i say appropriately, because i have never seen anything like this in my life. big water is an understatement. when eleanor roosevelt visited the falls she was reported to have said afterwards, "poor niagra."
while i've never been to niagra falls, iguazu apparently dwarfs it by 3 times. it is not just one fall, but a series of them. more than 135 million years ago lava from a prehistoric volcano formed the plateau, then about 200,000 years ago a geographic fault created a cliff. the river flowing over the plateau continued to erode the surface, causing the top layer to fall off the cliff in huge sheets of rock. this erosion continues today, slowly moving the falls further and further upstream towards the river's source.
as we walked through the jungle (actually the whole area of 212 square miles is a national park bordering argentina and brazil) we could hear a thundering sound that got louder and louder.
suddenly we turned a corner and saw this
the mist rose everywhere and rainbows glittered in the spray
we were able to get so close that you actually stood above the sheer drop at the edge -- (too close for my comfort as i have acrophobia) but my daughter wasn't afraid to take a look
if you want to get up close and personal in a different way - meaning going directly into the falls, you can board a boat. we took note at other passengers covering themselves in rain gear.
we however, did not. we basically spent the whole day getting wet from spray, so what's a little more water?
but as you can see from this foto - the boat (that tiny thing in the middle of the river) goes directly into the falls. again and again. we got soaked but had a blast doing so. (cameras were safely tucked away in dry bags, thank goodness.)
the falls went on and on, seemingly forever. i can only imagine what it must have been like when the first explorers came upon them. the rising mist can be seen from miles away, even from the aircraft when we landed and took off, and as i said before, the sound of the water is ferocious.
the granddaddy of all the falls is named 'devil's throat'.
you basically get soaked by the spray, which can blow in at any moment.
i kept my camera in a plastic bag, taking it out for a few seconds to snap a shot and praying it didn't get caught in the deluge.
this sign greeted us as we entered the park
no sooner had we begun our trek, this was the first of the 'dangerous' animals we encountered! this little guy is called a coati, and i felt like he was showing me his best side for the photo.
ok, maybe this is my best side.....
....hey lady, aren't you going to feed me for being so cute?
the leaves were ginormous (i know, not a real word, but nothing else seems to describe their size)
such intense colors of flora
and butterflies, which were everywhere, sometimes hitchhiking rides on our arms and legs
we saw toucans in the trees
and jacares (also known as caymans, the south american alligator) in the undergrowth
big water calls for a big nap. at the end of the day, my daughter enjoyed the hammock at our hotel
while i listened to the squawk of exotic birds and took a moment to enjoy the novelty of opposites:
wifi in the jungle.