Iguazú / Iguaçu Falls

17th – 18th of July, 2013

Since I did not get to go to Patagonia, the highlight of my trip through Argentina were definitely the Cataratas de Iguazu. They count as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of South America and are part of the UNESCO World Heritage. Depending on the water level, up to 1,500m³ of water go over the edge of up to 287 separate waterfalls. Generally it is possible to visit the falls from the Argentinean and Brazilian side. If you have enough time, do the Brazilian side first (Admission: 14 €/41,6 BRL; Bus 120 from Terminal Urbano, about 30-40 min, 1 €/2,85 BRL) and afterwards the Argentinean side (Admission: 17 €/170 ARS; Bus/Taxi from Puerto Iguazu: 5-6 €/50-60 ARS). I arrived from Buenos Aires and was going to head towards the Pantanal after Iguazu, which is why I did the Argentinean side first.

17th of July: Argentinean side

Other travelers had warned us (Renee, Thimo and me) not to enter the park too late since we were in the middle of the Argentinean holidays and therefore it was going to be packed with people. Unfortunately we overslept a little which is why we only got there at 11 am. Just looking at the crowd at the gates we already knew that we were going to have to put up a hell of a fight in order to get some decent shots without other tourists piling up in the background. We started off with the upper walkway which was already pretty impressive. The fact that there had been a lot of rain the weeks before was good and bad: On the one hand the falls had plenty of water which made the views even more spectacular. On the other hand the rain had led to flooding which had subsequently destroyed the walkway to the Garganta del Diablo, one of the main attractions. Nevertheless, there were plenty of breathtaking views to enjoy. We also decided to do the Nautical Adventure (18 €/180 ARS), a boat ride practically into the falls which was awesome and left us soaking wet (Preferably just wear board shorts or a bikini. If that is not possible, at least wear things that dry quickly or take a spare set of cloths. Ponchos DO NOT work, believe me).

Although the views were absolutely amazing, the hoards of tourists unfortunately spoiled the experience a little bit. At times it was so full, that it was next to impossible to get through or even have a few seconds to enjoy the view and take a photo. Thankfully, the boat trip made up a lot for that.

18th of July: Brazilian side:

Originally when I was planning my trip to Iguazu, visiting the Brazilian side had been optional since most people who have seen both sides say, that the Argentinean side is better. But since seeing the Garganta del Diablo on that side was not possible, I decided to spend the extra money and see the Brazilian side too – absolutely worth every penny. Needless to say that this, again, meant breathtaking views. Fortunately the amount of tourists wasn’t as bad as it had been on the Argentinean side which made it possible to actually enjoy the falls for a little while AND take great panoramic shots.

The absolute highlight of my Iguazu experience, closely followed by the boat trip, was the walkway up to the Garganta del Diablo. It is hard to describe the gigantic amounts of water pouring over the falls every split second. Even with panoramic shots it is hard to imagine, which is why I have uploaded this video.

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