Hukou Waterfalls (Kettle Spout Falls)

Hukou Waterfall, Yan'an
  Hukou Waterfall Pictures 
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Hukou Waterfalls are always compared to a glistening pearl in the middle reaches of the Yellow River, a mother river of the Chinese nation. It lies on the natural boundary of Yichuan County in Yan’an City, Shaanxi Province and Ji County in Linfen City, Shanxi Province. It is the only magnificent yellow waterfall in the world and the second biggest waterfall in China after Huangguoshu Waterfall.

When the mighty Yellow River flows through mountains and gorges to Hukou, the billowy water streams narrow suddenly, falling 30 meters (33 yards) into a deep riverbed like a herd of galloping horses, transforming the quiet river into a turbulent one. The thundering sound can be heard from quite a distance. The tremendous mass of water strikes the rocks, creating piles of foam and huge water poles. It is an amazing view with mist all around. The riverbed here is like an enormous teapot absorbing all the rushing water, so the waterfall is named Hukou Waterfalls (Kettle Spout Falls). No matter its rumbling sound, its grand vigor or its marvelous scenery can make you exclaim that the nature is really incredible.

The power of the yellow water of the Waterfalls is tremendous when falling down to the pond, so it is hard for you to get close to the main waterfall. Looking from a distance, you still can enjoy the vast and gorgeous yellow ocean of mist-covered water. The big waves and foam, like angry beasts, are running and roaring. The beauty and vigor of the waterfalls are indeed beyond words. You cannot know unless you visit it in person.

The turbulent waterfallThere are many wonders at Hukou Waterfalls, such as smoke from the river, boats on land, rainbows in the sunshine, and so on. Here, the water falls to the deep pond from a relatively high place, stirring the mist which rises high into the air like surging heavy smoke coming out of the river. You can see various shapes of rainbows formed by the rising mist, refracted by the sunshine from different angles. Sometimes rainbows are arched, cutting into the river from the sky like a dragon playing with water; sometimes they are colored ribbons lying across the river; sometimes they become colorful masses which change second by second. The water in Hukou is very much torrential, so all the boats from the upper reaches must be pulled out of the river onto to the bank when they arrive. These boats will have to detour around this section, carried by a group of boatmen or shipped by truck before they can be put in the river again.

The view of Hukou Waterfalls changes according to the seasons. In spring the frozen ground thaws and the stalactites of snow fall into the pond like the mountains collapsing and the earth cracking up. In summer and autumn there is much rainfall. With the rains, the river rushes and the yellow waves seem to reach the sky. In winter the waterfalls gives the visitors another new look. On the surface of the silvery ice waterfalls, cool water flows down. Little silver icicles hang on the cliffs around it. It presents you a distinctive natural landscape of the northern region of China.

Hukou WaterfallThe Hukou Waterfalls has for years attracted visitors from all over the world. You can have a better understanding of natural wonder if you come here in person. It will give you a warm welcome with its thrilling sound, rolling golden waves, changing scenery and majestic vigor.


This tourist site is divided into two sections, one in Yichuan County and the other in Ji County across the Yellow River. Visitors can view the waterfalls either in Yichuan or Ji County. The scenery in Yichuan side is better but they can have a close look from the Dragon Cave in Ji County side.

 To Yichuan Section:
1. Take bus no. 1, 10, 12, 13, 17, 18, 30, K7, K11, K12, or K22 to the South Bus Station opposite to the Railway Station in Yan'an City. Then take a regular bus to Hukou Waterfalls at the fare of about CNY 40. The bus to the Waterfalls departs at 7:30, 8:20, 09:00, and 15:30. The whole journey takes about three hours.
2. Take a bus to Hukou Waterfalls from Xi'an North Bus Station at 12:00. The ticket fare is CNY 106.5 and the journey takes about five hours.

 To Ji County Section:
Take a tourist bus from the Drum Tower Square in Linfen at 08:00 or 14:00. Or you can take a bus at 06:30 from Linfen Long Distance Bus Station to Yan'an and get off at Hukou Waterfalls.

 Note: The two sections are connected by Yellow River Bridge in the downstream. If you want to visit both, you can enter from one to the other through the bridge, but please note that they sell tickets seperately.

Yichuan Section Ji County Section
Admission Fee CNY 100 CNY 100
Battery Car: CNY 20
Dragon Cave: CNY 20
Note: Children below 3.9 ft (1.2 m) can enter for free.
Opening Hours 08:00 - 18:00 09:00 - 18:00
Best Time to Visit April, May, September, and November

 Suggested Tour Itinerary:
Yan'an Tour: visit Baota Hill, Yangjialing Village, the Revolutionary History Museum, Hukou Waterfall. 

 You may like: 15 Spectacular Natural Wonders of China

- Last updated on Apr. 13, 2021 -
Questions & Answers on Hukou Waterfalls (Kettle Spout Falls)
Asked by Dominic from MALAYSIA | Dec. 15, 2016 00:21Reply
One day trip to Hukou waterfall from Yan'an.
I plan to take 7.30am bus to the waterfall in the morning. Will the bus easily full and no able to go there?

As the last bus from Waterfall to Yan'an at 2pm, what if the last bus is full/ miss the bus, how to go back to Xi'an?

How many hours we need to visit the waterfall ?
Answers (1)
Answered by Jack from NEW ZEALAND | Dec. 15, 2016 02:39

Hi, dear! The bus is not easily full. You can probably take it to the waterfalls.

If you miss the last bus, you may take a bus to Yichuan, and then take a bus back to Xi'an.

Two or three hours will be enough to visit the waterfalls. :)
Asked by Simon from MALAYSIA | Oct. 05, 2016 00:08Reply
What is the last bus from Hukou to Xi'an?
Answers (1)
Answered by William from TURKEY | Oct. 06, 2016 02:31

I remember the last bus gets back around 12:00-12:30.
Asked by GWESTELLA | Sep. 07, 2016 11:57Reply
Advice on which section to go to Hukou Waterfall
If i depart from Xi'an North Station to Yanan, and go to the south bus station opposite the railway station, which bus goes directly to the waterfall? And which part of the waterfall I will be seeing is it? Is it Yichuan or Ji County?
Answers (4)
Answered by Lucy from USA | Sep. 08, 2016 02:38

Well, the section at Yichuan is more splendid. Upon arrival at Yan'an, you can take a direct bus to the waterfall from South Bus Station. The buses have no number. They depart at 7:30, 8:20, 9:00, and 15:30, and the trip takes about 3 hours. You will reach the Yichuan section of the waterfalls. Have fun! :)
Answered by GWESTELLA | Sep. 08, 2016 11:20

Thanks Lucy!!
Answered by GWESTELLA | Sep. 18, 2016 18:07

Any idea what is the last bus from the waterfall to Yanan? our train back to Xi'an is at 5:55pm ...
Answered by Jackie | Sep. 18, 2016 21:07

As I know, the last bus leaves at 14:00. The journey to YA takes 3h, so it will be a little tight to catch your train. If you don't mind, I suggest you take the one outside the scenic area leaving at 12:30 so that you will have a hassle-free journey.
Asked by Kate from POLAND | Aug. 06, 2016 16:02Reply
Xi'an - Hukou Waterfall - Pingyao - is it possible
We would like to visit waterfall on our way between Xi'an and Pingyao or Datong. How can we do that?
Answers (1)
Answered by Nick from CHINA | Aug. 07, 2016 02:13

Hi Kate. It is possible. I know a direct bus leaves from Chengbei Bus Station in Xi'an to the waterfall at 12:00. It takes around 5h. After visiting, you can take a bus to Yan'an, which also is worth your time for 1-2 days. At local Main Railway Station, take a train to Taiyuan and then transfer to another train to Pingyao.
Asked by joanne from SINGAPORE | Jun. 23, 2016 02:56Reply
I am going to Xi'an apr and plan to drop by hukou waterfall n see yaodong.
see from websit can take bullet train fm Xi'an to Yanan and from there plan whether to take public bus or hire car with driver to these two places the take the train back to Xi'an for just two person. would like to know 1. which is better route ? 2. will it too rush for one day? or should stay for one night?
Answers (1)
Answered by Betty from SINGAPORE | Jun. 24, 2016 01:31

Yes, you can take a bullet train to Yan'an from Xi'an North Railway Station (about 2.5 hours). Upon arrival, take a bus to the waterfall from South Bus Station near Main Railway Station (about 3 hours).
After returning, you can go to Zaoyuan or Yangjialing to see house caves (yaodong). You are advised to spend two days for the trip.
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