"Falling Water . . ." Top 5 Page for this destination Parque Nacional del Iguazù by acemj
Parque Nacional del Iguazù Travel Guide: 399 reviews and 1,166 photos
I wonder if the famous American architect Frank Lloyd Wright ever visited the Iguassu Falls on the border between Argentina and Brazil. Creativity can often be inspired by nature and this being the case, I would recommend that all aspiring young architects, artists and musicians pay a visit to the most magnificent waterfalls that I have ever seen.
I hate to compare too often, but as a personal reference point, Niagara Falls comes to mind. It is said that Eleanor Roosevelt exclaimed "poor Niagara" after visiting Iguassu Falls. In fact, Niagara's volume of water is greater, but Iguassu is nearly 4 times wider than her North American counterpart.
I've also heard people compare these cataratas (Spanish for waterfalls) to Victoria Falls in Africa (the world's largest falls). While I've never been to Africa, I've heard that the thundering mist produced by Victoria Falls often makes it more difficult to see and appreciate. Iguassu's mist, on the other hand, is very fine and doesn't obscure your view of the amazing sight. It is more than this though. There is something just magical about the forest that surrounds the falls here. The water seems to seep out in places and explode from the cliffs in others. The greenery that contrasts with the white and turbulent water is beautiful to behold. Also, this is not just one giant waterfall. It's actually a series of 275 falls that stretches for almost two miles along a great crack in the earth caused by volcanic activity long ago.
In this part of the world, it is often debated which side of the border is best to experience the grandeur of the falls. I spent the previous day exploring the Brazilian side of the falls and I felt my trip would be incomplete without giving the Argentine side a chance as well.
What was my conclusion? Well, for the overall view, the overwhelming spectacle, and to comprehend the energy and scope of these waterfalls, my vote is for Brazil. But, to experience more subtle wonders, greater surprises, more wildlife and better trails, you can't miss Argentina. In other words, you've got to see both sides!!! After all, both national parks are designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
First of all, in English it's Iguassu. In Spanish, Iguazu and in Portuguese, Iguacu , but the etymology of the word derives from an Guarani (natives) word, meaning "big water".
The Caingangues Indians who once lived in this area had a theory about how the falls were formed that, while contradicting modern scientific evidence, makes for a much better story. They believed that M'boy, a God-serpent, ruled the world. When a beautiful girl named Naipi was set to be sacrificed to M'boy, the young son of the Caingangues chief named Taroba decided to try to save her. On the night of the scheduled sacrifice, Taroba and Naipi tried to flee, but M'boy was angered and unsympathetic to their love, so he created a great crack in the earth that formed the waterfalls and transformed Taroba into a palm tree and Naipi into a rock beneath the falls where they can both be seen to this day.
I flew into the Aeroporto Internacional Foz do Iguacu, which is about 8 miles outside of downtown Foz do Iguacu in... more travel advice
Pack light and bring some bottled water for hiking around the falls. It's often humid here in the jungle, so be sure to... more travel advice
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