Wednesday, March 26, 2008

South American Highlights #1

I want to share some photos of our trip to South America and I've decided to do it in no particular order. But I will start with one of my absolute favourite parts! Iguazu Falls are found on the border between Brazil and Argentine and they are an absolute must see if you ever travel to SA! Darrin was excited when he heard we were going here and he was right - they are spectacular.

To give you some background, Wikipedia says:
"The waterfall system consists of 275 falls along 2.7 kilometres (1.67 miles) of the Iguazu River. Position is at Latitude (DMS): 25° 40' 60 S ,Longitude (DMS): 54° 25' 60 W . Some of the individual falls are up to 82 metres (269 ft) in height, though the majority are about 64 metres (210 ft). The Garganta del Diablo (Devil's Throat in English; Garganta do Diabo in Portuguese), a U-shaped 150-metre-wide and 700-metre-long (490 by 2300 feet) cliff, is the most impressive of all, and marks the border between Argentina and Brazil. Two thirds of the falls are within Argentine territory. [1] About 900 metres of the 2.7-kilometre length does not have water flowing over it. The edge of the basalt cap recedes only 3 mm per year.

Upon seeing Iguaçu, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt reportedly exclaimed "Poor Niagara!"[1] Vastly larger than North America's Niagara Falls, Iguaçu is rivalled only by Southern Africa's Victoria Falls which separates Zambia and Zimbabwe (this is excluding extremely large rapid-like falls such as the Boyoma Falls). Whilst Iguazu is wider because it is split into about 270 discrete falls and large islands, Victoria is the largest curtain of water in the world, at over a 1600 m wide and over 100 m (350 ft) in height (in low flow Victoria is split into five by islands; in high flow it can be uninterrupted).

The water falling over Iguazu in peak flow has a surface area of about 40 ha (1.3 million ft²) whilst Victoria in peak flow has a surface area of over 55 ha (1.8 million ft²).[4] By comparison, Niagara has a surface area of under 18.3 ha (600,000 ft²).[5] Victoria's annual peak flow is also greater than Iguazu's annual peak—9 100 m³/s versus 6 500—though in times of extreme flood the two have recorded very similar maximum water discharge (well in excess of 12 000 m³/s). Niagara's annual peak flow is about 2 800 m³/s, although an all-time peak of 6 800 has been recorded.[5] Iguazu and Victoria fluctuate more greatly in their flow rate."

I'm not going to say much more - just enjoy these glimpses taken from the National Park on the Brazilian side. I took 150 photos on this morning and I'll share some more tomorrow (if you don't mind!).

This was our very first glimpse and it took my breath away. With every turn of the path, there was another gorgeous picture to capture.

This was our first view of the Brazilian portion of the falls. It reminded us more of Niagara Falls with the volume of water and the mist/spray.

It was quite simply, a most amazing visit to an incredibly beautiful and majestic place!


  1. WOW, that looks absolutely amazing!! Great pictures, can't wait to see some more!! If the pictures look this spectacular, I could only imagine what it must have been like to be there!! A definite must on our growing list of sites to see, places to go!!

  2. Your photos are awesome! What an amazing place to see, explore and learn about. It definitely gets me thinking about a trip to SA and what beauty there is to see. I love the second photo with the trees and the different falls in between. Oh, they're all great. Looking forward to so much more.

  3. Blogger is being a pain this morning. The photos are stunning. I want to see them imn real life too. Some of the photos make it look almost gentle, whereas the Victoria Falls are immensely powerful.

  4. Oh my what beautiful things you saw!!! So happy for you.

    Thanks for the very sweet comment you left me today :o)

  5. Truly breathtaking!

  6. It is so amazing! You took some beautiful photos! I would love to go there one day!

  7. WOW!!! It looks so amazing!!!! What a great trip!

  8. I've heard people talk about those falls, but had no idea they were so spectacular. What beautiful photos!!