Folklore History of Iguazu Falls
Once upon a time, a Guarani warrior named Caroba, who was in love with a pretty Indian maiden named Naipi, took her into his canoe and fled the village, paddling for all he was worth down the Iguazu River.
But Caroba was not the only one who was enamoured of the fair Naipi. She had also attracted the romantic attention of a forest god. When the forest god saw Caroba paddling downriver with Naipi, he was angry.
To try to stop Caroba, the angry forest god made the land under the river disappear. Naipi fell out of the canoe and dropped over the edge. She landed at the bottom, and turned into a rock. Caroba turned into a tree that overlooks this rock. Where the river bottom disappeared or fell away is the site of Iguazu Falls.
Geological History of Iguazu Falls
Iguazu Falls was created in the area where the Rio Iguacu (Iguazu River, in Portuguese) in Brazil flows over a basalt rock plateau that ends at the Parana River. Basalt is formed from a lava flow. There are actually 275 waterfalls in the full Iguazu series.
Interesting Facts about Argentina Iguazu Falls
This signpost at Iguazu Falls shows some of the other large waterfalls around the world.
- First European to See Iguazu Falls Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca, a Spanish explorer
Ways to spell Iguazu Iguazu (Spanish); Iguacu, Iguassu (Portuguese)
Words meaning Waterfalls Saltos, Cataratas (cataracts; Spanish), fos (Portuguese)
How long are Iguazu Falls? 2.7 kilometers (1.67 miles)
How many waterfalls make up Iguazu? There are about 275 waterfalls, about two-thirds of which are in Argentina.
How high is Iquazu Falls? Devil's Throat Falls is highest falls, at 269 feet (82 m) and 490 feet (700 m.) wide. Devil's Throat Falls is a natural border between Argentina and Brazil.
More on Argentina Iguazu Falls ~ Major Waterfalls around the worldHere's a close up look at the sign detail at the National Park in Argentina Iguazu Falls:
Canada has two on this list, and Brasil (Brazil) has four water falls to its credit; worth exploring!
History of Iguazu Falls not the Main Attraction . . .
The waterfalls are! My walking tour at Argentina Iguazu Falls was a highlight of my South American trip. To stand close to the base of one of these water falls on a hot tropical noontime and be drenched in the spray is bliss!
My one regret is that the Iguazu National Park Sheraton Hotel, located within the park, was fully booked at the time of my visit. When I next visit Iguazu, I plan to book the hotel well in advance, preferably when a full moon tour is scheduled, and to stay longer!See also Argentina Iguazu Falls Maps to orient yourself. Traveling to Argentina? See Argentina travel info about visas, climate, language, etc. Two thirds of Iguazu water falls are in Argentina.