There is a walk along the top of the gorge to Devil's Throat. You can hear the roar of this might fall and see the spray long before you get to see the fall itself. Unfortunately, due to visa issues, I have only got my friend Peter's photos to see. Thanks to Peter for the use of his pics.
From the Brazilian side you can get some awsome views of nearly all the Iguazu Falls. Unfortunately, due to passport and visa problems, I didn't get to see these for myself. Thanks to P Jones for the use of his photographs.
The best way to take the sheer spectacular of Iguazu Falls is from the air. Helicopter rides are availalbe at the entrance to the national park. There are two different flights - the standard flight takes you over the falls and takes about 10 minutes while the longer flight includes views of the Itaipu Dam and land features marking the junction of the borders of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay.
The helicopters operate from 9am to 6pm depending on weather conditions.
Naturally, the thing to see when in Foz is the Foz do Iguaçu themselves: The Falls of the Iguaçu River, and the primary reason this city is an international tourist destination.
However, the falls themselves are quite some distance from the city of Falls do Iguaçu. In fact, once you get into the city, the directions to the national park are given as "As Cataratas" as Foz do Iguaçu is also the name of the city.
A frequent question: Is the Brazilian Side better or the Argentine Side better? If you have time, do both!!! The Brazilian side has many viewpoints from which it is possible to see things that simply can not be seen on the Argentine side, including some very nice panorama views of some very large sections.
The Argentine Side, however, allows you to get very close to a number of the falls, has a much larger distance of walking paths, and by many people are regarded to have done a better job at maintaining the ecological integrity of their part of the cross-border national park.
The falls are so massive, however, that neither side really does them justice. No matter where you stand, the best viewpoint only gives you one small fraction of the whole picture. Unless you can stand next to one of these falls, and realize that it is 269 feet tall, and spread out over several kilometers of fall line, then relate that to what you are seeing, then you start to get an idea of just how massive these falls are. It also shows just how distant you have to be from them to see them all at the same time. (About the only way I can think of to do this is to view them from Google's Satellite View - they show up pretty nicely there, but the sense of scale is pretty strange, and the view of the actual falls from the top from space isn't that impressive).
The water flow over the falls peaks in December and January. While your chance of being rained on is also greater during those months, if it does rain you will be treated to a park that is hugely vacant of visitors. As to the possibility of getting wet: you will be walking on pathways that are several feet from one of the largest waterfall complexes in the world. You will get very wet even on a day with no clouds in the sky! (Bring protection for your delicate camera gear, no matter the weather!)
Brazil requires a tourist visa before entering the country for USA citizens, while Argentina does not. Many of the Americans I have met that have visited this area say they did only the Argentine side for this particular reason.
However, the Falls are well outside the City of Foz do Iguaçu. While there has been a lot of development along the main road between the city of Foz do Iguaçu and the National Park of that name, there is still quite a lot of remaining forest land that separate the city from the national park. Furthermore, as of 2001, it became no longer possible for most individuals to drive their own vehicles or tour bus groups to enter the falls. The Argentine Side of the falls are not only well outside the city of Foz do Iguaçu but also across a major bridge and international border crossing.
Therefore, the majority of my material for the falls are located in:
Parque Nacional del Iguaçu (the Brazilian National Park side of the falls), because after all the falls and all of the other attractions related to the national park are inside the national park. Thus, I have put them in their correct location.
I don't haven't done too much with the stuff I have from my 2002 excursion to the Argentine side of the falls, but maybe one day.
The web site below is for the concessionaire that operates the web site for the national park, as it does not seem to have its own true separate web site existence.
I took the panoramic tour and became fascinated at what I saw. It was possible to fully understand the operation of the plant. The tour starts with a movie in the auditorium, where the making- off Itaipu is explained and shows the numerous sustainability projects promoted by it, including: protection of endangered species, and preservation of freshwater, riparian forests, children's education neighboring communities. From there, go to two lookouts where the plant is explained in more details and it is followed by a bus tour around the area. Arrive early as demand is large and fills up quickly.
Returning to film, I was horrified by the scene where the ex-brazilian president Lula appears at the microphone saying: -"The Itaipu Dam is completed " What impudence! What will foreigners and children vistiors understand? The Itaipu Dam was released in the 8o´s much long time before his government that began in 2003. But , here in Brazil , when the son is handsome everybody wants to be the father....
Attention blood donors: The visit has a 50% discount for us. It costs $ 20.10 and payed just $ 10.05
the pic is not that good, but still gives an impression of the wonders and the massiv loads of water plunging and crashing over the cliffs. Alvar Nunes, called...
Cabeza de Vaca, presumably because of his stubbornness, arrived at the Falls in 1541 and named them... Saltos de Santa Maria. but it fell into disuse and the Falls became known for the world as Foz do Iguacu....after the Tupi-Guarani language...meaning Great Waters
in Paraguai the Foz is spellt ...Iguassu, in Argentina..Iguazu
Best time of the year to see the Falls is between August and November.
if you travel between May and July......you might not get close to Falls because of the floodings and rainy season.
in the early 70's the three countries had talks about a hydroelectric powerplant, building a dam at the Itaipu River. for this mega project of over 500square miles, something had to give, mother nature had to be restrained and one of the most beautiful Sete Quedas Falls fell victim.
situated at the upper Parana River, Jesuits had worked in the 16th century here... have a look for more information on the Sete Quedas, click on the external webpage,
There are some interesting trails and paths. I went to the Path Of the Falls which is 1,2 km long trail with the overwiev of the falls. The end of the trail is the most dazzling fall, Devils's Throat.
Along with a panoramic view from this side of the Falls we felt we were seeing the Falls from below. It was an incredible view and the their roaring thunder add to the drama. There is a walkway that takes you right out to them so you feel surrounded by there fury. The effect is quite surreal!!
We headed out at 8:00 with our tour ...once again . This time we're heading to the Brazilian side of the Fall. It was nice to see all the same people from the previous day with us once again.
I really didn't expect to be wowed here as I expected a much more panaramic, distant view.
It was panaramic view but it sure wowed us!!
These waterfalls are the biggest in the world, about 2700 meters wide and falling down about 75 meters. The river Iguaçu is here the frontier between the Brasilian state of Paraná and the Argentine province Misiones. A few km downstream from the waterfalls the Iguaçu joins the river Paraná. The waterfalls are easy to reach, there are three cities nearby, Foz do Iguaçu in Brazil, Puerto Iguazu in Argentine and Ciudad del Este in Paraguay.Foz do Iguaçu is connected by bridges both with Argentina and Paraguay. You may easily notice the waterfalls even from distances of 10 km or more because there is always a cloud of fine drops of water above the forests marking the place of the waterfalls.
The area around the falls is forming National parks both at the Brazilian and Argentine side.
course I am bias, course I had better access to the brasilian site of the Foz. but from every point one looks at the Great Waters.......its not only a beautiful site, these days it's also a world heritage site.
for all photographers out there........the Mornings
are the best time to take pix from the
more info on my Parana page.
has been for me a little off the beaten path, and had to beat the red tape at the time of unrest in South America....made it though.
best for photography
more info on my Argentina page
The fallas are the main attraction in the area allthough there are many attractions.
They are just so bloody big and amazing that you gotta go and see it for yourself.
There is not just one but many falls and every time you turn a corner you get a new "Niagara falls" in your face.
You can find informations, tips, pictures on my page Parque Nacional do Iguaçu:
Please, visit that page. Thank you!!
The Itaipu dam is one of the biggest hydro electric dams in the world and located right on the border between Brazil and Paraguay.
It produces enough electricity to power almost all of
paraguay and all southern Brazil.
The dam is a joint venture between Brazil and Paraguay and considerd one of the "7 technical wonders of the world".
There are tours to the dam leaving several times a day from Foz do iguacu and they are very interesting and well worth the time and money.