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Yumbilla Falls

Upper cascade of Yumbilla Falls, Peru
Upper cascade of Yumbilla Falls / Paulo Tomaz, Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

WorldBlue  In short

Some of the highest waterfalls are found on the eastern descents of Andes in Amazonas Region, Peru. The Yumbilla Falls are the fifth tallest in the world.

4.2 out of 10 stars 41.8%

GPS coordinates
5.9190 S 77.9026 W
Location, address
South America, Peru, Amazonas Region, Bongará Province, some 70 km north from Chachapoyas, 9 km north-east from Pedcro Ruiz
Name in Spanish
La Catarata de Yumbilla
895.5 m
4 – 5
Approximately 8 m

Map of the site

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WorldYellow In detail

Lower cascade of Yumbilla Falls, Peru
Lower cascade of Yumbilla Falls / Paulo Tomaz, Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Discovery and measuring

Yumbilla Falls became known internationally in late 2007 when the report of the researchers from Peru’s National Geographic Institute was published in national newspapers and soon – also in international media.

Nevertheless local people knew well about these falls. The word "Yumbillo" comes from Quechua language and, reportedly, means "heart in love". One of the cascades of waterfall really has a shape that resembles a heart.

The height of falls – 895.5 m – was measured with laser equipment by the researchers of National Geographic Institute.


Yumbilla Falls, Peru
Yumbilla Falls / Paulo Tomaz, Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Waterfall starts at the height of 2723.6 m and falls down to 1828.1 m.

The information about the number of drops is controversial – some sources give 4 cascades, but in some photographs (f.e. in this one, from are clearly seen at least five.

The run of waterfall (horizontal distance between the beginning and the end) is 610 m.


Yumbillo stream starts approximately 1 kilometre before the falls. It starts from a cave – San Francisco de Yumbilla Cave. The cave is comparatively large, length of the explored passage is 250 m.


Yumbilla Falls, upper cascade
Yumbilla Falls, upper cascade / Ozesama, Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

Although this is one of the tallest waterfalls in the world, two factors make it less impressive. First – the amount of water is low, and in dry season may stop flowing altogether. Second – there are very few and hard to access locations where the full height of falls can be seen.

Nevertheless Yumbilla Falls are beaufitul, located in a lush rainforest with rich plant and animal life.

Local people are preparing for an influx of tourists and tourism authorities of the region are considering a new "product" – a visit to a whole group of fantastic local waterfalls, including the nearby Chinata Falls (some 580 m), Pabellon Falls (more than 400 m) and the magnificent Gocta Falls (771 m).


  1. Yumbilla, Catarata, World Waterfall Database. Accessed in 27.02.2012.

WorldYellow Linked articles

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Machu Picchu / Pedro Szekely, / CC BY-SA 2.0

Wonders of Peru

Peru is one of the most interesting and diverse countries in the world. Many landmarks here are unique, without analogs in the world. Highlights of Peru are the rich archaeological heritage, historical cities with colonial architecture, impressive river canyons, waterfalls, and rich biodiversity.

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Virginia Falls / Paul Gierszewski, Wikimedia Commons / public domain


Some of the most fascinating and awe-inspiring natural monuments are waterfalls or locations where a river abruptly changes its elevation.

Machu Picchu, Peru
Machu Picchu / Pedro Szekely, / CC BY-SA 2.0

Wonders of South America

There is little doubt – South America is one of the most spectacular… maybe the most spectacular continent of the world.

There is located the second-highest mountain chain in the world, the largest rainforest, the tallest volcanoes, and the tallest and largest waterfalls. The highest biological diversity in the world is reached somewhere near the eastern ranges of the Andes in Ecuador, Peru, or Colombia.

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