A Complete Guide to Gocta Falls
What is it about the Gocta Falls that we find so deeply mesmerizing? Is it the soothing sound of the tumbling water or the visual splendour of the cascade bouncing off rocks faces worn smooth with age? Or is it simply the overwhelming realisation of the power of Mother Nature? Whatever it is, the Gocta Falls are among the most breath-taking falls in Peru and visiting them is an entire adventure in itself.
The Gocta Falls sit just outside the ancient town of Chachapoyas in the North of Peru. The falls plunge 2,530ft over the side of a jagged cliff, through lush vegetation, into the depths of the Cocahuayco River. It is an immensely impressive sight to behold and its sublime natural surroundings of verdant cloud forest make it all the more magical.
Have we piqued your interest? Here is everything you need to know before you embark on your trip to the Gocta Falls.
The Best Time to Visit the Falls
Visiting the Gocta Falls is bound to be one of the highlights of your trip, and possibly your whole life, so it is important to time your trip right. The best time to see the Gocta Falls is during the rainy season as that is when the falls are at their fullest and most spectacular. The rainy season runs from November through to April. Take note that while it only rains intermittently during the rainy season, when it does rain it comes down very heavily. Pack plenty of waterproofs and you should be just fine.
Getting to the Falls
The first thing you need to do, if you’re planning on visiting the Gocta Falls, is get yourself to Chachapoyas. There are buses that run from all over the country to Chachapoyas, but these can take up serious chunks of time – depending on your starting point. The quickest and easiest way to reach the town is to hop on a direct flight from Lima. You’ll be there in an hour and you won’t need to worry about spending a night trying to sleep in a crowded bus. Rainforest Cruises can arrange this tour for you.
Once you arrive in Chachapoyas, your tour guide will bring you to the town of Gocta by private car. From here, you will need to hike the 5km trail that leads from the town to the waterfalls. Your tour guide will arrange transport and lunch for you, which takes a loads off your mind. If you’re more of an independent traveler, the hike is easy to do solo. Be sure to stock up on water and snacks in Gocta before you head off.
At the Falls
Once you arrive at the falls you’ll probably need a few minutes to catch your breath after the sight of the powerful cascades has taken it away. Snap some photos and admire your natural surroundings – this is a place of world class beauty. Those who want to cool down after the hike can jump into the icy cold water for a swim. If you’re not keen on swimming, you’ll still be able to feel the cool spray of water on your skin if you get within 30 metres or so of the falls. This alone is enough to cool you off.
When you’ve had your fill of natural beauty, make your way back along the path to Gocta, where you will finish your journey.
The Gocta Falls can be done in a day trip, but that doesn’t mean you should pack up and leave as soon as you’re back. Make time in your itinerary for the other attractions in the area, including the Kuelap ruins and the sarcophagi of Karajia. People might rave about Machu Picchu and Cusco, but the real wonders are up here in the North.
For more information about book a tour to Gocta Falls, please contact us or call 1-888-215-3555.