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Iguazu Falls

Rio (Brazil)


Iguazu Falls Travel Guide

In the park

Visitor Centre:
An Eco–Museum that familiarizes the visitor about the habitat protected in Iguazu Nacional Park detailing the biodiversity of the jungle.”

There are two walks available from the Visitor’s centre: Sendero Verde and Sendero Macuco.


Sendero Verde: An old footpath into the forest is the basis of this 600m trail that allows the visitor to go deep into the heart of the Misionera vegetation- it takes you to “Estacion Cataratas”- no stairs.

Sendero Macuco: 3,6 km (each way) At the end of the trail you will come across the Arrechea Waterfall. Less impressive but also less people and good opportunity to spot birds. Sleepy stairs.


Estacion Cataratas

From here you will have to circuits

  • Upper Circuit: This path offers a walk through the upper falls area. It is about 650 meters long and presents an overall panoramic view. No stairs.

  • Lower Circuit: On this path you will “feel” the spirit of the forest. It is a circular path of about 1700 meters that leads to 8 viewpoints of major importance. Here you can take the Boat for the “Gran Aventura” that will take you right under the waterfall. Also, you can make the “Aventura nautica” that it is shorter than the other.

Also you can take the boat to Isla San Martin (highly recommended!) where there is a nice beach and a walk of 2 hrs available with great views. Boat is free and takes three minutes the crossing. Stairs and muddy areas. The San Martin Island can be closed due to the river level, so if you are interested you must find out first.


The Devil Thoat:

This path of 1100 mts will take you to three ring-shaped balconies that permit a special view of the colossal “throat”, the culmination of the journey: a giant horseshoe-shaped waterfall 150 meters / 492 feet long, and 80 meters / 262 feet high. .


Available activities in the park

Great Adventure: 8 km ride among the Yacaratia trail. 6 km boat trip through the narrow Iguazu river, including 2 km of rapids- it gets wet close up the inside of Devil’s throat. It ends in front of San Martin Island.

Once an hour from Information centre at the entrance.

Nautic Adventure: From the bottom of the lower trail the bout gets wet near the Three Musketeers and San Martin falls .Every twenty minutes. From the lower trail.

Ecological Ride: 30 minutes of smooth and quiet navigation among  branches of  the upper Upper Iguazu River.

Every 15 minutes from Estacion Garganta del Diablo.

Isla San Martín: In the heart of the waterfalls this enormous rock formation allows visitors to take a sunbath in its small but nice Beach and to do a 2 hours walk to enjoy a very different view of the waterfalls. To get there take the boat trip from the bottom of the Lower circuit. Free.


Outside the Park


Hito Tres Fronteras

This viewpoint west of the town center stands high above the turbulent reddish-brown confluence of the Iguazú and Paraná rivers, which also form the Triple Frontera, or Tri Border. A mini pale-blue-and-white obelisk reminds you you’re in Argentina; across the Iguazú River is Brazil’s green-and-yellow equivalent; farther away, across the Paraná, is Paraguay’s, painted red, white, and blue.

La Aripuca

Rainforests throughout the world are under threat from human activity, and Argentina’s are no exception. This unique place aims to both preserve threatened native tree species, and expand visitors’ appreciation of the local ecology.

Designed to ‘capture the conscience of man’ (an aripuca is a trap used by the Guaraní to catch small animals) this interesting structure is made entirely from the timber of 29 different endangered native tree species. While this might sound contradictory, the timber is all salvaged, and the trap itself is a work of art, looking remarkably like a 10m-high (32ft) beaver’s lodge. Tours of the site are designed to raise awareness of forest conservation and to encourage sponsors. Patrons can either adopt a tree for 30 years, or for life, and are encouraged to visit their ‘child’ to check on its progress.

Address: RN 12, Km 5, Puerto Iguazú, 3370

Phone:    3757/423-488      


Guira Oga

Unfortunately, injured and orphaned wildlife seems to be an inevitable consequence of human proximity to the Argentine rainforest. Here, threatened native birds (but also any bird that could be in danger) are given a chance to recover and return to the wild. Species in care at any one time might include macaws, toucans and many different species of parrot and eagle endemic to the area.

As the name suggests, Güirá Oga (the house of birds in Guarani language) is a haven for native birds. It takes in the wounded, sick, abandoned and threatened, and houses and attempts to recuperate them. Not only is its work worthy, it gives visitors the chance to get close to species they might otherwise not see in the wild. Animals hurt by illegal hunting and trapping, or through car accidents and other human-related mischance, are taken in, assessed, given veterinary treatment and ongoing care, and, condition permitting, returned to the wild.

The center also aims to play an important educational function, raising awareness of the plight of threatened animals and the impact of human activity.

Address: RN 12, Km 5, Puerto Iguazú, 3370

Phone:  3757/423-980      

The hummingbird’s garden

 This is a family proyect made at their house garden. You can spend a couple of hours watching more than 20 species of native hummingbirds all year round. They are totally free, and they get very close to you! So take your camera and shoot. You must pay an admission fee, and you can stay as much as you want. It´s better to go on the afternoon before 6 pm. There are seats and restrooms.

Adress: Fray Luis Beltran 150, Puerto Iguazú,Argentina

Phone: 03757 424 081


Itaipu Dam

It took more than 30,000 workers eight years to build this 8-km (5-mi) dam, voted one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by the American Society of Civil Engineers.

The monumental structure produces 25% of Brazil’s electricity and 78% of Paraguay’s, and was the largest hydroelectric power plant on Earth until China’s Three Gorges (Yangtze) Dam was completed.

To see more than a view over the spillways, consider the special tours, which take you inside the cavernous structure and includes a visit to the control room. Night tours—which include a light-and-sound show—begin at 8 on Friday and Saturday (reserve ahead).

At the Ecomuseum de Itaipú you can learn about the geology, archaeology, and efforts to preserve the flora and fauna of the area since the dam was built. Note that it’s funded by the dam’s operator Itaipú Binacional, so information isn’t necessarily objective. 

Contact Information

Address: Av. Tancredo Neves 6702, Foz do Iguaçu, 85867—970  Brazil.

Phone: 800/645-4645      


Parque das Aves (Birds Park)

Flamingos, parrots, and toucans are some of the more-colorful inhabitants of the privately run Parque das Aves.

Right outside the Parque Nacional Foz do Iguaçu, it’s an interesting complement to a visit to the falls. A winding path leads you through untouched tropical forest and walk-through aviaries containing hundreds of species of birds. Iguanas, alligators, and other no feathered friends have their own pens.

Contact Information

Address: Km 17.1, Rodovia das Cataratas, Foz do Iguaçu, 85853–000

Phone: 045/3529-8282      


Local and Hidden

In the middle of the jungle and overlooking the river, there is a sanctuary called Nuestra Señora de Iguazu. Here there is an old amphitheatre with a capacity of 7,000 spectators. In the center there is a small altar where, on important dates (such as Easter week), an image of Santa María of the Iguazú is placed. In the chapel there is the cross, made from a jungle vine, known as “staircase monkey”. The sanctuary is 2 km from route 12 by kilometer 5 approx, where the entrance is oppossite  Guira Oga Garden.  You can go by public bus from the Bus station.

Eating and Drinking

Aqva: Av. Córdoba and Carlos Thays. Tel. 422064 – Specializing in fish, elaborate dishes, good selection of wines and good atmosphere, Aqva is the new pearl of Iguazú. You have to try the catfish with dried tomatoes… ñami ! It’s a good idea to make a reservation. 


El Quincho del Tio Querido: Av. Peron y Caraguatá. Te.: +054-3757-420151– The favorite for Argentines, which might be a good or bad thing, depending on your tastes! It is not a good choice for vegetarians, because specializes in grilled fish and meat. Every day there is live music, but you can also choose to sit in the lounge if you prefer to talk with friends. It is a good choice to learn about Argentine folklore, the musicians are good and the food abundant. A good value.


Parrilla Pizza Color: Av. Cordoba 135. Tel. 420206 – Casual with a mixture of pizzas and other dishes. Cheaper compared to other restaurants in the area, so it’s frequented by many locals. Service can be slow, and it is not recommended to ask for very elaborate dishes, but the pizzas are good and well priced.


Loi Suites Restaurant: located inside the Hotel Loi Suites. Tel. 498300 – Slightly outside of the village, surrounded by jungle, this beautifully decorated restaurant is full of atmosphere. Located inside the five star hotel, this is the perfect choice for a big night out or a romantic dinner!. Enjoy!


La Rueda: Cordoba 28. Tel. 422-531- Pasta, fish and beef are some of the choices of a good and extended menu. And, although it is not cheap, the good quality of the products they use deserves the price. 



In the town most of the blocks are 100 mts each.

Taxis are cheap and you can deal a price beforehand.



Since Iguazú is one of the most visited places in Argentina, almost nothing closes in holidays, that is when most of people from big cities come here for fun. But, you must consider that in small towns people have the typical “siesta”. So, some shops and supermarkets are closed from 1pm to 4 pm.  In Sundays most of them are closed too.


What To Do If You Get Sick

Being a small town health care service is not the best of the World, but you still can find assistance.

Usually hotels have a list of doctors that can visit you in the place. Here details of one of the best private hospitals.

Iguazu Med- Sanatorio Privado

Bompland 33 – Puerto Iguazú – Misiones 


Useful telephone numbers

Calling from Iguazu:  Pay phones operate with chip cards or change (5, 10, 25, 50 cents and AR$1). You can make either short or long distance calls. Direct International Dial-Up: 00 + country code + area code + number.

Calling Iguazu: The international prefix for Argentina is 54 and for Iguazu is 3757. For example, to reach the             455-5555       in Iguazu  when calling from abroad, dial: 54-3757-455-5555.

– International operator: 000 
– National operator: 19 
– Medical Aid: 107 
– Information: 110

– Official time: 113 
– Phone Technical Support: 114 
– Fire Department: 100 


Parque Nacional Iguazú-Av. Victoria Aguirre 66 (3370) Puerto Iguazú –Tel: 03757-420722/423252. Fax: 03757-420382.




A little basic Spanish goes a long way here and we recommend studying up (at least a tad) on menu translation so that you don’t end up eating the only thing you know how to order all the time. Although the guidebooks say that most Argentineans speak a little English, in Iguazu this is not true.



In a word… simple.

As in most of the world, people from the countryside is more shy and respectful than in big cities. They feel nearer their neighbors in Paraguay than from Porteños (people from Buenos Aires).



When you visit the Park, is always good to carry extra clothes and a towel. The strength of the waterfalls makes a constant mist! Also sunglasses, hat and sunscreen. It can be very hot during the day.


Entrance National Park

Always remember the entrance tickets for all national parks in the country are paid in Argentine pesos! No credit cards.



 Although you are all going to see the falls, it’s always a good idea to keep an eye on the trees. The variety of birds and other animals in the park is much more exciting than you would imagine, although given the number of visitors, the animals are quite shy. You might see woodpeckers, Magpies, and Monkeys. And pay attention, the raccoons can steal your food! So try to keep your bag far from the ground.  



If you decide to walk all the paths in the Park, at the end of the day will have walked 7 km, so make sure to wear adequate footwear! Not flip flops!


What not to forget

 Carrying insect repellent on all tours is very important! Have it handy to use after sweating or getting wet.


Lunch in the Park

Inside of the parks in both countries there are options for lunch but prices are higher than in town, similar to an airport. You can save some money if buy a bottle of water and some snacks at the supermarket the night before.



Iguazu Falls is one of the most popular destinations in Latin America. This means that at all times of the year there will be lots of people. If you arrive at the park in the early morning, you will be able to enjoy some quiet hours.



This part of the country is cheaper than other destinations in Argentina. A way to help the local community, wherever possible, is to buy directly of the Guarani people.



There are several optional excursions inside both parks. The boat trip to go closer to the falls is cheaper on the Argentine side. It runs every 20 minutes and you don’t need reservation. It is highly recommended to do this activity at the end of the day, after having walked paths, since you will get completely soaked! (That’s part of the excitement!)



As a country of beef eaters, Argentina has only a few opportunities to taste fish as good as the Surubi and Pacu. Both are very popular in this area, and highly recommended!


Photo Tips

The best pictures of the majority of the falls will occur during the morning hours whether from the Argentina or Brazilian side.  The sun rises from the Brazilian side and lights up the falls during the morning.  

The park on the Argentina side opens at 8:00 a.m. and photographers should be up and ready to embark on their photography adventure.

The Brazilian side opens up at 9:00 a.m. and it is a good idea to be there before that.  

The Brazilian hillside and rainforest shades photographers as they view the sun light falls across the way.

Devil’s throat is best photographed in the afternoon once the sun has risen.  If you attempt to view Devil’s Throat in the morning you will find yourself and your camera facing directly into the sun.  The park opens at night four evenings a year during the full moon.  

This also makes for creative images out over Devil’s Throat – make sure you take a tripod.

Many of the views of the falls from both the Brazilian and Argentinean sides are engulfed with spray or mist from the falls.  Make sure you have protective gear for your equipment.  If you do take the boat ride into the falls – they will drive the boat up to the beginning of the mist and pause to allow you to take pictures.  Then they will provide you with water proof bags to store your equipment as they make their way into the falls – you will get drenched.  

This is not a place the camera goes under your shirt mist – it is a downpour.

 SAN IGNACIO JESUITS RUINS/ WANDA Precious Stones Mine ( full day)

Traveling on the National Route 12, and passing through several typical Northern towns, we can reach the San Ignacio Ruins.
They were built in the XVII Century by Jesuits Missionaries.
Here a professional guide will explain the work of these missionaries and the regional importance of their contribution to the religious and cultural input of the Guarani Culture.
A precious stone mine is also visited in the way. 
The special feature of the mine, is that it is over the Paraná river, and it shows regional precious stones variety in a open space, mix with vast pine, yerba mate, and tea plantations.

ADVENTURE / Iguazú Forest ( 4 hours aprox)

It is an ecological-adventure excursion with various activities in direct contact with nature.
Activities are: camping, trekking, and rappel.


DINNER SHOW / Rafain Grill Place

In the Brazilian Falls way you will find the fantastic Rafain Grill Place. 
It is an excellent opportunity to try local dishes and the famous regional meat, served at the wished cooking style, plus a varied buffet of deserts and ice creams.
During dinner a Latinamerican show with international artists takes place. 
It has 1200 places, air conditioning, and exclusive parking lot. 

Full moon walk

Night tour in the national park, where you will enjoy the full moon over these impressive waterfalls. This is an incredible and romantic tour that will show you a different side of Iguazu’s national park and its nocturnal natural life.  Is given only five nights every month, and places are restricted so you may book it in advance.  You must include dinner at the La selva restaurant, buffet of barbecue, salads pastas and dessert.  Its canceled due to the weather.

 SAN IGNACIO JESUITS RUINS/ WANDA Precious Stones Mine ( full day)

Traveling on the National Route 12, and passing through several typical Northern towns, we can reach the San Ignacio Ruins.
They were built in the XVII Century by Jesuits Missionaries.
Here a professional guide will explain the work of these missionaries and the regional importance of their contribution to the religious and cultural input of the Guarani Culture.
A precious stone mine is also visited in the way. 
The special feature of the mine, is that it is over the Paraná river, and it shows regional precious stones variety in a open space, mix with vast pine, yerba mate, and tea plantations.

ADVENTURE / Iguazú Forest ( 4 hours aprox)

It is an ecological-adventure excursion with various activities in direct contact with nature.
Activities are: camping, trekking, and rappel.


DINNER SHOW / Rafain Grill Place

In the Brazilian Falls way you will find the fantastic Rafain Grill Place. 
It is an excellent opportunity to try local dishes and the famous regional meat, served at the wished cooking style, plus a varied buffet of deserts and ice creams.
During dinner a Latinamerican show with international artists takes place. 
It has 1200 places, air conditioning, and exclusive parking lot. 

Full moon walk

Night tour in the national park, where you will enjoy the full moon over these impressive waterfalls. This is an incredible and romantic tour that will show you a different side of Iguazu’s national park and its nocturnal natural life.  Is given only five nights every month, and places are restricted so you may book it in advance.  You must include dinner at the La selva restaurant, buffet of barbecue, salads pastas and dessert.  Its canceled due to the weather.

Distance from Bs As

1284 miles.               


Are there banks, ATMs?

Yes! There are several in town. There are also ATMs at the entrance to the parks, both Brazilian and Argentine.


 Yes. Although it is slower than in larger cities.


There are some call centers at the bus station, in Misiones and Cordoba avenues.


How far is Puerto Iguazu from the falls?

17 Km


Is the water drinkable?

No. (A bit ironic, no?)



Argentina’s unit of currency is the peso, which has held steady at about nine to one against the US dollar (but this rate could change quickly). Notes come in denominations of 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 pesos. One peso equals 100 centavos; coins come in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 25 and 50 centavos. The $ sign in front of a price is usually used to signify pesos, so this should be the case unless otherwise marked.

Don’t be dismayed if you receive dirty and hopelessly tattered banknotes; they will still be accepted everywhere. Some banks refuse worn or defaced US dollars, however, so make sure you arrive in Buenos Aires with pristine bills. Casa Piano (a well known Cambio) will probably change your older or written-on bills, but they will discount a 3% of the value.

Sadly fake currency has become more common. So look for a clear watermark or running thread on the largest bills, and be especially careful when receiving change in dark nightclubs or taxis. If you hesitate ask to change it for another note.

Due to local restrictions for buying US dollars for locals, if you change money on arrival to Argentina, you have to keep the receipt. In case you want to change your left over pesos on the way back to your country, you will have to show the first receipt.


Open daily from 8 hrs to 13 hrs. Not all the banks change foreign currency however there are many currency exchange shops.
Banks might have longer lines and more limited opening hours but may offer more security regarding fake notes.

There are many Cajeros Automáticos  (ATM) in the town, but they dispense just Argentinean currency.

There might be a limit amount per transaction, depending on the bank, but you can always do many transactions in the same ATM.

Beware of per-transaction fees. To avoid having a fistful of large-denomination bills, withdraw odd amounts like 290 pesos.

There is also an ATM at the entrance of the National Park, on both sides, Argentina and Brazil.


Credit cards

Many tourist services, larger stores, hotels and restaurants take credit cards such as Visa and MasterCard, especially for big purchases. Be aware, however, that some businesses add a recargo (surcharge) of up to 10% to credit-card purchases; ask ahead of time if this is the case. Some lower-end hotels and private businesses will not accept credit cards, and tips can’t usually be added to credit-card bills at restaurants.


Traveler’s checks

Traveler’s checks are very impractical in Argentina, and in Iguazu is almost imposible to change them and definitively impossible to change them at a good rate.



The Spanish word for tip is ‘propina’ – a synonym of ‘reward’- and derivative from the Latin word “propinare” meaning to give something.

 We cannot stress enough that tipping is a personal choice and should be based upon the quality of service provided. Nobody should expect a tip and do not feel obligated to give one if you are unsatisfied with the service.

It is difficult to give firm guidelines as to how much to tip a provider of services.

In general terms, we can say that It is normal practice in Latin America to tip anyone who provides a service, including waiters, guides, porters, room-service and maid-service in hotels. For everyone, with the possible exception of guides, it is more convenient to receive a tip in local currency.

In restaurants it’s customary to tip about 10% of the bill. Some Argentines just leave leftover change. Note that tips can’t be added to credit-card bills, so carry cash for this purpose.

Tip hotel porters for handling bags. Calculate an amount of currency equal to about $1.00 for every two bags.

Same amount is calculated for drivers if they help you with your suitecases.

If you are happy with the housekeeping you may want to consider tipping the maid between US$0.50 – $1.00 per night

You might also tip the concierge staff if you have used them to arrange dinner reservations, transportation or leisure activities.

In Argentina we don’t regularly tip taxi drivers.


Dangers & annoyances

Iguazu has been always a small, safe and relaxed town. But since tourism has grown so much some attacks in hotels have been registered in the last past few years.


You have more chances to be attacked by a raccoon than having a security issue in Iguazú, but still is advisable to be conscious and careful don’t flash any wealth, don’t stagger around drunk, always be aware of your surroundings.

Even imitation jewelry and small items can attract attention and are best left behind. Keep a very firm hold of purses and cameras when out and about, and keep them on your lap in restaurants, not dangling off the back of your chair.


Always remain alert for pickpockets. Try to keep your cash and credit cards in different places, so that if one gets stolen you can fall back on the other. Tickets and other valuables are best left in hotel safes.


And mainly, when you leave the hotel, make sure you closed the windows and door properly, and put the valued in the safe box.

Lonely Planet

“Northeast Argentina is defined by its water. Muscular rivers roll southward through flat green pastureland that they flood at will, the crashing roar of spectacular waterfalls reverberates through the surrounding jungle, and fragile wetlands support myriad birdlife, snapping caimans and cuddly capybaras. The peaceful Iguazú river, meandering through the tropical forest between Brazil and Argentina, dissolves in fury and power in the world’s most awe-inspiring cataracts – a sensual feast that cannot be missed…”


Rough Guide

“Poor Niagara! By Eleanor Roosevelt

Composed of over 250 separate cascades, and straddling the border between Argentina and Brazil, the Iguazú Falls (or “Cataratas”, as they are known locally) are quite simply the world’s most dramatic waterfalls. Set among the exotic-looking subtropical forests of Parque Nacional Iguazú in Argentina, and Parque Nacional do Iguaçu in Brazil, the Falls tumble for a couple of kilometres over a complex set of cliffs from the Río Iguazú Superior to the Río Iguazú Inferior below. At their heart is the dizzying Garganta del Diablo, a powerhouse display of natural forces in which 1800 cubic metres of water per second hurtle over a three-kilometre semicircle of rock into the boiling river canyon 70m below.”


“Iguazú consists of some 275 separate waterfalls—in the rainy season there are as many as 350—that plunge more than 200 feet onto the rocks below. They cascade in a deafening roar at a bend in the Iguazú River (Río Iguazú/Rio Iguaçu) where the borders of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay meet. Dense, lush jungle surrounds the falls: here the tropical sun and the omnipresent moisture make the jungle grow at a pace that produces a towering pine tree in two decades instead of the seven it takes in, say, Scandinavia. By the falls and along the roadside, rainbows and butterflies are set off against vast walls of red earth, which is so ubiquitous that eventually even paper currency in the area turns red from exposure to the stuff.
The falls and the lands around them are protected by Brazil’s Parque Nacional do Iguaçu (where the falls go by the Portuguese name of Foz do Iguaçu) and the Argentina’s Parque Nacional Iguazú (where the falls are referred to by their Spanish name, the Cataratas de Iguazú). The Brazilian town of Foz do Iguaçu and the Argentine town of Puerto Iguazú are the hubs for exploring the falls (the Paraguayan town of Ciudad del Este is also nearby).”



“One of the great natural wonders of the world, theIguaçu Falls(Portuguese: Cataratas do Iguaçu, Spanish:Cataratas del Iguazú, Tupi: Y Ûasu “big water”) are situated near the border of Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina. The area is on the UNESCO World Heritage List.”



“Any trip to Argentina should include the Iguazú Falls. They’re the biggest falls in South America – half as high again as Niagara – and a spectacular experience. You can get right up close to the water as it gushes down, along paths which enable you to enjoy the natural splendour of their subtropical setting, filled with birdsong and vividly coloured butterflies. In all, there are 275 falls stretching over 2.7 km but the main attraction is the Garganta del Diablo (devil’s throat), where walkways take you right above the falls to see the smooth river transformed in an instant into a seething torrent as the water crashes 74 m over a horseshoe-shaped precipice onto basalt rocks below, filling the air with bright spray and a deafening roar. The whole chasm is filled constantly with billowing clouds of mist in which great dusky swifts miraculously wheel and dart, and an occasional rainbow hovers. Then you can walk close to the bottom of the immensely wide Saltos Bossetti and Dos Hermanos, or take a boat trip, which speeds you beneath the falling water to get a total drenching. Viewed from below, the rush of water is unforgettably beautiful, falling through jungle filled with begonias, orchids, ferns, palms and toucans, flocks of parrots, cacique birds and myriad butterflies. There are some longer trails enabling you to enjoy the diverse flora and fauna in this national park, and several excellent guides on hand whose expertise will considerably add to your pleasure. The whole experience is uplifting, the park itself is clean and well organized, and the area is easily worth at least a couple of days of your itinerary. 

Argentina shares the falls with Brazil and you can visit them from either side for two quite different experiences. The Brazilian side has a smaller, more restricted park, and offers a panoramic view from its limited trails but you’re kept at a distance from the falls themselves. If you have to choose just one, go for the Argentine side, where you can get closer to the falls, walk in the jungle and explore the rainforest. Allow at least two days to see both sides, or to return to the park a second time in Argentina (half price if you keep your ticket). “



In 1542, the Spanish explorer Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca was the first European to discover what is now called Iguazu Falls. He was drawn by the noise of the water, which can be heard at a distance of several kilometers. When the Spanish arrived in the 16th century, the Guarani Indians were the principal inhabitants of the area.  He was sailing the Iguazú River downstream looking the way to get to Asunción.

In the XVII century, Jesuits Missions  arrived to America to start  teaching Catholic religion to the  indigenas. Their firsts villages were built in the north of Argentina, west of Paraguay and south of Brazil. In the Argentina territory, the Jesuits stayed in the Misiones province (this is the reason for its name) specially around the falls, but they must move towards the south of the province because some Portuguese wanted to invade them and keep the Guarani as slaves.  In 1773 the Jesuits priests were sent back to Europe. Not all the villages were destroyed and despaired in the jungle. Some of them were saved and restored, so we can visit them nowadays, like the ones in San Ignacio, Santa Ana and Candelaria.

In 1881, the province of Corrientes, which at that time included what is now Misiones, sold 50 square leagues (13,000 square kilometres (5,000 sq mi)) at the current site of Puerto Iguazú near the falls. The land changed hands three times in the course of just two years, and ended up as the property of Gregorio Lezama. At that time Misiones separated from Corrientes. Lezama funded a scientific expedition to explore the territory, enlisting Carlos Bosetti and Jordan Hummel for that purpose. Those two explorers later organized the first tourist trip to the falls. In 1888 Lezama also sold the land, this time to Martín Errecaborde and Company.

Around 1910 the National government (helped by Francisco Moreno and Charles Thays) confiscated those fields to create the National Park.



165 m



It is estimated that 80,000 inhabitants live in Puerto Iguazú, and 400,000 in Foz (on the Brazilian side).


Why is called Iguaçu?

In the language of the original inhabitants of Iguazu, the word meant “Big water.”



 The economy is centered around tourism, given that the city’s many hotels provide the principal source of jobs for its inhabitants. Many international hotels have been and are being constructed along the banks of the Iguazú River.

Want to know more?

News, Articles and more…

Iguazu Falls was a candidate for the 7 natural wonders of South America.

Anyone who has been here would understand why.

Here a selection of interesting, useful, fun and informative articles that we love reading and sharing with you.


South America’s Mighty Iguacu

By MAUREEN B. FANT; The New York Times

 “WHEN I saw the film “The Mission” on television last winter it never entered my mind that I too could visit those incredible waterfalls, much less with very little difficulty and at no particular risk to life and limb. But soon afterward, at the end of March, I found myself accompanying a friend to Rio de Janeiro and Curitiba, capital of the southern Brazilian state of Parana. A trip to the falls is a logical and relatively simple excursion from either city, so we went.

The cataracts, 275 in all, are collectively known as the Iguacu Falls and are situated in a bend of the Iguacu River between Brazil and Argentina. They’re big and powerful but, more important, they are heart-wrenchingly beautiful…” Read more


Iguazu Falls – A True Natural Wonder

By Jay Travels

“Iguazu Falls was the second stop on my first South American adventure that took me through 5 cities in 3 countries. Over the course of nine days, I hit Rio de Janeiro, Iguazu Falls on the borders of both Brazil/Argentina, Colonia del Sacramento in Uruguay and finished off with Buenos Aires in Argentina…” Read more


Iguazú Falls and beyond

By Vicky Baker, The Guardian, Uk.

Don’t just do Argentina’s Iguazú Falls in a day trip, says Vicky Baker. If you stay at a nearby lodge, you can explore what remains of the Atlantic rainforest.

‘Rainforest? In Argentina? I didn’t even know it had rainforest.” This was the common response when I told people about my trip. When you think of the South American rainforest, it’s hard to think past the Amazon. Yet the Atlantic rainforest – spanning Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina – once covered more than a million km sq.” Read More


Iguazu Falls

By Alan Cook,

“The sign outside the Cataratas Hotel reads “Don’t walk on the paths at night as jaguars and snakes abound.” Actually, the only walking we did last night was from our bus directly into the hotel, since an airline strike delayed our arrival at Iguazu Falls. Fortunately, Princess Cruises arranged for about 90 of us to fly to the Argentina side of the falls from Buenos Aires on a chartered plane.” Read More


Iguazu Falls: A photo Tour

By Kelvin Lim, Bootsnail One Stop-Indie Travel Guide

“Amazing, Grand, Spectacular! Those are the three words that would sum up the Iguazu Falls. The minute I saw the falls, I couldn’t believe the sheer number of waterfalls around and the massive volume of water that gushes down to the Iguazu River! There are waterfalls, and there is Iguazu Falls.” Read More

Iguazu Falls: Brazil vs Argentina

By Emma Field, The travel Editor

“Dividing Brazil and Argentina in spectacular fashion, Iguazu Falls toss 1,500m3 of water over a horseshoe-shaped drop of 80 metres every second. The 275 cataracts stretch for 2.7 km across the Rio Iguazu making Iguazu wider than Victoria Falls and higher than Niagara. No photographs can prepare you for this awesome display of nature’s might.


Known as Foz do Iguaçu in Brazil and Cataratas del Iguazú in Argentina the Falls must be seen from both sides of the border to get the most out of thisUNESCO World Natural Heritage Site. Argentina and Brazil both have National Parks alongside the Falls and both are very well organised with plenty of activities, including boat trips and hikes.” Read More




Iguazú in Concert.

Iguazú in Concert is a mega-music festival that every year brings together hundreds of children and youth around the world in the most wonderful natural scenery: the Iguazu Falls. Over his past five editions, Iguazú in Concert has joined more than 3,500 children. The shows are given during six days with individual concerts performed by orchestras, choirs and soloists who present their repertoires, with tracks ranging from the classics to the most representative of their cultures.The festival culminates with a Big Final Concert inside the Iguazu National Park, with the falls as background. And it is totally free!!