After a lot of back and forth I finally made it back to South America.. My initial plan to change my flight back from Santiago to Buenos Aires failed because the price was just insanely expensive, but then British Airways canceled my flight and suddenly they were offering me to rebook for free (or almost). So I ended up getting what I wanted with just the tiniest amount of heart attack after learning with less than 24h advance that my flight was cancelled, being rescheduled on a later flight, then being rescheduled again because that flight had three hours delay and I would’ve missed my connecting flight. I guess it’s a good thing that British Airways apparently flies Frankfurt – London every 15min.
So I ended up doing 6 hours of train, followed by 18 hours of flight, followed by 18 hours of bus to reach Iguazu.. For some odd reason I was completely exhausted when I arrived at 9am and in no position to do any sightseeing whatsoever. Instead I spent a day sleeping. A good thing, because the rain was intense and didn’t let up until the early morning hours the next day.
The next morning I got an early had start because I woke up by myself at 7 am.. I still managed to linger around until 9:30 before setting off to the Argentinian side of the falls.. The weather wasn’t quite as good as claimed, but about a hundred times better than expected. Namely cloudy with some sunshine.. The introductory leaflet handed out at the entrance mentioned I should definitely bring sun screen, a hat and mosquito repellent. I had none of those,but luckily I also needed none of those. It’s winter now, with some very humid 5-10 degrees the need to undress is completely removed. The intermittent clouds also assured that I didn’t need sunscreen.
My guide book had noted that there was an eco-hike one could do instead of taking the train. For one because it’s faster than waiting for the train and second because you were b
ound to see so many animals. The site is clearly setup to accommodate masses of tourists. Streets that are a couple of meters wide, the alternate roads to the train treks,and so on.. But I was visiting with maybe a hundred other people and there were no queues nowhere. I still did the eco-hike as it turned out to be a 650m foot path through the woods.. and I wanted to see all those animals. I ended up seeing none. I felt cheated, but soon enough the coaties showered their faces everywhere.. I had been too early, they only come out to steal your lunch (quite literally).
After the first disappointment and subsequent reconciliation it was finally time to go see those falls… I had been hearing them for quite a while, but hadn’t seen any yet. First let me say, they are so big you will never be able to see them all. I got lucky in the sense that the waterfalls were particularly strong due to the heavy rainfalls the previous days.I most also say that I really liked the reddish color of the water. I got unlucky because the water level was too high for me to access the San Martin island in the middle of the waterfalls.. While the excuse “The beach is inundated so we can’t land there” sounded really like a minor problem that could easily be solved with a “steg”, I later saw that in addition most of the paths on the island had been turned into rivers. Oh well.
I kept walking from one waterfall to the next, always more amazed, always eager to see more. Apart from the loop on the island, the park offers two more loops which allow you once to see the falls from below and once from above. They’re both amazing, though the upper one is slightly more impressive as it gets you right on top of the Gargantua del diablo, the devil’s canyon a u-formed set of waterfalls where the water is catapulted back up so high it seems to connect to the clouds. It also manages to rain on you from every direction. Even from behind. Bring waterproof clothing.. I didn’t.. and I even managed to return the next day and forget it again. I’m just gifted.
The next day I as going to the Bresilenian side of the falls. As many have said Bresil has the view, Argentina has the falls. What you could see from above or below the day before you can see from the opposite side from Bresil in all its glory. The plan to go very early, didn’t pan out because at 9am we were still enveloped by fog. The fog only lifted around 10:30 and made way for an almost cloudless sky.. Except the one in front of the sun obviously.. But even that gave up after a while. Luckily. The waterfalls soaked me completely and with the sun, the ocld was barely tolerable. Even my waterproof shoes had to yield.. They are not equipped to withstand two liters of water being dumped into the shoe from above.