7 Must-See Waterfalls Near Helen, GA

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Just 1.5 hours north of Atlanta, the quaint town of Helen is known for its tranquil surroundings and unparalleled views. Located right in the heart of the North Georgia mountains, Helen is perfectly situated to experience the great outdoors. Between the Chattahoochee River flowing straight through the town and the Appalachian Trail nearby, there’s no shortage of scenery just waiting to be explored.

But that’s not all - Helen is also surrounded by some of the most beautiful waterfalls in North Georgia! They range from kid-friendly hiking trails to more challenging trailheads. No matter what adventure level you prefer, North Georgia waterfalls live up to the hype.

We’ve rounded up our favorite waterfalls near Blue Creek Cabins to make it easy for you to explore the epic sights nearby! What are you waiting for?


1. Anna Ruby Falls

Photo Credit: Leos Kral via Flickr CC2.0

  • Location: 3455 Anna Ruby Falls Rd, Helen, GA
  • Length: .9-miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty: Easy, paved trail
  • Fee: $5 per person

Located near Unicoi State Park in the Chattahoochee National Forest district, Anna Ruby Falls is a relatively short, easy hike that ends in the rare sighting of twin waterfalls. The entire trail is paved, making this the perfect stroller-friendly, kid-friendly, and even dog-friendly hike.

Once you reach the waterfalls, there are two viewing platforms allowing you to take in the incredible site ahead. And even though the waterfalls are the main event, the trail itself is beautiful as well. Winding through forestry and along creeks, the trailhead offers a little bit of everything without having to go very far.


2. Raven Cliff Falls

Photo Credit: Milton via Flickr CC2.0

  • Location: 3000 Richard B Russell Scenic Hwy, Helen, GA
  • Length: 4.9-miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Fee: $5 per person (cash only)

If you’re looking for more of an adventure, Raven Cliff Falls is the perfect hiking trail for you. This 5-mile, moderate hike takes you across creeks, through towering trees, and up 500 feet in elevation. But the end result? A mesmerizing 40-foot waterfall nestled between two giant cliffs.

This trailhead starts by passing through a creek within the first half mile, so be sure to look for the wooden bridge if you don’t want to get wet! If you are hoping for a midday swim, a side trail leads you to a swimming hole nearby. There are multiple waterfalls leading up to the grand finale, so enjoy taking in the many views along the way!

There are about 50 spots in the parking lot, and they fill up quickly, so be sure to get there early on the weekends.


3. Dukes Creek Falls

Photo Credit: Tim Easterday via Flickr CC2.0

  • Location: 1699 Richard Russell Hwy, Helen, GA
  • Length: 2-miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Fee: $5 parking fee (cash only)

Dukes Creek Falls is a 2 mile, moderate hiking trail that takes you through a mountaintop forest along the streams of Dukes Creek. The first segment of this hike is a paved trail, making it a popular short hike for the whole family to enjoy (including your furry friends!).

As you reach the bottom of the trail, you’ll discover the waterfalls at the convergence of Dukes Creek and Davis Creek. There are several wooden viewing platforms available to admire the beauty of the 150-foot waterfall drop. The base of the falls is the perfect spot to enjoy a picnic, relax, or even dip your toes in the running stream!

There are 50 spots in the parking lot of this popular hike, so be sure to head there early if you want to secure a spot.


4. Desoto Falls

Photo Credit: recreation.gov

  • Location: Desoto Falls Visitor Center, 18365 US-129, Cleveland, GA
  • Length: 2.2-miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty: Easy to moderate
  • Fee: $5 parking fee

Desoto Falls offers a two-in-one waterfall experience. The trail begins through a picnic area before reaching a wooded creek with an intersection. Turning left brings you to the lower falls, where you’ll quickly reach a wooden viewing platform that overlooks Lower Desoto Falls cascading into a pool of water.

Head back to the intersection before taking a right to the upper falls, the larger of the two waterfalls. The trail follows the creek upstream as you wind through forestry and rock formations. It’s just over a mile hike before getting to the main attraction: Upper Desoto Falls. The observation deck is the perfect spot to relax and enjoy the view before making your way back down the trail.


5. Minnehaha Falls

Photo Credit: เฮลีนา่

  • Location: Lakemont, GA
  • Length: .4 miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty: Easy to moderate
  • Fee: None

As one of Georgia’s most popular waterfall spots, Minnehaha Falls is the perfect trailhead for those looking for a short, easy waterfall hike. There are some steep parts of the trail, but they are over before you know it! You’ll find hikers of all ages here, along with their pets.

Minnehaha Falls cascades down into the banks of Lake Ruben, making for a stunning view. This is the perfect spot if you want incredible views without having to work very hard for them.

P.S. There is very limited parking here, so make sure to come early or find a spot along the street near the lake.


6. Helton Creek Falls

Photo Credit: c_live_lee via Flickr CC2.0

  • Location: Hatchet Creek Rd/Helton Creek Rd in Blairsville, GA
  • Length: .3 miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Fee: Free

Located near Vogel State Park in the Chattahoochee National Forest, Helton Creek Falls is an easy, family-friendly hike that leads to double waterfalls and a swimming hole. And the great part? It only takes about 7 minutes to reach the waterfalls! This is the perfect spot to relax, eat a picnic, and enjoy beautiful scenery without having to work hard for it.

Because of how accessible this hike is, it tends to get pretty crowded. We recommend stopping here on the way to all of the other fun things to do in Helen.


7. High Shoals Falls/Blue Hole Falls

Photo Credit: Alexander Lerch via Flickr CC2.0

  • Location: 1333 Indian Grave Gap Rd, Hiawassee, GA 30546
  • Length: 2.4 miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Fee: Free

High Shoals Falls/Blue Hole Falls is one of the most popular waterfall destinations near Helen because you get access to two incredible waterfalls on one trail. At just over 2 miles roundtrip, it’s the perfect trailhead for those looking for a bit more adventure.

On your way to the waterfalls, you’ll hike along High Shoals Creek, pass trailside campsites, and make your way through a dense forest. You’ll first reach Blue Hole Falls, a 20-foot cascading waterfall, into a deep, blue pool of water. After a short set of switchbacks, you’ll find yourself at the 50-foot drop of High Shoals Falls. As you can see, this trail offers a little of everything for the adventure enthusiast.


A Day of Waterfall Adventures

Helen, Georgia, is perfectly situated to experience the wonder of the Blue Ridge mountains. But the greatest adventure of all is discovering the best waterfalls near Helen. From short, kid-friendly hikes to moderate trailheads winding through various terrain, there are endless ways to enjoy the beautiful waterfalls nearby.

Our Blue Creek Cabins are the perfect landing spot for your waterfall adventures. Settle into your cozy vacation rental before taking on the exciting waterfall hiking trails surrounding Helen!