From small cascades to hundred-foot high drops–the Finger Lakes region of New York State is dotted with waterfalls across its landscape. Many of these waterfalls are located within state parks, others can simply be seen while driving around. Whether you're looking to hike a long trail or step out of the car and onto the doorstep of a geological masterpiece, you're sure to find a waterfall worth photographing along your journey. So grab your camera and a map and start exploring! Check out our listing of Finger Lakes Waterfalls.
Visit one of the most picturesque locations in the Finger Lakes. Enjoy hiking, camping and year-round recreation.
Taughannock Falls State Park near Ithaca, NY, offers breathtaking waterfall views, as well as hiking, camping, picnicking, a playground, and swimming in Cayuga Lake.
Explore the 14,000-acre Letchworth State Park, which provides spectacular gorge views, white water rafting, and camping.
Tinker Falls - Truxon, NY
Also known as Labrador Falls or Tully Falls, Tinker is located on Rt. 91 in Truxton. Heading south you will pass Labrador Pond on the right. Tinker Falls will be shortly after that on the left. There is a small gravel parking on the right side of the road. Cross the road and head down into the creek. A short walk upstream will take you to the falls. This is a gorgeous waterfall to visit year-round.
Fillmore Glen State Park - Moravia, NY
Hikers at Fillmore Glen State Park can enjoy five waterfalls, of varying sizes, that are hidden within the lush woodland. The park is open year-round and can be accessed from Route 38A in Moravia.
Ithaca Falls - Ithaca, NY
To see this impressive and powerful cascade take Route 34 South (Lake Street) in Ithaca. You will pass Ithaca High School on the right and then cross a small bridge with Ithaca Falls on the left side. Across from the bridge, at the corner of Lake Street and Falls Street, there is a small gravel lot in which you can park. The path on the right side of the falls leads down into the gorge. You can walk right to the base of the falls or even fish in parts of the plunge pool.
For a scenic tour, follow Fall Creek Gorge as it leads to Ithaca Falls!
Lucifer Falls - Ithaca, NY
Lucifer Falls are located in the Robert H. Treman State Park in Ithaca. If you enter from the lower entrance you can hike the gorge trail to reach the falls. If you enter from the upper entrance you only have a short walk until you reach this impressive cascade. All together there are twelve falls within the park.
Lick Brook Glen - Ithaca, NY
Located just south of Ithaca, NY, this gorgeous glen is a part of the Sweedler Preserve, which is operated by the Finger Lakes Land Trust. Hike through mixed hardwood and Hemlock forests, along a brook on the Finger Lakes Trail, and past several beautiful cascading waterfalls.
By: Sue Freeman
In the northwestern section of the Finger Lakes Region head to the town of Honeoye Falls. Along the main drag (West Main Street) you can park at the town hall to view the crest of Upper Falls. Then turn south at the main town crossroads to head south on East Street (Route 65). From the bridge over Honeoye Creek you’ll get a good view of 30-foot-high Upper Falls. The red building near the crest of the waterfall began life as a sawmill.
Continue south on Route 65 for one mile and turn right (west) on Martin Road. From the bridge over Honeoye Creek you can view The Ledges of Honeoye Creek both upstream and downstream. The ledges are a series of small drops as Honeoye Creek falls 40 feet in a distance of 1,500 feet.
In Montour Falls at the south end of Seneca Lake, turn off Route 14 onto Genesee Street. South of the Main Street intersection you’ll be able to see Shequaga Falls tumble 156 feet down a cliff face to your right. Turn around and head north on Genesee Street and turn left onto Route 14, heading north. Shortly on your left will be Aunt Sarah’s Falls. You can pull off to a parking area on the right side of the road to enjoy it. This 90-foot-high cascade changes dramatically throughout the year, from a spring torrent of water to a wall of sculptured ice in winter.
Continue north on Route 14 and turn right onto Route 414 in Watkins Glen. In two miles, look right as you cross a bridge to see the upper portion of Hector Falls. Since the highway splits Hector Falls, the only way to see it in its entirety is from a boat on Seneca Lake.
At the north end of Otisco Lake along Otisco Valley Road you can view the 15-foot cascade formed by a dam. Then, head to the south end of Otisco Lake following Route 174 south. As you pass through the town of Marcellus Falls you can view two 10-foot cascades in Ninemile Creek to the west of the highway.
Maps to these and many other waterfalls can be found in the guidebook “200 Waterfalls in Central & Western New York – A Finders’ Guide.”