the snow begins to melt. The waterflow is dependent on snowpack, at First Creek Falls.
2. Mary Jane Falls
Mary Jane Falls is a waterfall in the Kyle Canyon area. It is a primitive waterfall and found on a 3.2 miles round trip hike.
The waterfall is not easily accessible for individuals traveling in a wheelchair or with children in strollers. The hike to Mary Jane Falls is difficult. There are numerous switchbacks on the trail. Cutting the switchbacks is not advised, as it causes the trail to erode.
The hike traverses over rough terrain with loose gravel. Proper footwear is recommended. The weather can also get quite toasty near Mary Jane Falls in the summer. Make sure you bring plenty of water.
Mary Jane Falls is a great waterfall to visit if you are looking to get a workout in too. It’s not for the unfit.
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3. Waterfall at the Wynn
The Waterfall at the Wynn is a manmade waterfall that stands 90 feet tall. It is part of one of the numerous attractions found in the bustling city.
The waterfall is part of the Lake of Dreams show. This is a multimedia show that happens on a three-acre lake at the Wynn. 5500 LED lights are used in this show. It runs nightly on the lake every half hour beginning at dusk.
The show at the Waterfall at the Wynn was designed by Emmy award winning director Kenny Ortega and designer Patrick Woodraffe.
It’s a fantastic show to view while you have dinner or drinks nearby. If you are looking for a fun water show during your visit to Las Vegas, the Waterfall at the Wynn is worth checking out.
4. Big Falls
Credit: World of Waterfalls
Big Falls is a large waterfall found near Mount Charleston, just outside of Las Vegas. It is found on a 4.5 mile out and back hike. This hike also offers views of Mary Jane Falls.
The area surrounding Big Falls is popular for birding and hiking. In the winter snow shoeing is a popular activity here. This area is open year-round. Dogs are allowed on the trail to Big Falls, but they must be leashed.
The trail to Big Falls is not the best marked. Rock scrambling is required over loose rocks to reach the waterfall. This waterfall dries up in the summer and fall. It’s best in the wet months and when the snow is melting.
The hike to Big Falls is usually not very busy. This is nice, if you are hoping to get away from the crowded Las Vegas Strip. Big Falls towers between 150-200 feet and is a straight drop.
It’s a truly spectacular sight if you are visiting it during the right time of year when it is flowing.
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5. Little Falls
Credit: World of Waterfalls
Little Falls is a spring fed waterfall near Mount Charleston in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest. It’s in an area known as the Spring Mountains Recreation Area. Little Falls drops 30-50 feet over the course of multiple drops.
It’s found beneath Cathedral Rock in Kyle Canyon. The easiest way to access the waterfall is by hiking in from Cathedral Rock Trailhead. This hike is 1.7 miles round-trip. It can also be accessed from Echo Trailhead.
The waterfall flows most of the year, but its maximum flow is in late June and early July. If you are looking to visit a waterfall that is typically flowing, during your stay in Las Vegas then Little Falls is great option.
6. Mystic Falls
Mystic Falls is an exciting man-made waterfall in Sam’s Town Hotel. It is the location of an exhilarating light and water show in the casino and hotel. The show at Mystic Falls is free to view.
The waterfall itself is open 24 hours a day, so if you want to see a waterfall day or night during your stay in Las Vegas, this is a great option. The waterfall has animatronic animals on it. These include a mountain lion and bear.
Fake shrubs, rocks, and sticks also create a natural looking landscape on and around the waterfall. Music plays around the waterfall and during the holidays its decorated with a festive theme.
One awesome thing about being located in a Las Vegas hotel is that you can enjoy a bite to eat while you enjoy the views of this waterfall. The Angry Butcher is a tasty restaurant nearby that is highly recommended.
7. Lost Creek Falls
Credit: Nevada Magazine
Lost Creek Falls is a fabulous waterfall in Red Rock Canyon. It is easy to access for most and the trail to the waterfall is short enough that kids can easily hike to it. The hike is 0.6 miles total to and from this waterfall.
The trail to Lost Creek Falls is shaded. This is nice if you visit the falls during the heat of the day. This waterfall is so easy to reach that it’s a popular place to visit. The waterfall does not run year-round.
It’s best after rain and in the winter and spring. Rock hopping is a fun activity you can partake in when you visit this waterfall. Beware in the winter the rocks can become icy though.
Mosquitoes are a frequent annoyance to those that visit Lost Creek Falls. If you are visiting in the summer and fall bug repellent is highly recommended.
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8. Ice Box Canyon Waterfalls
Ice Box Canyon Waterfalls are found in Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. They are accessed by taking on a 2.2. mile hike. This hike takes most people about 2 hours to complete.
The waterfalls in the canyon run December through April typically. To reach them you must hike up a shaded and narrow canyon. This canyon is cool, and sunlight rarely penetrates into the canyon.
The trailhead for Ice Box Canyon and the waterfall on the trail is found around mile 10 of the driving loop through Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.
A recreation pass is required to park at the trail head. Reservations are also suggested during the busy season from October to May.
The trail at Ice Box Canyon is well marked. The waterfalls are easily found during the rainy season. Beware that if it a storm comes; flash flooding can be an issue here.
The Ice Box Canyon Waterfalls are a great find if you are visiting Las Vegas in the fall and winter. They are easy to find. Plan ahead though because these waterfalls and the trail they are on can get busy.
9. The Medium Falls
Credit: World of Waterfalls
The Medium Falls is a splendid waterfall in Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest near Mount Charleston. The waterfall is in the Spring Mountains National Recreation Area. This waterfall is made up of two drops. It stands about 200 feet tall.
The waterfall is accessed by hiking in 1.5-3 miles depending on your starting point. The waterfall is between Little Falls and Big Falls on the northeast side of Kyle Canyon.
It’s up a wash off near Echo Trailhead. You have to hike about 0.8 miles to view it from this trailhead. You can also hike in from the Old Ski Tow area. It is about 1 mile each wat to and from the waterfall from this area.
To reach the waterfall some rock scrambling is required. If you have limited mobility this may not be the hike for you. You will want to wear sturdy footwear if you are going to Medium Falls.
This waterfall is best after snow melt. In the winter and spring there can be snow in the area. This can make trails wet and slippery.
10. La Madre Springs
Credit: canadian kate / Flickr
La Madre Springs is in the Red Rock Canyon area, outside of Las Vegas. It is a beautiful area where deer and blooming cactuses thrive in the spring.
La Madre Springs can be reached by hiking between 3.6 and 8 miles in, depending on where you begin your trek. One popular route is the White Rock-Will Springs Trail loop. Willow Springs Trailhead is a great place to have a picnic. There are restrooms here too.
La Madre Springs is a fifteen-foot waterfall. Sights on the trail to see this lovely waterfall include a stone cabin built by miners. There is an active mine site up trail from the springs where copper, lead, zinc, and silver have been excavated.
This trail is a great place to visit if you want to avoid the crowds. High clearance vehicles make it easier to reach the falls, but no matter which way you access the falls a substantial hike is required.
Winter is the best time to visit La Madre Springs. It is often dry by late spring. If you choose to visit this waterfall the hike is very enchanting.
Red and white sandstone cliffs, limestone mountains, and pinyon pines, juniper, and scrub oaks that line the trail are all beautiful.
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11. The Mirage Waterfall
The Mirage Waterfall is found at the Mirage in Las Vegas. It is a man-made waterfall outside of the hotel on the Las Vegas Strip.
This waterfall is in front of the volcano that offers choreographed displays each night. This show can be viewed as you walk the strip or while you enjoy a cocktail or dinner at a nearby dining establishment.
Other attractions to check out when you stop to see the Mirage Waterfall include the animals of the Secret Garden. If you want to see a waterfall on the strip during your explorations in Las Vegas, this is a fun and free option.
12. Aliante Nature Discovery Park
Credit: Kim Dung Ho / Flickr
Aliante Nature Discovery Park is a fantastic park with small waterfall about 30 minutes from the strip. The park is north of town.
The park has a 0.4-mile loop trail that is popular among hikers, birders, and walking. It is open all year. Dogs are allowed in the park, as long as they are leashed.
The waterfall is on a lake that ducks and geese often frequent. Bird poop can be a nuisance in some areas of the park because of this.
Overall, Aliante Nature Discovery Place is a peaceful place to spend time if you want to get away from the bustle of the strip and check out a waterfall.
13. Clark County Wetlands Park
Clark County Wetlands Park is the largest park in Clack County Nevada. It is near the natural beginning of the Las Vegas Wash. The water that goes through here runs from various water treatment plants.
It’s on the east side of the Las Vegas valley. The wetlands are free to visit and home to birds, turtles, quail and rabbits. Several ADA accessible trails go through the park. Some of the trails are bike friendly in the park too.
There is a nature center in the park. It’s open daily and a great place to learn about the waters and wildlife in the park. Paved and dirt hiking roads
If you would like more than a just a waterfall or waterway sighting and a nature-learning experience, then you will want to stop at Clark County Wetlands Park.
14. Calico Tanks
Calico Tanks is more a holding area for water in the desert than an actual waterfall. It is accessed by hiking 2.5-mile trail round trip in Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.
Calico Tanks is an area with yellow and red sandstone that paint this beautiful natural area. The hike leaves from Sandstone Quarry Trailhead. This area was first used as a quarry in 1905. Large boulders can be found throughout it.
The turnaround point for the hike is Calico Tanks. This is where a natural tinaja is with water. The water here is helpful to wildlife that live in the region and a unique sight for visitors to enjoy.
15. Bellagio Fountain
The Bellagio Fountain may not be an actual waterfall, but if you love waterfalls this is a sight worth seeing during your visit to Las Vegas that is impressive and waterfilled.
The Bellagio Fountain is quite the sight and it’s been in movies such as Ocean’s Eleven, that take place in Las Vegas. The waterfall has choreographed shows daily that enchant those that visit it.
This free to view attraction was built in 1998. It cost over $50 million to build and filters millions of gallons of water through its system each day. The water in the fountain shoots high into the air during the show. It can reach 460 feet!
Ducks love the manmade lake that surrounds this fountain. You will likely love the show that takes place in it, just as much.