Falls in Ithaca New York

Falls in Ithaca New York – Attractions and Parks

Whether you’re planning a family trip, a romantic getaway, or something in between, visiting the Falls in Ithaca New York is an excellent way to experience the region’s scenic beauty. With over 40 attractions and parks, you’ll find something to please everyone.

Here, we cover Taughannock Falls State Park, Buttermilk Falls State Park, Liquid State Brewing Company, and more. Plus, you’ll learn about the history of the town and its residents.

Ithaca Falls

Ithaca Falls, New York is an easy, scenic waterfall located just under one thousand feet from the parking lot. There are several trails for visitors to follow, including a path through the natural area.

During the summer months, it is safe to swim, though swimming is not permitted when a lifeguard is not on duty.

After Labor Day, it is rarely visited. If you are visiting Falls in Ithaca New York, you should check if it is open to swimming.

The Ithaca Falls waterfall is accessible to the public and is part of a hanging valley. Its height is over 100 feet and its width exceeds its height.

This waterfall is located in the Finger Lakes region, about four hours outside of New York City. During summer, it can be quite crowded. But if you visit the falls during this time, it will not be too busy.

If you are planning a picnic here, you can find plenty of space to sit on a park bench and enjoy the cool waters of the waterfall.

Buttermilk Falls State Park Ithaca NY

Buttermilk Falls in Ithaca NY
Photo Credit: Author Ron Shawley

Ithaca Falls, New York, Buttercream Fall State Park is a picturesque 811-acre park that drops down from over 1000 feet to 400 feet. The park surrounds a gorge, which plunges down into a deep pool.

You can explore the gorge and the waterfalls by hiking the five trails. Hike the Gorge Trail, which passes deep pools and the ‘Pinnacle Rock’.

The Rim Trail leads visitors down to the creek and Lake Treman, where there are many opportunities to see wildlife.

The Gorge Trail, a 1.7-mile loop, takes you past cascading waterfalls to the base of the waterfall. At the end of the trail, you can swim in the pool.

If you are hiking on a busy day, you can opt to skip the Gorge Trail and head straight to the waterfalls. Aside from the waterfalls, you can also enjoy the surrounding forest.

If you plan on staying in the area for longer than a day or two, it is a good idea to book a hotel in Ithaca. Besides being convenient, staying in a hotel in the heart of the city will eliminate any rushing around to get to each state park.

You can also enjoy the amenities close to the park if you choose a hotel near the Taughannock Falls.

Liquid State Brewing Company

The brewery features four house-brewed brews, as well as guest ciders and wines from the area. The brewery also features a Skee-Ball table and a bar area with many long wooden tables.

The atmosphere is similar to that of a German beer hall.

The Silo Food Truck, located in the parking lot of Liquid State Brewing Company, is also a destination for food trucks.

The dense, crispy fried chicken is served with a variety of sauces. The menu also includes Mac and cheese and corn bread, honey butter, and scratch-made pickles. If you’re in town for the event, you can order online, pick it up in the brewery, or go straight to the brewery for a delicious meal.

You can easily get to Ithaca from anywhere in the northeast of the United States, as there is an airport here.

It’s connected to New York City by great roads.

It’s a four-hour drive from New York City, and three hours from Niagara Falls. And, as you might imagine, Liquid State Brewing Company in Ithaca Falls, New York is a place that is worth visiting!

Cornell University in the Heart of the Falls in Ithaca New York

The Ivy League school of Cornell University in Ithaca Falls, New York, is located on 300 acres of hillside above the city. Founded by Andrew Dickson White and Ezra Cornell in 1865, Cornell is now an institution of higher learning.

Cornell University Falls in Ithaca NY

The school is organized into seven graduate and undergraduate divisions and features several major museums.

The Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art contains over 30,000 works of art.

The McGraw Tower is a notable landmark on campus. There is also a Cornell Plantations Museum, which is home to the famous traditional Cornell chimes.

Another favorite attraction is the Newman Arboretum, which specializes in trees native to New York State.

Located in the Finger Lakes region, Ithaca is known for its natural beauty and rich cultural life.

There are many attractions to explore in the area, including numerous wine estates and farms, the Cornell botanical gardens, an ornithology lab that is world-renowned, and one of the nation’s finest university art museums.

You can also enjoy swimming, boating, and hiking on the nearby Cayuga Lake.

Ithaca Falls New York Natural Area

If you are looking for a great place to visit in upstate New York, it may be the Ithaca Falls Natural Area.

The area features a number of activities, including hiking, fishing, and bird watching. The falls themselves are stunning and make for a great day trip. Parking is available on both sides of the bridge.

Be sure to allow enough time to park your vehicle, as the parking area can get quite full during the summer months.

It is a beautiful area in and of itself, with over 150 waterfalls within ten miles.

Fall Creek and Buttermilk Falls State Park contain the largest number of waterfalls. Six Mile Creek also contains waterfalls. A short walk from the parking area, the waterfall can be viewed from the top.

Those who are new to hiking should check the weather before going on a hike to avoid getting lost or injured.

The area surrounding the falls used to be owned by Cornell University but was sold to the City of Ithaca in 2000. For years, this area served as a popular park but has been under reconstruction and redesign.

Earlier this year, the Common Council voted to remove a house north of the falls. The council acquired the house after the owner failed to pay property taxes. However, the area around the falls is still present in the “Ithaca is Gorges” logo.

Ithaca NY is Gorges Logo

The area around the waterfalls was once used by several mills. Fall Creek was used to powering the factory for over a hundred years. Some remnants of this mill are visible from the base of the waterfall.

The area between Lake Street and the waterfall is now known as Ithaca Falls Natural Area. Though there is no infrastructure, the hike is just 150 yards.

If you’re in a hurry, it is also possible to get a view of the waterfall from the bridge, which is accessed by foot.

Top Things to Do in Ithaca, New York

Hiking near Ithaca, New York?

Try a hike by Potter’s Falls. You’ll have a spectacular view of the waterfall along the trail. Explore the Falls on foot, take a plunge in the swimming hole, and check out the nearby Gristmill and Restaurants.

This waterfall trail is perfect for all fitness levels. Get offline directions to Potter’s Falls. Then, plan your trip to see all the area has to offer.

1. Visit One of the Many Falls in Ithaca New York

For swimming in Ithaca, New York, you must visit Potters Falls.

This waterfall is one of the most popular in the area. Although it is contaminated with lead, you can still swim there if you know what to do and wear the proper clothing.

It is also possible to go kayaking or fishing in the area. To visit Potters Falls, you will have to pay a small fee to park your vehicle.

Ithaca Falls is an impressive waterfall, rising 100 feet and stretching out 175 feet.

Regardless of the season, you can swim year-round at Ithaca Falls. Potters Falls is an especially popular place to swim because of the wildflower preserve surrounding the waterfall.

Locals also enjoy swimming here.

While it may not look like it in the photographs, the water is pristine. This attraction is an important part of any visit to Ithaca, New York.

2. Visit the Swimming hole

The swimming hole in Potters Falls, Ithaca is located before the third dam, which supplies water for the town. It’s prohibited to swim in the reservoir, so if you’re caught, you’ll be ticketed.

Nevertheless, people often visit the swimming hole anyway, and it’s not difficult to see why. After all, it’s beautiful and fun!

The town is home to 150 waterfalls. The Taughannock Falls, for example, is higher than Niagara Falls. If you’re looking for a swim in a waterfall, this might be the right place for you.

The waterfall has both high and swift currents. There’s a small parking lot at the base of the falls, which makes the walk to the waterfall a quick one.

3. Gristmill in Potters Falls

If you’re looking for a good hike, visit the Gristmill in Potters Falls, New York.

The Old Mill can be found right at the upper entrance of Robert Treman State Park.

Gristmill in Potters Falls in Ithaca NY

Plug in the location into Google Maps and follow the directions, but make sure you park at the pay stations. Once you’ve arrived, head to the waterfall behind the Gristmill to check out its history.

Today, only three of the nineteen original gristmills remain standing in the watershed. Of these three mills, only three are still operating. The rest were converted to other uses or sat vacantly.

Restaurants around The Falls in Ithaca New York

You can find an abundance of dining options in the beautiful village of Ithaca, New York. Whether you are visiting during the fall foliage or the frozen waterfalls during the winter, there’s sure to be something to please your palate.

The city is home to tons of shopping and dining options, as well as many historic architectural facades and attractions. While visiting Potters Falls, take time to explore the town’s food scene.

 A few great restaurants in the Falls in Ithaca New York include:

  1. The Boatyard Grill: An American menu with Asian touches in a scenic lakeside setting with bands playing on an outdoor deck.
  2. Viva Taqueria & Cantina: This fun Mexican spot boasts a taco counter and a Margarita bar.
  3. Moosewood: This popular vegan restaurant has something for everyone, even those who don’t eat meat or eggs. Their cozy ambiance will bring you back again and again to enjoy their mouthwatering food!


While staying in New York, consider staying in Potters Falls.

These include Six-Mile Creek Trail, Ithaca Falls Trail, and Eldridge Wilderness trails. If you’re looking for accommodations in Potters Falls, consider the nearby Backbone Horse Campground and Kenisee’s Grand River Campground.

For outdoor recreation, head down to Six Mile Creek, a pristine waterway full of cascades and rock formations. From here, you can take a short trail that winds around the falls to enjoy the beauty of nature.

The first mile of the trail is believed to have the highest diversity of wildflowers in the state. The hike is open year-round, but be aware that it can be impassable during the winter due to ice.

Wrapping Up…

In conclusion, Potters Falls is a beautiful place to visit with many things to do. There are hiking trails, swimming holes, and accommodations available. And don’t forget to try the local food while you’re here!

This is an ideal destination for those who love nature and the outdoors.