Gocta Waterfalls & Kuelap: The Chachapoyas Experience

Explore the Splendor of Chachapoyas, Kuelap Fortress & Gocta Waterfalls - Tour Extension

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Gocta Andes Lodge at sunset Gocta Andes Lodge view of the falls Stone hut in Peru Birding near Gocta Falls Peru Tour Chachapoyya Mountains Gocta Waterfalls Hike Kuelap & Gocta Falls Mysterious of Northern Peru Tour Map

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6 Days / 5 Nights

Explore the Splendor of Chachapoyas, Kuelap Fortress & Gocta Waterfalls - Tour Extension

Enjoy six full days of adventure, history and natural beauty as you travel around the highlights of northern Peru in the Chachapoyas region. Visit northern Peru's most important archaeological site, the Kuelap Fortress built in the 6th century AD, and see why people call this the "second Machu Picchu." The massive complex consists of more than 400 buildings overlooking the beautiful Utcubamba Valley. Bask in serenity at the Gocta Falls, one of the tallest waterfalls in the world. See flora and fauna as you hike through the cloud forest. Examine the unique sarcophagi in Karajia and hike to the colorful cliffs of Leymebamba.

This tour extension can be done in 4 or 5 days and is the perfect add-on to our Essence of Peru Tour or the World Wonders of South America Tour.

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We include what others call optional

This tour includes:

5-Nights Accommodations
All Tours & Transfers
All Breakfasts & Some Lunches
All Entrance Fees


  • Chachapoyas
  • Kuelap Fortress
  • Gocta Waterfall
  • Karajia and Huanacas
  • Leymebamba

Tailor-Made Tours

We take care of ALL the details

We take care of ALL the details

Customized Tours Travel at your own pace

Customized Tours Travel at your own pace

Choice of Private or Group Excursions

Choice of Private or Group Excursions

Superior Hotel Accomodations

Superior Hotel Accomodations

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24/7 Phone Support Travel Worry Free

24/7 Phone Support Travel Worry Free

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Gocta Andes Lodge Poolside

Arrive in JaΓ©n & Transfer to Gocta Andes Lodge

Day 1

Upon arrival in the Jaén Airport, take a private transfer to Chachapoyas. Here you land in the Amazon, just twenty minutes from the busy city of Jaén. Continue on a scenic drive as you descend to the Marañon River and a major Amazon tributary. Cross past an arid region before entering the Utcubamba Canyon where you will stop for lunch in Bagua Grande.

Then, finally ascend to the village of Cocachimba via the picturesque Utcubamba Canyon. In the early evening, arrive at the Gocta Andes Lodge where every room offers a spectacular view of the Gocta Waterfall, some of the world's highest waterfalls. Experience the tranquility and serenity.

Gocta Waterfall in Peru

Gocta Waterfall Excursion

Day 2

In the morning, begin your trek to the incredible Gocta Waterfalls. These falls were first measured in 2006 and are now amongst some of the highest waterfalls in the world reaching 771 meters.  The hike follows the side of the valley, passing by sugar cane fields and continuing into the forest teaming with wildlife including, yellow tailed wooly monkeys, mountain sloths, and the magnificent cock-of-the-rock bird. With over 80 species of birds in the Chachapoyas region, hikers can enjoy fantastic bird watching along the way.  This area is untouched by mass numbers of tourists, allowing for visitors to fully immerse themselves in the local nature and culture. Finally, arrive at the base of the falls; those brave enough may want to take a refreshing dip in the pool. If you are not comfortable hiking, you can travel to the falls by horse.  After some time, return to the village for a second night in Gocta Andes Lodge.

Karajia Peru Sculptures

Sarcophagi of Karajia and Huancas

Day 3

After breakfast, drive to Utcubamba and cross into the neighboring Province of Luya. From the village of Luya, continue to the village of Cruz Pata, where a short 45-minute walk takes you to Karajia. In Karajia you will find striking sarcophagi, sculptured like humans, that have become an icon of the area. For 750 years the statues looked towards the rising sun and undoubtedly mark the resting place for some elite members of the Chachapoya warriors. Snap a few photos of the sarcophagi before returning to the city of Chachapoyas for lunch. Continue north to the small village of Huancas, famous for its pottery made by local women. Close to the Huancas is a stunning lookout across the 1000m deep Sonche Canyon.  Explore the area and return to Chachapoyas in the evening.

Colorful Cliff near Kuelap

Revash and Leymebamba Museum

Day 4

Today, drive to Yerbabuena and get ready for a short hike climbing a gradual hill (2 hours) for a close-up view of a spectacularly colorful cliff tomb. This photographic site rests atop a yellow cliffside with small tombs that look like mini houses with red pictographs dating back to 1200 AD. Learn about the indigenous people that used to inhabit this region before returning to Leymebamba.  Finish today with a visit to the new museum in Leymebamba that houses 219 mummies that were found in 1997 at a nearby lake. In the evening return to Chachapoyas.

Kuelap Ancient Structures

Tour Kuelap Fortress

Day 5

Take a short drive (15 minutes) to the village of Tingo and board a bus that will get you to the Kuelap Cable Car. The cable car takes guests across a ravine to the ticket office a short distance below Kuelap. The towering walls and hundreds of roundhouses capped by the cloud forest at 3,000 meters (9,900 feet) above sea level always amaze first-time visitors. Explore the many ceremonial constructions and brilliant layouts as a group with plenty of opportunities to wander on you own. In the evening return to Chachapoyas.

airplane small

Return to JaΓ©n

Day 6

After breakfast, begin your journey back to Jaén Airport in time for your flight to Lima or to your next travel destination in South America. Seamlessly combine a trip to Machu Picchu and Cusco from Lima. 

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Izabela Zielinska
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