Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Iguazu Falls

We took a trip of a lifetime over Memorial Day weekend and headed to Argentina to see the Iguazu Falls. The falls are located on the boarder of Argentina and Brazil and it divides the river into the upper and lower Iguazu. The waterfall system consists of 275 falls along 1.67 miles of the Iguazu River. Truly amazing!

On the plane and very excited about heading to Argentina to see the Iguazu Falls

We stayed on the Argentina side and inside the national park at the Sheraton Hotel. It is the only hotel within the park so we were able to get on the trails right when the park opened. Also, the view from our balcony was spectacular. From our balcony.
Nice pool at the hotel but it was too cold to enjoy it
Behind the Sheraton, there is a trail which leads you to the different areas to view the falls. The three main are Upper Circuit (view from the top of the falls), Lower Circuit (view from the middle and bottom) and Devil's Throat (the largest combined falls).

Met my first Coati also known as a Brazilian aardvark. This animal is part of the raccoon family and about the size of a large house cat. Harmless little creatures. We saw a lot of them over the 3 days. They were always more focused on finding food by digging their noses into the dirt than bothering us.

Pretty butterfly
DAY ONE (May 29, 2010)
We started our adventure by viewing the Upper Circuit. As we turned the corner from the trail this was the first sight we saw. The photo does not do it justice. It was breathtaking and only the beginning.

These are examples of the walkways to get to the different area points to view the falls. Most of them are built over the water. Very convenient!!

We were told by several people to take a boat ride. The boat actually rides right up to the falls in (2) different areas. Since it was off season we were the only ones on the boat. When we returned we were drenched!! To have massive amounts of water crashing down onto you leaves you breathless. It was an amazing experience and definitely thankful for the recommendation.

The boat heading into the falls
After heading back to the hotel to change clothes, we went to see Devil's Throat (Garganta del Diablo). This is the most impressive and largest of all the falls. Eighty meters high, u-shaped and can be viewed by both the Argentina and Brazil side. Here is the walkway to get to Devil's Throat. The entire bridge was built over water and a 1/2 mile walk from the mainland.

Devil's Throat

After viewing Devil's Throat, we took a ride on a raft back to the hotel. We came across this "little" creature. The guide pulled the raft about 6 feet from the gator. Needless to say I was slightly worried but the alligator just laid there without a care in the world.
DAY TWO (May 30, 2010)
Woke up and it was pouring outside. This was our day to head over to Brazil and we had scheduled a driver. We ventured on, knowing we would be getting wet from the falls and the sun would eventually come out.

Distinction between the Argentina and Brazil border.
Before entering the park, we stopped at the Parque das Aves (Bird Park). Personally I am not a huge fan of seeing birds but I knew they had Toucans and I have always wanted to see one.

In the park there are areas you can actually "hang out" with the birds.
My Toucan up close and personal. Incredible bird!

Since it was still raining we bought some lovely ponchos to wear.
WOW the view from the Brazil side was spectacular. You get a complete different perspective from this side.

DAY THREE (our last day)
Since our flight was not till 4pm we were able go back to see the falls once last time.
We had lunch at this restaurant yesterday while on the Brazil side. It was a great place right on the water. When the weather is nicer, you can have lunch outside on their patio and hear the falls.

This picture (thank you internet) shows you how huge Devil's Throat falls really is and some if surrounding falls.
Video I took on our trip
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