Iguazu National Park – An Amazing Experience

We left Cordoba in the early afternoon and flew direct to Iguazu Falls. Colleen chose the destination as it is one of the three great Water Falls in the World: Victoria Falls, Iguazu Falls and Niagara Falls. Two words: Bucket List!

Our 10th airplane ride on this trip

We stayed in the Iguazu National Park at the Melia Hotel (formerly a Sheraton).  Although pricey it gave us extra opportunities to enjoy the park as soon as it opened at 08:00 up until closing at 18:00. Accommodation for three nights for two rooms was $2423.29CAD which at least included a very good breakfast.  The entrance fee into the park was 500ARS for adults (12+) and 130ARS for children which is $168.21CAD for all five of us.  Food options in the park are the hotel or a couple of fast-food restaurants.  We found the best deal to be the all you can eat Parilla BBQ at 300ARS or $20.78CAD per person.  A true Argentinian grill with steak, chicken, sausage, ribs, and blood sausage.

The first morning was awe inspiring with the sounds of the humid jungle landscape.  Soaking in the morning air from my balcony I saw the scene below.  Suddenly I knew we were in for a great time.

A group of Coatis looking for food

The National Park

The park has six major walking trails that are easy to navigate. We spent our time on three of them as two were not open and the third was relatively small.  Walking is easy along well defined paths and the park staff keep the grounds fairly clean.

The Lower Circuit

An easy 1700m trail that takes about 2 hours to complete.  You have to stop and look at all the views and also keep an eye out for the inhabitants of the park.  The culminating point of the Lower Circuit is standing immediately below the roaring falls.

First Contact with a Waterfall
Very close to the spray
The first bridge we crossed
Watch out for Spiders
The second bridge
A family of Spiders that stick together
First site of the Devil’s Throat
Walking the Trail
Breathtaking view of the Falls on top of Falls
Isla St Martin, in the background, is not currently open for visiting
Another impressive view
Double Banked Falls

 

Ben and Emma enjoy a moment of tranquility
Curtains of water
I believe this is one of the Falls in the movie, “The Mission”
The noise is staggering
A beautiful view – go early in the morning to avoid crowds
Rainbow effect
The mist keeps everyone cool
Walking right up to the Falls
Wow!
Yep, Wow!
The Force of Nature
Colleen getting soaked from the mist
Ben opts for a waterfall his size

 

Vogue Model pose
Unfortunately, no swimming
Lunch Time!
The water is higher than normal
Dragon Fly on the bridge
The base of the Two Sisters Falls
Rob and Emma in front of the Two Sister Waterfalls
Incredible power
Amazing to view
Another view of the rainbow
Waterfalls on waterfalls
You can never have too many rainbows

The Upper Trail

The upper trail is 1750m long and also takes about 2hrs to complete.  Not only do you witness the Falls with a birdseye view, you have the opportunity to walk over the river and see some of the inhabitants.

Ben mesmerized by the Falls
Looking out to the Falls
Vertical drop of 100m+
Mother / Daughter moment
Amazing how the trees and bushes survive the water
Another great view
Isla St Martin in front of the Falls
A true force of nature
Finally a Couple shot!
A wasp nest
Not sure what that bird is thinking?
Snail shell remnants after being dropped by the birds and eaten
Emma on the Upper Circuit
It started raining fairly heavily and then became a fine mist
Looking down a the lower circuit and the water below
Hannah takes shelter under some bamboo

 

Walking along the bridge
Provides perspective on how high up we are
A good view of the Falls in the distance
Hannah and I competing for the best Lizard photo – MIne
or hers?
Great shot of the force of the water
I am Canadian, eh!
Milan – Here I come ….
Bird preening himself
A toucan enjoying the spiders and dragon flies for lunch
As impressive as the Falls are, the fauna and the walk through the forest is equally impressive

The Devil’s Throat

The walkway is 1100m long and takes 2hrs to complete.  The entrance is accessible by a free train ride that runs every fifteen minutes.  The train starts at the parking lot with tour groups so if you are waiting, like we did, from inside the park you will be hard pressed to get a seat.  We decided to walk beside the train tracks which added another 2km.  In hindsight, if you walk you avoid the crowd from the train so you want to time your visit in the middle of the train schedule as it will mean less people.

 

The view directly over the Devil’s throat is amazing!
The Brazilian side of the Falls
Looks like something out of the Lord of the Rings
The true force of nature

 

Hannah, Emma and Ben on Christmas Eve
Colleen in the Devil’s Throat
It took about ten photos but I finally got Emma to smile big!
Ben in the heart of the Devil’s Throat
Heading back to the Main Park
A turtle taking a rest on a rock in the midst of the heavy current
Catfish? swimming in the water looking for handouts
This bird sang a beautiful melody
Emma on the bridge
These birds were everywhere
Circle of life – the ants took down the grasshopper and covered the entire pathway
Colleen just after crossing the ants
Beauty in the mud
Broad snouted Caiman – a relative of the crocodile
The Caiman enjoyed the mud and shallow water beneath a bridge

Christmas on the Road

Christmas Eve 2017 – We opened gifts in the evening as we caught a plane to Salta this next morning
All the gifts had to be consumable or portable. I got the kids Mentos – which turned out to be menthol cough drops and not the Mentos mints we are used to
Ben got a small Lego Star Wars toy – Interesting to note that Lego costs about 4 times the price as it does in Canada
Christmas Morning – Early Breakfast so we can catch our flight to Salta
The hotel has an upper terrace so we all went to take a final look at the Falls. It was surrounded by Monkeys who had just raided a couple of unlocked rooms
View of the hotel property and the Falls in the distance
Possibly a scene from Escape from the Planet of the Apes where the monkeys swarm across a building
Monkey’s on the move
A cookie wrapper from the mini-bar of somebody else’s room – $200USD cleaning fee for not heeding the warning of locking your door
We returned to our room to finish packing and found some peeping toms on the balcony
Colleen feeding apples to our visitor
A mother and baby are on the roof watching the apples
Not sure if it is a howler Monkey or a piggy
A sweet face
A little cheeky now that he has the apple
Full but I’ll still eat more
Can’t Talk – Eating …
What no bananas?
Mom and Baby show up for some food
That’s All Folks !!!

Conclusion

Iguazu Falls is a fantastic place to visit even if it is a bit of a budget buster!  Staying in the park is a definite bonus and gives you more flexibility to see the park. If you want to visit the Brazilian side and truly experience all aspects of the Falls I think you need three days.  We spent two days just walking the trails on the Argentinian side. We left by cab and took a plane to Salta as a staging area to head into Bolivia.

6 Replies to “Iguazu National Park – An Amazing Experience”

  1. omg love love love the pictures….. That smile on Colleens face as she feeds the monkeys says it all….

    love you guys… miss you tons

  2. WOW! I can see why that was on the bucket list. Loved the photos and especially the family one on XMAS eve. That is one XMAS you won’t forget.
    Expensive but I think well worth it!

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