The Chinda Falls are made up of two waterfalls - the Odaki (the larger waterfall, considered to be a 'male' waterfall) and the Medaki (the smaller, 'female' waterfall). The Odaki flows from the main stream of the Ono River, and the Medaki flows from the Ono River's tributary, the Hiraigawa River. While the Odaki is an expansive 100-110 metres wide, and 20 metres high, the Medaki is just a little shorter at 18 metres tall, but a lot narrower at only 10 metres wide. It is believed that the two waterfalls were formed by the Hiraigawa River and the Ono River colliding, but other sources say that it was formed 90,000 years ago by an eruption from Mount Aso in Kumamoto.
The Ono River, in which the waterfalls are located, borders the two towns of Ono and Kiyokawa in Bungo Ono. It also has a large volume of water, as another river - the Ogata River - joins the main stream of the Ono River about 400 metres upstream, before the water all flows over the cliff in a line of around 13 different streams. The sight of the waterfalls is so magnificent that it has had numerous poems written about it, and the waterfalls have even been painted by famous Muromachi-period (1333 - 1568) painter Sesshu, in a piece titled simply "Chinda Falls". Unfortunately the original was lost to fire caused by the Great Kanto Earthquake, but fortunately, an artist of the Kano school (the longest-running and most influential painting school in Japanese history) had painted a reproduction of the piece, which still remains today. The Chinda Falls are also mentioned in the Bungo Kokushi ("History of Bungo" - Bungo is the former name of the main province which made up Oita prefecture) which was written in the Edo period (1603 - 1868).
Below the parking area of the nearby park are the stone remains of the old Chinda Power Plant, which was built in 1909 for the old trains that ran between Oita and Beppu but are now no longer in use. In the present day, it remains as a souvenir of Kyushu's modernisation period. There is also an observatory where you can enjoy the beautiful surroundings.