Monday 2 March 2009 - Tuesday 10 March 2009 33 °C
It was back on the bus to make the trip to the Iguazu falls...on the first bus i was in the 'death seat' as its affectionately known, the seat right at the front on the top deck of the bus, crash and you are flying out that window! Anyway that was only for the first 4 hrs, we were served our lunch of cheese and ham sandwich with a ham and cheese roll to go with it, a favourite thing to serve on buses here! Time to swap buses in Tucuman, land of the weird coin operated tv's. The second bus was a cama which has two seats one side of the aisle and only one seat on the other and i was in a seat on my own so no getting breathed on! Result! Had a mid afternoon nap and was rudely awoken by Ricky Martin screeching at me from the TV! After sitting through what seemed like his entire music video collection it was time for dinner...yep you guessed it, the bus journey classic, cheese and ham and ham and cheese! Although they did mix it up a bit with a salami and cheese version! So after 30 hours of bus fun and plastic food i'd travelled 1/2 way across the country and finally arrived in Puerto Iguazu, starving! But soon forgot all about being hungry as i was blasted by the heat and humidity as i stepped off the bus and ran for the nearest air-conditioned building! It was so hot, like being back in Asia but felt a lot more torturous as i hadn't had the gradual acclimatisation, i'd gone from nice and sunny but not too hot Salta to the furnace-like Iguazu!! Luckily the dorm at the hostel was a haven of ice cold air-con!
The next day we filled our bags with plentiful water supplies and headed off into the heat to visit the Argentine side of the Iguazu Falls (they straddle the Brazil/Argentina border). There are various trails you can follow to view the falls from different angles, from above, afar and then finally you can see the Garganta del Diablo close up in all it's roaring glory. We started by walking along the top of the long stretch of falls, here you start to get an appreciation for the sheer size of the falls, they stretch in a long arc for about 3kms! Then it was down to the lower circuit, this is where you get the big panoramic vista and really see the beauty of the falls, pouring down over two levels surrounded by lush green vegetation and sub tropical rain forest. We stopped every ten paces to snap another photo just because the view was slightly different, but really, no picture or words can even begin to explain how beautiful they are. Eleanor Roosevelt was famously reported to have exclaimed 'Poor Niagara!' when she visited! Not having visited Niagara i couldn't compare but Iguazu would take some beating! If the garden of eden existed, Iguazu would be the centrepiece.
We spent about 2 hours walking around and admiring the falls from every angle possible and then it was time to take the train across the park to visit the Garganta del Diablo- The Devils Throat, a narrow horseshoe shaped cataract, the largest and most powerful of all the falls at Iguazu. You walk for about 10 minutes on a specially constructed walkway that takes you out into the Iguazu River, as you draw closer the roar increases and all of a sudden..its there! The hypnotic, blinding sight of thousands of gallons of white water plunging down, creating so much spray you can't see the bottom of the falls.
After standing staring into the abyss, taking lots of photos and being engulfed in the cloud of spray we tore ourselves away and headed back to the town to collapse in the air con!
The Iguazu Falls were definitely one of the highlights of my trip and one of the most powerful displays of nature i have ever experienced.
Back on another bus!! This time only 20 hours south to the city of Rosario, this was the last overnight bus of my whole trip! I was on a single cama seat again but with a different company and boy did i know it! We got pillows and blankets, the seats had pull out trays and when dinner came round i couldn't believe it, no sandwiches! A little salad, with a strange sweet swiss roll thing, a roll and cheese spread (didnt get away from the bread and cheese totally!) then we got a hot (yes hot!!!) rice and prawn dish, which seeing as we were on a coach for the foreseeable future i thought the inclusion of seafood was living a bit dangerously! a fruit salad for dessert, we even got offered champagne! It was luxury compared to the previous journey!
Spent a few days relaxing here in Rosario and in the morning its off to Buenos Aires!