Silver Falls State Park

People call it the “crown jewel” of the Oregon State Parks system, and once you visit, you know why. Silver Falls State Park is the kind of standout scenic treasure that puts Oregon firmly onto the national—and international—stage.

 

Its beauty, boundless recreational opportunities and historic presence keep it there. Nestled in the foothills of Oregon’s Cascade Mountains, less than an hour east of the state capital of Salem, the sprawling 9,200 acre property is the largest state park in Oregon, and one of the most popular.

Waterfalls:  Where else can you walk behind a waterfall? Check out the famous South Falls and see what a 177-foot curtain of water looks like from behind. It’s part of the Trail of Ten Falls, a spectacular, nationally recognized hiking trail that weaves through a dense forested landscape. The trail passes a series of breathtaking waterfalls along a rocky canyon, and descends to a winding creek at the forest floor. This 7.2 mile loop is considered to be a moderate hike, with an overall elevation change of 800 feet. Several connecting trails with separate access points make shorter routes. For everyone’s safety— absolutely no pets allowed on the Canyon Trail. Pets on leash are allowed on all other trails.

Boots, bikes, paws, hooves: The park offers more than 25 miles of backcountry trails for mountain biking, hiking or horseback riding. Bears and cougars live in the more remote park areas.

Daytime activities: The South Falls Day-use area has spacious lawns, barbecue stands, picnic shelters, tables, a playground, horseshoe pits, an off lead area for dogs, and a charming creek. Ever since the opening day in 1933, visitors have been using these grounds for potlucks, family reunions and weddings.

Overnight: The main campground has tent sites, RV spots and cabins. Bring your horse and stay in the horse campground. If you need an area for many people, the park also has group tent and RV camps, dormitory-style bunkhouses (each Ranch sleeps 75) and the historic Youth Camp for up to 250 campers.

The Silver Falls Lodge and Conference Center offers a variety of amenities for all visitors to the park. Relax and enjoy comfortable lodging within the wooded setting, or feast at the many catered specialty events. Enjoy a preordered meal at the historic dining hall or order a box lunch to take on a hike or to your campsite. They also specialize in hosting special events! Visit silverfallslodge.com or call 866-575-8875.

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating: 5.0/5 TripAdvisor Traveler Rating based on 963 reviews

TripAdvisor

  • TripAdvisor Rating
    May 28, 2024
    Drumraine

    Don’t Miss This Park

    Another impressive park in Oregon. Buildings maintained perfectly. Good picnic areas. Very informative wildflower exhibition when we visited. Excellent coffee. Trails and signage very helpful.

  • TripAdvisor Rating
    May 28, 2024
    girlwhotraveled

    So lovely!

    This was a pit stop on a road trip and I’m so glad we swung by! Arrived around 9:30 am on Sunday of MDW and plenty of parking at South Falls Day Use parking area. By the time we left an hour later the lot was getting quite full. It was great to come early though as you generally have the falls to yourself. Friend and I only had time to see one waterfall so we chose to stick with the South Falls and it was so lovely! Love that you can walk behind it and take great pics at various angles. The fall is not too far from the parking lot, about half a mile or less. We basically went to the falls and around the loop and back to the parking lot, so about a mile each way total and spent an hour here admiring the gushing water. I didn’t think I’d be impressed but it was so lovely! We didn’t stay for other trails or falls as we wanted to drive out to Cannon Beach which was 2.5 hrs away. The drive to Cannon from Portland is gorgeous by the way! The drive to Silver Falls was also super picturesque in general with beautiful trimmed farmland. There are bathroom facilities at the visitor center near the parking lot. Would recommend even for a short stop but early morning to avoid crowds!

  • TripAdvisor Rating
    March 6, 2024
    drmarkstravels

    A Beautiful walk and Park

    Beautiful park with a warming house (with fireplace) and eating facilities. The trail will take you down to the base of the falls, then begin the falls, and up the other side. We had lots of snow so hiking sticks were helpful for the slopes/

  • TripAdvisor Rating
    January 29, 2024
    Joseph R

    Awesome Park

    We only did the first 2 waterfalls, and then looped back to the parking area, and even then we walked about 4 miles, which was a good bit on our kids. That said, the waterfalls themselves were gorgeous, and walking behind them was a really cool thing to do. We did get rained on while there, and luckily the tree canopy is pretty thick so it wasn't terrible, but it was raining hard and eventually you definitely got to a point where you were ready to leave. But overall, really great park.

  • TripAdvisor Rating
    November 4, 2023
    MrNjorl

    North Falls rim hike

    Went during a low flow period so falls on this trail were trickling. The hike itself was moderate with steep sections but smooth footing. If you are not in good shape, hike the rim loop in a counterclockwise direction. That way the steepest portion is downhill.

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