Explore Looking Glass Falls


Added by The Outbound Collective

Looking Glass Falls is a quick stop off of Highway 276. This 60 foot waterfall offers a wading pool at the base, which is a great spot to cool off in the warmer months.

Looking Glass Rock located along the Blue Ridge Parkway (North) is one of the largest masses of granite in the Eastern US. It got it's name for the way the sunlight hits its rocky surface when wet, creating a shimmering, reflective, mirror-like effect. The views from this overlook are vast and clear, unhindered by trees that may block parts of other scenic overlooks along the parkway.

This is one of the most popular and scenic waterfalls in the area. If you've come to visit it on a warmer day, remember to pack your bathing suit. This magnificent 60 foot waterfall has a pool at its base that you can wade, swim, and cool off in. Remember to be careful as the rocks under the falls are slick, so be careful if you enter the pool.

From the parking area, you can head down the stairs and cross the railing for different perspectives of the falls. For info on getting the best photos of the falls, check out this adventure.

Additional Info:

This mountain is known as a "pluton"-- a large mass of molten rock that was once hardened below the earth's surface. The massive rock used to be covered with soil, but was able to endure the erosion that led to the removal of the soil, exposing what you see before you while standing at this overlook. You should note that this overlook faces East. If you visit in the morning, the sun will be shining directly on your face. The best photos are taken in the afternoon and especially after a rainstorm.

Aside from plentiful photographic opportunities, the solid rock is 4,000 feet tall and is a great place for rock climbers. Looking Glass Rock is also a fun place for hikers. Spend the day hiking "Looking Glass Rock Trail," which is 5.5 miles round trip. The trailhead is not accessible from the overlook, but rather a 30 min drive away. Note that this trail does not have guardrails at the summit, so do hike with caution and watch your footing.

Whether you want to hike to the top, climb to the top, or drive and snap photos at the top, Looking Glass Rock is a picturesque landscape view you won't regret checking out.

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Known for

Family Friendly
Handicap Accessible
Swimming Hole



Leave a Review

Great stop

This is a great place to stop along the road to view the waterfall and to cool off in the summer.

Worth an off-season visit

It's a super impressive waterfall. A lot of people say it's crowded but I've only visited in the offseason. Both times there was only a handful of people there. It's not a hike, and I wish it was, but it's still a cool little stop when exploring around Asheville and the BRP.

Looking Glass Falls

Easy walk down to the falls. The falls are beautiful and stunning in the winter when there is ice .

Beautiful Falls.

Not really a hike. You just hop out of your car and walk down some steps. The Falls are pretty but very crowded

Crowded in summer

The waterfall is relatively close to the entrance of the forest, so in mid-May it was teaming with swimmers and site seers. Beautiful waterfall, but hard to get a picture without lots of people in it.


over 4 years ago

Good Place for Photography

Not much of a hike and there's usually a lot of foot traffic. But it's a beautiful waterfall to photograph!


almost 5 years ago


We stopped off at this waterfall before jumping on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It's a super easy walk down to the base and you'll inevitably end up staying for at least an hour so be prepared for that. In the summer I've heard it's swarming with people but we went during the fall and and had no problems with too many people being there. Loved this waterfall!

Beautiful Falls

One of the most beautiful waterfalls in the region. Highly recommend!

Great place for photos

I probably stayed at this waterfall for two hours just taking photos and even came back at night to take some more. Awesome place, and really close to Davidson River Campground!

Looking Glass Falls

Absolutely breath taking area. Highly recommend to anyone.

1048 total saves


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Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

Nearby Adventures

Hike Looking Glass Rock

6.1 mi / 1729 ft gain

Hike to Moore Cove Falls

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Hike to John Rock

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