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From Rio to the Rainforest ? Or My 2.5 weeks in Brazil

Teddie Watts

Recently club member Teddie Watts traveled to South America the blog below tells about her trip and shares some images from the adventure.

From Rio to the Rainforest

Our grand adventure began at the intersection of Brazil, Argentina, and Paraguay, where the Parana River joins the Iguazú River.  Prehistoric lava flows created tiers of rock that became 275 different waterfalls shared by Argentina and Brazil, as the Iguazú River separates the two countries.  The separation caused a bit of a delay, as we had to clear emigration/customs both going into Argentina and then going back into Brazil (but my passport got a new Argentina stamp).  A small train took us from the park entrance to the falls.

From Rio to the Rainforest
 

Brazilian people were so friendly; I was given this beautiful baby to hold on the train to the falls.


 

Our visit to the Iguazú Falls included both the Brazilian and the Argentinean sides of the falls.  Numerous, long catwalks are built on both sides providing close views of the great waterfalls.  Some catwalks were ¾ of a mile in length.  The sides fold down to protect them when the river floods.  This was one aspect of the trip that was hard to visualize.  When we went in March, at the start of the rainy season, the rivers were already high. (The Amazon and Rio Negro showed marks on the trees a good 9-10 feet higher than what we saw.)  Argentina had most of the catwalks while Brazil’s walks mostly focused on panoramas of the Argentinean side as well as close-ups of the thunderous Devil’s Throat.

From Rio to the Rainforest

Devil?s Throat: When Eleanor Roosevelt saw the falls she reportedly said, ?Poor Niagra.?

From Rio to the Rainforest

From Rio to the Rainforest

We had the opportunity to go on the Macuco Safari, a guided tour in the Brazilian Iguassu National Park. It involves a trip of 2 miles through the forest in open trucks followed by transferring to a safari-type 4-wheel drive truck to get down to the river.  After clambering down the riverbank and across a narrow, partially submerged ramp to a floating pier, we got into BIG lifejackets and into an inflatable boat.  The boat took us upstream to see the Devil?s Throat from the bottom of the falls.  We had magnificent perspectives of the falls.  Our boat cruised along the bottom of the falls—surrounded by them with the water hitting the end of the boat.  The noise was deafening and the movement of the water and heavy mist was awe-inspiring.  Actually it was more exciting than some folks expected, and one woman stood up and said, ?I have to get out of here!?   
 
This website includes videos of the falls from different locations. 

From Rio to the Rainforest
 

The day before the boat trip, a boat from the Argentine side of the falls hit a rock and capsized causing several deaths.  We could see the investigation of the accident from above.

From Rio to the Rainforest
 

This is our tour group.

From Rio to the Rainforest
 

Our three days in Iguazu went by quickly.  In the evenings after sightseeing we sat by the hotel pool and ate pizza, drank wine, and got acquainted.  On the third day, we left for Rio de Janeiro.

From Rio to the Rainforest

If you look hard, you can find Foz do Iguacu toward the bottom of the colored area.

From Rio to the Rainforest

Looks like a great trip - thanks for sharing Teddie!