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Iguazu Falls - A 3 day itinerary

Here is a suggestion of an itinerary for independent travelers who are planning to visit Iguazu Falls. It´s basically the one I did when I went to Iguazu in 2011. 

Three days is the minimum, but sufficient time to visit the area without rushing, including both sides of the Falls, in Brazil and Argentina. 

The Iguazu Falls were recently elected as one of the New 7 Natural Wonders. It´s an amazing place, situated in the middle of the sub-tropical nature reserve of Iguazu Park. 

It´s located on the border between two countries, Brazil and Argentina. The Argentinian side has the larger amount of falls, where one can get closest to the impressive Devil´s Throat. On the other hand, the Brazilian side offers the best views, with panoramic scenery, besides having the most secure boat tour, the Macuco Safari. Also, the city of Foz do Iguaçu offers more fun options for the night. So, it´s totally worth checking both sides of this Wonder! 

Day 1 – Iguazu National Park, Argentina 

If you´re coming from Buenos Aires, you should start by seeing the Iguazu Falls from its Argentinian side, in Puerto Iguazu. 

The Argentinian Park looks more “wild” than the Brazilian and offers a lot of interesting activities, as walks through paths, stairways and bridges that cross the jungle and open to the marvelous waterfalls. 

To arrive in the Park, you can get the bus to Iguazu National Park, which leaves the Bus Station of Puerto Iguazu. The ticket costs around 10 pesos and the journey takes around half an hour. 

I recommend exploring the Park as much as you can. Do not miss taking the “Jungle Ecological Train” that connects the Bridge to the biggest waterfall in Iguazu, called “Devil´s Throat”. It´s an unbelievable amount of water! 


Then, walk through the Upper and Lower Circuits, where you can see from two different angles of view to the Falls. 


 

The funniest and most interesting of the two is the Lower Circuit, where you can get closer to the Falls. Principally the Bosseti Falls. Believe me, you´ll really get a shower! 


All these activities are going to last around 4 hours, at least. If you still have time and energy, the Park offers other activities, such as a visit to San Martin Island (available until 3pm) or the Green Trail, an alternative way to the Train. 

Day 2 – Parque Nacional Iguaçu, Brazil 

Pick a day to cross the border between Brazil and Argentina and visit the Brazilian Park. 

You can get the bus to Foz do Iguaçu in Puerto Iguazu Bus Station. The ticket costs R$3,50. Arriving in Foz, you´ll have to get another bus to the Brazilian waterfalls (R$2,40). 

On the Brazilian side, besides having an amazing front view of the waterfalls, and climbing a panoramic lift just beside the Devil´s Throat, don´t forget to make the Macuco Safari tour. As I said before, I think it´s better to make this tour on the Brazilian side, firstly for security reasons, and second because the Argentinian park is too big, and you´ll already spend a lot of time on other activities. 





The Macuco Safari is surely one of the best highlights of the visit to Iguazu Waterfalls. The adventure is unique and joins the best of Iguazu Park in one goal: the waterfalls and the forest. 

The tour starts with a ride in a jeep inside the forest, where the guide shows some of the thousands of species of fauna and flora that belong to the Park. 

In the second part, optional, the visitor can walk along paths inside the forest for about 600 meters until they reach the river, where the boats are already waiting. From there, it´s another 20 minutes in a boat tour that finishes with a “shower” in 3 Musketeers Waterfall. 

Before the end of the day, consider making a helicopter panoramic flight over the waterfalls! The flight leaves just outside the entrance to the park and costs around R$195. 

Invert the itinerary above if you arrive in Iguazu Falls coming from Brazil. 

Day 3 - Itaipu Hydroeletric

One more day allows you to visit the Itaipu Hydroeletric, which is considered one of the 7 engineering wonders of the world and it´s the biggest powerstation in production!

There are 3 options for the visitors: the panoramic circuit, that takes you to the external areas; the special circuit, that also allows the visitor to check the internal areas; and the lighting of the dam, that happens at night on the weekends. 

I made the panoramic circuit, which starts with a video about the construction of the powerstation, followed by a double deck bus tour around the external areas: the viewpoints, dam and spillway. The tour is really interesting and surprising for the infrastructure and quality. 



Tips from someone who has already been there! 

  • Be prepared to take many showers. Just for getting close to the waterfalls. You always have the option to use a raincoat, but believe me, it´s cool getting wet there!
  • The Argentinian restaurant, La Selva is not so good. The Brazilian, Porto Canoas, is much better, and the view of the falls is amazing!

And you, have you already been there? Do you have any tips or suggestions? Share them with us!
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