25 Beautiful Waterfalls in Duluth, Minnesota

Family enjoying the best waterfalls in Duluth MN

Did you know that Minnesota is home to 134 registered and named waterfalls? Many of the most scenic waterfalls are on the North Shore of Lake Superior near Duluth, MN.

Did you also know that there are five waterfalls in Duluth, MN that sit within the city’s boundaries? There is a reason Duluth is seen as the gateway to adventure in Minnesota and is the perfect base camp for your next adventure.

Below is a list of the 25 best waterfalls in Duluth, Minnesota. The list is broken down into three sections:

May visitors to Duluth also explore the North Shore of Lake Superior. What people often forget is that Duluth sits on the Minnesota-Wisconsin border. This means that much of Wisconsin’s South Shore of Lake Superior is equally close!

Read More: 18 Best Breweries in Duluth, MN (Tap Houses Too)

Waterfalls in Duluth, MN

Lester River Falls are very accessible waterfalls in Duluth MN
Lester River Waterfall in Duluth MN

There are five waterfalls in Duluth city limits. All are easy to access and provide beautiful views. As with most waterfalls in Minnesota, Spring is the best time to see them in action. Summer is great too, however, water levels are often lower.

Read More: 46 Best Things to Do in Canal Park, Duluth, MN

Lester River Falls

Lester River Park is a great spot for families. It is home to playgrounds, picnic areas, hiking and walking paths, and fat-tire biking paths.

The Lester River Waterfall is the highlight and can be seen from the Superior Street Bridge. There is a parking area on the east side of the bridge. The hike from the parking area to the falls is short.

Amity Creek Falls

Aminty Creek Falls is also in Lester Park in Duluth. These narrow waterfalls are easy to access via two trail options.

The first trail leads 1.5 miles from the Lester Park parking area to the base of the falls. Then you can hike up the path on the side to the footbridge and see the falls from above.

The second trail starts from the parking area on Occidental Boulevard. This hike is short and takes you to the top of the falls.

Chester Creek Falls

Chester Creek is one of 23 major creek ravines in the City of Duluth. It is spring fed and runs from Chester Park, through Downtown Duluth, to Lake Superior.

Chester Creek Falls is a small waterfall about midway through the creek trail. Follow the trail from the Chester Park Playground t the very edge of the park where it meets 4th Street. And make sure you stop at Burrito Union afterwards for a quick bite!

Read More: 32 of the Best Places to Eat in Canal Park, Duluth, MN

Tischer Creek Falls (Also Congdon Falls)

Tischer Creek Falls is located in Duluth’s Congdon Park. The Park features some of the most pristine hiking trails in Duluth, including beautiful bridges and waterfalls. We especially love it in the winter.

The waterfalls are a narrow cut through the park. They are not as wild as what you’ll find up the shore, but they are worth the quick hike nonetheless. The falls are on the section of the trail on the Northwest (away from Lake Superior) side of E Superior Street.

This is a great choice for families.

Swinging Bridge Falls

Swinging Bridge Falls is on the St. Louis River just south of Duluth in Jay Cooke State Park. The park has a couple of waterfalls that are worth seeing, with the highlight being Swinging Bridge Falls.

The falls are accessed via a short walk from the Visitors Center. The falls are best seen walking across the swinging bridge.

We love the state parks that dot the North Shore of Lake Superior. Almost every one has a waterfall and most are a short walk from the parking area.

Waterfalls on Minnesota’s North Shore of Lake Superior

View of Manitou River in Manitou State Park, MN, one of the most rugged waterfalls in Duluth MN
Enjoying the view from the opt of Mantiou Falls

Duluth sits at the southwestern corner of Lake Superior. There are a ton of waterfalls on Highway 61 as it winds its way up the North Shore, with many on the Superior Hiking Trail.

If you are in Duluth, chances are you’ll be taking day trips outside the city anyway. The waterfalls below would be well worth your attention.

Read More: 60+ Best Hiking Trails on Minnesota’s North Shore

Gooseberry Falls

Gooseberry Falls is located in Gooseberry Falls State Park on Hwy 61 just north of Two Harbors. The falls consist of three separate waterfalls: Upper Falls, Lower Falls, and Middle Falls. The latter are ADA accessible.

All three are short hikes, and the lower two can be fun to swim in during the warmer months. Be forewarned, though, this park can get very busy during its peak.

Fifth Falls

Fifth Falls is a less-well known waterfall within Gooseberry Falls State Park. It is the smallest waterfall and the furthest away from the parking area.

Follow the same hiking trail that takes you to high falls and continue for about another 1.5 miles. There is a bridge over the falls that allows you to hike back on the other side of the river.

Read More: 21 Best North Shore Breweries – MN Lake Superior Beer Tour

Beaver River Falls

Beaver River Falls is located in Beaver Bay, MN just on the north side of town. It is accessed via a short hike from the parking area by the mouth of the Beaver River.

These falls can be seen as you drive by on Hwy 61.

Two-Step Falls

Two-Step Falls is located in one of our favorite state parks, Tettegouche State Park. It is accessed via a 3-mile round trip hike that follows the Baptism River. If you are feeling adventurous, you can hike a bit further to High Falls, which is another half mile upstream.

Illgen Falls

Illgen Falls is also in Tettegouche State Park. It is accessed via a small pull off on Highway 1 by the Illgen Falls Cabin. It is accessed via a very short hike.

We recommend combining Two-Step Falls with a trip Illgen Falls. There is also a rope swing, which is fun in the summer months.

Caribou Falls

Caribou Falls is a quick 1/2 mile hike from Hwy 61. Park at the Caribou River Wayside located at mile Marker 70.7 just past Sugarloaf Cove. The hike follows the river and there is a staircase leading up to the top of the falls.

Temperance River Falls

Temperance River Falls is located in Temperence River State Park just south of Tofte, MN. The waterfalls consist of the Upper, Middle (also called Hidden Falls), and Lower Falls.

Lower Falls is accessed via a very short hike from the parking lot. The others are accessed via a 2 mile hike from the same parking lot.

Hidden Falls

Hidden Falls is the “secret” waterfall at Temperance River State Park. This waterfall is located deep in the Temperance River Gorge.

Luckily, it can be accessed via a short hike from Highway 61.

Cascade Falls

Cascade Falls are located in Cascade River State Park just north of Lutsen, MN. Cascade Falls is accessed via an easy 0.5 mile loop from the parking area. You can extend your trip by taking the bridge over the river and hiking back on the opposite side.

Manitou River Cascade

Manitou River Cascade is one of the least accessible waterfalls near Duluth. It requires a drive away from Lake Superior and a meaningful hike.

You can read all about it in our guide to George H. Crosby Manitou State Park.

Barrier Falls

Barrier Falls on the Devil Track River is a little known waterfall north of Grand Marais. The falls are best accessed in the winter via snowshoes or skis once the river freezes over. The only access to the falls is by walking up the river. There isn’t a dedicated hiking path.

You can also hike to the falls in the summer months, however you will be walking in the river bed so you will get wet! Pull off and park on the shoulder of Highway 61.

High Falls on the Pigeon River

High Falls is the only waterfall on this list that is partially in Canada. At 120 feet, it is the highest waterfall in Minnesota.

High Falls is located in Grand Portage State Park and is accessible via traditional hiking paths and a paved trail. It can also be viewed from Pigeon River Provincial Park on the Canadian side.

Devil’s Kettle Falls

Devil’s Kettle Falls is located at Judge C.R. Magney State Park near Grand Marais, MN. It is a unique waterfall as the water seems to vanish below the falls. The river appears to end there.

The water enters an underground river that later flows back into the main river. It is one of the more impressive waterfalls in the Duluth area.

Waterfalls on Wisconsin’s North Shore of Lake Superior

Amnicon Falls is a waterfall that is very close to Duluth, Minnesota
Amnicon Falls in Wisconsin

Often visitors to Duluth only think about driving North on Hwy 61 to spots along Minnesota’s North Shore of Lake Superior. What they often forget is that the Wisconsin border is closer!

Below are a couple of great waterfalls that are close to Duluth, but often forgotten by most visitors.

Read More: 40 Amazing North Shore Campgrounds on Lake Superior

Orienta Falls (WI)

Orienta Falls are located at the Orienta Dam on the Iron River in northern Bayfield County. While these falls are not as serene as many mentioned above, Orienta Falls are a fun spot to take a swim on a hot summer day.

Amnicon Falls (WI)

Amnicon Falls are located in Amnicon Falls State Park in South Range, Wisconsin, a short 32-minute drive from Duluth.

It is a series of waterfalls and rapids along the Amnicon River. They can be viewed from a covered footbridge or two miles of trails that follow the river. They were created by the Douglas Fault.

Big Manitou Falls (WI)

Big Manitou Falls are the highest waterfalls in Wisconsin and the fourth-highest waterfall east of the Rocky Mountains. Big Manitou Falls is 165 Feet High.

They are located in Pattison State Park, a mere 30 minutes south of Duluth.

Morgan Falls (WI)

Morgan Falls is located at St. Peter’s Dome National Natural Area. It is the farthest away from Duluth at 1.5 hrs.

The falls drop 80-100 feet into an unnamed tributary of Morgan Creek. The hike is 1.2 miles roundtrip from the parking lot and is easy for hikers of all abilities.

Copper Falls (WI)

Copper Falls is located in Copper Falls State Park, which is very close to Morgan Falls. Combining them together makes the drive worthwhile.

The falls cut through volcanic rock and are surrounded by a majestic forest. A fall viewing would be spectacular!

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