Göksu Waterfall & the Long Walk

The guide said it was a gentle stroll to Göksu waterfall. “It will only take an hour,” he said

Sounded good, I thought. Göksu waterfall is described as a beautiful and natural landmark of the Black sea region so I was desperate to see it.

Goksu waterfall Rize

However, I soon learned that when it came to defining the words “gentle stroll” The guides definition and mine was completely different.

A gentle stroll

Getting to Goksu Waterfall

“You are not serious,” I said, staring down at a narrow, muddy ledge, only wide enough to take one human foot. If I slipped, the tumble down the mountainside would definitely result in broken bones.The guide was serious.

I walked the ledge with pure fear running through me, refusing to look down and thankful when I was told that was the worst of it.

However, it wasn’t. I felt like crying when faced with our next obstacle. “This has got to be a joke right?”

We had to negotiate our way over a fallen rock formation in a semi-circle. The rocks were slippery from the humidity.  I virtually crawled across with my hands and feet, not caring how uncool I looked.

I knew that if I had  an accident in this remote location, there was no chance of an ambulance arriving in a quick five minutes.

Walking up to the waterfall

We continued walking up hill, the dense humidity was making me sweat, and I knew my whole body was crying out for water.

The plants of the dense green forest, at times reached up to my shoulders and most of my effort was  put into avoiding prickly nestles with a sharp sting of which the itching would last for hours.

Walking with the group to Goksu waterfall

There were no smooth roads or paths, just rocks and to negotiate my way over them, I had to use every muscle in my legs.

To experienced walkers, the climb might be normal, but for someone like me who likes to play it safe, I was petrified, thinking about the next obstacle that would scare me.

Black sea Turkey

The dilemma came when we reached the top. Bad weather, a couple of weeks previously had caused another rock fall. At this point, something kicked in and my attitude changed.  My reaction surprised me.

There was no way I was turning back. I did not negotiate narrow ledges, semi circles of rock falls and the humidity of the forest for nothing.

The last climb

I was determined to reach Göksu waterfall and nothing was going to stop me. The sudden burst of energy took me by surprise, and I bounded up the rocks. Once we reached the waterfall, I was buzzing and wanted to walk further.

Goksu waterfall Black sea Turkey

My photo really does not describe how beautiful Göksu waterfall is, and the long, unsafe walk uphill was definitely worth it. I was soon to learn that in this area, there is an abundance of waterfalls and I got used to them, no longer experiencing the wow factor.

 That day was about more than Göksu waterfall.

I remember walking back down and my mood had changed. While the narrow ledges and rock formations still freaked me out, I did not feel the need for dramatic  outbursts expressing my concerns about safety.

I had wanted “off the beaten track” and I had got it.

I wanted to go back across the narrow ledge and the slippery rock formations. Something was giving me motivation, allowing  me to carry on.

At the same time, the simplicity of nature was wowing me. I was no longer focusing my whole experience on safety, and this allowed me to look around and appreciate my surroundings.

We picked wild strawberries and came across freaky, slimy things, of which to this day, I still do not have a clue, what they were.

Insect of the black sea

I have thought long and hard about that day and the mixture of emotions that I felt. I think it was a combination of an adrenaline rush followed by euphoria, which on this occasion was not induced by alcohol. It was simply pure and natural.

Eating wild strawberries

By the time, I returned to the bottom, I wanted to take on the world. I have heard some people say, that an hour’s work out in the gym gives them a buzz that lasts the whole day. Maybe I was experiencing the same thing; I was certainly on a high.

Despite the fact that I had joined a tour with complete strangers, to a place I had never been before, I felt totally at ease and relaxed.

Goksu waterfall Kackar

Regarding that adrenaline buzz and following emotions of euphoria, I wish someone would bottle it and sell it because I would be their best customer.

As for the guide, I can forgive him for  describing it as a gentle stroll. He took photographs for me all day so I had proof that I had been there and done it!

Group tour goksu waterfall

Readers Question : Would you attempt this hike to see Göksu waterfall?

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Hi. My name is Natalie Sayin and I am the author of The Turkish Travel Blog. I am an Internet addict with a passion for history. Read my story here or leave a comment below to join the discussions.
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  1. Bernard says

    I will never mind a long hike through that kind of rough terrain… five years ago. Now with my uber unstable ankles and peroneal tendonitis, no thank you.

  2. says

    Congrats on making it through the hike! You’ve done a lot of exploring this past year.

    We love going off the beaten path as much as we can in Turkey. I’m the one who always wants to be like a “monkey” and climb over rocks and trees to get a view of what’s around the bend. 😉 Keep it up.
    Joy (My Turkish Joys) wrote about..Strolling Along the Bosphorus in Istanbul

  3. says

    Bravo! Well done you . . another little demon done in! Wandering this type of country is what I love most of all – exploring, turning over rocks, photographing flora and fauna. Your post has given me a buzz – thank you!
    Alan wrote about..Meet Me Mates!

    • says

      Glad you liked the post Alan – exploring off the beaten track has never really been my type of thing but looks like I have a new passion in life now. I understand why you like it
      Natalie wrote about..The Striking Beauty of Efeler Valley

  4. phil + Di marina gateway says

    yea i’d give it a go
    dose anyone know what the slugg type thing is i thought you were going to say you’d eaten it !!!!!!

    Turkey is a beautiful part of the world there’s so much to see

      • phil + Di marina gateway says

        oh watch this space then let us no what you find out

  5. says

    This reminded me so much of my recent experience at Sümela waterfalls. Why oh why does guides have this habit of describing things as easy and gentle when in fact you can break your leg or neck at any moment. I survived Sümela, but I now crave desert or the Everglades. As plain as possible and not a rock in sight!
    inka wrote about..Oman – my next destination

  6. says

    Well done, Nat. You’re a braver woman than I. Sometimes wish I could be more like a mountain guide but sad truth is that I’m a real wimp when it comes to climbing.

  7. vito andolini says

    Wow, nice adventure…always looking for that kind of adventures and really enjoyed reading this post. Just amazing :)

  8. Sue says

    Am thoroughly enjoying your Black Sea Blog as I am planning a visit there in August 2014, sadly only for a week or so. Contemplating the walk to Çoksu Waterfall but at 65, with Osteo porosis I do now have to be a bit sensible.! You mention humidity – will it be VERYhot in August?
    Thanks for all the interesting Info.

    • Nat says

      Hi Sue, I really would not attempt the walk. I struggled at age 35. The humidity will be hot, but will decrease the higher into the mountains you go

  9. says

    a new walking path makes it possible for everyone to enjoy the waterfall – it has not detracted from the natural beauty of the valley. The wierd ‘insect’ has been confirmed as a Carpathian Blue Slug and Natalie’s find and drawing to my attention means she is now the crowned the ‘Slug Queen’ because this beautiful creature is more than 1200kms from its nearest previously known location.
    Alan wrote about..Blue Heaven

    • says

      That is good news Alan – it was hard work to get up to the waterfall. The “slug queen” much appreciates up for updating her with this information 😉

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