After years of following NatGeoTravel and South American travel instagram accounts and liking numerous photos of Iguacu Falls, I was finally there to see it for myself, and it was unbelievable.
Last Friday I and 6 other international students set off for Iguacu Falls. We all met at the airport (having been arriving from different areas in Belo Horizonte) with all of us travelling with ‘conexao aeropuerto’ a bus service running from the main station or from other stations situated downtown. As we arrived we headed to the departure area of CNF (Belo Horizonte Airport) for domestic flights (this is situated upstairs). We flew with GOL (a Brazilian airline) which took us first to São Paulo, and then on to Foz de Iguaçú airport (which is the closest one to the falls, and the easiest for getting there)
I found my flight through sky scanner, and then purchased my flights on the GOL website – they were around 480 R return (around £90), with a daily promotion added to this price (others were around 650 R) I would definitely recommend booking in advance for the likelihood of finding cheaper prices, and if you can book on the weekends, look out for the daily promotions and discounts that GOL, along with Azul and Tam, offer! These are normally on the right hand side of the webpage and are normally very good value for money!
As far as the security process for these flights, all is very easy-going. You can take liquids in your hand luggage (I mean, I say this not on the knowledge of whether it is permitted or not, only on the basis that I had full bottle liquids in my bag (as I was only taking hand lugggage) and I did not even need to take it out of my bag..or throw away larger bottles, like you have to do with all international flights).Neither did they weigh the bag, therefore the process was very chilled.
A little point worth adding is that there is not a lot of choice once you get past ‘security’, therefore if you are wanting to eat, there is not a lot of choice (pao de queijo is everywhere though if you fancy one of them or a toastie of some sort!) Likewise I would recommend arriving an hour maximum before your flight, as if you are only travelling with hand luggage, two minutes and you are into the gate with nothing to do. Even with checking luggage an hour maximum is suffice! It isn’t necessary to be there hours before like in an international flight, you will just be waiting for ages with nothing to do!
From Iguacu Falls airport we then got the 105 bus from the airport which goes straight to the centre (where we were staying) this is very easy and costs around 2-4 R (very cheap). It is very easy to ask if you are not sure if the bus goes to where you need to, so do not worry if you are unsure. We were staying in Che Legarto Hostel, which I found through Hostelworld.
To get to the falls themselves we took the same bus (coming from the airport) that took us directly to the falls. This was ideal as it dropped us right outside the entrance to the falls, and then on the way back it dropped us back at the train station in the centre (5/7 mins walk from our hostel).
The hostel itself was really very good. It did not have a normal hostel layout – it was very spacious, and very clean and tidy. I was really impressed with the staff there, the one gentleman that served us upon arrival was very helpful and check-in was done in no time at all. The staff continued to be really helpful, from organising taxis and giving directions to restaurants, and organising transport, to and from. They have an agency within the hostel building where you can also organise all your trips and activities and buy tickets there and then, to avoid queuing within the park. This was ideal as we did not know how busy the park was going to be so planning our days beforehand and having our tickets already in hand meant that the day moved a lot smoother for us.
The hostel adopts a very clean, spacious design with white and green as the colours used on the walls and on each floor there were different travel quotes painted on the walls which I liked.
They also had a large map on the wall by the entrance as you walk in which displays all of the Che Legato hostels across South America, if I get the opportunity I would love to stay in them while I am exploring.
I would definitely recommend this hostel to anyone visiting Iguazu Falls – it is clean, comfortable, in a great location to get to the falls, the staff are lovely and very considering – and they organise bbqs on the top terrace where they have a jacuzzi, serving different flavoured Caipirinhas. It has a very relaxed atmosphere about it and welcomes all ages. Not to mention the price is very good also.
Um dia depois da minha chegada no Brasil, eu comecei na universidade, com o segundo dia das induções para os estudantes internacionais. Eu fui numa visita guiada da cidade e do campus da UFMG de manhã e depois eu comi no bandejão na universidade.
“Language is the road map of a culture. It tells you where its people come from and where they are going.”
I made it! After so much deliberation and ‘um-ing’ and ‘arr-ing’ and a kind shove at the airport from my family to get on the plane, I made it, 15 hours later and I have touch down in Sao Paulo. Continue reading “Touch Down in Brazil”
Despite it still being pleasantly warm here in Cádiz and the fact that there are no Christmas markets here, there are LIGHTS. Not entirely sure if they’re just squiggles or meant to be a symbol of Christmas here, but they are fab, I love them and with my last presentation finished today for this term, and the fact that I’ll be heading home soon to my family for Christmas next week, everything is starting to feel very Christmassy at last! Continue reading “Home time”
Just a few reflections out of many that I have made about London, through living in Spain:
- It’s actually REALLY big. Despite Cádiz only being a tiny ounce of the size in comparison to London, I didn’t expect for it to be so small that if you meet someone by chance in the street, or in a bar, you are more than likely to see them again, everywhere. This changes the way that you act. I have made sure that in all circumstances that I bump into people that I am pleasant, and would not find myself embarrassed or in need of avoiding them for the rest of my time here, because I acted atrociously. I think that I take for granted how big London is, that for example, it wouldn’t matter if you rush into someone on your way to a lecture and forget to apologise and leave them with their books on the floor, because a) the likelihood of you ever seeing them again is unlikely and b) someone would surely be around to pick up the pieces you left them to clear up. Not that I would ever act in that way with another person, but it gives you perspective, that if for example you treated someone badly while you were in a rush, whether you realised it or not, would you want to meet them again, and if so, would you feel embarrassed by your previous actions? Cádiz es una pañuela (a small world) and the close proximity in which everyone lives here encourages such a positive atmosphere.