We Take a Stand

The Mermaid of Botocan Falls

2 min read

By James Veloso Published: July 17, 2020

(Second of two parts)

Through the years, countless tales have been told about the naiad who lived at the foot of Majayjay’s Botocan Falls.

Almost all the tales concern the fabulous riches the maiden apparently guards – and shares with those whom she deemed worthy.

One tradition has it that any man bringing a pure-white cock to the naiad could get a share of her gold.


The Golden Centipede

During the Filipino-American War, in the early 1900s, there was a tale about an American captain stationed in Majayjay who, one day, decided to take a bath at the foot of the Botocan Falls.

Upon reaching the spot, the US captain decided to go to the bottom of the falls, where he found one of the naiad’s golden creatures – a centipede.

The golden centipede was so large that the captain had to give a fight just to catch it. But in the end, he only got one of its legs, which he immediately fashioned into two big rings.

The naiad was reportedly furious about this theft.

And so, the legend went on like a curse: if a foreigner visits the area, it would immediately rain heavily.


Sailing In The Sky

Tales like this attracted countless visitors to the falls in the hope that they will find the golden riches allegedly guarded by the naiad.

Once, a skillful miner came and put some magic medicine at the entrance of the cave to trap the naiad.

Unfortunately, he only succeeded in catching the naiad’s servant. Tales had it that the maiden managed to escape.

That night, the naiad was seen on a ship in the air accompanied by innumerable butterflies. She sailed away to the top of Mount Banahaw.

It is said that she soon returned to her cave and still being “seen” by many.

(Source: The Aswang Project)

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