Almost Heaven

West Virginia beckons the nature traveler with more than 200 waterfalls—and America’s newest National Park.

For the very first time, a statewide trail helps active travelers get off the beaten path, connecting them to over two dozen waterfalls across the most scenic parts of West Viriginia. The 29 waterfalls of the official West Virginia Waterfall Trail are just a ‘drop in the bucket’ of the more than 200 waterfalls found in picturesque places around the state.

Included on the trail are six waterfalls in America’s 63rd—and newest—national park, the New River Gorge National Park & Preserve. These breathtaking cascades can be found within secluded coves, such as Turkey Creek Falls, or can be enjoyed at the end of a scenic trail, such as Glade Creek Falls, or as hidden gems like Finn’s falls. As travelers continue to flock to the national park, the falls along the West Virginia Waterfall Trail highlight must-visit spots to add to an East Coast summer nature trip.

The novelty of the new park and its falls is in addition to well-known cascades along the West Virginia Waterfall Tails like Blackwater (pictured) and Sandstone, as well as lesser-known waterfalls like Drawdy in Boone County. Some, like Cathedral, tower above the valley floor, while others span wide rivers.

As more and more of us show an interest in spending our leisure and travel time outdoors, the launch of the first-ever waterfall trail couldn’t come at a better time—in addition to its debut in summer and along with the state’s landmark new national park and nature preserve.

The state dubs itself ‘an outdoor oasis in the heart of the East Coast,’ and just in 2022, the state has been recognized by a number of prestigious publications for its magnificent scenic beauty and outdoor recreation. Among its natural wonders, the rushing waterfalls found across the state create the perfect backdrop for soft adventure that’s accessible to almost everyone, young and young at heart, and at multiple levels of fitness.

West Virginia is connecting its natural wonders via new technology. Travelers on a waterfall quest in the state can go to WVtourism.com/waterfalls and register to have the West Virginia Waterfall Trail passport delivered straight to a smartphone. As travelers explore each of the more than two dozen waterfalls featured on the trail, they can stamp their passports by checking in at each location.

The state’s Department of Tourism is even rewarding waterfall chasers with exclusive gear along the way in the trail’s inaugural season:

• Check in at three or more waterfalls and receive a custom sticker.

• Check in at 10 or more waterfalls and receive an aluminum water bottle.

• Check in at 20 or more waterfalls and receive a waterfall wanderer t-shirt.

Magic Carpet Travels is located at 1359 S. Main Road, Vineland, NJ 08360. Contact at magickellie@mctravels.com or 856-507-9110.