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Saturday, 31 May 2014

Iguazú, Argentina: The Waterfall & 3 Frontieras

After another long bus ride, this one just shy of 20 hours, I was in the town of Puerto Iguazú and my 5th Province of Argentina. Argentinean buses are probably the best in the world. For the first time in a while I had a hostel pre-booked for a couple of nights.

Iguazú Falls is one of the most impressive sets of falls in the world. The falls are predominantly in Argentina with the most impressive part, Garganta Del Diablo (The Devil's Throat), splitting Brazil and Argentina. The largest drop in the falls is 82m. The falls stretch 2.7km, however, there are up to 300 mini islands separating this giving a water length of about 1.8km.

After checking into my hostel I was straight off to the falls. There were a series of circuits with many separate falls and loads of wildlife, mainly coaties. I decided to walk the lower circuit first.

 






It was now time to take on the upper circuit in my freshly wet clothes.





The upper circuit was equally impressive. It was now time to take a train to the most impressive part of the falls, The Devil's Throat. We were joined by coaties on the train, they managed to steal a little girls candy bar and run up a tree.



One of the many streams that head over the falls




The Devil's Throat
The photos and going near the rail had to be timed as the mist was shooting up to 150m from the water below.

The Brazilian side has the better viewing point of The Devil's Throat but I decided that it is not worth a visa.

The water was actually flowing a lot more than usual on this day due to rain in Brazil and the falls closed a few days later due to dangerous water levels and submerged platforms. The falls were incredibly impressive but the amount of mist on this day was not so great for photos.

It was now time to return to the hostel where I ran into Matias, an Argentinean I met at a steak dinner I organised in Uruguay. My 2nd chance repeat encounter on my South American leg but the beginning of a flow of repeat encounters.

The next day I explored the town of Puerto Iguazú and the river downstream from the falls marking the meeting point of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. I have now seen Brazil and Paraguay, although I never touched foot in either country.


They must have run out of Paraguayan and Brazilian Flags.

From Argentina, Brazil on the right across the river and Paraguay on the left (the far side of the T).


The next morning I was on another huge bus trip to meet a friend I met in Spain.

Next stop Rosario!

Lessons Learnt:
The greatest sights, as impressive as they are, aren't the greatest experiences.
 Photos can't show a full experience, especially when the sound of crashing water is unbelievable.
I need to try to remember people's names because you never know if you will see them again.
I definitely don't travel to tick countries off a list.

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