You’ve no doubt heard plenty about the mighty Iguazú Falls, which border Argentina and Brazil, but we bet there are some things you didn’t know. Below we’ve listed 10 curious facts about Iguazú Falls, so you can show off your knowledge and fully prepare yourself ahead of your trip to Argentina.
1. Iguazu Falls has the greatest average annual flow
During rainy season, which lasts from November through till the start of March, the rate of flow can rise to a whopping 450,000 cubic feet per second! As a result, Iguazú Falls currently has the greatest average annual flow of any waterfall in the world, twice as great as that of Niagara Falls.
2. It’s one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature
Iguazú Falls was selected as one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature by the New Seven Wonders of the World Foundation in 2011 with more than 1 thousand million of votes from people from all over the world.
3. It was discovered by the Spaniards
The first European to come across Iguazú Falls was Spanish Conquistador Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca, after whom one of the falls on the Argentine side is named. A man named Boselli is credited for having re-discovered them in the late 1800s.
4. It was all the serpent’s fault
There is a legend that explains how the falls were created: Mboi, a god in the form of a serpent, was to marry a beautiful woman called Naipi but Naipi was in love with a young warrior, with whom she fled in a canoe. When Mboi discovered this, he was enraged and sliced the river with his serpent tail, thereby creating the falls and causing the young lovers to sink.
5. …Or that of a volcano (choose your version)
Iguazú Falls was in actual fact formed as the result of a volcanic eruption, which left a large crack in the earth.
6. Iguazu, the ‘big water’
When translated from the native Indian language, Guaraní, Iguazú translates to ‘Big Water’, a fairly fitting description.
7. There are birds living inside
There are a species of birds called Great Dusky Swifts that nests in places on the rock walls behind the falls, and are often seen plunging right into them.
8. It is a major electricity supplier
The power of Iguazú Falls has been used to create hydroelectricity and produces 40% of the electricity consumed by both Argentina and Brazil.
9. It’s a world heritage site
Iguazú National Park, where the falls are located, was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List due to its exceptional natural beauty and because it’s home to rare and endangered species.
10. Indiana Jones was here!
Iguazu Falls featured in the Indiana Jones movie, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, the first not to be filmed in the UK. It has also featured in films Moonraker (1979), The Mission (1986), Mr. Magoo (1997) and Miami Vice (2006).
Find more facts about Iguazú Falls yourself by visiting this amazing destination. Read our Igauzu Travel Guide to plan your trip, and be sure to check out our catalogue of great Iguazu tours and activities!
By: Milly Day – English Content Manager