Iguaçu Falls, Brazil is right across the water (and the border) from Argentina.
Spelled Iguassu or Iguaçu in Portuguese, Brazil’s national park is also a World Heritage site and is a larger landmass than Argentina’s National Park with 185,262 hectares (457,794 acres).
Iguazu’s walking trails are on the Argentine side of the waterfalls.
Most visitors stay across the border in Puerto Iguazu, Argentina but travel here for at least a half-day to see the panoramic views.
Most of the activities and boat tours take place in Iguaçu National Park, Brazil, located in the state of Paraná in the south of Brazil.
Ideally travelers will want to spend a day here to enjoy some of the wet and wild boat rides and other adrenaline inducing activities.
It’s also possible to travel here straight here after landing in Foz do Iguaçu. The airport is 17 km from the falls.
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Iguaçu Visas & Covid Entrance Requirements
No visa is required to enter Brazil for those from those from G20 or Mercosur countries.
Be aware that some old guidebook or websites may say that Canadians, Americans and Japanese among other countries require a visa but the reciprocity visa (aimed at countries who require a visa for Brazilians to enter) was done away with in 2019.
Those from other countries will want to make sure they check the entry requirements for their country.
Requirements related to COVID are still evolving.
Right now (mid-2022) visitors need either proof of vaccination, or a negative PCR test to enter Brazil.
As the situation is still changing frequently, please check Brazil’s latest requirements here.
It should be noted that visitors staying in Puerto Iguazu can hop over to Iguaçu on a public bus or as part of a tour group without getting any entry or exit stamps.
While it’s possible to visit just the border area without a stamp in your passport, it’s preferable to get off the bus at immigrations and get the stamp.
Visitors may have to ask the driver to stop at immigrations, because most people on the bus are locals who do not need to get a stamp.
After getting the stamp, either wait for the next bus or get a taxi to the Parque Nacional do Iguaçu entrance from there.
Although there are not as many trails and close encounters with the falls on the Brazil side, the panoramic views are superior.
On the Brazilian side of Iguazu there is also the opportunity to get a view of the falls by a boat tour.
Just north of the cataracts, on the border of Brazil and Paraguay, is the Itaipu Dam, the largest hydroelectric power plant on the planet.
It is considered one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by the US Association of Civil Engineers and is an interesting excursion for those who enjoy educational travel.
Although they aren’t high in the list for many tourists, there are some gem mines in the area to visit as well.
Iguaçu, Brazil Places to Stay
Many tourists opt to stay in Puerto Iguazu on the Argentine side of Iguazú, rather than on the more urban and crime-ridden Foz do Iguaçu on the Brazilian side.
Foreign currency also goes further in Argentina than Brazil.
Nevertheless, because of the over-saturation of accommodations in Foz do Iguaçu there are some good deals there.
The most desirable lodging option if staying on the Brazil side of the waterfalls is the Hotel das Cataratas, a classic colonial-style four-star hotel.
This hotel is unique for being located inside Iguaçu National Park.
It is a bit more expensive than the old Sheraton Hotel (now, Melia Iguazu) which is the only hotel located inside the Argentina side of the park.