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Let's go to Gocta, one of the highest waterfalls in the world!

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Let's go to Gocta, one of the highest waterfalls in the world!

Its more than 700 meters high make it one of the largest in the world. Its majesty and natural beauty, which is not found just like that, make all its visitors fall in love. In the Amazonas region, you can find a series of archaeological and natural attractions, such as the Karajía Sarcophagi, the City of Chachapoyas or the Kuelap Monumental Archaeological Zone. But its maximum natural jewel is the Gocta Waterfall, located in the heart of the Peruvian Amazon.


This waterfall is besieged by tourists seeking to connect with a totally natural environment. Public or private transport does not enter here, so you can breathe the harmony of flora and fauna in each space you cross. And for the same reason that there are no tracks or asphalt, accessing the Gocta Waterfall has a certain degree of complexity. However, the journey is completely worth it, because witnessing the permanent waterfall is indescribable, as it fills your soul and transports your mind to a state of calm never before intuited.


To better locate ourselves geographically, it should be noted that the Gocta Waterfall is located between the hamlets of San Pablo, Cocachimba and La Coca, which belong to the district of Valera, in the province of Bongará (Amazonas region). And to get to it, there are a number of alternatives that adjust to the adventurous spirit of its potential visitors: you will have to take different sections (or routes) where you will combine long walks and horseback riding to reach this natural charm, but you can get closer beforehand. to your destination with buses (from the city of Chachapoyas to Cocachimba or San Pablo) or hired cars.


The history and the legend

The Gocta Waterfall was discovered in 2002. The German explorer Stefan Ziemendorf was investigating a series of caves found in the department of Amazonas, but it was not until four years later that he made, together with a group of the most experienced local guides, the first records and research on the waterfall, since it had confirmed that this attraction had not been previously discovered.


His topographic notes showed that the Gocta Waterfall measured 771 meters -being the third largest waterfall in Peru, only behind Las Tres Hermanas (914) and Yumbilla (895.4), located in the regions of Junín and Amazonas, respectively- and that In the surroundings of this beautiful natural wonder that is divided into two falls, there are some 22 smaller waterfalls.


As a result of its discovery, the first legends that relate the waterfall to mythology were also born. One of the ones that gained more weight over the years was the story of a golden-haired mermaid who scared away visitors from Amazonas. This woman spent the night in the lagoon that lies at the end of the Gocta Waterfall, with the mission of protecting a brilliant treasure. And those who had the little fortune to get close, made them disappear.


How to get?

To enjoy this magical place, you must first travel to Chachapoyas, the capital of the region. From Lima, it is a 24-hour journey by land and the ticket costs 80 soles. You can also go by plane from Lima to Jaén, Tarapoto or Cajamarca, and then complete the tour by bus.


To get to the waterfalls, you must go to the town of Cocachimba. You can take a collective or a tourist bus service to this place, with a travel time of one hour. Here begins a walk of five or six hours, prior payment of an entrance fee and guide service. It is important that during the days prior to your trip you prepare yourself very well physically, since the first kilometers of the route are quite demanding due to the steep ascent.


As you get closer to your destination, the journey becomes more bearable. The sound of the water and the song of the birds, such as the cock of the rocks, will accompany you throughout the journey, making the route more comfortable. Finally, when crossing a group of trees, you will have before your eyes the imposing waterfall that will envelop you with all its energy. Rest assured that it will be an unbeatable feeling.


Do not forget to bring a waterproof jacket, suitable shoes, water, some fruit, a cap or hat, sunscreen and repellent. The Gocta waterfalls can be visited all year round, although in the rainy season (December to March) you will be able to appreciate them in their maximum splendor.


What is the best time to visit Gocta?

You can visit Gocta all year round, but to make the walk easier, I recommend you avoid the months of October to April because it is the rainy season.


But, on the other hand, if you travel in this season, you will see an extremely green landscape and a multitude of waterfalls in the valley!


Tips to visit Gocta

  • As I already mentioned, the walk can last between 5 and 6 hours (in total), so it is very important to arrive early to avoid walking in low light. But don't worry, if it's already late, you can stay in Cocachimba.
  • It is a humid mountain climate so bring comfortable trekking shoes and a raincoat. And even if it doesn't rain, believe me you're going to get wet when you reach the waterfall! For this very reason, I suggest bringing some protection for your phone and camera.
  • The weather changes throughout the hike, and you will go from the mountains to the jungle. It is best to have light clothing, and on top of that, warm clothes that you can take off.
  • Have enough cash (entry, guide, bus, taxi, etc.) because cards are not accepted.
  • The water is very cold, due to the force of the fall of the water and the altitude. If you really want to get in, it's best to have a polyester T-shirt and Aquashoes (water shoes).
  • Hydrate well. It's a long day and you're going to get tired walking, so it's very important to bring about 2L of drinking water per person.
  • I also suggest you have some snacks (bars, nuts, chocolate, etc.), whatever you like and that gives you energy.

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If you want to visit Machu Picchu, we recommend you to book your Machu Picchu Tickets in advance, so you will enjoy your Vacation in Machu Picchu without any problem. 

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