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Iguazu Falls

Iguazu Falls

I travelled to Brazil and Argentina last summer and when visiting either one of the countries, top of the "to do" list are the Iguazu Falls. Made up of 275 individual waterfalls separated by small islands the Igauzu falls make for a breathtaking sight and an unforgettable experience.  

Iguazu Falls or Iguassu Falls or Iguacu Falls are the waterfalls resulting from the Iguazu river that form at the border of Brazil and Argentina and are shared by the respective national parks. 

One of the most astounding sites and listed as one of the top seven natural wonders of the world the Iguazu falls can be enjoyed on foot by walking through the marked trails, by an adventurous boat ride or a scenic helicopter ride. If you are not pressed for time, it is worth it to do all three. 

You can hear the falls roar as you start to approach them and nothing can prepare you for the mammoth sight, no pictures or videos can do justice; you have to see them to believe the sheer size and volume of water. 

For the complete experience you need to visit the falls from both sides and it is possible to do this in one day. While a tour guide isn't really required to explore the falls as the trails are easy to navigate, a guide is helpful in traveling to and fro between the two sides as you are required to go through immigration while crossing the border. 

If for some reason you are able to visit them from only one country here are the highlights from each side. 

Brazil: Majority of the falls are actually in Argentina, which means you can actually view most of the falls from the opposite side, i.e. from Brazil. You have the option of staying within the Brazilian Iguaçu National Park at the spectacular Hotel Das Cataratas (which is where I stayed).

The Brazilian side also has the option of taking a helicopter ride. The flying time maybe for a short duration but offers spectacular views of the falls particularly the Devil's throat which is the widest and deepest part of Iguazu. 

Argentina: As 80% of the falls are in Argentina, the trail actually takes you for a walk literally over the waterfalls. The Iguacu National park here has an entire attraction creation around the falls. A very Disney like environment friendly train takes you up to the falls, where you are greeted by eating joints and gift shops at first. There are several trails here that you can explore on foot that could take up to several hours, but all worth visiting. As you are walking through a dense forest, take the time to spot unique flora and fauna. Also, available is a boat service that takes you right under the falls. 


What To Wear:


In terms of dressing; you will get completely drenched!!! You can carry your own raincoat or purchase a disposable on location. Its a slippery trail so water resistant shoes with a rubber sole are a must. I opted for a pair of Timberlands for my trip and was really happy with them. 

If opting for the boat ride, keep it at the end of your trip because raincoat or no raincoat you will come out soaking wet. 


Travel Tip:


Being such a popular destination there are airports near the falls on both sides. Paraguay is also a short drive from the waterfalls, so it is actually possible to visit them from Paraguay as well. 

Based on your itinerary check if you need multiple entry visa for one or both countries. Also, it is recommended to check the weather before you go as in heavy rainfall, the falls need not be visible and certain sections of the trail may be closed to visitors. 

While traveling from India, it is mandatory to take a yellow fever vaccination. This injection tends to be in short supply and needs to be administered at least ten days before your date of travel. You need to bring your passport with valid visa to the yellow fever centre, so plan the timeline accordingly.

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