After 8 weeks away, it was fitting that the grand finale in my last week would be a visit to the Iguazu Falls. The falls are 150 million years old and the name means big water. There are 275 waterfalls shared primarily between Brazil and Argentina.
There were four of us who took the long 15-hour bus journey to and from the falls. It was me, Patricia, Barbara and Mattheus – one of the awesome staff at the Barra Beach Hostel. Barbara and Mattheus met at one of the beach parties and have been seeing each other since. Another fabulous vacation romance! Sadly, Kim had to head back to Toronto. But it was great to have four of us for the road trip.
After my many Argentinian bus rides, the one to the falls was a piece of cake. I slept through most of it and was totally refreshed for our latest adventure. We stayed at a very cute hostel called Garden Stone. It felt like a tropical paradise and we had a spacious private room for the four of us. We dropped off our luggage and headed straight to the Brazil side of the falls.
While I am very proud of Niagara Falls, they don’t compare to Iguazu because there are so many stunning and majestic falls. The Brazil side boasts a panoramic view that is truly breathtaking. I could quickly understand why the falls are called one of the seven natural wonders of the world. We took the afternoon to travel across walkways that took us to various viewpoints of the falls. We even got so close that we got quite wet from just the mist. The refreshing water was welcome after walking around in the blazing hot sun.
We headed back to the small town of Puerto Iguazu on the Argentinian side. It was very cute, with lots of shops and a few bars and restaurants. We stopped off for a delicious pitcher of fruity cocktails after the falls and then went out later in the evening for a fabulous dinner.
The next morning, we got up at 7:30 so we could enjoy a full day on the Argentinian side of the falls. The gang was excited to do a 3km hike to see a hidden waterfall. The hike was not very scenic but we did see a pack of hungry South American raccoons, gigantic ants and spiders with webs that spread from one side of the path to the other, as well as many butterflies in an array of colours. The highlight was seeing wild monkeys on our way back. One of them came down a tree to see us and was casually munching on a piece of fruit. There was also a very cute baby. They were so much fun to watch!
The waterfall was small but beautiful. People were swimming and sun bathing on the rocks. We took some photos and headed back so we could spend a full afternoon exploring the main falls. We started out at Garganta Del Diablo – the devil’s throat. You really do feel like you are at the core, standing directly in front of a massive fall with tonnes of water crashing into the river below. The noise is deafening and the water is mesmorizing to watch.
The hike ate up a lot of our time so we had no time for lunch and had to rush across a million walkways to get to a boat ride we booked for 4pm. We barely made it but it was so worth it! The boat ride took us right under the falls and we got drenched. It was so amazing to be so close to them. This was the highlight of our Iguazu adventure!
When we got off the boat, we had a little time to explore this side of the falls. It was looked like a tropical paradise and was incredibly beautiful. This was my favourite part of both sides of the falls. I wish we had more time to explore it but we had to rush back to catch our 15-hour bus ride to Florionopolis. We took some awesome pictures before we left and then I blew a big kiss goodbye to Iguazu. I have a feeling I’ll be back again someday!