In August 2013, we ended our 4 month trip to South America in Buenos Aires. We rented an apartment there for two weeks and during that time we took a bus trip to Puerto Iguazú in order to see Iguazú Falls. This is really a collection of approximately 275 discreet waterfalls that straddle the border between Argentina and Brazil. Iguazú Falls are considered to be among the most beautiful and largest in the world. They stretch out over an area 1.7 miles long so it’s difficult to take it all in but you can experience the beauty of these falls from many vantage points.
While in Puerto Iguazú, you can easily check out Tres Fronteras which provides a view of three countries at the confluence of two great rivers.
El Paso is in the extreme western edge of Texas and is right on the border with Mexico with Ciudad Juarez on the other side of the Rio Grande. We have not previously stopped here so I took a drive on Scenic Drive which gives a nice view of downtown El Paso and Juarez beyond.
San Jacinto Plaza
Downtown El Paso
El Paso Scenic Drive
Next stop: Wilcox, AZ
(Click here for more photographs.)
Yes, it’s true. Niagara Falls is amazing. It seems like that word is getting overused these days. Can a hamburger really be “amazing”? Let’s agree that Niagara Falls is truly amazing. It’s one of those wonders of nature that you have to experience in person to fully appreciate. After visiting Niagara Falls and Iguazú Falls (in August 2013), we have now seen two of the world’s three most spectacular waterfalls with Victoria Falls remaining for a future trip. Niagara Falls, consisting of the American Falls, Bridal Veil Falls and Horseshoe Falls, is tops in terms of vertical drop combined with water volume but the 1.7 miles long series of waterfalls at Iguazú deserves its own type of amazing.
The route into Argentina from San Pedro de Atacama crosses the Andes through Paso de Jama, a mountain pass at about 13,800 feet above sea level. It was first necessary for us to get stamped out of Chile which is done at their border control office located just outside of San Pedro, 160km from the border.
Leaving from Arequipa, we wanted to get to Arica, Chile, just across the border from Tacna, Peru. This meant first taking a bus from Arequipa to Tacna. When we arrived in Tacna, we walked “across the street” to the international bus terminal. From there we would join a “collectivo” which would take us across the border, making the stops to get us stamped out of Peru and then into Chile.
In general, a collectivo is some type of vehicle that collects passengers until it’s full before leaving. In this case, the collectivo was a passenger car with 5 passengers. Once we had our 5, the driver took our passports and had our Chile tourist cards prepared.
Following the relatively uneventful border crossing, the driver delivered us to the international bus terminal in Arica. The trip from Tacna, Peru, to Arica, Chile, is about 40 miles, took a little over an hour and cost us about $11.