The immensely gorgeous Anna Ruby Falls in Helen, Georgia is one of the state’s most popular hikes. Check out this quick and easy hike to these beautiful twin waterfalls.
Take this short 0.9 mile out-and-back trail to see two of Georgia’s most popular waterfalls. Once you’ve finished this hike, you’ll understand why Anna Ruby Falls is considered one of the best waterfall hikes in Georgia.
About Anna Ruby Falls
Anna Ruby Falls is named for the daughter of John H. Nichols, a wealthy White County resident who owned much of the land nearby. The story goes that that Nichols found these twin falls while riding through the mountains shortly after the death of his wife and child.
The tallest of the two waterfalls is the Curtis Creek falls with a drop of 153 feet. The smaller York Creek falls have a drop of 50 feet. Both creeks begin on Tray Mountain, another great hiking spot. The water at the bottom of the falls makes up Smith Creek.
Hiking at Anna Ruby Falls
There are three trails at Anna Ruby Falls: the popular Anna Ruby Falls Trail, the long Smith Creek Trail, and the short Lion’s Eye Trail. Here’s what you need to know about hiking each trail.
Anna Ruby Falls Trail
The entire hiking path to Anna Ruby Falls is paved and is just under half a mile.
The hike departs from the Anna Ruby Falls Visitor Center. The paved path follows along Smith Creek, crossing a bridge at 0.15 miles.
The trail reaches the first wooden viewing platform at about 0.4 miles and a second viewing platform less than 0.1 miles further. You’ll reach the waterfalls at less than 0.5 miles.
From here, you have the perfect view of the twin waterfall’s cascading waters.
The hike back follows the same paved path. You’ll complete your hike at about 0.9 miles total round-trip.
Smith Creek Trail
If you’re up for a challenge, try out the Smith Creek Trail. This 4.6 mile one-way hiking trail leads from the base of Anna Ruby Falls, near the first viewing platform, to Unicoi State Park.
Lion’s Eye Trail
The park also has a short trail for the visually impaired. This 0.1 mile paved walking trail along Smith Creek, departing from the visitor center, has interpretive signs in Braille highlighting features of the area.
Visiting Anna Ruby Falls
Anna Ruby Falls is located just a few miles north of the cute little town of Alpine Helen.
To get to the falls, you’ll have to drive through Unicoi State Park, though the falls aren’t part of the State Park. It’s free to drive through Unicoi as long as you’re going to Anna Ruby Falls.
At the visitor center, you’ll pay $5 per person over 16. Parking at the falls is free.
The visitor center, gift shop, and recreation area are open daily from March 1 through December 31 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. During the winter, it is open on Thursdays through Sundays from January 1 through February 28 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
There is no admission after 4 p.m. All facilities are closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day.
Anna Ruby Falls FAQ
The Anna Ruby Falls Trail is only about a 0.9 mile hike round-trip. You can expect the hike to take about 30 minutes.
Anna Ruby Falls is definitely worth visiting! It’s a beautiful twin waterfall that is easily accessible and is a great family-friendly hike.
Anna Ruby Falls is named for the daughter of John H. Nichols. The story goes that that Nichols found these twin falls while riding through the mountains shortly after the death of his wife and child.
To get to Anna Ruby Falls, you’ll drive through Unicoi State Park. You don’t have to pay for Unicoi State Park admission as long as you’re going to Anna Ruby Falls.
It costs $5 per person 16+ to hike Anna Ruby Falls.
Final Thoughts on Visiting Anna Ruby Falls
Visit Anna Ruby Falls and you’ll soon see why it’s considered one of the best waterfall hikes in Georgia.
Whether you take the Anna Ruby Falls Trail, the Smith Creek Trail, or the Lion’s Eye Trail, Anna Ruby Falls is a must-see spot in Georgia.
Come experience this beautiful natural wonder and find yourself enchanted by the majestic waterfalls.
Where to Stay Near Anna Ruby Falls
Find the perfect place to rest your head on your visit to Anna Ruby Falls, from the top rated accommodations to unique stays you can’t get anywhere else.
- Top Cabin Rental: Serenity Ridge Cabin
- Top Hotel: Valhalla Resort
- For Small Groups: Helen Duplex
- Unique Stay: Alpine Village Inn
Things to Do Near Anna Ruby Falls
Looking for more to do in and around Helen, Georgia? Check out these great itineraries and travel tips:
- A Wine Weekend Getaway in North Georgia Wine Country
- Tips for Visiting Unicoi State Park
- Georgia Hikes: Unicoi to Helen Trail
- A Day Trip to the North Georgia Mountains
Ready to visit Helen, Georgia? Plan your trip with these tips.
- Book Your Flight: Find the cheapest flights using Skyscanner, my favorite flight search engine.
- Find Accommodation: You can find top cabin rentals in Helen using VRBO.
- Start Packing: Check out my packing list resources so you’re prepared for your trip.
- Explore Helen in a New Way: Enjoy a Mystery Weekend in Helen to discover more of the town.
Have you hiked the trail to Anna Ruby Falls in Helen, Georgia? Let me know in the comments below!