Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Iguasu Falls

So I've been in Brazil now for a week. Its been a really awesome trip so far - a lot of fun, but more expensive than I thought it would be.

Today I went to Iguasu Falls. The falls are at the intersection of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. They are TRULY spectacular... but, if you do go, be sure to bring a rain poncho or something! We started out this morning and the sun was shining and things looked bright... we were going to explore the Argentinian side of the falls first, because you can get "up close and personal" with the falls. We started by taking the train on the green trail which lead to this long path to the Devil's Mouth - the largest of the falls. While I did get sprayed with water there, it wasn't TOO bad. The sun was still bright... unfortunately, the rain started pouring down while we were in the middle of our walk in the park at the "superior" trail. Since I didn't want to pay 13 pesos for a plastic poncho, I thought I would tough it out - I mean, how bad could it be?? Well... the rain just kept going and and going and going.. We signed up for this boat ride where you go right up to the falls and under them - and I just got COMPLETELY drenched. I was sooo cold.

I would recommend the boat ride though. It was a ton of fun. We zoomed around in the river under the falls and they made a video of us screaming. It was sort of like being on a roller coaster ride. After the boat ride, they took us on a little tour of the rainforrest on this converted truck. We sat on the top of this truck-thing which was painted green and the tour guide talked to us about wild species in the park.

I felt like the Argentinian park was really professional too. Apparently they are ISO 9000 certified, which is quite impressive. All the bathrooms were clean and there was plenty of toilet paper.

After the Argentinian side, we went over to the Brazilian side of the park where we get to see a "panorama" of the falls. Basically, the 70% of the falls are on the Argentinian side, so you can get a good view of everything from further away in Brazil. It was pretty awesome, except for the wild coaties! Apparently people feed them too much food, so they go right up to people and are really aggressive. At first, I thought they were so cute and cuddly looking -- kind of like a cross between a raccoon and a possum.. Well, then one of them came right up to me, jumped up like a dog on my leg and when I shied away, accidently pointing my plastic bag at him, he BIT INTO MY BAG!!!

He wouldn't stop when I tried to jerk the bag away and I was afraid he would eat my passport, so I took my water bottle and smacked him with it! Then he let go of my bag and me and this other Portuguese family I was touring with ran up the hill as he chased us! I was afraid he was going to bite me and give me rabies!!

Can you believe he just ate my bag like that? He also slobber this weird orange all over my camera case! My plastic bag just had this big hole in it. Sigh, I tossed the bag before I remembered to take a photo of it. It was DEFINITELy traumatic though!

If you come to Iguasu in Brazil, watch out for these coatie things!!!

Hehe, I also had deet in my bag, so I was sort of thinking, if another little creature comes up and tries to eat my bag, maybe he will get some deet instead! (Which of course, would be really toxic for the poor creature, so maybe that's not a nice though...)