10 Waterfalls in Ithaca for a Pleasant, Exciting Day Out

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If you’re looking for a beautiful waterfall to explore in Ithaca, NY, you won’t be disappointed by the choices.

The surrounding woodlands provide a pleasant backdrop to the scenes you will encounter, and combining sightseeing in the city with a trek in nature is a great way to enjoy the local area.

How Many Waterfalls Are There Near Ithaca?

The greater Ithaca area is home to over 150 fantastic waterfalls.

This gives you a wide variety of options for enjoying a different part of central New York every time you choose to step out into nature.

Top Waterfalls to Visit Near Ithaca

Ithaca is an underrated part of New York and visitors from around the world discover this fact every year.

When in the area, be sure to visit some of our favorite waterfalls below.

Ithaca Falls

Ithaca Falls
Ithaca Falls is the most prominent of all the famous waterfalls in Ithaca.

Located in the central portion of the city, this magnificent waterfall stands at a staggering 150 feet tall. It’s a popular spot for locals, hikers, and tourists alike.

The falls are best seen from the north side of the gorge, but there are several well-marked trails that wind around the area for a closer look.

Buttermilk Falls

Buttermilk Falls
Buttermilk Falls, standing at 165 feet, is certainly worth a visit.

The falls cascade down a series of rocky ledges and terraces, providing stunning views of the surrounding area.

There are several trails leading to the falls, including one along the north side of the gorge and another along the south side.

The falls can also be seen from the nearby trails, offering plenty of opportunities for stunning photographs.

Taughannock Falls

Taughannock Falls, New York
Taughannock Falls is the largest waterfall in the Ithaca area, at a height of 215 feet.

The beautiful falls cascade down a series of three steps, each with its own unique allure. It is one of the most picturesque natural sites in upstate New York and can be seen from miles away.

There are several trails leading to the falls, making it easy to explore and appreciate its charm.

Upper Falls

Letchworth State Park Upper Falls
Upper Falls is a popular spot for both local residents and tourists, with its beautiful cascades and lush surroundings.

The impressive falls can be seen from the city center, but there are several trails that lead to the site, convenient for exploring and relishing its landscape.

Lower Falls

Lower Falls
If you’re looking for a more secluded waterfall experience, Lower Falls is the perfect place to go.

Located in the city’s easternmost section, this impressive waterfall is less well-known than some of the other falls in the area.

The falls drop 45 feet down a narrow chasm, providing a singular and delightful experience.

To get there, take Route 13 south from Ithaca and look for the sign for Lower Falls Park.

Cascadilla Gorge

Cascadilla Gorge - Falls and Steps
Cascadilla Gorge is a gorgeous waterfall located in Ithaca, NY.

The powerful waterfalls’ highest drop is 80 feet, making the gorge a suitable place to snap photos for your social media albums.

There are several trails that lead to the dramatic falls, making it easy to explore and savor the scenery.

Horseshoe Falls


Horseshoe Falls is a small waterfall situated just outside of Ithaca.

It stands at a height of approximately 20 feet and features three tiers of cascading water.

Its horseshoe shape gives the cascades a unique look that changes according to your vantage point.

Well’s Falls

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Sitting at the base of the city’s downtown area, the Well’s Falls is a must-see for anyone visiting Ithaca.

You can reach Well’s Falls from a trail that follows along the top of the falls and allows you to take in the scenery from multiple angles.

The Well’s Falls are an ideal spot for a family picnic or a romantic outing and offer beautiful views of Ithaca’s natural scenery.

Triphammer Falls

Triphammer Falls
Triphammer Falls is one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the Ithaca area, with a magnificent drop of 55 feet.

The falls are easily accessed via a short trail and offer dramatic views of the encompassing area.

It is an ideal spot for fishing, photography, or simply nature-watching.

Ludlowville Falls

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Ludlowville Falls is a pleasing waterfall located in Ithaca.

The waterfall has a 40-foot drop, adding to the impressive rock formations that make the gorge a suitable place for drawing inspiration or getting away from your stress.

It is known for the several natural pools that have formed at the base of the falls, making it an idyllic spot for swimming and sunbathing.

The trail that leads to the falls isn’t challenging and getting to the water is easy, despite a relatively steep path as you near the site of the falls.

How Long Is the Ithaca Falls Trail?

The Ithaca Falls trail is about two miles long and is family-friendly for your weekend excursions.

The trail is well-maintained and easy to follow, making it a great option for all levels of hikers. There are several viewpoints along the way that allow you to soak up the elegance of the falls.

The trail is also wheelchair accessible, making it perfect for visitors with disabilities.

Is Taughannock Falls an Easy Hike?

Taughannock Falls is an easy hike, but it does require some climbing. The trail starts at the visitor center and heads up the falls before looping back around.

It should take you anywhere from 45 minutes to about two hours to complete, depending on your pace and whether you take the opportunity to stop and enjoy your surroundings.

Conclusion

Ithaca is abundant with magical waterfalls, and each one offers something different.

Whether you’re looking for a secluded spot to relax or a family-friendly trail, there is a nearby waterfall for everyone.

So why not make your next outing an adventure to one of these beautiful natural wonders? With its awesome views and cool cascades, Ithaca’s numerous waterfalls provide the perfect way to explore the glory of nature.

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