Legend has it that many years ago, a god named Mboi lived in the form of a serpent in the Iguazú River. Once a year the tribes held a ceremony to sacrifice a beautiful maid as an offering to Mboi by throwing her into the river. One year, the woman to be sacrificed was Naipi, the daughter of a tribal chief. A young warrior, Taroba, was in love with Naipi, and tried to convince the tribe members not to offer her. Unsuccessful at his attempt, Taroba kidnapped Naipi the night before her sacrifice, put her on a canoe and escaped by the river.
When the god, Mboi, learned what happened, he twisted his serpentine body deep into the earth, slicing the river in rage. Thus, Mboi created waterfalls and took over the young lovers by the powerful waters, condemning them to an eternal fall.
According to the legend, Mboi turned Taroba into the trees surrounding the falls and turned the long hair of Naipi into the Iguazú Falls. Then, Mboi submerged himself into the Devil’s Throat and to this day, watches to ensure that Naipi and Taroba never come together again. On sunny days, however, rainbows emerge from the water to join the two lovers.
Iguazú Falls, located on the border of the Brazilian state of Parana and the Argentine province of Misiones, was chosen as one of the Natural Seven Wonders of the World in 2011. The Iguazú River flows through Brazil for most of its course, although most of the waterfalls are on the Argentine side. The falls are a direct ride from Buenos Aires on a comfortable 18-20 hour overnight bus or a 2 hour flight, which Say Hueque Tours can help book.
This natural wonder is miraculous and cannot be described in words. The greatest challenge for visitors is to stop exclaiming, “Wow!” at the sight of the falls. If you take a trip to Iguazú Falls, don’t miss out on the Garganta del Diablo (literally translated to “Devil’s Throat”), the main waterfall. It is even possible to take a boat ride through the falls or a helicopter ride above them. Apart from viewing the falls, visitors may also participate in outdoor activities such as hiking, rock climbing and zip lining.
Although visitors may spot exotic birds at the National Park, those who would like to see more can visit the Parque das Aves, a park dedicated to wildlife conservation, education and research. The park features aviaries that visitors can go into for a close view of macaws, hummingbirds, toucans and hundreds of other birds. The park also has a Butterfly House. Other animals in the park include marmosets, anacondas and alligators.
Nearby in the town is the Hito Tres Fronteras, a river connecting Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil. There, one may see the borders of the two other countries as well as their respective flags. An ideal time to go is during the sunrise.
On full moon nights, visitors have the opportunity to go on the Moonlight Tour, which consists of cocktails and a dinner with live music. Afterwards, a guided walk to the Naipi side brings visitors to a panoramic view of the waterfalls in the moonlight.