Iguazu Falls – Cataratas del Iguazú

While I was in Argentina and before going to Brazil, my sister and I decided to visit Iguazu Falls. When I was planning for my South America trip, I had questioned if it was worth seeing this waterfall for the cost, the endless bus rides, and mosquito bites. Of all the travelers I have met on the road, they all recommended that I had to go, that it was a must and that I would be dumb enough to not go while I was in the country. I was very skeptical because I have seen a lot of waterfalls and usually I am there for five minutes, take some pictures, and then go. I don’t know how people can fall in love with a waterfall or take endless pictures. I later find out that I was wrong.

In 2011, it was named one of the new seven wonders of nature. The name Iguazu means “water” and “big”. There is a legend that a God wanted to marry a lady name Naipi; however, she had decided to leave with her mortal lover name Taroba in a canoe. The God was angry and therefore split the river creating the waterfalls and punish the couple in an eternal fall.

There are three cities in which you can go to visit the waterfalls that borders among Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay. Keep in mind that if you are an American citizen, you will need a visa for Brazil and Paraguay. Beverly and I had taken a bus from Bueno Aires to the city of Iguazu, about 25 minutes from Puerto Iguazu. Puerto Iguazu is where you can see the waterfalls from the Argentina side. We had decided to stay outside of the National Park because there is not much of a selection in terms of lodging on a budget.

Upon arriving into town, you will be created with cobblestone roads, luscious green trees, and bugs. Our hostel was only 10 minutes away from the bus terminal but decided to hitch a ride from the police.

Although it is filled with tourists from around the world, it still has a great vibe and authentic feeling of Argentina. In the town, you can find many restaurants selling dishes of salami, cheese, and olive. You can also pick up plenty of these items from the markets surrounding the restaurants.

We were only here for less than 24 hours including our visit to the waterfall. There isn’t much to see or do besides the cataracs. We didn’t do much the day that we had arrived except eat and errands. At the bus terminal, you can buy a bus ticket from the city into the town of Puerto Iguazu. You have a choice of buying a one way or round trip ticket. The reason for this is because you may cross into the Brazil side and see the waterfall from that side. I heard from the locals that the Argentina side is the best because there is a lot more that you can do at the national park. However, on the Brazil side, you can see the famous Devil’s Throat better.

Once you take the bus into Puerto Iguazu, you will be dropped off at the entrance of the park. Depending where you are from, the fee is different. There are many trails that you can go throughout the park to see many different types of waterfalls. Since Beverly and I had to be back into the city for our bus ride to Brazil, we decided to only see the main attraction Devil’s Throat – Garganta del Diablo. When you enter the park, make sure you walk on the Green Trail to the Central Station. Once you are there, you wil take a train to Garganta del Diablo. However, they don’t drop you off right there. You need to walk about 800 meters to the actual site. While walking to the Devil’s Throat, you can see many species that surrounds you such as monkeys, turtles, badgers, great dusky swifts, and many butterflies.

Once I had arrived to the platform, before me was the most beautiful waterfall I have ever seen. I literally was shocked and amazed on how I fell in love. I stood there soaking wet taking endless pictures of the waterfall. It seriously was the most amazing waterfall that nature has to offer us.

Although I was in the area for less than 24 hours, it was worth every minute on the bus ride, bug bites, and cost.

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