North Georgia is home to some of the nation’s most beautiful scenery. Cities like Blue Ridge, Dahlonega, Helen and Hiawassee provide a stunning natural backdrop for outdoor adventures. Explore the hundreds of miles of hiking trails that yield breathtaking views, and you’ll also stumble upon some amazing waterfalls perfect for a photo opp or a quick dip in the pool below. So if you’re looking to get away and enjoy nature in all its glory, North Georgia and its waterfalls should be at the top of your list. Learn more about these 13 waterfalls and how to access them.
13 Waterfalls in North Georgia
418 Amicalola Falls State Park Road, Dawsonville, GA 30534
Amicalola Falls measures an impressive 729 feet in height, making it the tallest cascading waterfall east of the Mississippi. That fact alone makes its name highly appropriate — “Amicalola” is a Cherokee Indian word meaning “tumbling waters.” The falls are located within Amicalola Falls State Park, which is one of the state’s most popular parks for both its beauty and abundance of hiking trails, one of which leads to the Appalachian Trail. If you want to make it an overnight experience, the park also has lodging options and a restaurant.
Anna Ruby Falls
3455 Anna Ruby Falls Rd., Helen, GA 30545
Located a little over an hour from Blue Ridge, GA, and in the heart of the Chattahoochee National Forest, Anna Ruby Falls features twin waterfalls located near where the Curtis and York creeks converge. An approximate half-mile of paved path leads to the base of the falls, and from there, hikers can continue along the Smith Creek Trail, a 4.6-mile hike that leads to Unicoi State Park. Admission is $3 per person for ages 16 and older, and hours are daily, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
3171 US-64, Benton, TN 37307
Located in the Cherokee National Forest, Benton Falls is a 65-foot waterfall located about 1.5 miles from the Chilhowee Recreation Area. The hike in and back is easy, and dogs are welcome to join as long as they are leashed. A $3 day fee is payable upon arrival.
18365 US-129, Cleveland, GA 30528
Check in at the DeSoto Falls Recreation Area, and set up your campsite before you embark on your adventure. The trails provide an easy hike to either of the two stunning falls along Frogtown Creek — it’s .75 miles to the upper falls and .25 miles to the lower falls. And be sure to stop by the observation deck for a spectacular photo opp.
Dukes Creek Falls
1699 Richard Russell Hwy., Helen, GA 30545
A moderate 2.5-mile round-trip hike leads you to Dukes Creek Falls, where you can marvel at the 150-foot falls. Stop by the observation deck for a stellar view of the rushing waters, which pour through a granite canyon into Dukes Creek. The Dukes Creek Recreation Area is located off the Russell-Brasstown National Scenic Highway, the drive on which is an experience in itself.
Fall Branch Falls
Stanley Creek Rd., Cherry Log, GA 30522
Located on the Benton MacKaye Trail, Fall Branch Falls requires a short yet moderate 30-minute round-trip hike to get there and back. An observation deck is located right by the falls, and dogs are welcome on the trail as long as they’re on-leash. (SB TIP: Reviews of Fall Branch Falls indicate that it’s quite crowded, so consider going during less popular days/times.)
Helton Creek Falls
US-129 S., Blairsville, GA 30512
The short .2-mile hike leading to Helton Creek Falls makes it a top pick for families who love to hike. Located near Helen, GA, in the Chattahoochee National Forest, Helton Creek actually boasts two falls — a brief descent takes you to the first fall, and then a short ascent leads you to the second larger fall.
High Shoals Falls
1333 Indian Grave Gap Rd., Hiawassee, GA 30546
About an hour from Blue Ridge, you’ll find High Shoals Falls. Comprised of five different waterfalls that pour into High Shoals Creek, this 170-acre area is rich in lush vegetation and natural beauty. A brief 1.2-mile hike along the High Shoals Trail leads you along the creek and to observation decks offering birds-eye views of these wonders. (Note: The trailhead is currently closed due to damage. Before visiting, check HERE for updates.)
Jacks River Falls
Jacks River Falls, Epworth, GA 30541
Located in Epworth, GA, Jacks River Falls is one of the most popular destinations in the Cohutta Wilderness Area. A rugged and somewhat secluded 4.5-mile hike leads you to the falls, and it’s a trail that is best reserved for the more experienced hiker. Beautiful views and a refreshing swim are your rewards for the trek, and you can also camp on a first-come, first-serve basis.
RELATED: 20 Southern Waterfalls Worth a Visit
Long Creek Falls
Forest Service Road 58, Morganton, GA 30560
Enjoy a two-mile hike along Long Creek, and you’ll find your way to Long Creek Falls. Located where the Appalachian, Benton MacKaye, and Duncan Ridge trails converge, Long Creek Falls is often lauded as a hiking fan favorite. The falls are surrounded by beautiful forest and lush greenery, while the trail offers several stop-off picnic spots.
Ravens Cliffs Falls
3000 Richard B Russell Scenic Hwy., Helen, GA 30545
Follow the trail along Dodd Creek and you’ll be rewarded with stunning views. Clocking in at just under five miles round-trip, the hike leads you past several smaller falls prior to rewarding you with the majestic Raven Cliff Falls. Located near the Bavarian-inspired Helen, GA, you can make an overnight adventure of your travels.
Sea Creek Falls
6050 Appalachian Hwy, Suches, GA 30572
Located about an hour from Blue Ridge in the Coopers Creek Recreation Area, Sea Creek Falls offers a family-friendly adventure. An easy, flat hike in rewards you with the beauty of the falls, and pack a picnic and wear a swimsuit, and you can make a day of it. Splash in the pool or simply meditate to the sounds of the rushing 30-foot falls. (SB TIP: While the hike is easy, it is not stroller-friendly.)
1239 Farner Rd., Farner, TN 37333
Located in the Cherokee National Forest, the Turtletown Falls trailhead is actually located in Farner, TN. This destination actually offers two falls: the upper is a short walk from the parking area, while accessing the lower requires a more moderate hike. The 3.8-mile loop offers breathtaking views of the Hiwassee River and the falls, and there are also several swimming holes to get cooled off. Leashed dogs are welcome here.
Enjoy your adventures!
Find more great Southern destinations in our travel section. Click HERE.