20 Beautiful waterfalls in NY (with a useful map too!)

April 15, 2021

Are you looking for the most beautiful waterfalls in NY? If so keep reading!

New York State is full of so many beautiful places to visit – and the waterfalls in NY have to be some of the most breathtaking. If you’re looking for the best waterfalls in the NY to visit and drive out to – then this list is going to give you 20 amazing, awe-inspiring waterfalls in NY, that you just have to see to believe!

Before I get into all the individual waterfalls (there are photos of them all below!) I’ve also put together this useful map of all the waterfalls in New York on this list. I thought this would be useful so you can see which are closest to you, which are further away, and maybe so you can even plan a route between several of these amazing waterfalls in NY!

A useful map of waterfalls in NY…

You can save the map above really easily (it’s just a Google Map), or even print it easily if you’re more traditional! So hopefully you find it useful!

Anyway… let’s get started on this list of waterfalls in New York!


The best waterfalls in NY…


Niagara Falls

How could I write a list of waterfalls in NY and not mention the mother of all waterfalls? Niagara Falls is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in NY, and it’s one of the most famous in the world! What makes this waterfall so special is the fact that it’s surrounded by so much city life, and it’s actually a brilliant place to visit and spend time.

As most of the waterfalls on our list are more isolated, we feel that Niagara Falls is an interesting standout that needs to be seen. The size of this waterfall is genuinely incredible, so be sure to bring your camera and a poncho with you! This is definitely one of the best waterfalls in NY.

Read more: 50 things to do in Niagara Falls


Middle Falls, Letchworth State Park

If you’re looking for one of the most beautiful waterfalls in NY, then the search is over. Middle Falls in Letchworth State Park towers over the surrounding land at 107 feet tall, and it’s one of the must-do things if you’re heading to the area. There are plenty of vantage points that you can head to if some spots get crowded too, which we think is a huge plus. This is such an amazing choice for waterfalls in New York to visit.


Buttermilk Falls

Okay, so you won’t be able to get any pancakes here, but Buttermilk Falls is still one of the most beautiful waterfalls in NY that you can visit. Located in the Ithaca area, this is the perfect spot for tourists that are looking to explore New York’s natural wonders. One of the best parts of this particular waterfall is the fact that it’s safe to swim in due to its natural pool and slower flowing water. 


Eternal Flames Falls

This beautiful waterfall in NY is small but packs a mighty punch. Sure, it may only be 30 feet tall, but it flows in front of a natural flame that somehow keeps burning despite a constant torrent of water moving past it. This combination of natural gas and water should be seen to be believed, as you’re probably unlikely to find anything like it anywhere else in the world! If you’re looking for small but mighty waterfalls in New York, this is the one!


Indian Brooks Falls

Indian Brooks is next on my list of waterfalls in NY. Indian Brooks Falls looks like something out of Lord of the Rings, and it’s certainly worth visiting if you happen to be in Philipstown. This beautiful waterfall in NY is located near Cold Spring and is a slight detour from the Hudson Highlands State Park. Just park your car up at the designated parking lot (be quick though – there is literally minimal parking available) and take the short trail to Indian Brooks Falls to get your fill of natural beauty. This is a classic choice for waterfalls in New York to visit.


Upper Falls, Letchworth State Park

Another beautiful choice for waterfalls in NY that we highly recommend checking out is the Upper Falls in Letchworth State Park. This area of New York is home to incredible waterfalls, and Upper Falls is located just slightly upstream of the previously mentioned Middle Falls! There’s a special concrete walkway that has been constructed to give visitors the best possible views of the falls, so be sure to head out there for the best vantage points. This is such a wonderful option of waterfalls in NY to visit for the day.


Rainbow Falls, Watkins Glen

If you’re looking to plan a weekend away around waterfalls in NY, then this next waterfall in New York is going to be a great choice. Watkins Glen State Park is generally gorgeous, but did you know that it’s also home to one of the most beautiful waterfalls in NY? Rainbow Falls isn’t enormous, but we love the fact that it’s encased in rocky gorges that cause the water here to flow in a unique pattern. It’s more picturesque than it sounds, just take our word for it!

Read more: Fun things to do in Watkins Glen, NY


Taughannock Falls

Next on my list of waterfalls in NY, it’s Taughannock Falls. This waterfall in NY is a big one, and it’s located in Taughannock Falls State Park. This beautiful New York waterfall plunges a massive 215 feet, and it’s without a doubt the standout feature at this stunning park. Believe it or not, this waterfall is taller than Niagara Falls! So, if you happen to be near Ithaca, pop this one on your list of places to visit. 


High Falls Gorge

High Falls Gorge is next on my list of waterfalls in NY. If you’re looking for a truly gushing waterfall in NY, then High Falls Gorge is a great one to pick. High Falls Gorge is in the Adirondacks, and there’s a great hike around the area that passes the waterfall should you wish to explore the area in more depth. Don’t worry – the hike isn’t too long and promises to be family-friendly! This is such a stunning choice for waterfalls in New York.


Lower Falls

Lower Falls is in Robert H. Treman State Park, and it’s one of the most beautiful waterfalls in NY. Though most waterfalls don’t allow swimmers near them for safety reasons, you’ll be pleased to know that this waterfall has a designated diving board that allows visitors to dive in and have a swim! It’s a great spot for a photo opportunity, that’s for sure! If you’re looking for a great spot for photos, then this waterfalls in New York should make your list.


Cohoes Falls

Cahoes Falls is next on my list of waterfalls in NY, and it is really something to behold. Located along the Mohawk River, this waterfall spans 1,000 feet (the entire length of the river, essentially)! According to Native American history, Cohoes Falls is supposedly where The Great Peacemaker founded the Iroquiois. So, if you’re after a bit of history with your waterfall fix, this should be your top pick! If you’re looking for awe-inspiring waterfalls in New York, then this is an amazing choice to visit.


Ithaca Falls

Ithaca Falls is next on my list of waterfalls in NY. Ithica Falls is a favorite among visitors at Ithaca Falls Natural Area, so if you’re around that area then you should add it your own list of waterfalls in New York to visit. At a massive 150-feet tall and 175-feet wide, Ithaca Falls is a beautiful waterfall in NY that is not to be scoffed at! For great views if you’re heading to the falls by car, be sure to take the bridge over Lake Street. 


Chittenango Falls

Chittenango Falls is another wonderful waterfalls in NY to visit. It is the stunning focal point of Chittenango Falls State Park. Realistically, if a park names itself after the waterfall, you can assume that you won’t be disappointed with what you find! If you’re brave enough, you can head down the steep hike that takes you to the pedestrian bridge. This is where the best views of the falls can be found, so we reckon it’s worth building up the courage to trek down! A gorgeous choice of waterfalls in NY to visit!


Waterfalls in New York: Kaaterskill Falls

Kaaterskill Falls is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in NY, and it’s easy to see why. As this waterfall is technically a combination of an upper and lower waterfall, it appears GIANT. Though this might seem a bit of an exaggeration, it isn’t far off at more than 260 feet! So, if you’re in the Catskills, be sure to check this place out. 

Read more: 10 things to do in Callicoon, NY


Salmon River Falls

Salmon Creek Falls is one of the best waterfalls to check out in New York. At 110-feet tall, it’s an impressive sight to behold! Located just north of Syracuse, this is an easy waterfall to fit into your trip itinerary if you’re in the area. Will you be adding this waterfalls in New York to your list?


Rainbow Falls, Ausable Chasm

Rainbow Falls is next on my list of waterfalls in New York. Coming in at a remarkable 91-feet tall, Rainbow Falls is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in NY. If you choose to visit Rainbow Falls, we just have one word of warning – it’s not exactly free! You can get fantastic views from the bridge on Route 9 outside Keeseville, but if you want the up-close-and-personal experience, you’re going to have to fork out for the paid walking tour through Ausable Chasm.

Read more: Fun things to do in Tupper Lake, NY 


Lucifer Falls

Lucifer Falls is next on this list of waterfalls in NY. Another beautiful waterfall in NY that just so happens to be in Robert H. Treman State Park is Lucifer Falls. Though its name may be devilish, we can promise that the falls itself are angelic (pardon the slightly cringey pun!).

Standing at 115-feet tall, it’s a very impressive New York waterfall that’s only around 15 minutes from Ithaca. So, if you happen to be in Ithaca for the day, just pop in when you’ve got a spare moment. This is a great choice of waterfalls in NY to visit for the day.


Dionondahowa Falls

Dionondahowa Falls is my next suggestion for waterfalls in NY! It is not far from Greenwich, and we think that it’s one of the most beautiful waterfalls in NY. It’s not the tallest waterfall on our list (it tops out at around 60 feet), but it’s still one of the most stunning places in NY. It’s difficult to get an ideal view of the falls due to the sprawling vegetation that tends to cloud things, but it’s still a beautiful spot to visit! 

Read more: Ultimate guide to the Finger Lakes, NY


Split Rock Falls

As you may have already noticed, there are some truly beautiful waterfalls in the Adirondacks section of NY. Split Rock Falls is a stunning waterfall near New Russia that we highly recommend you take a look at. If you’re looking for the best possible view of the falls, we recommend heading to the hillside area, as you’re at a much better vantage point than at the base. This is a wonderful choice for waterfalls in New York to visit.


Waterfalls in NY: Ok Slip Falls

Another beautiful choice for waterfalls in NY that’s located in the Adirondacks is Ok Slip Falls. Standing at 250-feet tall, we can safely say that this gushing waterfall is no joke! As this spot in the Adirondack Park fills up incredibly quickly, it’s best to park up early and head out before it gets too crowded. There’s seriously nothing worse than people getting in the way of your perfect shot, right?


Hopefully this list of beautiful waterfalls in New York has given you loads of ideas!

There are so many wonderful waterfalls in New York to explore, so whichever you choose to visit you’ll love it. Or maybe you’re going to make a list and try and cover as many waterfalls in NY as possible! Have fun!

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