Looking to visit some waterfalls near Asheville? Well you have come to the right place! We have compiles a list of our top 5 must-see waterfalls near AVL!
1. Catawba Falls (Map)
2. Hickory Nut Falls (Map)
It’s well worth the effort to get to the foot of Hickory Nut Falls, the second highest waterfall of its kind east of the Mississippi River. The falls can be reached by taking a gentle walk via the Hickory Nut Falls trail to a platform at its bottom. It’s a cool, refreshing stop and a “must see” during your visit to Chimney Rock. Visitors to the falls may view it from U. S. Highway 64 for free. To view the falls more closely, visitors must pay an admission fee ($15 for adults, $7 for children) at the park gate.
3. Setrock Creek Falls (Map)
The falls is located at the base of Mount Mitchell, the tallest mountain in the United States east of the Mississippi River, on Setrock Creek, a small tributary of the South Toe River, which itself is a tributary of the French Broad River. The creek falls over multiple steep to near-vertical sections of rock under a solid canopy of trees. It has low water flow which can slow to a mere trickle in dry weather. The water clings to the rocks on its way down and ends in a nice pool at the bottom. From the intersection of NC 80 and the Blue Ridge Parkway, go 2.2 miles north on NC 80 and turn left on South Toe River Road. Passing the access to Roaring Fork Falls, go 2.19 miles to the fork, go right, and go 0.61 miles further to the Black Mountain Campground. From the hiker parking area, enter the campground and take the drive furthest to the left, on Briar Bottom Road. Just over 200 yards from the parking area, the drive crosses a small creek. Take the trail on the left, pass the start of the Mount Mitchell Trail, cross Little Mountain Creek, take the right-hand path 200 yards to the falls.
4. Looking Glass Falls (Map)
The name comes from Looking Glass Rock, which resembles a wintertime mirror (or “looking glass”) of sunlight, as water freezes on its sides and reflects the sun. The falls are open to the public and are accessible on the side of U.S. Highway 276, approximately 5.6 miles north of the intersection of 276, U.S. Highway 64, and NC Highway 280 in Brevard, North Carolina. It is an extremely popular waterfall, due to ease of access to the falls directly on the side of the road. There is a path that leads to the plunge pool. According to local Emergency Services personnel, there have been many injuries and deaths at the falls, mainly due to individuals who rock climb near the edge of the falls and accidentally fall in the plunge pool, or persons who jump in the plunge pool. Persons who visit Looking Glass Falls should take care to respect both basic safety rules and the fragile environment that exist at the falls.
5. Tom’s Creek Falls (Map)
Wonderful and relatively easy trail with hike to the 60-foot, cascading Tom’s Creek Falls, located on Toms Creek. The creek flows over several cascading upper sections of bedrock into a near-vertical lower cascade, ending in a small scoop in the rocks. A wide, flat pool area is at the base, located in a gully that has large amounts of mica embedded in the rock. From the junction of US 221 and US 70 in Marion, go north on US 221 for 5.6 miles. Turn left on Huskins Branch Rd. and go 1.2 miles to a small parking area located before the bridge that crosses Toms Creek. From the Parking lot, follow the moderate-difficulty 0.4 mile trail to a short, moderately steep climb and scramble down to the base of the falls. A small creek crossing used to be required, but a bridge has been built over the creek. An old mine is located just downstream of the plunge pool.