Cascada Velo de Novia in Chiapas is one of the most impressive waterfalls you’ll see in Mexico. This thundering cascade of whitewash water tumbles some 70+ metres into the most turquoise pool you’ll have ever laid eyes on. Indeed, Cascada Velo de Novia is a feast for the senses, along with the other four waterfalls you can visit at El Chiflon.
In this guide, we’ll tell you all about the outstanding Cascada Velo de Novia, as well as how and why you should visit.
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About Cascada Velo de Novia
Cascada Velo de Novia is the largest and most visited waterfall at the incredible Cascadas El Chiflon in Chiapas, Mexico. The huge cascade tumbles thunderously into a rich hue of the purest turquoise below. Indeed, the colour of the pool at the base of Cascada Velo de Novia is quite something.
Translating to ‘bridal veil waterfall‘ in English, Cascada Velo de Novia sure lives up to its name. The long, flowing gush of water is so forceful, that it appears white. Just like the long, flowing veil of a bride. The waterfall plunges some 70+ metres down and is made up of two separate drops.
It’s easily the most outstanding of all the El Chiflon waterfalls, which also include Cascada Suspiro, Cascada Ala de Angel, Cascada Arcoiris and Cascada Quinceañera. And that’s saying a lot, because, in truth, all of the Cascadas El Chiflon are world-class.
Certainly, many visitors come to Cascadas El Chiflon just to see Cascada Velo de Novia. Indeed, it’s a steep walk from the entrance to reach Cascada Velo de Novia, which is the third waterfall you’ll see along the El Chiflon waterfall walk. If you didn’t want to walk any further, then you’d leave quite satisfied having enjoyed the views of Cascada Velo de Novia. That being said, we recommend seeing all of the waterfalls at El Chiflon.
Where Is Cascada Velo de Novia?
Cascada Velo de Novia is one of five world-class waterfalls within the Cascadas El Chiflon Eco Park. Along with Cascada Suspiro, Cascada Ala de Angel, Cascada Arcoiris and Cascada Quinceañera, they’re some of the best waterfalls you’ll see in the whole of Mexico.
Cascada Velo de Novia and the other waterfalls of Cascadas El Chiflon are found in the south of Mexico in the state of Chiapas. The nearest major town from which most tourists visit Casacadas El Chiflon is San Cristobal de las Casas. Alternatively, the town of Comitán is becoming a popular place to stay and is a much closer 40km away.
Feel free to click on the interactive map below to see exactly where Cascada Velo de Novia is in Chiapas.
How to Visit Cascada Velo de Novia
It’s easy to visit Cascada Velo de Novia independently or as part of a tour of Cascadas El Chiflon from San Cristobal. Typically a tour will also visit the Parque Nacional Lagunas de Montebello, which is a great way to explore more of this less-visited part of Chiapas, Mexico. Below, we’ll take a look at your options.
By Public Transport (Bus + Colectivo)
To reach Cascada Velo de Novia from San Cristobal via public transport, you’ll first need to take a bus from the central bus terminal, located here, to the town of Comitán. The bus journey between San Cristobal and Comitán is around two hours. Tickets can be purchased directly from the ADO website, using Busbud or by booking directly at the ADO/OCC bus terminal.
Then, from Comitán, you’ll need to take a colectivo to El Chiflon Ecotourism Center, which is about 40 minutes away. As you exit the bus terminal in Comitán, head left and towards the waiting colectivos. Take one displaying ‘El Chiflon’ in the front window. If in doubt, ask a driver.
Bear in mind, with the length of the journey to El Chiflon waterfalls from San Cristobal, you’ll likely not arrive until mid-morning. By then, it’ll be much busier. If this doesn’t bother you, then great. But, if you want to visit Cascada Velo de Novia without the crowds, then perhaps consider staying in Comitán the night before. That way, you can take a colectivo first thing in the morning. Read Where to Stay in Comitán for more information.
By Rental Car
Of course, renting a car and driving yourself to Cascadas El Chiflon in Chiapas, Mexico to view Cascada Velo de Novia is one of the easiest ways to visit. The drive takes around three hours (sometimes less) from San Cristobal and by all accounts, it’s a safe drive to do independently.
If you do want to hire a car in Chiapas, Mexico, to see Cascada Velo de Novia, then we recommend using DiscoverCars.com. You’ll find a variety of cars on Discover Cars, which are very easy to book online, with a great cancellation fee if needed.
By far, the most convenient way to visit Cascada Velo de Novia, Chiapas is with a tour. You’ll find plenty of tour operators in San Cristobal offering trips. Often, tours to Cascadas El Chiflon to see Cascada Velo de Novia are combined with a visit to Lagunas de Montebello (Montebello Lakes), which makes for a wonderful full-day trip!
Dan and I took a tour of Cascadas El Chiflon. We booked with Tours Villa Real, who are located close to the central bus terminal, leaving for the trip the very next day. We thoroughly enjoyed the trip (which included Lagunas de Montebello) and are happy to recommend it. Bear in mind that the tour is a very long day, with pick-up times between 6am and 7am, and not returning to San Cristobal until around 9pm.
The combined Cascadas El Chiflon and Lagunas de Montebello tour visits El Chiflon waterfalls first, before continuing on to Montebello. Here, you can take a fun raft trip across one of the lakes, visit some beautiful viewpoints of the national park, and even take a few steps into neighbouring Guatemala.
If you prefer to book your tours in advance, or simply like the safety of booking with reputable online companies, then GetYourGuide offers some great tour options to Cascada Velo de Novia and El Chiflon, leaving from San Cristobal.
Alternatively, Viator also offers some awesome tour options to Cascadas El Chiflon and Lagunas de Montebello.
Best Views of Cascada Velo de Novia
Once at Cascadas El Chiflon, you’ll want to see Cascada Velo do Novia in all its glory, from every angle. Below are some of the best viewpoints for admiring this incredible waterfall.
The base of the falls: as you arrive at the base of Cascada Velo de Novia, you’ll see a wide paved viewing platform, surrounded by a wooden fence. This is the best spot to view Cascada Velo de Novia in its entirety, from top to bottom. You get a real sense of just how big this El Chiflon waterfall really is. In addition, the views following the river downstream provide some of the most open and picturesque views of the turquoise waters. The colours will blow you away.
The Mirador at the top of the steps: follow the path towards the waterfall and up the wet and slippery steps. Here, you’ll find two tiers of small viewing platforms. Both are much closer to the waterfall than the previous viewpoint and give you a better sense of the power of Cascada Velo de Novia. The spray alone is immense, so don’t expect to return dry!
El Chiflon walking track: another excellent viewpoint of Cascada Velo de Novia is actually from the El Chiflon walking track. As you leave waterfall no.2 – Cascada Ala de Angel, you’ll see Cascada Velo de Novia as you continue the walk, appearing through the tree cover. The waterfall is framed perfectly and looks wonderful with the trail in the foreground.
Visiting Cascadas El Chiflon
Visiting Cascadas El Chiflon should definitely be high on your to-do list whilst travelling through Chiapas. Indeed, El Chiflon is more than just Cascada Velo de Novia. The park is open from 7:30am to 5pm daily. Along with the El Chiflon waterfall walk, which visits all five of the park’s incredible cascades, you can also go swimming and ziplining. It’s a wonderful day out.
What to Pack For Cascada Velo de Novia, Chiapas
These are our travel essentials for visiting Cascadas El Chiflon and Cascada Velo de Novia in Chiapas.
- Merrell Moab Mid Gore-Tex Hiking Boots: you’ll benefit from a sturdy pair of hiking boots. Especially useful for the waterfall hiking trail to Cascada Velo de Novia.
- Osprey Skarab 30L Day Backpack: a great backpack for day tripping, which has plenty of space to store your gear.
- The North Face Venture Jacket: a waterproof jacket is handy to keep you dry from the waterfall spray. Unless you need the refreshing cool down, of course!
- Camera: you’ll be wanting to photograph this incredible waterfall. A waterproof case isn’t a bad idea either.
- Insect repellant: this is the Mexican jungle after all!
You should also pack water, lunch and snacks. For a longer gear list, read our 66 Travel Items You Must Travel With. And, for a list of everything else you’d need for travelling, read our Packing Checklist.
Where to Stay in Comitán, Chiapas
If you want to stay in Comitán the night before visiting Cascada Velo de Novia, then below are a few accommodation options.
- Budget – Hotel Clasico Colonial: the centrally located Hotel Clasico Colonial provides a clean and comfortable stay.
- Mid-range – Hotel Jardín de Tereza: the very reasonably priced Hotel Jardín de Tereza is a beautiful five-star hotel. The accommodation features private gardens, free parking and comfortable rooms.
- Luxury – City Express by Marriott Comitán: the City Express by Marriott Comitán offers modern accommodation. Additionally, you’ll get to enjoy an American breakfast and free parking.
Alternatively, it’s possible to stay at the El Chiflon Ecotourism Center. Cabaña Velo de Novia offers a rustic stay at the foot of the magnificent waterfalls. Expect to be the first to explore Cascada Velo de Novia if you stay here.
Where to Stay in San Cristobal de las Casas
It makes sense to stay in San Cristobal if you plan on visiting Cascada Velo de Novia, Chiapas. So, below we’ve hand-picked some of the best budget, mid-range and luxury options for you to consider.
- Budget – La Abuelita Hostal: San Cristobal has some wonderful hostel options, with La Abuelita Hostal one of the best. Guests love the location, the cleanliness of the facilities and the speedy wifi.
- Mid-range – El Hostalito 14: Dan and I stayed at El Hostalito 14 and can highly recommend it. The location is fantastic, the rooms and separate private bathrooms are comfortable and the price is very reasonable. Of course, if you’re happy to share a dorm room, then El Hostalito 14 becomes a very budget-friendly option too.
- Luxury – Hotel Bo: if you want to do San Cristobal in luxury, then look no further than Hotel Bo. This beautifully designed hotel in the historic centre of San Cristobal comes with its own restaurant, private parking and on-site gym.
Travel insurance is a real necessity, especially when travelling through Central America and getting a little off the beaten track.
SafetyWing is an excellent budget-friendly travel insurance provider. Personally, Dan and I have used SafetyWing’s Nomad Insurance many times to insure our trips. The Nomad Insurance is fantastic value for money with a smaller additional cost to add a partner. Unlike most other insurance companies, there’s an option to pay on a monthly basis, similar to having a prepaid phone plan. Better yet, there’s no lock-in contract. In addition, you can cancel at any time, which will take effect the month after.
For shorter trips, it’s also possible to use Nomad Insurance for trips lasting just days or just 2–3 weeks. Indeed, SafetyWing is cheaper than almost all other travel insurance policies and covers just as much and sometimes more.
SafetyWing is a modern travel insurance company that is certainly leading the way in terms of how travel insurance should work in the future.
Cascada Velo de Novia Bonus Tips
- Carry cash: it’s always good to have some pesos handy when exploring Mexico.
- Best time to visit: the dry season, typically from November to March, is the best time to visit. During these months you’ll experience the sparkling turquoise waters. Outside of these months is the rainy season, when the water becomes dull and murkier.
- Make the most of Chiapas: check out our guides on Palenque and San Cristobal for more incredible natural attractions in Chiapas. Alternatively, GetYourGuide offers some pretty cool tours around Chiapas which might be worth checking out too.
More Mexico Travel Guides
Feel free to explore more of our Mexico travel guides below.
Tell us about your experience visiting Cascada Velo de Novia, Chiapas in the comments below.