Explore the most popular waterfall trails in North Carolina with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

20 hours ago

Nice hike, wish there were more blazes, but luckily I had a map! John Rock has a really cool overlook should touch follow that trail!

1 day ago

Nice trail, easy hike and only a few bikers today. The river water was higher than usual, when crossing it got tricky since the water was higher than normal and slick rocks.

Had a fantastic time here. We hiked all the way to the end of the trail seeing all 3 waterfalls. It was Thursday so very few people were on the trail. Had lunch at the top if rainbow falls. It was an amazing view.

This hike is definitely a workout. The first 1-1.5 miles are pretty much a non-stop incline. After that it’s pretty much smooth sailing, with a few short inclines that sufficiently get your heart pumping. Took my dog and she loved it. It was definitely a workout for her too! We added an extra .4 miles to go to the Chestnut Knob overlook. The view itself is pretty good, but there’s not really anywhere to sit comfortably and no shade. And because we went on a fairly warm day, the sun was a little too much. Other than the overlook, there’s a few spots with some decent views, and places to sit and enjoy them. As other mentioned there are a ton of burnt trees, so a little dreary but nothing too bad. Overall I’m giving this hike a 4 because it’s a great workout, but it’s just short of a 5 because of the lackluster views.

Great place to hike in and camp the night. My Daughter and I went there , had a great time. We also took MST to Devils Garden Overlook but be warned that at time we hiked it All Trail Classification is wrong. Devil Garden Overlook is an advance trail not moderate.

Loads of fun with three young kids. Wading, running, skipping rocks, hiking, lots of inspiration for imaginative play... oh and hiking! Stream was chilly but the kids left soaked and muddy. Would love to come back and picnic when it’s hot.

1 day ago

Beautiful crisp morning with a little snow on the ground still. Falls were gorgeous.

MAKE SURE YOUR DIRECTIONS ARE CLEAR! We followed the GPS directions (from the All Trails app) and never found the trailhead or anything. We really wanted to hike it but we gave up after driving around lost for about 30 mins. We would like to try again sometime though.

Super Trail -
Easy on the body, might even recommend it for almost anyone!

The area is quiet, and the cover is thick for the most part, and we stayed cool and comfortable!

You'll love it

Nice trail. Not too strenuous. Tracked it at 6 miles total. There were plenty of children doing this trail with no problem. There are places where I would not have a dog with no leash. The views at the end are well worth the trip.

Our first hike on this trail. The waterfall is beautiful and worth the hike.

Super packed with people! Suggest early rising to avoid the crowd and get decent pics!

3 days ago

Really nice! Easy parking and quick to get on the trail. I did this hike alone and felt very safe. It’s moderately trafficked but not too busy. At each of the overlooks I had the area to myself. So pretty and not too challenging.

Always enjoyable. This is turning into a default area for us.

Nice little hike. The kids and dogs enjoyed it.

Easy walk up to a pretty waterfall. We went off to the left to look for the mine. That made it even better for us.

I always ignore the trail and rock hop right up the river. one of my favorite places

My first time hiking the Wildcat Rock to the meadows this past Saturday, there are a good many strenuous areas along this trail, especially as you continue past the waterfall. The falls did not have alot of water, alot was frozen. Before the waterfall there are a few creek crossings and all along the trail large rock faces and huge boulders.There are maybe 130+ rock steps going straight up in this area. The view from Wildcat Rock is worth the hike. From the trailhead to the meadow it is 3.8 miles round trip. Elevation gain is 1,100 feet.
I posted many pictures, be sure to check the out.

GPS users may enter N35.4734, W-82.3320

This trail is clearly mark all along the trail and is managed and owned by the Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy.

From Greenville, SC
Start out on Hwy 25 toward Asheville
Get on I-26 toward Hendersonville, NC
Exit on Hwy 64 toward Chimney Rock
Take Hwy 64 for 12.3 miles until it intersects with Hwy 74
Turn Left and go 3.9 miles until you see a parking lot of the 'right' side of Hwy 74
There will be an old Chimney and a Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy sign
The trailhead for Wildcat Rock is across the street from the parking area

7 days ago

My mom (51) and I (24) hiked to the falls on March 4th and it was lovely. The hike is not super forested the entire way, but making it to the falls is worth it! There are tables near the falls to picnic if you’d like. There was a decent elevation gain but nothing my mom and I couldn’t handle. This trail would be perfect for mountain biking. This hike is easy to moderate (moderate only when gaining elevation). There are two lakes along the loop you can enjoy as well.

Beautiful! Easy trail a bit harder for younger kids but works out because at the end there is a place to jump into the river. If you are looking for some fitness and fun for the summer time this is perfect and if you are just looking to get some good cardio in or nature appreciation then this is perfect.

8 days ago

Beautiful river views along the trail, with many short diversion trails leading to really nice spots along the way. As others have stated, the trail is wide and can be very crowded on a pretty day. But the trail surface is natural, somewhat muddy in places, and an overall nice hike. The falls are beautiful and a look a bit different from every angle. There's also a steep trail up the right side of the falls (muddy, rocky, and slippery with ropes added for stability) that will take the more adventurous to the top, or almost there. Plenty of places for a cautious person to step out on the falls for great views and photos. Obviously popular destination and not a private afternoon by any means but well worthwhile.

8 days ago

loved this trail! we had a great time despite it being overcast and rainy. It's definitely a moderate hike, we went uphill for 2 miles. Not crazy steep but we were still huffing by the end.

9 days ago

been going to Mingo falls since I was a child. I absolutely love the magestic falls. it is a very easy trek as the path is mostly all stairs. one day i will hike up to the top.

9 days ago

Very good hike, trail was muddy in spots but otherwise well kept. Crossed over a lot of water but didn’t see any waterfalls.

Fun trail. I didn’t realize the Tower was the end - I continued down to the river (veered left in front of the tower). There was a path going right that I didn’t take. Going down to the river makes this a even tougher climb back up but it’s well worth it. Some climbing over fallen trees / big rocks and stumps is required. I went in March and it was empty. Saw only 1 other hiker. The falls were great. Really enjoyed the hike. .

Was not expecting the beauty of that waterfall! The rest of the hike is easy getting there, but when you start that descent to the falls it’s a whole other story. The ropes are useful, definitely take advantage of them. There were quite a few people on the trail including families with children, not a trail for all kids-those kids were beasts! The falls were well worth the heavy breathing!

This place has an incredibly gorgeous waterfall called Looking Glass Falls and mild rock climbing if you want to get closer to the waterfall. And not far from there is Sliding Rock, which is also a waterfall but different in that you can actually slide down the whole thing like you would a water slide at a water park. It's gorgeous. Traffic was minimal, at least when we went it wasn't bad. It was really nice.

cant wait to come back this summer!

Hiked this trail on a cool early March afternoon. The temp peaked at 42. Even thought there was lots of rain recently, the trail was mostly dry, views were excellent (through the trees), and we were sheltered from the early March winds. There's a bit of elevation change, slow and steady, nothing crazy. Our dogs had a great time too.

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