Iguazu Falls (or Cataratas do Iguazu as the locals like to call them) lie on the border between Brazil and Argentina near Paraguay. These falls have been described as one of the most beautiful places on earth. Believe me, they are. I have never seen a sight so breathtakingly beautiful as Iguazu. It is a place I fell in love with. Some may ask, "Is it better than Niagra?" In a word, YES! Picture a place where there are hundreds of falls stretched throughout a canyon that is a couple of miles long. Picture a place free from the commercialism of Niagra where you are alone with nature in the tropical rain forest.
There are only two hotels near the falls. One is on the Brazilian side and one is on the Argentine side. All other hotels are in the towns that are several miles away. The area around the falls is a national park on each side of the border.
We stayed at the Tropical das Cataratas Hotel on the Brazilian side of the border. This hotel was recommended by both Fodor's travel guide and my friend, Renato. It is an outstandingly beautiful colonial hotel that has oustanding service and facilities. I would highly recommend it to anyone wishing to travel to this area.
|A view of Iguazu falls from just outside the front lawn of the Tropical das Cataratas Hotel. Note this is just a small portion of the falls!|
The Tropical das Cataratas Hotel from the front (left) and from the gardens behind the hotel (right).
|Below are several more shots of the falls from various points along the trails along the Iguazu River.|
|It is worth seeing the falls from the Argentine side as well. On the Argentine side of the falls you can go and actually walk along the bank of the river and even swim in some points among the falls. Unfortunately for us, the lower circuit of the Argentine side was closed for maintenance while we were there and we were not able to experience that part of the adventure. Fodor's guide on South America gives an excellent overview of all that is available to do and see at the falls. And for those of you that have heard about the noisy helicopters - they no longer fly directly over the falls, nor do they take off from inside the National Park. You hardly know they are there.|
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