Iguassu Falls


After an early morning flight from Rio de Janeiro, we arrived in Foz de Iguassu, the city in Brazil near the falls and after a short bus ride we arrived at our hotel…. Hotel Tropicale das Cataratas in the Iguassu Falls National Park.   It was very humid and very hot…just the way I like it!    We checked into the hotel…and with its pink color, it seemed perfectly suited for this sub tropical paradise. 

            From the open verandah, we were able to see the falls as well as Argentina on the other side of the Iguassu River.   Though it was air conditioned, the dining room, lobby and other rooms were generally kept open to the outside offering a very tropical air to the setting.   Iguassu (“E_wa_su”) means Big Water.

            As we walked the trail from the hotel along the Brazilian side, we enjoyed amazing views along the two mile breadth of the falls.   There are over 275 different falls along this stretch of the river.   While most of the falls are on the Argentine side of the river, the best views are from Brazil.   The closer we would get to the main section of the falls, the spray became a wonderful cooling source in contrast to the perspiration we were suffering with as a result of the heat and humidity.  

Hotel Tropicale das Cataratas

The View from Brazil

            The paths are generally well constructed and one part of the trail is built directly into the path of the spray of the main section of the falls.  At the end of the trail we reached the base of the falls and to reach the upper section we must either use an elevator or climb the stairs to the top.  At the top we were able to ride back to the Hotel Tropical das Cataratas.  It was an exciting experience, but because of the heat and excessive humidity it was exhausting.

            In the evening, the dining room doors were open to the verandah and we would eat dinner while enjoying magnificent views of the falls and warm evening breezes.   Our room did not have a real air conditioning system…it was a swamp cooling system ….so sleeping was not comfortable.   The next day, we requested and were moved into a room with a real air conditioner. 

Left: The trail on the Brazilian side of Iguassu Falls

Right: Looking from the upper section on the Brazilian side of Iguassu Falls


           In the morning we drove to the Argentinean side of the falls, a very different perspective as we would be walking along the top of the falls as they were falling away from us.   From this perch, as we walked the two mile trail we could see our hotel, nestled in the rich forest on the Brazilian side of the Iguassu River.   Up the Iguassu River from the falls there is a juncture with the Piranha River.  The Iguassu River separates Brazil and Argentina, as the Piranha River is the border between Paraguay and Brazil. 

            The next day we had a leisurely breakfast and once again sat on the verandah watching the falls, which was very fortuitous as it was raining and we could see the many visitors now having to make their way along the trail in the inclement weather.  After noon we returned to Rio de Janeiro, for our next day embarkation on the Amsterdam.


Iguassu Falls from the Argentinean side

Iguassu Falls Trail on the Argentinean Side

A view from Brazil