Even with its rather harsh and dry environment, Utah still has some of the most beautiful waterfalls around. The hikes to these spots vary in length with some being quite long and others relatively short.
We have compiled a list of 13 easy waterfall hikes in this region that have a relatively short roundtrip and thus perfect for a family outing.
1. Battle Creek Falls
Battle Creek Falls is located in Pleasant Grove – on the same trailhead as the ‘G’ hike. It is a popular waterfall because its trail is wide and has a slow, steady climb leading to the Falls. You can walk alongside the river while enjoying the scenery around including a small cave along the Battle Creek trail.
The little stream below the Falls is a perfect spot for fun activities such as wading. The trail leading to the Battlecreek falls is 1.5 miles roundtrip.
2. Provo River Falls
It will cost you $6 to drive to these Falls which are located on the Mirror Lake Highway. The waterfall is quite simple and it has a few stairs leading to a beautiful view. Its trail along the river will lead you to several spots where you can comfortably enjoy the surrounding scenery – and wet your feet while throwing pebbles into the water.
The trails to the Falls vary in length depending on how far you walk down the river. Even so, you will walk for approximately 1/4 miles total.
3. Donut Falls
The water from these Falls pours into a donut-shaped rock and thus its name. Its surroundings are quite beautiful which explains why it is a very popular hiking trail. During summer, the parking lot for this trail fills up very quickly and you may have to take a longer hike should you decide to park further down the road.
You might, therefore, consider heading there early in the morning, especially if your planned hike is during the summer. The round trip to the Donut Falls is 1.5 miles in length.
4. Hidden Falls
It is probably less than 5 minutes walk to these Falls located on the S-curve in Big Cottonwood Canyon. Visitors, most especially kids, love standing by the waterfall and feeling the water spray on their faces. If interested, you can also join other rock climbers climbing the steep rock wall. The trail is flat thus easy for a hike. It is also relatively short - less than a quarter mile roundtrip.
5. Ghost Falls
The Ghost Falls are situated behind the LDS Draper Temple in Corner Canyon. You can access it from two trails: one about three miles long and completely flat, or a hike from the other side with a 1.8-mile round trip – and a little steeper than the first.
6. Adams Canyon Lower Falls
These Falls are located on the lower side of the Adams Canyon and it's about 1.5 miles roundtrip. The trail is relatively kid-friendly, thus a great place for a family outing. It starts with a steep climb, but after 10 switchbacks, the trail eventually evens out. A little climb down will take you straight to the waterfalls.
7. Grotto Falls
The trail to these Falls is not only beautiful but also flat and quite easy – thus a perfect spot for a family outing. Its hike takes you through the shaded trees and crosses the stream a few times. After about 1/4 miles, you will reach the waterfall which has curved its own grotto.
There’s a shallow pool at the waterfall that is a popular spot for fun activities such as wading. The roundtrip of this trail is 0.5 miles.
8. Cascade Falls
This is a small waterfall (more of a trickle, actually) with a trail located east of Cedar City near Duck Creek. I would suggest you take this hike during the spring when the Falls will be larger. The beautiful thing about this spot is that the Cascade Falls come directly out of the rock giving an amazing view. The 1-mile round-trip is quite fun, and it is not a surprise that people actually enjoy the hike more than they do the Falls.
Also, you might consider setting off early to avoid the heat of the day since there are no shades around.
9. Bridal Veil Falls
Bridal Veil is among the most known waterfalls in Utah. Once at the waterfall, you will find another paved trail leading to a small pool below. Here, you can walk in the shallow waters while enjoying the beauty of Provo Canyon.
There’s also a fish pond nearby where you can feed the fish if you want to. The hike to the falls is relatively easy since it consists of a 1/4 mile round-trip.
10. Upper Falls
These falls are also located in Provo Canyon, just a mile north from the Bridal Veil Falls. The trail is a steep climb, with only 0.6 miles roundtrip – but once on top, you will enjoy the epic view of the 40-foot waterfall crashing down.
11. Rocky Mouth Falls
You will walk up some stairs, through a neighborhood in Sandy, and right onto the Rocky Mouth Falls Trail. Its trail is relatively short with a little bit of a climb to the waterfall. You can also choose to explore the several caves along the trail.
The best part is that you can visit this spot in the spring, summer, or fall, and still have an amazing experience.
12. Dripping Rock Trail
It is not exactly a waterfall but it is still one highly recommended family spot for cooling off, especially in the summer. One big advantage of this spot is that its trails are paved – making it easy to push a stroller or wheelchair.
As you walk along this trail, you will hear water dripping from the river banks. There’s a steep walk down to the river’s edge that takes you to the largest area of Dripping Rocks – which is a perfect spot for wading. The roundtrip for this hike is 1 mile.
13. Lisa Falls
Located in Little Cottonwood Canyon, Lisa Falls is home to lots of beautiful hikes and scenery. The best thing about this waterfall is that it is unique and the trail leading to it is super short. However, the 0.3-mile hike is filled with lots of big rocks scattered along the way. Though it is a relatively short distance, it is essential that you look out for your little ones.
Utah County is no doubt a popular tourist destination mainly because of its numerous natural features. Because of this, you will find that it always receives visitors all year round. It is essential to plan your trip early so as to avoid the many hassles that come with the last minute rush.