I have just returned from a wonderful photography trip to one of the seven natural wonders of the world – Iguazu Falls. The falls are shared by the Iguaçu National Park (Brazil) and Iguazú National Park (Argentina) , and have been designated the title of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The “Iguazu” name comes from Guarani or Tupi words, and means big water. Iguazu Falls resides where the Iguazu River falls over the edge of the Paraná Plateau, some 14miles upstream from the Iguazu’s confluence with the Paraná River. The waterfall system comprises of 275 falls along 1.67 miles of the Iguazu River. Iguazu falls boasts the greatest average annual flow of any waterfall in the world.
The whole site is truly breathtaking, with both sides worth a visit, and certainly alot to take photos of. There is often a debate as to which side is the best. There is something different on each side.
For me the Argentine side has far more to do in terms of walks around the falls. There are 3 trails you can take around Iguazu falls Argentina. A lower trail walk, an upper trail walk above the falls, and literally on top of them in places, and a trail to The Devil’s Throat (La Garganta del Diablo), an area where around 50% off the falls fall into a narrow section. The Argentine Iguazu falls national park has an abundance of wildlife in it. You will regularly see Toco toucans flying above you, monkeys playing in the jungle surrounding the falls, and masses of stunning butterflies fluttering past you. These things truly make the experience special.
The Brazilian Iguacu falls on the other hand has one trail. But this trail for me has the better views photographically. You can see the falls you were walking above on the Argentine side, and hence you get a much better point of view and overall layout of the falls. People say you don’t get close on the Brazilian side, but I disagree. At the end part of the trail, you can almost touch the falls (and take a better photo). As for wildlife it would seem the Brazilian side has less to offer, mainly due tot he fact that the surrounding jungle on this side is quite a bit smaller in size. That’s not to say you wont find Coatis (a raccoon like animal) or monkeys about.
Overall I couldnt decide between the two sides of Iguazu falls, you have to visit both IMO. Check out my photo gallery of Iguazu Falls here
A couple of tips to note:
- Take insect repellent. Iguazu falls is teeming with mosquitoes.
- If you don’t like getting wet, you must take waterproofs. You will get completely soaked through at points, as will your camera.
- Save your money by not staying at the Sheraton hotel. If you are hoping to be able to walk about on the trails after dark just because you are staying inside the park in the Sheraton hotel, think again – you can’t. I managed to sneak on 20 mins earlier to try and get park of the best light, but that was it.
- For best photos I found the sunset on the Brazilian Iguacu side was best by far. The sunrise was nice too on the Argentine Iguazu Falls side.
See the entire collection of photos of Iguazu falls.