I don’t know about you, but I absolutely love chasing waterfalls, and there are some pretty amazing waterfalls in Southern Utah.
We’ve been to Southern Utah many times, and each time, we’ve enjoyed the variety of landscapes.
Of course, being mainly desert, you may not expect to find incredible waterfalls in Utah. However, there are actually several, and they’re all gorgeous!
In this post, I will share some of the most beautiful Southern Utah waterfalls I have been to or are on my Southern Utah bucket list!
1. Toquerville Falls
First up is Toquerville Falls. Of course, I had to start with one of the very best waterfalls in Utah!
During our first few times in Utah, we completely missed this waterfall. However, a friend told me about it when she found out we were going again, and of course, we knew we had to find it!
We went, and this ended up being one of our favorite things to do in Southern Utah!
Although it is a stunning waterfall that we thoroughly enjoyed, I must warn you that reaching these falls is quite an adventure!
You will have to drive 7 miles on a very rough dirt/rock road to reach Toquerville Falls.
Because the road is so rough (and sometimes treacherous), you will have to drive very slowly. It took us almost an hour in our Jeep to make it!
A 4WD vehicle is highly recommended if you plan to make the drive from the nearby town of Toquerville. We passed multiple vehicles that had gotten stuck or broken down along the way.
That being said, this is a beautiful waterfall, and if you’re up for the adventure, it shouldn’t be missed! The cascading series of waterfalls is simply stunning.
Bring along a swimsuit if you plan to spend a lot of time at the waterfall. There is a shallow pool where the water has collected enough to enjoy hanging out at the swimming hole.
We even saw someone in a mermaid costume taking a photoshoot while we were here! It’s definitely one of the most Instagrammable places in Utah!
2. Red Cliff Falls
Red Cliff Waterfall is a small waterfall on the outskirts of greater St George. Located within the Red Cliffs National Conservation Area, the beautiful journey amongst red rocks and sandstone formations to reach the fall makes this easy hike unique and worthwhile.
Like many waterfall hikes in the high desert area here in Utah, this waterfall is best visited in the early spring (April & May) and could even be completely dried out by summer, so be sure to go earlier in the year.
An awesome feature of visiting Red Cliffs is that during high water flow, there is a small cliff that you can jump off of into the pool below, making it a great hike for the whole family.
There is a small fee required to enter Red Cliffs Preserve, but no special permits are required. 4×4 is not required to reach the trailhead.
However, there is one tunnel with an 11’ height restriction to keep in mind if bringing an RV to the trailhead or campsites at the base of the trailhead.
There’s much more to this region to explore than Red Cliffs waterfall. St George is a haven for recreation.
From chasing waterfalls to hiking through Zion Canyon or enjoying the unique landscape of Snow Canyon, southern Utah is one of a kind in its ecosystem, so I recommend a week in the area, if not more.
Recommended by Gabi Robledo of Nomads With a Purpose
3. Kanarraville Falls
Kanarra Falls is two strikingly beautiful cascades in a beautiful slot canyon in Utah near Kanarraville in the southwest corner of the state. The hike to the falls follows the specular Kanarra Creek Canyon.
The 3.8-mile out-and-back hike traverses moderate desert landscapes and crisscrosses the river. This hike is one of the best canyon adventures in the Southwest.
Once you reach the smooth high walls of the slot canyon, you will find two waterfalls inside. The first waterfall has a ladder to ascend to the top.
The views of the red rock slot canyon and powerful falls from the pool on top are magnificent. You can also scale the second cascade on the rocks. The canyon then opens up a little, but it is still a pleasant stroll.
To return to the parking lot, you will need to climb down the falls on the rocks or the ladder. Make sure to wear hiking water shoes with good traction to climb the slippery rocks.
Kanarra Falls is very popular, as it is one of the best hiking trails in Southern Utah. Therefore, a permit system caps the number of hikers allowed on the trail each day at 200 people.
Tickets are $15 for adults, while tickets for kids under 7 are free and can be purchased online here in advance. In the summer and fall, tickets are liable to sell out, so reserve early.
Recommended by Karen of Outdoor Adventure Sampler
4. Mossy Cave Waterfall
The Mossy Cave Waterfall is (true to its name) located just next to Mossy Cave in Bryce Canyon National Park.
This waterfall is not in the main part of the park, so it’s easy to miss, and you are likely to encounter fewer people in the area.
We enjoyed this national park hike in November, and it was beautiful! The trail is less than one-mile round-trip, with very minimal elevation gain, and is perfect for almost everyone to enjoy!
Along the trail, you will be surrounded by the stunning red/orange rocks of Bryce Canyon National Park. We also really enjoyed the river that flowed along the trail.
The waterfall itself can have varying amounts of water depending on the time of year that you visit. It is likely to have more water flowing during the spring months.
Of course, you should also stop by Mossy Cave while you’re on this hike. Although not a massive or impressive cave, it is still neat to see, especially in the winter when the water in the cave turns into icicles.
The entrance fee to Bryce Canyon NP is $35 if you do not have a National Park pass.
5. Lower Calf Creek Falls
Lower Calf Creek Falls is a beautiful waterfall following a truly stunning hike. The trail is located in Grand Staircase-Escalante and is accessible with regular vehicles just off Highway 12.
The 6-mile roundtrip trail follows Lower Calf Creek through a beautiful canyon with red and white walls. Sometimes, you’ll be hiking on rock, but often, you’re walking through a sandy wash to the falls.
The sandy trail conditions make the hike more difficult, but you’ll enjoy some truly incredibly scenic surroundings. Thanks to the river, the canyon is actually really green and lush, even in the middle of summer.
The greenery, combined with the red and white striped canyon walls, make the hike itself as stunning as the end destination.
You’ll start and end the hike right next to the stream, but the middle of the trail is far enough away that you won’t see or hear it.
The waterfall is beautiful and a great place to relax and enjoy yourself for a while. The falls are 126 feet high and drop between a notch in the tan cliff wall, creating a small, calm pool of water.
The water is chilly, but if you’re hiking in the heat of summer, it feels fantastic. Surrounding the pool of water is a sandy beach-like area, and behind the sand is a cropping of trees.
There is a $5 fee per car (self-pay box), or a National Parks Pass is also valid. I’d plan for several hours – hiking in the sand takes longer, and you could spend a lot of time at the falls.
Adding the Upper Calf Creek Falls could also make this a longer trip if you have more time to spend in the area.
Recommended by Stephanie Rytting of USA Adventurer
6. Red Hills Hot Spring Waterfall
When you think of waterfalls, typically, hot springs waterfalls don’t come to mind. However, Red Hill Hot Spring has a beautiful cascading waterfall down a mineral wall leading into the hot spring pools.
This waterfall starts at the top of the hot spring, where temperatures are too hot even to touch the water. As it flows down the landscape, the water cools to a more manageable temperature, settling into multiple pools that are perfect for hot spring goers.
As the water trickles down the wall, minerals from the water are left behind, creating a beautiful natural painting of all different hues of reds and oranges.
Red Hills Hot Spring is located on city land. There’s a decent-sized parking area, bathrooms, and trash — all managed by the city of Monroe and free to use.
The road leading up to this hot spring waterfall is dirt, and while it’s doable in any vehicle, you should drive slowly so as not to stir up too much gravel and dust.
We felt the best way to enjoy this hot spring was by staying overnight on the public land that was adjacent to it.
You cannot stay in the parking lot overnight or along the road; however, the land across the road is BLM land and is fantastic for free boondocking in the area!
Recommended by Heather Arbour of ArboursAbroad
7. Hidden Haven Waterfall
If you are looking for an amazing waterfall close to Brian Head, Utah, you need to hike Hidden Haven to Benson Creek Waterfall trail.
This waterfall makes for a great day trip after you’ve explored other natural gems around St. George, such as the lava tubes or dinosaur footprints.
Hidden Haven trailhead is 7 miles north of Brian Head. You do not need a permit, and there are no fees. Parking is a gravel pull-out on the side of UT-143. UT-143 is paved, and it is plowed in the winter.
Check road closures by Cedar Breaks National Monument during the winter, as that may limit the options on how to get to Hidden Haven.
Hidden Haven is a 2-mile round-trip trail. The trail is not very steep, except for a short scramble right before the waterfall. There are a few river crossings, but we were able to hop across on rocks and keep our feet dry.
It took our family an hour and a half to do the hike, but we had to stop and try out every bench and picnic table along the way and throw rocks and sticks into the river.
The waterfall tumbles down into a beautiful canyon of red-orange rock. We visited in April, and it was still partly frozen. The waterfall frequently spits rocks, and there is a mound at the bottom of the waterfall.
Hidden Haven is perfect for all levels of hikers and is a fantastic place to visit.
Recommended by Elizabeth of Tall Adventure Fam
8. Emerald Pools & Falls
Zion National Park is Utah’s most popular National Park, home to one of the most unique Southern Utah waterfalls. You’ll find it while hiking Zion’s popular Emerald Pools Trail.
The Emerald Pools are a tiered collection of three pools called Upper, Middle, and Lower Emerald Pools.
They are located in an alcove, surrounded by the towering sandstone peaks of breathtakingly beautiful Zion Canyon. The upper pools feed the lower pools sequentially, and you can hike to each.
The round-trip hike to visit all three pools is 3 miles long or 2.2 miles if you are only visiting the Lower Pool. It’s an easy trail to hike to the Lower Pool but turns into a moderate climb to the other two.
And so what about the waterfall? As you approach the Lower Emerald Pool, you’ll first see a long semicircular sandstone shelf. The trail here takes you directly underneath an overhang in this sandstone.
A small waterfall cascades from the Middle Pool, over this shelf, to the Lower Pool. So, this particular southern Utah waterfall is a walk-behind waterfall!
Water levels in Zion vary throughout the year, and you’ll experience the most falling water in spring and early summer. It may be more of a trickle later in the season. I took the photo below in March.
The Emerald Pools Trail is located halfway up Zion National Park’s main scenic drive roadway. This road is closed to vehicular traffic for most of the year due to limited parking, and you are required to ride a shuttle instead.
The entrance fee to Zion NP is $35 if you do not have a National Park pass.
9. Gunlock Falls
Have you ever heard of Gunlock Falls? If not, you’re in for a treat! This hidden gem is tucked away in the striking landscape of Southern Utah, and let me tell you, it’s worth the trip.
Gunlock State Park, where the falls are located, is a short drive from St. George, making it a fantastic day trip destination.
The falls aren’t always flowing, so your best bet for seeing them in action is to go during spring or after a good rain spell. Trust me, it’s a sight to behold when the water is gushing!
Getting there is pretty straightforward. You’ll head out on a paved road that takes you right to Gunlock State Park.
There’s a small parking fee, but the falls are just a short hike away once you’re there. The trail isn’t too tough, but make sure to wear sturdy shoes, as it can get a bit rocky.
The falls cascade beautifully over smooth, red boulders, creating a stunning contrast against the blue skies of Utah.
There are spots where you can wade in and enjoy the cool water, so don’t forget to pack a swimsuit and towels.
While Gunlock Falls is the star of the show, the state park also offers plenty of other activities. You can have a picnic, do some fishing, or just soak up the sun. And if you’re lucky, you might spot some local wildlife!
Just a heads up, it can get pretty popular on weekends, so if you’re looking for some peace and quiet, try hitting the falls on a weekday.
And please remember to pack out what you pack in to keep this place as pristine as you found it.
10. Lower Pine Creek Falls
Lower Pine Creek Falls is a little slice of paradise that’s just waiting for you to discover it!
Nestled in the heart of Zion National Park, this waterfall might not be as famous as some of its neighbors, but it’s every bit as enchanting.
The trail to the falls is a bit of a hidden gem itself, which means you might have this beautiful spot all to yourself.
To get there, you’ll want to find the Pine Creek stream near the tunnel’s east entrance on the Zion-Mount Carmel Highway.
There’s a small parking area nearby, but it fills up quickly, so getting there early is a good idea.
The hike is relatively short, but it’s an adventure. You’ll navigate through some creek crossings, so prepare to get your feet wet.
The path is not officially marked, so it feels like you’re in on a secret that only a few know about. As you walk, you’re surrounded by Zion’s iconic towering cliffs until you reach the falls.
The waterfall cascades down a smooth rock face into a serene pool below, creating a tranquil spot that’s perfect for unwinding and soaking in the natural beauty.
Springtime is magical here when the water flow is at its peak, but there’s something incredibly peaceful about the gentle trickle in the summer and fall at the Lower Falls.
If you’re up for a bit of exploring, you can climb around the rocks at the base of the falls for different views and perspectives.
Although it doesn’t involve a waterfall, another thing we enjoyed doing in this area was Belly of the Dragon!
Map of the Best Waterfalls in Southern Utah
If you’re more of a visual planner, you can use our map of the best Southern Utah waterfalls to plan which ones you will visit!
In Closing: The Top 10 Epic Waterfalls in Southern Utah in 2024
I hope that you’ve enjoyed this list of the best Southern Utah waterfalls! Which of these popular waterfalls did you add to your bucket list?
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Safe travels & happy hiking!