Travelling in Argentina is a wonderful experience, but the best mode of transportation isn’t always clear. In light of that, Bri has written a comprehensive post on the best way to get from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls (on the Argentinian side), so you know exactly how to approach this situation in your travels.
Planning a trip to Argentina can be an overwhelming task. If you are continuously trying to make the most of your time on your trip, without over-scheduling yourself, you want to plan accordingly.
We decided that given the time constraints of our trip to Argentina (we were there for two weeks most recently), flying between destinations would make the most sense to cover the ground necessary.
When you begin researching flying in Argentina, South America’s second largest country, you’ll learn that many flights have a stopover in Buenos Aires. So, for example, if you were in Mendoza, and you wanted to go to Iguazu Falls, you’re likely still going to have to go back through Buenos Aires.
This is why it makes the most sense to travel directly from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls. There are many different ways that you can travel to Iguazu Falls, but let me break down the best way to plan your trip from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls, so you can get the most out of your time visiting this incredible site.
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Flying from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls
After spending a few days (or more, if you have the time) in Buenos Aires, there are a few options to get to Iguazu Falls.
An important item to note is that Buenos Aires has two airports. The first is Ezeiza International Airport (EZE), which is about an hour from the city centre by car. It can be much longer, though, depending on traffic. It is the most common airport for international flights coming from a farther distance, but it has a small local terminal, too.
If you are flying locally within Argentina, there is nothing wrong with this airport, but it does mean you’ll need to leave your accommodation much earlier if you’re staying in the city centre. We took a 7am flight from Ezeiza to Mendoza, and we needed to leave our accommodation in Palermo Soho around 4am to feel comfortable getting there on time.
If you are taking a local flight, I would recommend flying out of Aeroparque Jorge Newbery (AEP) from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls instead. This airport is extremely close to the city centre, and just down the road from our favourite neighborhood in Buenos Aires, Palermo Soho.
It is convenient and easy to get to, and eliminates some stress of having to leave much earlier for your flight, as you would need to at EZE.
Airlines You Can Take from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls
There are a few good options for carriers you can travel with when you make the trip to Iguazu Falls.
Budget Friendly Airlines
The two more budget-friendly options are Fly Bondi and Wingo. While we didn’t travel with either of these airlines during our trip, they both seem like good budget options. As is the case with most budget airlines, they seem to be more stringent about carry-on luggage, and they don’t include checked bags.
We saw measuring stations for Fly Bondi, specifically, all over the terminals we travelled through, so if you are flying with them you need to make sure your bag is the right size.
Also, because our trip was so tight for time and we had a lot we wanted to see, we heard some flights can be delayed or cancelled in Argentina, and we didn’t want to risk a flight being cancelled with a smaller fleet or budget airline. It’s very possible this wouldn’t have happened, but we didn’t want to chance it.
ARgentina’s Largest Airline (and flag carrier)
We decided to travel exclusively with Aerolineas Argetinas for our domestic flights within the country. Despite reading poor reviews in some travel guides, we were happy with our experience flying with them. All of the flights we took were delayed slightly, no more than 40 minutes, which was good. That being said, if you have a stopover between local flights in Argentina, it’s recommended to give yourself a little extra time between flights.
Another great aspect of flying with Aerolineas Argentinas was we were also able to travel with our North-American sized carry on backpacks on each flight. We aren’t sure if our bags would have fit the criteria for the budget airlines.
Plus, Aerolineas Argetinas is a part of “SkyTeam,” an airline alliance featuring 17 other airlines including Delta, Air France, ITA, AeroMexico and more. If you are a part of any of their reward programs, you can collect miles. We, for example, collected Delta SkyMiles throughout our time in Argentina by flying with Aerolineas Argetinas.
Travelling from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls by Bus
Although we opted to fly on our trip, there are some overland options if you’d like to travel by bus instead.It’s definitely a more affordable option, since flights in Argentina aren’t exactly cheap. However, a bus from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls will take you around 20 hours at best.
There are a few places that could be worth stopping at along the way if you’re on a longer trip. Some cities to stop at could be Colon, Garupa or Puerto Rico. But at the end of the day, the real allure of this drive is Iguazu Falls.
Many different bus companies operate in Argentina for this journey. Good options for this trip would be Rio Uruguay, Via TAC and Via Bariloche. There are many different departure times with each of these companies, so you have a lot of different ways to plan out the trip.
When you arrive to Puerto Iguazu by bus, you’ll arrive at the main bus station. It is convenient to stay near the bus station, since you’ll need to access the buses to explore Iguazu Falls on either side.
There are many different places to stay in walking distance to the bus station, so it’s worth your while to find one of these accommodations. Here are some options:
Where to Land When You Fly to Iguazu Falls
If you’re traveling within Argentina on your trip, then traveling to and staying on the Argentinian side of Iguazu Falls makes the most sense. It can get a little confusing, since the falls border Argentina and Brazil, with Paraguay not far down the river. There are a lot of ports of entry in the area!
I’d highly recommend landing on the Argentinan side of Iguazu Falls, at Puerto Iguazu International Airport/Cataratas of Iguazu International Airport (IGR). If you’re planning to land in Argentina, make sure you do not book a flight to Foz do Iguaçu International Airport (IGU), since this is the airport on the Brazilian side. Since the airport names are so similar, it can be tricky to ensure you’re landing at the right one.
From the airport, it’s a close bus ride to Puerto Iguazu, the Argentinian town nearest to the falls, which I’ve mentioned prior in this article.
Getting to Puerto Iguazu from the Airport
You need to take some mode of transportation from the Iguazu airport to Puerto Iguazu, as it’s about a 30 minute drive, depending on where you’re headed in the city. It’s also a very long and desolate road, surrounded by rainforest, as the road follows one of the edges of Iguazu Falls National Park.I was surprised to see a traveller walking along this road during our trip—I wouldn’t recommend it!
It’s important to note that Uber and other local car-sharing apps like Cabify aren’t available to get around Iguazu Falls. We weren’t prepared for this when we landed, since we had no problems using them in other parts of the country, but it was okay since we had done a little extra research beforehand. But let us take the guess work out for you, and help you plan this part of your trip a little more easily:
There are three major options for getting from IGR to Puerto Iguazu.
The best option to get from IGR to Puerto Iguazu, in my opinion, is to line up at the Four Tourist kiosk outside of the arrivals gates at Iguazu Airport. You’ll buy a ticket for a place on one of their air conditioned mini buses.
This is a comfortable, convenient and relatively inexpensive way to get from door-to-door, and they’ll drop you off at your accommodation, too. The price for a transfer at the time we visited was $1300 ARS per person (8 CAD/ 6 USD).
The next option is to take a local bus, like with Rio Uruguay, from the airport to the central bus station in Puerto Iguazu. This is the cheapest option, at $650 ARS (4 CAD/3 USD). The buses run fairly frequently, and are comfortable for the trip.They’ll take you to the Puerto Iguazu central bus terminal, from which you can conveniently walk to your accommodation. Puerto Iguazu is quite spread out, so make sure you choose a place to stay that’s nearby.
It’s possible that depending on the time your flight lands and how many buses are left at the end of the day, your only option (which will be comfortable, but more expensive) is to take a taxi from IGR to your accommodation in Puerto Iguazu. It will cost you about four times the price of the Four Tourist transfer, at a flat rate of $4500 ARS (29 CAD/ 21 USD), making it a fine option if you are traveling with a small group or family.
Planning Your Time at Iguazu Falls
Once you’ve made the trip from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls, the real fun of planning your time at the falls can begin. We were absolutely blown away by Iguazu Falls—I had no idea how much I’d want to stay and continue exploring during my visit.
Stay tuned for our upcoming article on how to plan a visit to Iguazu Falls. There are a lot of things to consider when planning your visit, and we want to make sure you have all of the best tips in advance to make the most of your time.
South America Travel
Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls