Visiting the spectacular destination of the Iguazú Falls is an awe-inspiring and unforgettable experience. Occasionally you may be faced with the great decision of whether to visit the Argentinean or Brazilian side of the Falls. This pleasant problem is because both sides of Iguazú Falls offer their own unique perspective and beautiful panoramas. The area has over 200 waterfalls with some reaching a staggering height of 200 feet (60 meters) making this New 7 Natural World Wonder not one to be missed!
Argentinean Side – Cataratas del Iguazú
The Argentinean side offers a more intimate experience and contact with the tremendous Iguazú Falls. A small open train transports you from the gate to the Falls allowing you to take in the surrounding National Park area and tropical forest. With a number of walking trails throughout the nature reserve you can enjoy walking amongst tropical vegetation, and you may even catch a glimpse of the local wildlife such as Coatis and a wide variety of butterflies. The Upper Circuit consists of bridges and trails that run along the top of the Falls, giving you fantastic views. You can also look down over many of the largest Falls in the area such as the awesome San Martin Falls. Along the Upper Circuit there are 6 lookouts and viewing areas so that you can soak up the sheer power and bask in the amazement of this Natural Wonder. One of the most spectacular parts of this whole are is the unique view of Devil’s Throat. As its ominous name suggests, this mighty and breathtaking Fall consists of fourteen of the highest and most powerful of all the Cataratas del Iguazú. The Lower Circuit of Iguazú gives you a completely different perspective as it leads you to the base of the falls where the tremendous spray is sure to leave you at least a little moistened. You can take advantage of a boat ride to San Martin which is an island separating the Falls as well as the incredible experience of going right up to the base of a several Falls where you will undoubtedly get wet…very wet!
Brazilian Side – Foz do Iguaçu
Fancy seeing it from the Brazilian side? A completely different experience from the Argentinean side, the Brazilian side of the Falls offers more panoramic views of the Falls making for some incredible photographs. Offering an unforgettable overview of Devil’s Throat and the rest of the Falls from both above and below, Brazil’s side of the Falls certainly doesn’t disappoint. You can also get some more up close and direct views of the Devil’s Throat due to a walkway that goes right out to it. Visiting Foz do Iguaçu also has the added extra of being able to go on a panoramic helicopter tour. From this vantage point you are treated to a bird’s-eye view of this stunning landscape and offers photo opportunities like no other. Aside from the helicopter tour, there is a number of rafting tours and other parks such as the Bird Park which is full of exotic jungle and rainforest birds, making the Brazilian side just as incredible as the Argentinean side.
But before you go…
If you can only visit one side, don’t worry as both sides offer an incredible and memorable experience. However, if you are able to visit both sides, try and begin with the Brazilian side so that you are treated to seeing the whole aspect and expanse of Iguazu Falls before getting up close and personal on the Argentinean side. Although the two countries are only separated by the Natural Wonder, for some visitors, it is not as easy as simply strolling over to the other side. It is therefore vital to take note of the Visa and Entry requirements needed for each country. Citizens of Australia, Canada and the United States all need to arrange a tourist Visa to visit the Brazilian side of the Falls. To visit the Argentinean side, visitors from Australia need to obtain a Tourist Visa which is valid for 90 days and costs USD$100. Those travelers visiting Iguazu Falls on the Argentinean side from the United States no longer need to pay a reciprocity fee. For Canadians, they have the option to pay a reciprocity fee of USD$75 for a single entry or USD$150 for multiple entries over a 5 year period. Make sure to check your Visa and Entry requirements for each country and arrange it in time for your visit so that you can enjoy the incredible environment, vistas and awesomeness of this natural and exquisite wonder of the world.
Quick summary of the two sides
- The Brazilian side is perfect for a quick visit half or full day tour whereas the Argentinean side can be enjoyed for longer with a full day or more visit to the Falls.
- Get up close to the waterfalls in Argentina whereas just as spectacularly you can admire the vistas and panoramas of Iguazu Falls from a distance in Brazil.
- In Brazil there are shorter experiences to take advantage of, such as a helicopter tour, various boat tours and the Bird Park. The Argentinean side concentrates on the ecological and environmental aspect and beauty of Iguazu Falls.