Iguazu Falls

Peru Sacred Valley
Machu Picchu
Buenos Aires
Iguazu Falls

Jan 8 – Sun. We used the morning to fly up to Iguassu Falls, Argentina. By mid-morning we had checked into the Sheraton which is the only Argentinian hotel located inside the national park. (There is one hotel located in the Brazilian national park as well). Iguassu Falls borders Brazil and Argentina. Each country has its own national park dedicated to the falls and each received UNESCO World Heritage Site status in the late ’80s.

The view from our room faces the falls and they are spectacular. On first assessment one is tempted to make comparisons to Niagara Falls; however the size alone of the set of falls in Iguassu far out number the total mass of the North American waterway. Niagara’s water flow is larger than Iquassu while Victoria Falls has a larger consolidated curtain of water than Iguassu. The origin of the falls is mainly from the Brazil waterways which meet at the San Antonio River. The Spanish first visited the falls in 1541 and named it “Big Water”. There are 275 separate waterfalls and cataracts flowing over the Parana Plateau’s basalt rock from heights ranging from 200 to 269 feet.

Jan 9 – Mon. Today, we start by making our way across the border from Argentina to Brazil. We arrive in the Brazil national park ready to view the falls from a completely different perspective. Unlike the Argentinean park’s train system, visitors are shuttled around by double-deck buses with the top level open to enjoy the scenery and listen to a narrative about the park and its tour/adventure (repelling, rafting, jungle walks, etc.) offerings. We start our walk across from the pink colonial Brazilian hotel by means of a series of walkways following the river toward the U shaped basin of the Devil’s Throat. Along the way we experience a more comprehensive view of the series of waterfalls on the Argentina side and can appreciate where we rode on our boat ride yesterday. There are a number of coati, mothers and babies, playing along the trail and looking for snacks. The park service is becoming concerned over the health of these creatures since they are starting to show signs of tooth decay and diabetes from too much sugar and human foods.

We wind up on a platform at the base of the Devils’ Throat with the mist and spray from the falls cooling us and the crowds of visitors. To leave the bottom, an elevator tower/observation deck is conveniently located for our egress and view of the main falls from above. While there are lots of other ways to enjoy the falls, we have a plane to catch and leave the park around midday for the nearby Brazilian airport.

On to Brazil


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