The 10 Best Waterfalls Near Blue Ridge GA

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[Updated October 20, 2021] Between the historic downtown area, delicious restaurants, wineries, gorgeous scenery, outdoor activities, and unique places to stay, it’s no wonder why locals and visitors alike recognize Blue Ridge as one of the best small towns in Georgia.

This tiny North Georgia mountain town offers countless attractions within its city limits, but also provides a great home base for exploring the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest. 

There are magnificent mountains, glistening mountain lakes, scenic hiking trails, and numerous beautiful waterfalls hidden throughout the surrounding areas.

So whether you’re looking for a quick afternoon excursion or a full-day hiking adventure, read on for our list of the 10 best waterfalls near Blue Ridge GA, which we’ve arranged in order of geographical distance from town!

READ MORE: 101+ Things to Do in North Georgia

Falls Branch Falls in Blue Ridge GA
Falls Branch Falls, photo by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett

Love North GA Waterfalls? Check out these great guides!

The 20 Best North Georgia Waterfalls (& How to Get to Them)

The 15 Best Waterfalls Near Helen GA

How to Get to Horse Trough Falls in Helen GA (Upper Chattahoochee River Campground)

How to Get to Anna Ruby Falls Near Helen GA

How to Get to Dukes Creek Falls Near Helen GA

How to Get to Helton Creek Falls in Blairsville GA

How to Get to Hemlock Falls at Moccasin Creek State Park

How to Get to Minnehaha Falls on Lake Rabun

How to Get to Panther Falls & Angel Falls at Lake Rabun Beach

How to Get to Long Creek Falls in Blue Ridge GA

How to Get to Sea Creek Falls in Suches, GA

How to Get to the DeSoto Falls Scenic Area Near Helen GA

Falls Branch Falls

Cherry Log, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 12.4 miles 

Level of difficulty: Easy

Trail Length: 0.9 miles round-trip

Elevation Gain: 200 feet

Just about a 20-minute drive from downtown Blue Ridge, the Falls Branch Falls Trail explores a beautiful mossy forest before leading you to the mesmerizing double cascades of the waterfall.

Perfect for all different levels of ability, this short half-mile trail takes hikers along the Benton MacKaye Trail, which is lined with beautiful wildflowers such as rhododendron and mountain laurel.  

The trail will ultimately lead you to a wooden observation platform, where you can get amazing views and photo opportunities of the multi-tiered, 75-foot waterfall. 

After taking in the sights, you can continue along the Benton MacKaye Trail to extend your adventure, or simply retrace your steps back to the parking lot for a quick, yet scenic trek. 

READ MORE: The 20 Best Things to Do in Blue Ridge, GA

Noontootla Falls

Newport, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 22 miles 

Level of difficulty: Moderate

Trail Length: Under a mile from the road

Located just off of Forest Road 58 in Fannin County, in the vast Chattahoochee National Forest, Noontootla Falls is an 80+ foot, multi-tiered North Georgia waterfall.

If you travel on Forest Road 58 for just over two miles, you’ll reach a small tributary on the right that falls off of the mountain and goes under the road by a culvert.

Just make sure to keep your eyes peeled, because it’s really easy to miss.

From the north side of the creek, it’s a short trek (but a fairly steep and slippery one) to an opening where you can see the hidden waterfall. 

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Amicalola Falls in Dawsonville, GA
Amicalola Falls, photo by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett

Amicalola Falls

Dawsonville, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 34.5 miles 

Level of difficulty: Moderate

Trail Length: 2 miles

Elevation Gain: 784 feet

One of the most popular waterfalls near Blue Ridge Georgia, Amicalola Falls is the tallest waterfall in the state, reaching a total height of 729 feet.

There are different trails that give you access to the falls, including the wheelchair-accessible West Ridge Falls Access Trail and the East Ridge Trail, which is just one mile long.

But the most popular trail for viewing the falls is the two-mile Amicalola Falls Loop Trail.

This path guides you up a series of metal-grate stairs along the side of the falls to a viewing platform, where you can admire the rushing water as it tumbles over seven different cascades.

You can head back down the same way you came to complete your adventure, or continue past the falls to explore more of Amicalola Falls State Park.

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Trahlyta Falls in Vogel State Park, North Georgia Mountains
Trahlyta Falls, photo by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett

Trahylta Falls

Blairsville, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 32.9 miles 

Level of difficulty: Easy

Trail Length: 1.1 miles

Elevation Gain: 75 feet

Situated in one of the oldest North Georgia State Parks, Trahlyta Falls is a 110-foot-tall cascading waterfall surrounded by the lush Chattahoochee National Forest.

To access the falls, take the Trahylta Lake Trail, which is one of the easiest and most scenic waterfall hikes in GA. 

The hike starts near the Vogel State Park Visitors Center, crossing over a wooden boardwalk and onto an earthen dam where you can catch spectacular views of Trahylta Lake and Blood Mountain.

After descending a set of wooden stairs, you’ll reach a spacious viewing platform where you can get up close to the spectacular Trahlyta Falls.

After admiring its serene beauty, you can retrace your steps around the lake to the trailhead, completing the hike at just over a mile.

READ MORE: The 10 Best Waterfalls Near Blue Ridge GA

Long Creek Falls in Blue Ridge GA
Long Creek Falls, photo by Anna KP

Long Creek Falls

Suches, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 24.6 miles (46 min drive)

Level of difficulty: Easy

Trail Length: 1.9 miles

Elevation Gain: 301 feet

Of the five waterfalls in Fannin County, Long Creek Falls is arguably the most popular.

This is largely because of the beautiful 50-foot waterfall itself. But also because of its location on the Appalachian Trail near Three Forks, where the AT, Benton MacKaye, and Duncan Ridge Trails come together.

The hike to the falls is enjoyable in its own right. The trail meanders beside Long Creek, leading you through a lush forest filled with rhododendron, hemlock, and tulip poplar.

When you reach the falls, you’ll be treated to a gorgeous display of water surging down 50 feet before collecting in a serene creek surrounded by moss-covered boulders and stones.

Between the falls, creek, and surrounding flora, it’s definitely one of the most scenic spots for an afternoon picnic!

READ MORE: The 10 Best Wineries in the North Georgia Mountains

Sea Creek Falls in Suches GA, one of the best waterfalls near Blue Ridge)
Sea Creek Falls in Suches GA, photo by Hope Cross

Sea Creek Falls

Suches, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 25.6 miles 

Level of difficulty: Easy

Trail Length: 0.5 miles

Elevation Gain: 32 feet

Tucked away in the Coopers Creek Recreation Area (part of the Chattahoochee National Forest), Sea Creek Falls is a mesmerizing 30-foot waterfall that spills into a shallow pool.

The half-mile, in-and-out Sea Creek Falls trail follows along its namesake creek. It’s one of the easier waterfall hikes in GA, although it can become quite muddy after heavy rains.

The shallow, rock-filled pool at the base of the falls is great for splashing around in. It also provides a scenic spot to relax and enjoy the peacefulness that comes with being immersed in nature.

While the waterfall is beautiful at any time of year, it is particularly remarkable in late Winter or Spring, when the water flow tends to be stronger.

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Upper Helton Creek Falls in Blairsville GA
Upper Helton Creek Falls, photo by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett

Helton Creek Falls

Blairsville, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 36.3 miles

Level of difficulty: Easy

Trail Length: 0.6 miles

Elevation Gain: 29 feet

Perfect for small kids and dogs, the Helton Creek Falls Trail is incredibly well maintained and is one of the easiest hikes with a waterfall in GA.

As you descend the trail’s entry staircase, you’ll immediately get a glimpse of the waterfall through the beautiful valley of hemlocks and hardwoods mixed with conifers and rhododendrons.

Soon after that you’ll reach a short side trail with a set of wooden stairs that guide you to the base of Helton Creek’s lower falls. Here, water rushes over a smooth rock face into a peaceful pool surrounded by ferns and verdant mosses.

If you continue on the main trail, there’s a short climb in elevation before you reach the Upper Helton Creek Falls viewing platform.

It showcases the taller and wider falls as they tumble over a massive rock outcrop, with lots of large boulders around that make this the perfect place for an afternoon picnic. 

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DeSoto Falls near Dahlonega GA
DeSoto Falls, photo by Lauren Touchy

DeSoto Falls

Suches, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 39.5 miles

Level of difficulty: Easy

Trail Length: 2.2 miles

Elevation Gain: 160 feet

Desoto Falls are a magnificent pair of North Georgia waterfalls where, legend has it, a piece of Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto’s armor was found from his North American expedition in the mid-1500s. 

The hike is fairly easy, with minimal elevation gain. And, at just over 2 miles, the kid-friendly distance makes this waterfall very popular with families. 

From the paid parking area, you’ll follow a paved path before crossing a wooden bridge over the rhododendron-lined banks of Frogtown Creek. Here, you’ll get your first sight of the lower DeSoto Falls.

At around 1/4 of a mile, you’ll reach a wooden viewing platform that allows you to see the lower falls up close. But the truly breathtaking sights come after crossing another wooden bridge, where you’ll reach the gorgeous cascades of upper Desoto Falls. 

There’s a spacious viewing platform here where you can stop for a picnic, rest, and take in the beauty of the nearly 80-foot falls.

READ MORE: Visiting Expedition Bigfoot Museum (aka Sasquatch Museum) in Cherry Log, GA

Raven Cliff Falls in Helen GA
Raven Cliff Falls, photo by Michael Gonyea via Heavy Nature 

Raven Cliffs Falls

Helen, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 42.6 miles

Level of difficulty: Moderate

Trail Length: 4.9 miles

Elevation Gain: 400 feet

Surrounded by towering hardwood trees, verdant moss, and creek banks lined with vibrant wildflowers, Raven Cliffs Falls is easily one of the most beautiful waterfalls in northern Georgia.

The Raven Cliffs Falls trail follows the tranquil Dodd Creek upstream before crossing a wooden bridge and continuing through the forest, where you’ll spot a number of meandering streams and smaller cascades along the way.

Before you see even the falls, the sound of the rushing water will fill your ears.

At just over 2 miles, you’ll come face-to-face with the striking 40-foot tall falls, where the water plummets down a massive rock outcrop before settling into the pool below. 

This is one of those spots that are hard to pull yourself away from. But when you’re ready to complete the hike, just follow Dodd Creek back downstream to the trailhead.

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Lower Observation Platform at Dukes Creek Falls
Dukes Creek Falls, photo by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett

Dukes Creek Falls

Helen, GA

Distance from Blue Ridge: 43.5 miles

Level of difficulty: Easy

Trail Length: 2 miles

Elevation Gain: 300 feet

Nestled in the heart of North Georgia’s Blue Ridge region, the hike to Dukes Creek Falls is an extremely kid- and dog-friendly adventure that is also partially wheelchair-accessible.

Starting from a parking lot that offers a great view of Yonah Mountain, the beginning of the trail is paved and leads to an ADA-accessible viewing platform, where you can get a first look at the falls.

The trail will then turn to dirt and begin to drop in elevation as you make your way down, with occasional sightings of Dukes Creek along the way.

One unique thing about this hike is that the upper part of the waterfall is fairly visible throughout. You’ll also be treated to several sightings of smaller cascades along the way to motivate you to keep going.

Of course, the best views come when you reach the observation platforms at the base of the falls, where you’ll be treated to exceptional views of the 150-foot cascades. –by Christina Maggitas

 

 

Leave No Trace logo

We encourage anyone who loves the Blue Ridge region to learn about the Leave No Trace principles of responsible environmental stewardship. 

Stay on marked trails, take only pictures, pack out your trash, and be considerate of others who share the trails and parks you explore. 

Remember that waterfalls and rocky summits can be dangerous. Never try to climb waterfalls or get close to a ledge to get a selfie.

When you're exploring the wilderness, it's better to be safe than to be a statistic!

Growing up in rural south Georgia, Christina Maggitas developed a love for nature at a young age and spent the majority of her formative years outdoors. Since first visiting the Great Smokey Mountains with her family as a child, she has always admired the beauty of the Blue Ridge region and spends as much time as she can hiking north Georgia. She has a passion for writing and storytelling with the hopes of inspiring others to enjoy the great outdoors. Currently, Christina is a senior at Kennesaw State University where she is studying Journalism and Emerging Media.