Iguazú: the Zoo of Argentina

This weekend I started off spring break by flying with the people on my program to Iguazú in northern Argentina. This entire area of Argentina is jungle and filled with amazing wildlife and, of course, the Iguazú Falls which is the world’s widest range of waterfalls (and most beautiful).

Friday morning we met up with everyone at 7 a.m. at the airport in Buenos Aires, tired yet so excited for the jam-packed weekend. When we landed in Iguazú, we met our tour guide for the weekend, Pilar, and got on our bus. The bus had the comfiest seats ever, even better than the ferry to Colonia! Anyway, we dropped our stuff at the hotel, ate lunch, and went straight to trekking in the jungle.

The butterflies in Iguazú were everywhere and so beautiful!

The butterflies in Iguazú were everywhere and so beautiful!

We got in these large jeep-like trucks and drove to part of Iguazú where the native Guaraní people live. We got to see their town and lives which was very interesting because I had learned about them a few weeks ago in my Culture & Civilization of Argentina class here in Buenos Aires. Our trek lead us through a path in the jungle and to a lookout view of Paraguay! It was so cool because I didn’t even realize how close we were to the border. At the end of the trek, we went to a small waterfall and swimming area where we actually got to go into the waterfall. It wasn’t anything in size compared to Iguazú Falls, but technically we were in Iguazú and it was a very beautiful, secluded fall!

On our trek we stopped to get a beautiful view of Paraguay.

On Saturday morning, we woke up early to head straight for the falls. This is the part I was most excited for because people always say the pictures will never do them justice. After seeing them in person, I can definitely confirm that what they said is true—the falls are unbelievable in person! After taking two trains inside the park and walking along a bridge, we arrived right in front of the breath-taking Iguazú Falls. Right when we got to the look out it started raining, but it didn’t even matter because we were already getting soaked from the mist of the falls. We spent a lot of time trying to get pictures but in the end we just tried to enjoy the beauty because our camera lenses were getting soaked anyway.

At the heart of the falls where we got an amazing view of the entire range!

At the heart of the falls where we got an amazing view of the entire range!

After we saw this view, we got to walk the upper and lower trails of the park to see the waterfalls from all different angles. This part was amazing because I thought it would be the same as we saw before, but these waterfalls seriously never get old. I think I could have stayed there all day and not have gotten bored of the view.

We got soaked from the rain and the mist but we were still so happy!

We got soaked from the rain and the mist but we were still so happy!

Once we finished lunch in the park, we got back on the big comfy bus to go to an animal sanctuary. This was very cool because we got to see so many animals that live in Iguazú that we wouldn’t normally see just on the streets. From tucans to tortoises to otters, we saw it all! We learned all about how the animals are rescued from this sanctuary and stay until they are healthy enough to survive on their own, or in most cases for life.

In the animal sanctuary we saw so many different types of toucans, this was my favorite!

In the animal sanctuary we saw so many different types of toucans, this was my favorite!

On our way back to the hotel we made one more quick stop at the point where Argentina, Paraguay, and Brazil all meet. It also happens to be where the Panama River and Iguazú River meet.

After an amazing weekend in the northern part of Argentina, I’m excited to say that I’ll spend the rest of my spring break in the very south in Patagonia. This country keeps amazing me everywhere I go, it’s the most beautiful place in the world!

Kelsey B. is the Spring 2017 MOJO Blogger in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She is currently a  Junior studying Journalism & Public Relations at Indiana University. 

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