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Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

Monte-Carlo, Monaco
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Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

Can the falls be seen from both countries easily?

I have been to Victoria Falls (Zambia/Zimbabwe) and Niagara Falls (USA/Canada) and in both cases, one could easily cross the border near the falls and see them from both sides...

How easily can this be done at Iguazu? Looking at Google Earth, it seems there is no nearby bridge or road to cross sides...

Lunenburg, Canada
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for Saint John, Foz do Iguacu, Iguazu National Park
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1. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

It's not nearly as easy as at Niagara Falls.

At Niagara, the international bridge is within sight of the falls. At Iguasu, though, the nearest bridge is 20 km downstream. It's not walking distance. There is no lawful way to cross between the two countries at the falls itself, even by water.

Check your country's foreign affairs website for details of border formalities. Canadians, Australians and US passport holders require special, expensive visas to enter Brazil and must pay a stiff arrival tax to go to Argentina. EU and related states do not have these costly and time-consuming formalities, but don't take it from me. Check your website.

David

capetien10@gmail.co.

Monte-Carlo, Monaco
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2. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

Thanks David...

London
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3. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

We stayed on the Argentina side for three days and one day took the local bus from the bus station to the Brazilian side. We had to get out of the bus at the border, do the passport checks and get back on the bus on the Brazilian side. Pretty easy and as UK citizens no visa problem. Shortly after the border we got out of the bus, walked a couple of hundred metres and caught a Brazilian bus to the Iguassu park. There was a long queue to get into the park. Then the rain came down, we were drenched and joined a long queue for the bus to Iguassu bus station, then caught the bus to Argentina. Sounds more complicated than it was, and I would do it again.

An Argentinian said to us "Argentina has the waterfalls but Brazil has the balcony". This was true. Most of the waterfalls are in Argentina, and Brazil has a great view of them.

Having seen both sides, I would strongly recommend staying in Argentina. There is so much to do and see, and their walkway system takes you to some amazing locations. Brazil was nice and worth the day trip, but the Argentinian side offers much more. Iguazu is one of the great sights of the world.

Monte-Carlo, Monaco
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4. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

Thanks Caravanserai!

I m a US citizen, so I was hesitating... I'll definitely return to Iguazu once I visit Brazil to see them fro "the other side", but in this instance, I ll just stay on the Argentinian side :-)

Monte-Carlo, Monaco
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5. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

A quick post to say I ended up staying at the Sheraton in Argentina. Went to Brazil the first afternoon (a quick note, if you do not have a visa for Brazil, it isfairly easy to get in and out without completing immigration formalities as the immigration office has a parking lot where cars park and people then walk into an office to haave their passport stamped.. so if you just stay in the car, no one will know.. My taxi told me that many taxis accept to 'smuggle' you into Brazil for the day)

Anyway, the view from Brazil is perhaps more extensive, since the Argentinia side does not allow you to view the part of the falls that lies East...

However, on the Argentinian side,it is possible to take a boat rider to the falls in 12minutes(the time it takes the boat to go under the water).. On the Brazil side, this activity is coupled with some silly safari and takes approximately 2hrs total (they wouldn't let me skip the safari part and go straight to the boat)...

Argentina also has the Train rider to some viewpoint, but the waiting line was 40 minutes so i chose not to do that...

London
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6. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

Thanks for the update, glad you enjoyed it.

Lunenburg, Canada
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for Saint John, Foz do Iguacu, Iguazu National Park
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7. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

Were you traveling on a Monégasque or a European Union passport?

A word of caution to other readers, who may hold Canadian, US, or Australian passports: The formalities for entering Brazil may be more rigorous and costly for us than for someone from Europe. Brazil requires special visas for Yanks, Canadians and Aussie passport holders, the kind that cannot merely be stamped in at the border the way they can for a European Union (or associated states) person.

David

Lunenburg, Canada
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for Saint John, Foz do Iguacu, Iguazu National Park
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8. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

Thanks for confirming other accounts I have heard, that taximen and professional guides know of unofficial ways for getting their guests across the border for brief visits without the special, costly Brazilian visas.

Did you hear any word on whether the taxis can work their magic in the other direction, for people who are already in Brazil and wish to visit the Argentine falls for a couple of hours?

David

Monte-Carlo, Monaco
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9. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

I had a US passport with a proper Brazilian visa inside. My commetn was just aimed at people who might not have had time to get the Visa.. It is fairly easy to get into Brazil without one...

As for the other direction, the Argentinian border operates like a paytoll, where each car stops and hands the documents through the window to an agent sitting in abooth. therefore, it is highly unlikely anyone would be able to get into argentina without resorting to deception (hiding in trunk....) + there is a customs officer that also opens some car trunks randomly once the passport inspection is done...

Again, the difference in Brazil is that the border is layed out like a Highway Gas Station, where you park en enter a small building to have you passport stamped.. no one is really watching to make sure that everybody had their passport stamped.. In my case, the driver took my passport and went in the building to have it stamped in and out.. He could just as easily have not taken my passport and left me waiting in th car while he got his papers sorted out... I commented to him that I was surprised at how anyone could just get into Brazil without a proper check, and he said that sometimes, there are random inspections on the road or even at the Iguacu falls.. And that if you're caught you pay a fine.. Still, If anyone holding an American passport ends up in Iguazu (argentinian side) and wishes to see th Brazilian side, I m fairly confident they could do so without the Visa and not risk too much...

Willemstad, Curacao
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10. Re: Iguazu: Brazil or Argentina side?

From Brazil to Argentina and back is very easy from the brazil side as the Brazil side did not check our passports at all. Argentina customs does check the passports and stamps for entry and exit (this can take some time). If you go to Iguazu do visit both sides.. take a day for Argentina and a half day for Brazil side