Whitewater Falls

Nantahala National Forest

Easy $
Whitewater Falls is a massive waterfall that roars as it rushes down the mountain.
(Video: 4 minutes 0 seconds)
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In the Southern Nantahala National Forest of North Carolina, just North of the South Carolina border, is the massive Whitewater Falls that echoe through the Jocasee Gorge as the whitewater river roars an impressive 411ft down the rugged cliffs of this beautiful mountainous region. Whitewater Falls is part of a series of six different falls on the Whitewater River along the North and South Carolina border that collectively fall over 800 feet.

The Nantahala National Forest is the largest National Forest in the state of North Carolina spanning over 830 square miles; almost the entire Western tip of the state. It is a mountainous region with numerous rivers, lakes, waterfalls, and popular North Carolina attractions.

Whitewater Falls is located along NC Highway 281 less than 1 mile from the South Carolina border where the Highway becomes SC Highway 130. From North Carolina you approach from Highway 64 turning South onto NC Highway 281 for about 8 miles. From South Carolina you would most likely approach from scenic highway 11 heading North on Highway 130 for about 11 miles. Look for the big sign across the street from the entrance.

There is a fee of $2.00 per car to visit Whitewater falls that is payable at fee stations around the large and spacious parking lot. There are also restroom facilities onsite as well numerous picnic tables, benches, and large green spaces. It is a well maintained park in beautiful surroundings that would be a great spot to relax at even without the falls. But Whitewater falls is the main attraction at this park and definitely worth seeing.

The trail to the overlook starts at the far end of the parking lot behind the information boards. Although it is uphill, It is a very short paved trail that is both family friendly and wheelchair accessible. After a 1/4 of a mile you will reach the upper overlook that provides clear and stunning views of Whitewater Falls on the other side of the narrow valley. It is a magnificent waterfall that relentlessly thunders as the large volume of water rushes down the mountain.

If you think the view from the upper overlook is good, the view from the lower overlook is even better. The lower overlook is reached by walking down the approximately 150 stairs located to the right of the upper overlook. This takes you down to a large fenced in overlook that offers a better perspective allowing you to see more of the waterfall.

There is a bench here where you can sit and relax before starting the climb back to the upper overlook. When you are ready to leave, walk down the walkway back to the parking lot.
Whitewater Falls of North Carolina
Address & GPS
NC 281
North Carolina
35.027791N, -83.017684W
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