Where to find the best waterfalls in Bend, Oregon

Today, we’re headed to the stunning city of Bend, Oregon, to explore its breathtaking waterfalls. Bend is one of my favorite places in the Pacific Northwest, and it’s easy to see why. With its towering mountains, crystal-clear lakes, and awe-inspiring landscapes, Bend is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts.

But what sets Bend apart are its spectacular waterfalls. From towering cascades to serene streams, the waterfalls here are a sight. So whether you’re an experienced hiker or just looking for a relaxing stroll, the waterfalls near Bend, Oregon, offer something for everyone.

The Best Waterfalls Near Bend That Are Worth Seeing

In this article, I’ll take you on a tour of Bend’s most magnificent waterfalls, sharing insider tips on the best hiking trails, viewpoints, and photo spots. So grab your camera, lace up your hiking boots, and explore the Bend, Oregon, waterfalls.

waterfalls near bend oregon

Amazing Central Oregon Waterfalls Near Bend To Explore

Tumalo Falls

bend oregon waterfalls tumalo falls

The closest and most popular of the Bend, Oregon waterfalls, Tumalo Falls, is gorgeous and an easy hike for almost anyone. You can get to the lower overlook from the parking lot by walking less than 100 feet.

For those looking for a longer trek, there’s an upper overlook about a brisk half-mile walk away. However, be aware that the parking lot is small, and visiting it on the weekends is undoubtedly busy.

Drive time from Bend: 30 minutes

Proxy Falls & Linton Falls

These are close to each other and can be completed in a single day. First, Proxy Falls has an upper and lower waterfall with a 1.5-mile loop to reach both. Next, Linton Falls, which is about a 5-6 mile round trip hike. First, you’ll hike to Linton Lake, which seems somewhat of a roller-coaster trail.

However, once you reach the lake, keep going. There’s also an upper and lower for these waterfalls near Bend, so keep your eyes out for both!

Drive time from Bend: 80 minutes


Related: Oregon’s Best Waterfalls


Tamolitch Falls

Also known to many as the Blue Pool, Tamolitch Falls is near Sahalie and Koosah Falls, making for a perfect trifecta of waterfalls near Bend, Oregon. This is a 3.5-mile round-trip hike with some slight but consistent elevation to reach the end.

Drive time from Bend: 75 minutes

Sahalie Falls

bend oregon waterfalls sahalie falls

The fall’s best overlook is just a dozen yards or so from the parking lot. (Though if it’s pouring, you’ll notice every yard!) However, even in the rain, the views were stunning, and I couldn’t help but think how wonderful it would be, slightly less dry. While the trail stays higher than the water level, there is a worn trail that gets you closer.

This is likely due to photographers wanting to put a person in the shot. Unfortunately, on my day, it was far too slippery even to attempt. Additionally, you can go to the top of the waterfall, which offers an excellent view upstream, but the idea of the actual falls is diminished.

Of the waterfalls near Bend, this one is one of my favorites!

Drive time from Bend: 70 minutes

Koosah Falls

koosah falls central oregon waterfalls near bend

The final of the trifecta, you can combine all three into a single hike that looks to be around 10 miles round trip. Koosah Falls offers a couple more vantage points with a high and lower option. However, there’s not much opportunity to get down to the water.

This parking lot is much smaller, so keep in mind the walk between Koosah Falls and Sahalie is a half mile.

Drive time from Bend: 70 minutes

Dillon Falls & Benham Falls

Dillon Falls and Benham Falls are two of the closest Bend, Oregon, waterfalls. They’re also connected on a 7-mile trail that allows you to kill two birds with one stone. However, if you only want to check off Benham, it’s a short walk from the parking lot. Dillon Falls is just as accessible with a quarter-mile walk at best.

Drive time from Bend: 15- 20 minutes


Related: The best photo spots in Bend


Lava Island Falls

Lava Island Falls is also a super easy-to-access central Oregon waterfall in the same vicinity as the previous two. It has a parking lot and a day-use area, perfect for lunch or dinner outside.

Drive time from Bend: 15 minutes

Paulina Creek Falls

We’re heading south of Bend to the Newberry National Volcanic Monument for the final member of the waterfalls near Bend, Oregon crew. This one is just above the lake and falls 80 feet to the rocks below. The trail is 5.5 miles round trip with a moderate 750 feet of elevation gain. Of the waterfalls near Bend, this is the furthest east.

Drive time from Bend: 45 minutes

Bend, Oregon, waterfalls

Planning your trip to chase Bend, Oregon, Waterfalls

Where to Stay Near Bend and Other Recommendations

Bend is a phenomenal city with lots to do in its heart. Additionally, it’s home to an absurd amount of breweries; each grouped nicely to help with bouncing between places.

When I visited, I stayed in the Old Mill District at the Hilton and loved the accessibility to the biking/walking path along the Deschutes River. The only downside is it’s not super close to the breweries and restaurants. I’d estimate the walk to the Monkless Belgian Ales brewery to be about 8-10 minutes.

The Podski Food Truck is also a fantastic place to grab a meal. I actually went twice – once for Thai, another for BBQ. Speaking of Thai, Wildrose is to die for. I had the most fantastic dish there. Highly recommend. Now for breakfast, I did most of mine on the run but did enjoy the food/coffee at Strictly Organic.

Hopefully, these give you some fuel to chase the Bend, Oregon, waterfalls.

What to wear when chasing waterfalls near Bend, Oregon.

What else you should know about the top waterfalls near Bend, Oregon

What is the closest waterfall to Bend?

The waterfalls near Bend are Lava Island Falls, Dillon Falls, and Benhman Falls. Each is within 25 minutes of Bend. Tumalo Falls is just outside of that, about 30 minutes away.

What waterfall is between Eugene and Bend?

There are a half dozen central Oregon waterfalls between Eugene and Bend. I’d recommend checking out Proxy Falls, Linton Falls, Koosah, and Sahalie Falls.

Winter hiking accessories?

Even though it’s a high desert, Bend still receives snow. If you’re planning to hike in the winter months, bring microspikes, warm gear, and a satellite communications device in case of an emergency.

Wrapping up – Waterfalls near Bend

The Bend, Oregon, waterfalls on this list will bring you so much joy as you experience their power and beauty. So pack your bags and get on the road to the waterfalls near Bend!


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Author: Alec Sills-Trausch

Title: Founder of Explore with Alec

Expertise: Hiking, Backpacking, Photography, and Road Trips

Bio:

Alec Sills-Trausch is a hiker, backpacker, landscape photographer, and syndicated travel writer. He enjoys showing off the beauty of the world through his photos, videos, and written work on ExploreWithAlec.com. Alec is also a 2x cancer survivor and bone marrow transplant recipient, showing the world that there is a future from this terrible disease.

He lives in Washington, where he gets to enjoy the stunning PNW mountains in addition to all the other places he attempts to visit each year! You can see more work on IG at @AlecOutside