The Iguazu Falls are simply too grand and imposing to be seen from merely one vantage point. There are too many variations of experience for one trail to handle: from taking the Falls in panoramically, to being below them, to being within touching distance of their explosive power. For this reason, the Iguazu Falls on the Argentine side include three separate trails, all of which offer as their highlight one of these distinct experiences. For the best panoramic view, head to the upper trail. For a compelling view of the Iguazu Falls from below, head to the lower circuit. To get close to the Falls’ climactic moment of power, heading to the ‘Devil’s Throat.’
A tour along the Iguazu Falls’ upper circuit is essentially the opposite of the experience available on the Brazilian side. Up high, one can see the majestic curtains of water falling from a large proportion of the 200 some different Falls. Leaving the Ecological Train Station from the Cataratas station, proceed to the beginning of the circuits. The first vista features this sweeping view, with the Dos Hermanas waterfall on the right, and arcing away from there. Follow this arc, enjoying the frequent spots to take in this panorama from a slightly different view. Eventually, one makes it to the Salto San Martin, near the middle of the arc, with powerful jets of water cascading down on both sides for a far as one can see. The experience is somewhat overwhelming, even though the trail is only 600 and some meters long. Heading back to where the circuits begin, proceed down a stairway and along the trail to the lower circuit. This circuit brings one much closer to experiencing the Falls and the jungle surrounding them, and in many ways is the core of the park. Featuring about 8 different viewing places on a series of cat walks 1.7 kmlong, it would be easy to spend the majority of one’s time here. Make sure to venture close to the Iguazu Falls on the trail that doubles back towards the Dos Hermanas and Bossetti Falls, and enjoy the views further along from there of San Martin. This particular trail continues all the way down to the bank of the river to board a boat across to San Martin Island, or to begin one of the Adventure tours that speed boat right up to and even beneath the waterfall. Doing these extra trails and excursions is wonderful, but remember that if one has very limited time to see the Falls, there is still the Devil’s Throat trail to remember. The lower circuit trail backs away from the waterfalls after these views, passes by the Salto Alvar Nuñez and into the surrounding the misty jungle (be aware that following the circuit conventionally, one will progress in the opposite direction). This longer, lower circuit includes one bathroom and restaurant stop, but the upper circuit doesn’t include either.
The third trail is in many ways the climax of one’s tour in Iguazu Falls. Upon arriving at its end, one comes to understand exactly why it got its dramatic name, the Devil’s Throat—indeed only the Devil should be able to make such a noise! Departing from the lower circuit requires one to re-board the Ecological Jungle Train to its final stop. Once here, a series of trails, bridges and board-walks progress across the upper river to where the mist is being cast hundreds of feet into the air. Along the way, pause and take in the sheer force and breadth of the water rushing from here towards the fall. In some ways it seems remarkably tranquil. The trail culminates in a viewpoint of the 80 meter high, 150 meter long, horse-shoe shaped spectacle. It takes some time to really understand exactly how much water is falling mere meters away. The visitor should make sure to close their eyes, grip the rail and focus on the sound and the feeling of the mist on the face. Opening them again, it will be hard to disagree with Eleanor Roosevelt when she said concerning her tour in Iguazu Falls, ‘poor Niagara!’
For further information about tours in Iguazu Falls, Argentina vacations or tours in Patagonia, contact Argentina travel experts, Say Hueque – Tours in Argentina www.sayhueque.com