Welcome to the World’s Biggest Waterfall System

It really doesn’t get much better than this.

Iguazu Falls lives up to its reputation as one of the most beautiful attractions in all of South America. Pictures don’t do it justice. The power of these falls is immense. The views are insane. The surrounding rainforest is stunning.

Iguazu Falls is one of those places you start planning your return to before you’ve even left. We’re guilty of rushing through things when traveling, but Iguazu Falls stopped us right in our tracks. We repeated the same walkways over and over again and never got bored.

If you’re on the fence about visiting Iguazu Falls, just do it. You won’t regret it!

We’ll go over the best ways to visit the miraculous Iguazu Falls so you make the most of this unbelievable experience.

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How to Visit Iguazu Falls Argentina and Brazil

Iguazu Falls Itinerary

As we mentioned before, you can’t get bored here. However, if you’re pressed for time, you can see both the Brazilian and Argentina side in just 1 day. If you have the time and the budget, staying at the Gran Meliá on the Argentina side for 2 nights, and the Hotel Das Cataratas on the Brazil side for 1 night is the best way to experience Iguazu Falls. These hotels are actually inside the park, so you have exclusive access before and after standard opening hours.

Check which trails are open on the Argentina side here!

Iguazu Falls 1 Day Itinerary

Argentina Side

To visit Iguazu Falls in one day, we recommend staying the night in Puerto de Iguazu, which is on the Argentina side. It also helps significantly if you rent a car, hire a taxi for the day, or go as part of a tour, (we recommend this one). Head over to Iguazu Falls on the Argentina side and arrive before 8 am, so you can be one of the first people there. On the Argentina side check out the following:

  • Sendero Verde: 10 minutes
  • Superior Circuit: 30 minutes
  • Inferior Circuit: 45 minutes
  • Gran Adventura Boat Ride: 2 hours including being driven to and from the dock
  • Devil’s Throat Trail: 1 hour
  • Tren de la Selva or “Jungle Train”: 5-10 minutes
  • Macuco Trail & Arrechea Falls Hike: 1.5 hours

Brazil Side

On the Brazil side, we recommend purchasing a sunset ticket (if you’re fine with staying inside the park until 7:30 pm). The sunset ticket grants access to the park before it closes, but you can also stay until after it’s closed for general admission ticket-holders. There’s only one trail (but it is incredible) on the Brazil side, although there are plans to make bike trails! Although pricier, Brazil has a buffet restaurant at the end of the trail overlooking the river before the waterfalls. Grab a late lunch or early dinner here! Tickets are cheaper if you buy them online versus in person.

Did you know Iguazu Falls can be visited as a day tour from Buenos Aires? This tour takes you from Buenos Aires to the Argentina side of Iguazu Falls and gets you back to Buenos Aires by nightfall!

Iguazu Falls 2 Day Itinerary

If you have two days, we recommend doing everything EXCEPT the boat ride on the Argentina side. Just relax, go slower, and maybe even do the trails multiple times!

The next day, head to the Brazil side for the Macuco boat ride, and walk the trail and admire the beautiful Iguazu falls. This trail takes around 45 minutes, but you can definitely relax, take your time, or walk it multiple times. If you’re interested in the birds of this beautiful rainforest region, check out the bird park nearby!

This 2-day tour includes airfare from Buenos Aires, and allows you to see both the Brazil and Argentina side of Iguazu Falls.

Iguazu Falls 3 Day Itinerary

If you’re older, or traveling with older people, this is the best option, in my opinion. The times listed for the trails in the 1 day itinerary section may be double for those who don’t have the best physical abilities, or just prefer going slower. We recommend splitting the Argentina side into two days (after all, your second day is 50% off).

On the third day, check out the Brazil side, with or without the boat ride, and do the trail.

If you have 3 days, we recommend visiting when there is a full moon, so you can do the full moon tour on the Argentina side. Marvel at the Iguazu Falls lit up by the moon, away from crowds and you won’t regret it!

The Perfect 1, 2, or 3 day Iguazu Falls Itinerary

Is Iguazu Falls better from the Argentinian side or the Brazil side?

There are a million quotes that answer this question, one of them being “You experience Iguazu Falls from the Argentina side, you admire it from the Brazil side.” Though 80% of Iguazu Falls is in Argentina, the panoramic views from the Brazil side are impossible to beat. That being said, Argentina has way more walking and hiking trails, so you can spend much more time here. Both sides are worth visiting, and we doing them both instead of taking your time and only doing one side.

NOTE: As of May 2024, the trail leading to Garganta del Diablo is closed on the Argentina side. Don’t worry! The Brazil Side is much closer to the action – which means you get WET!

Iguazu Falls Brazil

How to Buy Tickets for Iguazu Falls

How to Buy Tickets to Iguazu Falls in Argentina

You can buy tickets on the official website for designated time slots. However, the earliest you can buy them online is for 9 am. To get tickets for 8 am entry, buy tickets in person! The ticket booths are efficient and accept card. Make sure to bring your passport! Boat tickets are purchased separately, before the train station.

How to Buy Tickets to Iguazu Falls in Brazil

You can buy tickets on Brazil’s official website, or in person with the ticket machines. There are bilingual attendants to help you out if you get stuck. If you buy a special ticket, like the sunset option, stop in at the tourism office to get your wristband. Bring your passport! Boat tickets are purchased before you enter the bus dock, on the right and near the mini food court.

How to Buy Tickets for Iguazu Falls

Cost of Iguazu Falls

Iguazu Falls Entrance Fee in Argentina

Iguazu Falls on the Argentina side costs $20 for foreign adults, $10 for 6-16 year olds, and is free for kids under 6. There’s also a 50% discount on your second day, you just have to get your ticket validated when you leave the park on your first day. The boat tickets cost $60. You can enter the park between 8 am and 4:30 pm and must leave by 6 pm.

Iguazu Falls Entrance Fee in Brazil

The entrance fee for Iguazu Falls on the Brazil side is $19 for foreigners and $15 for Brazilians. Sunset tickets cost $35, sunrise tickets cost $41, and night tour tickets are $49 (Saturdays only). Boat tickets, which include a jungle tour cost $75. The regular hours are 9 am to 5 pm, but the sunrise, sunset, and night tour tickets allow you to enter the park outside of these hours.

There’s a 40% discount on second day, and if you buy 3-day tickets you get a 50% discount on days two and three!

Cost of Visiting Iguazu Falls

How to Get to Iguazu Falls

How to Get to Iguazu Falls (Argentina) from Puerto Iguazu

The buses leave from the Puerto de Iguazu Bus Terminal every 15 minutes from 7 to 6:15 and cost $3.50 USD. Rio Uruguay only takes cash, so bring your pesos! You can buy return tickets without any specified return time Rio Uruguay’s Bus Turístico is what you’ll be taking. The bus takes around 30 minutes.

Taxis cost $3 per person and leave once there’s a full car. For those driving, parking costs $1.

How to Get to Iguazu Falls (Brazil) from Foz de Iguaçu

From the Foz de Iguaçu urban bus station, it costs 5 real or $1. This bus also goes to the airport after the falls. The bus leaves every 10-20 minutes and takes around 30 minutes. To get to Iguazu by 9 am, take the 8:05 am bus. You can also take the 8:20 bus, but not on Sundays.

Foz de Iguaçu is a city much more built up than Puerto Iguazu on the Argentina side. Therefore, Uber is a great option to get to the falls. You can also take a taxi, but it will be a bit more expensive.

If you’re driving, there is plenty of space in the parking lot, located here.

How to Get to Iguazu Falls (Brazil) from Puerto Iguazu

From the Argentina Puerto Iguazu bus station you can take a $3 USD bus directly to the Brazil side of the falls with Crucero del Norte (CDN). They leave every hour from 8 am to 4 pm. Rio Uruguay also runs this route, but it’s a little more expensive. The ride and border crossing takes around 45-60 minutes.

Iguazu Falls Tour From Buenos Aires

If you’re short on time and don’t want to plan logistics, you can visit Iguazu Falls in just one day from Buenos Aires! This tour takes care of everything including flights and entry tickets, and just goes to the Argentina side. This 2-day tour from Buenos Aires allows you to see both sides of Iguazu!

Everything you need to know before your visit to Iguazu

Activities in Iguazu Falls

What to do in Iguazu Falls Argentina Side

Iguazu Falls Walking and Hiking

The Superior, Inferior, and Devil’s Throat trails are beautiful walking trails through the park that are the highlights of the experience. If you want to do some hiking, check out the Macuco Trail and Arrechea Falls hikes. Here you’ll be able to spot wildlife, enjoy the peace, and challenge yourself. The downside of this hike is you aren’t constantly admiring the waterfalls!

Gran Adventura Boat Ride

The Gran Adventura Boat Ride is a must-do experience for those visiting Iguazu Falls on the Argentina side. Get up close and personal with the roaring waterfalls as the driver steers you extremely close to under the waterfalls. (Yes, you’ll get very wet, but the park provides places to store your belongings.) This costs $60 for foreigners and $48 for nationals, students, and those aged 6-12.

Iguazu Falls Full Moon Tour

The full moon walks on Argentina’s side of Iguazu only happen 5 nights a month (when the moon is full or near full) at 7:45, 8:30, and 9:15. The walks last 2 and a half hours and costs $100 USD. You can optionally add a dinner onto your experience. Book your tickets on the official website!

What to do in Iguazu Falls Brazil Side

Macuco Boat Ride

The Macuco Boat Ride on the Brazil side of Iguazu is basically the same thing as the Gran Adventura Boat Ride on the Argentina side. We recommend doing one or the other, or if you have deep pockets, both! Make sure to get off at the first bus stop after the welcome center! This costs $75.

Iguazu Falls Helicopter Tour

The Iguazu Falls Helicopter Tour is only possible from Brazil. The company picks you up from your hotel, takes you to the heliport (outside of the park), and then takes you on a 10 minute helicopter ride. It seems super short, but the truth is you don’t need much longer to admire the falls when you’re flying above them!

Book your helicopter tour of the Iguazu Falls here!

Iguazu Falls Night Tour

The Night Tour of Iguazu on the Brazil side is held every Saturday at 8:30 and 9 pm for $49. There is only one trail here, but the views at all times of day are marvelous. They also include a welcome drink (and various refills that you pay for in the form of tips to the waiters) in the ticket price. Check out the tickets here.

Best Things to do at Iguazu Falls

Things to Know Before Visiting Iguazu Falls

  • You must bring your passport!
  • You can pay with cash or credit cards. The Argentina side takes American Express but Amex has a worse exchange rate. Read our post on everything you need to know about exchanging money and paying with card in Argentina!
  • On the Argentina side, San Martin Island has been closed since 2017, Macuco trail closes when there’s lots of rain/flooding, and the paseo ecológico boat tour and garganta del diablo are closed as of May 2024
  • Both sides have luggage storage with ample room for carry-on luggage
  • There are ATMs, convenience stores, and places to hire tour guides on both sides of Iguazu
Iguazu Falls Things to Know Before your Visit

Best Time of Year to Visit Iguazu Falls

The best time of year to visit Iguazu Falls is during April, May, September, and October. These months tend to bring dry and not overwhelmingly hot weather, along with fewer crowds.

Though the falls are at their highest water levels during the summer months (December-February), we recommend not visiting during these months. This is the peak tourist season, so the park will be crowded and accommodations will likely be more expensive. The summer also brings the most rain, the highest temperatures, and high humidity, and lots of rainfall can lead to trail and activity closure.

As far as the best time of day to visit Iguazu Falls, the earlier the better! We avoided the masses by showing up as soon as the park opened. On the Brazil side, the sunset and sunrise options are a great way to hog the beautiful views for yourself (and a few others)!

Where to Stay in Puerto Iguazu

As we mentioned earlier, the Gran Meliá Iguazú is the best hotel to stay at when you’re visiting Iguazu. It looks absolutely amazing (sadly it wasn’t in the budget this time!) and is the only hotel on the Argentina side of the park. If you can’t dish out the dough for that, we recommend staying right in downtown Puerto Iguazu. Though the town isn’t very nice, this will put you close to the bus station so you can get to the falls easily.

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Where to Stay in Foz do Iguaçu

If you can, we highly recommend staying at Hotel das Cataratas. It’s the only hotel in the park and it looks spectacular. However, it has a high price! If that’s not in the budget, we recommend staying right in downtown Foz du Iguaçu so you can be close to the bus station!

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Our Favorite Travel Resources

Accommodations: We use Booking.com for hotels and HostelWorld for hostels. We also use VRBO or TrustedHousesitters for longer stays.

Flights: We recommend using Skyscanner to find the cheapest and best flights.

Ground Transport: We use 12Go and Omio for buses and private transfers, and rentalcars.com and Discover Cars for rental cars.

Activities: GetYourGuide and Viator are the best websites for booking organized tours.

International Medical Insurance: We highly recommend SafetyWing for Digital Nomads and HeyMondo for those not traveling full-time, or who frequently engage in higher-risk adventure activities.

eSIM: We recommend Airalo or Holafly for getting data internationally.

Check out our Travel Resources Page for more of our favorite travel-related products and services!

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