21.09.2008 25 °C
After a very interesting 22 hour bus ride to Iguaçu Falls including moldy air conditioning, broken seat belts, broken smelly toilet and 2 hours of sleep; it was certainly a relief to arrive. I was convinced I would have picked up tuberculosis or some other horrific air borne disease from the bad environmental conditions on that bus but happily nothing came of it except a numb ass and disdain for Brazilian public transit. Apparently Brazilian buses are a luxury compared to buses in Peru and Bolivia...scary. Anyway the same day we arrived at 7am we headed straight onto more local buses to get across the Argentina border to Puerto Iguacu. This was not particularly difficult, the bus left us at the Brazilian exit point and we got stamped and then realized it was a 2 km hike to the Argentinan border. That day though was the first day of good weather we had seen in a week so we were happy to be in the light even if it including carrying our heavy bags. The crossing at the Argentinan border was relatively painless. The most trying part was the bathrooms which all appeared to be broken to varying degrees. I suspect however that we may have skipped a part of the border crossing process - we saw people walking through metal detectors and such but we had just walked right along. Perhaps all the chaos of big buses going through gave us a break.
Anyway we got to the hostel, Puerto Canoas, and it was pretty cool. Room was decent and there were hammocks outside. It was very colourful and we were lucky enough to be able to check straight into our room even though we were there at like 10am (normally you can´t book into a hostel till around lunch time). We had a bit of breakfast and then headed straight to the falls. We learned our lesson in Rio, never wait. If there´s good weather - do the sites. As much as you can. So straight to the falls, while the weather was beautiful. It was a long day but the falls themselves were amazing. Extensive and we walked quite a few trails in order to see it from several angles. What amused me the most were the animals though. I suppose through exposure to Niagara Falls, though not nearly as impressive, of a similiar mold, I was somewhat desensitized to the charms of waterfalls. The new and interesting animals though were great. We saw couti, some kind of cross between a a lemar and an anteater in appearance. Very cute. We saw some lizards that were either gigantic lizards or small komodo dragons. We saw a caiman, some sort of small alligator, so many butterflies, a toucan. It was great. Now that I definitely can´t see at home. Between the fabulous sunny warm weather, the friendly animals and the roar of the falls it made a great day.
The next day we just lazed around and enjoyed the town which is very laid back. A bit touristy but still very quaint just the way a sleepy small town should be. Another fun 20 hour bus ride to Buenos Aires next.
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