Iguazu Falls (also spelt Iguassu or Iguaçu), are phenomenal and should be a must see on itineraries to Southern Brazil or Argentina. Something that is becoming very popular, due to direct flights to Iguassu from Lima, are visits that also include Machu Picchu in Peru. Combination itineraries are fairly easy to arrange and allow you to see two world wonders in one tour, or three if you include Rio de Janeiro for the Corcovado.
Iguazu are some of the most spectacular falls in the world; an average of 1700m3 of water flows every second over 70m high cliffs, along 275 falls, spread over a 3 km crescent on the border of Brazil with Argentina. The falls span both Brazil and the Argentine border at Iguassu and both sides are very different making them both a must see. The sub-tropical Iguassu National Park in which the falls are located is renowned for its variety of tropical flora, birds and butterflies.
Iguassu Falls – As it is known on the Argentine side
The Argentine side of the falls is vast and you should allow a day to explore it´s many circuits and adventure options. The falls consist of a series of walkways from which there are amazing viewpoints over the falls. There is the Upper Walk, linking dozens of tiny basalt islands, and the Lower Walk, closer to the falls below. The walkways and bridges twist and turn above, below and even behind the vast system of mesmerizing waterfalls.
There is a gas powered train within the park that drops you at the start of the walkways and later continues to ‘Devil’s Throat Station’. From here, a kilometer-long walkway leads you across the river to the thunderous ‘Garganta Del Diablo’, which offers a spectacular vantage point peering into the thundering vortex below. Rainbows are often seen here and it is truly spectacular view.
The Argentine falls are also packed with adventure options from speed boat rides so close to the falls that you get soaking wet, to a serene dinghy ride spotting flora and fauna in the park. These can be booked within the park.
Iguazu Falls- as the Brazilian side is known
The Brazilian side consists of wooden walkways and viewing platforms that allow you to view the base of the falls as they thunder downwards. Whilst not as vast as the Argentinean side the falls are nevertheless spectacular, especially at the base of Garganta Del Diablo, where you can walk across a large wooden platform to get stunning views of the base of the falls. Allow half a day to explore the Brazilian side which you could also combine with a helicopter flight over the falls to get a truly rounded view of the spectacular site.
The falls are a memorable spectacle at any time of the year. During the December to March rains, the volume of water over the precipices is at its most impressive and the sound of its impact with the river below could easily be mistaken for thunder. With the onset of dry weather, the clouds of spray disperse to reveal an unforgettable panorama across the falls, which gleam in the brilliant sunlight. The peak of the dry season is August to October.