Cullasaja Falls

Nantahala National Forest, Highlands, Macon, NC
CullasajaFalls near Highlands, NC
Cullasaja Falls (6/21/2013, 50 mm, f/22, 1/3 sec, ISO-100 hi res photo)
Order from Gardner Photography


Cullasaja Falls is only safely viewed from a small roadside pullout.  Even from a distance the waterfall is impressive.  It’s actually a series of cascades of the Cullasaja River as it leaves the Cullasaja Gorge.  It’s a beautiful area and well worth the drive.

There are probably some mountain goat trails that would get you closer but I didn’t try any.  My understanding is that photography is obscured by trees and such anywhere else.

Enjoy the nice view and move on.

And definitely plan some time for Dry Falls, just to the south on U.S. 64, as well as Bridal Veil Falls.  Both are roadside and well worth the visit.

Getting There

From the junction of U.S. 64 and NC 106 in Highlands, NC take U.S. 64 north (or west) for 8.7 miles.  Traveling from Highlands the pullout is on the left side of the road and visibility is too low to safely pull across oncoming traffic.  Instead, go past the pullout and make a u-turn about  a half mile down the road.

I forgot to record the location of the parking area but it is approximately:

35.11736, -83.26987

Use the following link to customize your own directions to Cullasaja Falls or just click through the map below.

Hike Details

No hike.

Photo Tips

Canopy is open so mid-day photos will have issues – just look at mine for confirmation.

Under the right conditions you can get some great photos.  Fall colors will frame the waterfall quite nicely.  Lower water flow and morning/evening light will also help.

A camera lens in the 50-100 mm range should work nicely.

Use a polarizing filter to reduce glare on the tree leaves and always use a tripod.


Here you go. 

› Cullasaja Falls

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