Legend has it that there is a beautiful, blonde mermaid that lives in the waters and would lay a curse on whosoever revealed their whereabouts.
I am disappointed to reveal that I was not bothered by said mermaid on either of my visits. Nor can I lay to rest the debate as to where these falls rank worldwide. But I can attest to them being utterly spectacular and well worth the visit: at one lookout there are eight separate waterfalls visible and The World Waterfall Database gives Gocta itself a ‘scenic rating’ of 96% ... which is frankly ungenerous!
And luckily, one can now stay in full view of the falls, at the appropriately-named Gocta Lodge, and combine a visit to Gocta with other Chachapoyas highlights, such as Kuelap fortress or Revash mausoleums, on a four or five-day visit.