Beautiful Iguazu Falls Border of Argentina and Brazil
Iguazu Falls are the most imposing natural attractions in Argentina and the World, located on the border of Brazil (state of Parana) and Argentina (province of Misiones), at the intersection of the rivers Parana and Iguazu, on the territory of two national parks of the same name (Argentinean and Brazilian). It is one of the most popular tourist attractions in South America where about 1.5-2 million people every year, come to see this wonder of the World.
Iguazu Falls and Brazilian Tourist Complex
Origin of Iguazu Falls:
The name of the waterfalls originated from the Tupi or Guarani language, which means "Big Water" which were formed by a volcanic eruption, which later lead to the formation of large crevice in the ground. Thus, the waterfalls formed due to solidification of lava, and the Age of the basalt deposits are about 130-140 million years. Iguaza falls were first officially discovered in 1541, by an European explorer, the Spanish Conquistador named Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca, who came across this natural beauty. This was also well known by the ancient Brazilian tribes before he discovered it.
Iguazu Falls the Border of Brazil and Argentina
Beauty of Iguaza Falls:
The Iguazu Falls have an enormous system of waterfalls which consists its two-thirds of the cascades on the Argentinean side of the river, stretching in width for about 2.7 kms (or 1.7 miles), having 200-280 individual drops of different height varying between 60 mts (200 ft) and 82 mts (269 ft) - here the number again depends on the water level. This fact makes the Iguazu Falls taller than Niagara Falls and twice in width.
A large proportion of the Iguazu waterfall is thrust down as the "Devil's Throat" which in Spanish sounds like Garganta del Diablo. This huge horseshoe-shaped waterfall, measures 82 meters high, 150 mt wide and 700 mt long having a distinguishing U-shape which serves as a natural border between Argentina and Brazil. Among the other significant waterfalls we can distinguish "Two Sisters", "Adam and Eve", "Ramirez", and "The Three Musketeers". There are also several islands within the river and the falls. The rocky terrain between the waterfalls is covered with dense thickets of diverse vegetation.
The Beauty of Iguazu Waterfalls
Legends of Iguaza Falls:
In fact, the Iguazu Falls are what divides the river of the same name into its upper and lower portions, a fact that has given rise to several myths and legends as to their origin.
One such legend says that a Giant Snake called "Boi" used to live in the river. One day to calm its ferocity, aborigines decided to sacrifice a woman every year as an offering. But a brave guarani aborigin kidnapped the woman to be sacrificed by escaping through the river and saved her life from the traditional rite. Soon after that Boi burst in anger, bended its body and splitted the river forming the Cataratas separating the man and the woman.
Aerial view of Walkboard to the Falls
Significance of Iguaza Falls:
The most significant part of this river lies in the political and geographical structure of the continent of South America for being the boundary between Brazil and Argentina.
Today, these falls are owned by the two UNESCO World Heritage Sites: the Iguazu National Park in Argentina and the Iguacu National Park in Brazil. Recently in 2011, the Iguazu Falls were awarded with the title of one of the "7th Natural Wonders of the World", which is undoubtedly the most visited place in Misiones and one of the most imposing natural attractions in Argentina and the World.
It is an integral part of the unique ecosystem of the jungle, which is protected by both Argentinean and Brazilian national parks from both the sides of the cascades.
Salient Features of Iguazu Falls:
The tourists or visitors entering from either the Brazil or the Argentina side must have a confirmed VISA, to ease the accessibility, as the falls comprise both the countries. One can reach these falls from Foz do Iguazu in Brazil and Puerto Iguazu in Argentina, or from Ciudad del Este in Paraguay.
There are special walkways constructed stretching for about 2 kilometers for the convenience of the visitors which are well connected through the small islands protruding from the seething waters of the rivers between the waterfalls so that they can get much closer to this wonderful natural beauty and power. A long pathway along the canyon (on the Brazilian side of the falls) is complemented by helicopter flips over the water to allow a completely uninterrupted, unlimited experience of the splendour of Iguazu.
Tourists Walking on Footbridge to view the falls from both Argentina and Brazil
Walk Through Footbridge:
Along these 270 falls there are some cliffs and islets seen scattered in a half moon. There are two basic circuits: an upper path and a lower path.
Lower Path: It leads to the base of the falls, where the spray moistens visitors. This circuit gives one an unique experience which is worth daring and adventurous, also has a boat to Isla San Martin.
Upper Path: This gives one panoramic views from the footbridge which are an unforgettable experience.
In addition, there are some special observation platforms, hiking trails, automobile roads, dozens of campgrounds with hotels. The visitors can also enjoy a fantastic boat trip on the rivers of Parana and Iguazu and get a chance to visit one of the largest hydroelectric power stations in the world – Itaipu Dam.
Tourists standing very close to the Iguazu Waterfalls
Till today these exquisite Falls have been used as the backdrop for many films like: Happy Together (1997), Mr. Magoo (1997), Miami Vice (2006) and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008).
Best time to Visit:
It is advisable to the Visitors to visit the Iguazu Falls in Brazil during Spring or Autumn, as Summer is very hot and humid, as the water level drops considerably in the winter.
Other Attractions near the Waterfall:
The other best known falls in Brazil are Benjamin Constant, Deodoro and Floriano.
Apart from waterfalls the visitors interested in Wild Adventures, can also travel through the jungle which offers a series of alternatives in a dump but slightly fresher environment with a wide variety of animals and plants. There are almost 500 species of wild fowl, 80 species of mammals and an immense variety of reptiles, fish, insects and butterflies surviving in this beautiful ecosystem.
Here is the detailed Clip of this waterfalls, Please do have a look of it to explore the beauty of Iguazu Falls:
How to Reach: Visitors are requested to arrange their tours to this place, well in advance to secure and enjoy their trip.
By Air:There are two major International Airports close to Iguazu Falls:
1)The Argentine Cataratas del Iguazu International Airport (IGR): This airport is 25 kms (16 mi) from the city of Iguazu, closer to the falls hotels than its Brazilian counterpart with bus and taxi services to and fro from the Airport-Iguaza Falls.
2)The Brazilian Foz do Iguazu International Airport (IGU): This airport is between Foz do Iguazu, Brazil, and the Falls.
By Road:Busses run to and fro from the Falls and the Airports frequently.