The 3rd ... or 5th ... or 16th Highest Waterfall in the World

Do you know which is the world’s 3rd highest waterfall? And the 5th? And the 16th? Well, depending on which source you read, they are all Gocta Falls, in the Department of Amazonas.

Whatever their official ranking, it is incredible that they have only recently come to general attention. 

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