Waterfalls worth the drive

Waterfalls worth the drive

Dry Falls

(Courtesy Jackson County Tourism)

Ready for a day trip? You’re in luck. North Carolina is home to many spectacular waterfalls and we found a few that are an easy drive from Charlotte.

Remember, weather and COVID-19 closures or safety restrictions may impact access to each spot, so be sure to check the website links provided before you head out.

Dry Falls - The Nantahala National Forest is home to Dry Falls, a 75-foot tall waterfall that flows from an overhanging cliff. For a worthwhile experience, make sure you walk between the falls and rock wall to see what it’s like behind the powerful water source! Dry Falls is a few miles outside of Highlands, about a 3 1/2 hours drive from Charlotte. website

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Hickory Nut Falls - Chimney Rock State Park is home to this 404-foot natural wonder -- one of the highest waterfalls east of the Mississippi. The waterfall was featured in the movie "The Last of the Mohicans” and is about a two hour drive from Charlotte. You must purchase a ticket to the state park to hike to the falls. website

Linville Falls - Located about two hours from Charlotte at mile post 316 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, Linville Falls offers five different viewpoints for visitors to enjoy, depending on how far they want to hike. The falls drop 90 feet into the Linville Gorge. website

Looking Glass Falls - Looking Glass Falls is one of the most easily accessible falls in the Tar Heel State since it can be seen from the roadside, directly off Highway 276 North, making it perfect for those with limited mobility. There are several vantage points and locations for photographing the falls. Guests can also enjoy a dip in the water below the 60-foot drop. Be sure to visit again during the winter to see the incredible ice formations that are created around the rocks and falls. Looking Glass Falls is near Brevard and just under a three hour drive from Charlotte. website

Soco Falls - Soco Falls is a unique double waterfall right outside of Maggie Valley, a little under three hours from the Queen City. Guests can take a leisurely stroll to see the 120 ft. drop and spectacular views from an observation deck that’s easy to get to, making Soco one of the best falls for people of all ages to visit. website

Sliding Rock Falls - A local favorite, Sliding Rock Falls could be considered more of a water slide than a waterfall. Each year thousands of tourists visit the falls to take their turn sliding down the 60-foot flat rock into an eight-foot pool of water at the bottom. Sliding Rocks is also near Brevard. There is a fee to enter the recreation area. website

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