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South America: Iguazu Falls

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9 – 11 March 2010

Bus Journey to Brazil

We woke early on Tuesday to check out and be at the bus station by 8am for our 8:30am departure to Ciudad del Este, continuing along the highway where we had been the previous day. The 150 mile trip was supposed to take about four hours, but with the continual stops for the bus to drop off / let people on, we did not arrive in Ciudad del Este until about 2:30pm, six hours after we began. We immediately hired a driver to take us to the Paraguay and Brazilian borders and then were able to find the hotel in Foz do Iguaçu. It was very hot and we were tired from the long bus ride but managed to walk around town to find an ATM and get some snacks. Dinner was at a nice steak restaurant down the street from the hotel.

Seeing Brazilian Side of the Falls

On Wednesday morning we walked two blocks from our hotel to the public bus station and bought a ticket to take us to the Iguaçu National Park and the Brazilian side of the falls. It was about a 40 minute bus ride and we met several other travelers along the trip. Even though we arrived soon after the park opened for the day, we still had to wait in that ticket line for about 45 minutes before we could finally enter the park. We took the park bus to the third stop and from here we could take a self guided tour of the falls on a nice path up high above the river.

We left the bus and then saw the falls (looking over to the Argentinean side) and they were amazing! The remainder of the morning was spent strolling along the path, seeing different views of the falls with every twist and turn, until we reached the horseshoe portion of the falls and the Devil’s Throat. It is 82 meters (269 ft) high and truly awesome. There are a series of boardwalks here that allow you to walk above the water and get very close to the falls. We also took the glass elevator to get some other great views.

We retraced our steps back down the trail and then took the bus to its last stop, above the falls, where there are gift shops and a buffet restaurant. Here we had a relaxing lunch, sitting outside, above the falls and along the river. We spent a couple of hours there and then, after one more walk along some of the same trails, we made our way back to the park entrance and to the bus back to Foz do Iguaçu. Because we had such a large lunch we had a picnic of sorts with snacks in the hotel room.

Trip to Argentina and Viewing the Falls

We checked out of the hotel on Thursday morning and made our way to the Argentina border. Once across we skipped around the city of Puerto Iguazú and went directly to Iguazú National Park and our hotel. We stayed in the Sheraton, located in the national park, as a big spurge and we were fortunate to get a great room overlooking the falls in the distance.

As soon as we checked in, we were able to walk from the hotel right into the park and then on to the trails. The first area we visited, via the lower trail, allowed us to get close to many of the falls, since the majority of them are on the Argentinean side. We were going to try the upper falls trail next, but since there were so many tours on it, we opted to visit the Garganta del Diablo (Devil’s Throat) trail which takes one along a boardwalk over the water to right on top of the waterfall. It was great and we spent time taking many pictures.

After a quick lunch at a cafeteria, we then went back to walk along the upper trail, which moves over the tops of a series of waterfalls. By this time, many of the tours had left for the day, so we were able to enjoy this trail at a leisurely pace and we spent much of the afternoon moving along the trail above the falls.

We returned to the hotel, enjoyed a swim and had a nice dinner before we went to the room and opened our window so that we could hear the sounds of the falls at night.


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