Iguassu Falls- the Brazilian side
Iguassu Falls was even better than I imagined. Honestly, expectations were kept low because a few of the “big” must-see places around the world end up being less than special (stay tuned for my Christ-the-Redeemer statue fail). Located between Argentina and Brazil, you can and should visit Iguassu Falls from both countries for vastly different experiences. Brazil is home to the panorama views and inexpensive helicopter rides with the best views of the entirety of Iguassu Falls.
Most of my group did the Helisul helicopter ride. I did not. I wish I would have, could have, but flying terrifies me and I would have been in misery for the entire 5 minute falls tour. With Kobe in the back of my mind, it just wasn’t happening. Yep, I’m a wimp.
Really you are flying less than 10 minutes total. But their photos were amazing and well worth it if you can stomach a helicopter tour.By the way, it is about $80 US so it isn’t a bank-breaker.
About an hour later, my first glimpse of Iguassu Falls was at an overlook at the start of the short and steep hike down into the gorge and then back up again.
I would guess it is about a mile in total but mostly straight down with the option of an elevator or stairs straight back up. Also the entirety of the hike is very crowded even at the start of the Covid-19 epidemic. Our tour leader and driver mentioned that the park was dead. I can’t even imagine how busy it gets on non-Coronavirus days (this was the beginning of March so not widespread Covid-19 in the area at the time, probably).
On the Brazilian side, there is only one main trail so we hiked on after devouring a quick lunch at the snack bar. We used our Purell hand sanitizer and hiked down. It was crowded and everyone was elbowing each other for selfie space at the railings of these magnificent waterfalls.
The views were magical. Iguassu Falls did not disappoint!
Besides the people, there was also the heat to contend with and it was brutal. There was no shade and probably 95 degrees with 99% humidity. We are in the rainforest after all. Wear your sunscreen everyone! (And if possible don’t go in the mid-afternoon heat like we did.)
My new pal Sonia and I were hikers and climbed the stairs rather than wait in the throngs of other sightseers to take the elevators. It was hot but hey, avoid those crowds. I rewarded myself with a coconut ice cream bar filled with dulce de leche. It was the best ice cream bar ever! The heat probably helped increase it’s deliciousness rating .
Even then, we were still sweaty humans so Sonia got us a giant Jaguar beer. Jaguars live in this rainforest (Beware!).
Beer in a paper cup with a view! This has to be one of the best beer views I’ve ever had.
Later that night after we showered and napped, we hit up a local gathering/barbeque for some amazing grilled meats, salads, and caipirinhas.
Too many caipirinhas (made up of lime, sugar and local spirits similar to rum) lead to excessive amounts of fun and dancing to 80s music.
My Brazil crew:
More Iguassu Falls from the Argentinian side up next!