Our 11 Waterfalls near Asheville Weekend Trip is a detailed itinerary of how to see all the best waterfalls Asheville has to offer in one weekend. We recommend visiting them in this order if you’re trying to hit them all like we did! This can be done in 1 day, but we would recommend splitting it up into 1-3 days, to allow for more time to enjoy each waterfall!

Asheville Waterfalls

Overview & Map

Quick Overview

  • Best Time of Year to Visit:
    • Cooler Hiking Weather: March – May
    • Warm Swimming Weather: June – August
    • Fall Foliage: September – November
  • How to Get There:
    • Fly into Asheville NC or Greenville SC
    • 2-3 Hour Drive From: Atlanta GA, Charlotte NC, or Knoxville TN
  • Local Transportation:
    • Car is the best form of transport here, there is not public transportation.
  • Where to Stay:
    • NC Surrounding Cities: Asheville, Hendersonville, Cashiers, Brevard
  • Navigation:
    • Download an offline Google Map before you go. You won’t have cell service most of the time. (How to)
    • “Follow” our Asheville Waterfalls Weekend Trip Google Map. This will save our recommended stops directly onto your Google Maps App.

Waterfalls near Asheville Map

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Asheville Waterfalls Weekend Trip

#1 Hooker Falls

12 ft wide waterfall, empties into a large pool!
Trail Distance:
0.75 mi round trip (easy)

  • The hike begins at: Hooker Falls / Triple Falls trailhead and parking area at DuPont State Forest.
    • At the trailhead, facing the bridge, take a right and follow the river downstream
  • You’ll see the falls to your left along the trail, continue further down and you’ll find a large area at the bottom with rocks that allows easier access to get in at.
    • Good for large groups and kid friendly
    • Great for swimming!
  • If you started at Hooker falls, head back the way you came and go across the pedestrian bridge. This trail will take you first to Triple falls on the left, then you can continue on the same trail to reach High falls.
Hooker Falls, North Carolina

#2 Triple Falls

120 ft waterfall
Trail Distance: 1.4 mile round trip (steep, 120 ft elevation gain)

  • This waterfall gives you the unique ability to stand “in the middle” of the waterfall. Be careful and stay behind the ropes. The rocks are very slippery and it is dangerous near the water. There have been deaths here.
  • You will see stairs on your left that will take you to rocks in the middle section of the waterfall!

Fun fact: This waterfall was featured in The Hunger Games!

Hooker Falls, North Carolina

#3 High Falls

150 ft waterfall
Trail Distance: 2.0 miles round trip
(continue on the same trail as triple falls)

  • To get to this waterfall, return to the path you took to get to Triple falls. The trail continues uphill 0.2 mi then take a left onto High Falls Trail. After another 0.3mi you’ll get to a junction:
    • To get to the bottom of the falls take a LEFT onto Riverbend Trail. The path is about 0.3miles to the waterfall at this point. The path is along the river and gets rocky and narrow.
    • For the best views of the falls take a RIGHT
  • Go early to beat the crowd.

Don’t try and climb on the rocks, use extreme caution.

Hooker Falls, North Carolina

#4 Looking Glass Falls

60 ft waterfall

Parking:along the side of the road
  • Direct access from the road. Steps lead down to the falls
  • Popular and Beautiful waterfall (Highly Recommend)
    • Great Instagram photo spot!
    • Easy to get to, fun to swim
Hooker Falls, North Carolina

Gorges State Park:
One big (popular) hike, with 3 waterfalls! Totally worth the climb! (Hidden Falls, Rainbow Falls & Turtleback Falls)
Parking: Large parking lot with restrooms available
Trail Distance: 3.4 mi round trip (moderate/hard)

Hike Details: Start your hike on Grassy Ridge Trailhead, at 0.3 mi turn RIGHT at the junction onto Rainbow Falls Trail (follow the orange trail blaze). You’ll reach the river at 1 mi. After crossing a stream you’ll see signs that you’re entering Pisgah National Forest (the trail blazes stop here). At 1.4 mi take a LEFT onto a side trail that leads to Hidden Falls.

  • Return to the main trail and you’ll reach wood stairs, you’ll soon see Rainbow Falls on the left.
  • If you continue, the trail splits. Left: leads to an overlook with close-up view of the falls. RIGHT: takes you to Turtleback falls.
  • After passing the view of Rainbow falls, you’ll see the top of the waterfall. Don’t try and go near the river here as many have died due to the strong current.
  • After about 0.25 mi, you’ll arrive at Turtleback Falls!

#5 Hidden Falls

10 ft Waterfall
Trail Distance: 1.4 mi

  • Underwhelming but safe to wade in water
  • Good for family swimming, close to the trail (we almost missed it).
  • You need to be close to the river to see it.
  • See “Gorges State Park” for Hike Details
Hooker Falls, North Carolina