Are you often finding yourself unsure what to do with your time off this summer? Escape the city and invite your BFF to join you on an incredible hike. This 2.6 km gorge trail will take you to a hidden waterfall swimming hole near Ontario that is the ultimate spot for a spontaneous adventure!

Located near Ithaca, New York, Buttermilk Falls State Park is only a few hours drive away from Ottawa, Kingston and Toronto. Here you trek on the 2.6 km loop trail that will take you past dense woodlands, a gorge, a series of smaller waterfalls, and the spectacular Buttermilk Falls.

The 2.6km trail is rated moderate in difficulty but is well worth it to see all the waterfalls en route. If you'd rather skip the hike you can access Buttermilk Falls directly as it is near the parking lot, but you would miss seeing all the smaller waterfalls along the trail.

Buttermilk Falls is a 165 ft (roughly 50 meters) high waterfall, and at the base, there is a natural pool that is a swimming hole. The swimming hole is the perfect spot to cool off after your hike. It is hard to beat swimming next to a waterfall in a natural pool for the perfect summer day activity!

For 2019 the swimming season is open until September 2, from 11 am until 7 pm on Fridays, Saturday, Sundays and holidays only. Swimming at Buttermilk Falls is weather dependent, so the New York Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation recommend contacting Buttermilk Falls State Park before you visit.

To visit Buttermilk Falls State Park there is an $8 fee per vehicle. The trail to Buttermilk Falls is open April to October. Within Buttermilk Falls State Park you'll also find plenty of picnic tables, bathrooms and showers so you can easily enjoy a packed lunch and change for swimming. If you want to make a weekend getaway out of your visit to the falls, there are also several cabins available for rent too.

Buttermilk Falls

Price: $8 per car

Address: 112 E. Buttermilk Falls Rd., Ithaca, New York

Why you need to go: You can swim next to a waterfall this summer!


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