Vancouver Island is blessed with an abundance of waterfalls. So many, in fact, I happen to hear about another one almost weekly. While I hope to eventually write about them all, this post will showcase the hidden waterfalls near Parksville.

This means the following article will not highlight the more commons ones, such as Englishman River Falls and Little Qualicum Falls. If you wish to read about those two, please visit our post entitled ‘Natural Wonders of Oceanside‘.

The waterfalls mentioned below may not be as spectacular (large) as the ones people tend to flock to the most, (like the two mentioned above). However, when your destination is off the beaten track it makes it even more alluring. And the extra bit of effort is always worth it!

Hidden Waterfalls Near Parksville

Often the most alluring waterfalls are those that are a little more hidden. Discover and explore these hidden waterfalls while on Vancouver Island!
Lower Falls

Triple Falls

Location: Errington

Difficulty: Easy 1 km trail

The name of this Falls is a bit misleading, for one expects to see three separate waterfalls, which is not the case. Regardless, there are definitely two beauties.

The first waterfall is located off to your left, on a trail that leads down a hill. It has a series of small drops and natural rock ledges perfect for sitting on.  I actually enjoyed this area more than the upper Falls, so don’t bypass this trail!

After spending some time at the lower falls, head back up the hill and continue on the trail to your left.

The upper falls have a double drop, so I am wondering if this is why the area is called ‘Triple Falls’!?

No matter the reason for the name, the short walk (and long drive) out to this spot in Errington is worth it!

Triple Falls
Upper Falls

Getting There

Please note: This is an update to my original directions (and not as detailed as I would like – please read below why)

There are now two access points to Triple Falls. The first one is at the end of Sierra Road, which ends in a gravel culdesac. The second is off of Catherine Place, which is off of Englishman River Road. Both have a narrow trail that leads off the road into the forest.

I have personally only accessed the falls off of Sierra Road. However, access was tricky due to private property signs. Apparently, things have improved since I was last there, and a new trail leads you to the falls without having to cross the property. Unfortunately, as I haven’t actually travelled down this new trail, I can’t give you exact directions. However, it’s a loved trail by many, so my best advice is to follow the beaten path. It’s always best to respect private property signs, doing otherwise is at your own risk.

Triple Falls Coordinates

Here are the coordinates to Triple Falls off of Sierra Road. 10 U 0403651 E 5459385 N

Often the most alluring waterfalls are those that are a little more hidden. Discover and explore these hidden waterfalls while on Vancouver Island!
One of the many beautiful waterfalls of Nile Creek

Nile Creek

Location: Bowser area

Difficulty: This approximately 5 km trail is well marked and a lot of work has been put into trail maintenance, but it’s still a challenge. The trail is often very muddy, has some single log bridges and some (short) steep sections. It takes approximately 3 – 4 hours return. Hardy shoes, hiking poles, water and snacks are recommended.

The trail follows alongside Nile Creek the entire way, and you will walk through a beautiful forest with a great variety of trees.  The trail is mostly single track with not much elevation until you reach the waterfalls.

At around the 45-minute mark, you will be greeted by waterfall after waterfall (and beautiful pools) to reward you until the end. In fact, there is a total of 10 – 12 waterfalls to view along the way! (I’ve heard there are 12, but we have only ever been able to find 10 of them).

In order to find all of the waterfalls, you need to follow every trail that leads off the main track. If you listen carefully while you walk, you will most likely hear the falls before you see them. So use your senses and follow your ears. And keep watch for the alternate trails that keep veering off to your left.

A beautiful pool on Nile Creek with a peek-a-boo view of a small waterfall behind the log

Getting There

Finding the trailhead to the waterfalls of Nile Creek is a bit tricky, and requires you to park your vehicle on the Inland Island Hwy.

Head northbound towards Courtenay. After you pass the Horne Lake Exit, you will cross over two bridges (overpasses of sorts). The next one should be the Nile Creek bridge. Park on the north end of the bridge (there’s a bit of a wide spot) and find the trailhead on your right-hand side. Follow it back around and under the overpass. Continue on the trail until you reach the first waterfall (approximately 45 minutes).

If you are heading southbound, park on the north side of the bridge and follow a partially overgrown gated access road until it meets up with the main trail.

Often the most alluring waterfalls are those that are a little more hidden. Discover and explore these hidden waterfalls while on Vancouver Island!

Trent River Falls

Location: Royston area

Difficulty: This is a very short trail (approximately 10 minutes to the falls), but well worth it if you are already in the area. The narrow trail follows a bit of a ridge that isn’t very well maintained. However, someone was kind enough to mark the trail with orange flag tape, so if in doubt, follow the tape until you reach the waterfall.  The descent down to the river is also very steep, but doable with caution and sturdy footwear. There are ropes if you need them.

If you prefer not to descend down to the river bed, you can still get a great view of the waterfall. About 1/4 of the way down the roped section (the easiest part), hang a right on the trodden path. You will discover a great vantage point that is perfect for taking pictures of the falls.

This steep section of the trail is extremely slippery when wet, so please use extra caution.

This image shows a bit of the roped trail

Getting There

  • You will be looking for the Trent River Bridge, which is located on the Inland Island Highway, on your way to or from Courtenay.
  • This trail requires you to park your vehicle on the highway.

If you are heading northbound, park on the north side of the highway right after the bridge. Approximately 40 meters up you will see a wider rough road (trail) that leads into a forested area.

If you are heading southbound, there will be a large gravel pull-out area off the highway on the north side of the Trent River bridge. You will follow the path that leads under the overpass. From there, follow the orange flag tape.

Often the most alluring waterfalls are those that are a little more hidden. Discover and explore these hidden waterfalls while on Vancouver Island!

Nymph Falls

Location: Courtenay area

Difficulty: This trail is a leisurely 600-meter stroll to the Falls.

This waterfall is by no means hidden, but it’s totally worth the stop!

The waterfall is part of the Puntledge River and is a popular spot year-round. From Fall through to Spring the waters rage through this area, much to the delight of white water enthusiasts. The Summer months bring calmer glacial waters and a great place to swim.

Something of importance to note is the Puntledge River is a hydroelectric spillway. This means that the levels are manually regulated. So if you hear a siren going off, the water level is rising, and you must evacuate immediately!

The park surrounding the Falls has designated trails for pedestrians, mountain bikers, and horses. And you might be happy to know that it’s a leash-optional area for your dog!

Getting There

Nymph Falls is also located on Forbidden Plateau Road. Take the Piercy Road connector (exit 127) north of Courtenay, from the Inland Island Highway. Turn onto Forbidden Plateau Road, and follow the Nymph Falls Park signs to the parking area. The Park entrance is located just before the hatchery.

So there you go! I hope you enjoy these hidden waterfalls between Parksville and Courtenay. How many have you been to? Let me know in the comment section below.

More Hidden Gems (Especially in the Comox Valley)

If you enjoy discovering secret locations, you will most definitely like our Hidden Gems e-book. It has more than 20 hidden gems in the Mid-Island area. You can check it out here:

Hidden Gems of Vancouver Island E-Book

OR, we have a new addition to our website which offers monthly hidden gems sent directly to your email. It’s a yearly membership service for all those who love exploring hidden areas of Vancouver Island. You can check it out here:

Hidden Gems & Secret Spots of Vancouver Island Membership

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Hidden waterfalls on Vancouver Island. Vancouver Island View


  1. Lyle Denny Reply

    Thank you for the suggestion on Triple Falls. Was absolutely amazing, our 3 daughters and our dog had a blast. Easy to find, and at no point were we on private land. It was cool to see initials of a couple and the year 1946 carved into bedrock. What a time capsule. Absolutely breath taking.

    The next we want to venture to is Nile Creek.


    • Oh, I am so glad you enjoyed Triple Falls! And I’m happy to hear that there is a way around the private property issue now. Thank you for letting us know!

  2. Please update your directions to the triple falls. They are inaccurate and you are directing people to break the law. Private property. Not a public trail. Dont be ignorant and disrespectful.

    • Oh my! I definitely don’t mean to be disrespectful or ignorant. I am, however, unaware of an alternate way to get to Triple Falls, for this is the information I was given when searching directions. I recently learned that the falls themselves are in a Provincial conservation area, so they are most definitely not on private property. It’s truly unfortunate that a small portion of the trail leading up to them is. Wouldn’t it be amazing if the owner of the property would work with the general public, so that we could all enjoy these beautiful falls!? (Sigh, if only the world worked that way). I will definitely do some more research to see if I can find an alternate route. In the meantime, if you know of one, please do let me know! Thank you for your concern.

  3. Pat Borecky Reply

    I went to Nile Creek yesterday. There are no signs after you park & the trail was a mess. Hacked trees, scrub everywhere, I felt like I was in a storm area. No one else was around (even though there were a few cars on hwy) It is confusing which way to go. I turned back as it go muddy & found my way to a bit of creek (hardly any water) to stop & eat my lunch. Was a bit eerie. Definitely need some signage especially at beginning and distance would help. At this time I would not recommend.

    • Oh no! I am so sorry to hear this. As mentioned in the article, the trail does indeed get very muddy. However, when we went the trail was well marked (not with signs, but with flag tape – in my opinion, signs would ruin the whole hidden gem thing). We haven’t been on the trail for quite some time. However, friends of ours went as recently as late June and were able to find the waterfalls. So perhaps give it another go, for it’s definitely worth the effort.

  4. Pingback: Hidden Trail & Waterfall Vancouver Island | Chasing Waterfalls Series – Vlog 132

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