There are multiple ways of getting from Buenos Aires to Iguazu falls. The good news is that regardless of the method of transport you take, it’s a relatively uncomplicated journey.
Which one you choose will depend on a number of factors. The main considerations are how big your budget is, how much time you have, and your desired level of comfort.
I have personally visited Iguazu falls from Buenos Aires on no less than three separate occasions. So if you were in any doubt as to whether it’s worth the journey, there’s your proof.
Yes, the falls are really that spectacular. In fact they are literally awesome in a way that will leave you struggling to process your emotions.
This post covers every method of getting from Buenos Aires to Iguazu falls – by bus, plane, and with a tour. You’ll discover which option is best for you as well as where to find the cheapest deals.
Plus we’ve included a host of other useful info to know before you go. Everything from when’s the best time of year to go to what to pack and where to stay.
Let’s do this!
Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls by Plane – The Quick Option
Hands down the quickest way of getting from Buenos Aires to Iguazu falls is by plane. It takes just 1 hour and 50 minutes to cover the roughly 670 miles (1080km) between the two airports.
Even taking into account the time at either end getting to and from the airports, checking in and going through security, it’s way quicker than other methods. Especially because as it’s an internal flight, you only really need to arrive at the airport an hour or so beforehand.
There are 7 airlines that fly direct from Buenos Aires to Iguazu and there are multiple flights each day. And in contrast to some of the outdated info available online, there are now budget airlines operating in Argentina.
The operators running this route are JetSmart, LATAM, Norwegian, Aerolineas Argentinas, Flybondi, Andes Lineas Aereas, and Austral. They all have direct flights from Buenos Aires to Iguazu, but there are a couple of other differences worth knowing about.
Flybondi and JetSmart fly from a different airport to the other airlines. El Palomar (EPA) is actually a military airstrip which opened up for commercial flights in 2018.
It’s about 15 miles (25km) from Buenos Aires city centre and the airlines operating here are budget airlines meaning cheap flights. However, it’s slightly further away from popular areas like Palermo than the other airport. Because of this it’s also slightly more tricky to get to.
The rest of the airlines fly from Aeroparque Internacional Jorge Newbery (AEP), the city’s main domestic airport. Long established, it’s relatively simple to get here by public transport or taxi.
Confusingly the airports codes – AEP and EPA – are strikingly similar, so don’t get them mixed up.
The cheapest flights can be found for around £40 ($51USD), but these are one way, outside of peak times. The average return flight will cost around £100 ($127USD), so any less than that and you’ve bagged a good deal. More than that and you’ve probably left it a bit late or you’re heading to Iguazu in peak period.
One thing to bear in mind is that Iguazu falls are extremely popular, particularly during the peak months. The best idea is to get your flights booked up in advance to save disappointment.
Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls Bus – The Cheap Option
Perhaps, like me, you’re not a big fan of flying. Or maybe you’re just looking for the very cheapest method of getting from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls. Either way, the bus is a great alternative option, but only if you have the time to spare.
The route covers about 930 miles (1500km) while journey times run from around 17-21 hours. Some people just don’t have the patience or capacity to sit on a bus for that long.
All buses run from the vast Retiro Station. While it’s conveniently central, it’s not the kind of place you want to spend too long hanging around in.
There are at least 5 different bus operators running the route from Buenos Aires to Iguazu. However, these do change relatively frequently, hence why they’re not listed. There are numerous bus times each day.
If you’re really looking to conserve your pennies, catching a bus can help you save multiple times over. This is because the buses run overnight meaning you’ll save on that night’s accommodation as well.
Bus Seating Options
Your seat choice for the bus from Buenos Aires to Iguazu largely determines three things. 1 How big your seat is, 2 how much leg room you get, and 3 how far back it reclines.
These are the options you’ll have to select from:
“Semi cama” or “Dorado”: There are 4 seats in a row with an aisle down the centre. You get arm, leg, and footrests and your seat reclines to an angle of 40 degrees. These seats are upstairs on the top deck.
“Cama ejecutivo” or “Cama”: There are 3 seats to a row, 2 next to each other with the third separated by the aisle. Less seats means more room. The single seat is also ideal if you’re a solo traveller and don’t fancy sitting next to anyone. You get arm, leg, and footrests, but your seat reclines to an angle of 55 degrees with cama. These seats are usually on the bottom deck.
“Cama suite” or “Lie-flat”: Full cama suite have seats that recline a minimum of 85 degrees. You’ll be virtually laying flat, and seats tend to be made of soft leather.
Whatever seat you choose you’ll get food and drinks provided. However, the frequency, quality, and size differs from company to company.
There’s usually hot and cold water available on tap. However, the best advice is to take plenty of snacks and water of your own.
Most buses will play a few movies, some have a minibar, and many have wifi. You might also get a blanket and pillow provided. If you’re bothered about any of these things then it’s best to check with the providers before you book.
Iguazu Falls Tours from Buenos Aires – The Stress-Free Option
Maybe you want to take all of the hassle out of your trip to Iguazu falls. Or perhaps you’re on a really tight timeframe and want a fully organised schedule. Then why not let someone else arrange it?
There are various tours from Buenos Aires to Iguazu Falls available to suit any schedule. They go right up from single day tours to multiple day excursions with every detail taken care of.
One Day Iguazu Falls Tour
Iguazu falls are definitely an unmissable experience when you come to Argentina but not everyone has days to spare. If you’ve got limited time then a day trip could be the perfect solution.
Get shuttled straight from your hotel to the airport in B.A. before jetting the 2 hours to Iguazu airport. You’ll then be picked up in a private car and driven directly to the falls.
From here you’ll skip the lines and your private guide will show you around the incredible cascades.
3 Day Iguazu Falls Tour
Got a bit more time to spare but still want the luxury of having everything arranged for you? A multiple day tour will be right up your street.
This 3 day excursion allows you time to explore both the Argentine and Brazilian sides of the falls. While they’re the same cascades you get completely different experiences on each side.
The Argentine side allows you to view many of the hundreds of different little falls that make up Iguazu. You can also get close up views of the action with the walkways that take you into and directly over many of the drops.
The Brazilian side gives you prime views of the biggest and most powerful falls. This means you get to experience the raw energy of Iguazu as thousands of litres of water thunder down directly in front of you.
Also included in the tour are a 4×4 trip through the surrounding lush jungle, plus a cruise up the river. All your accommodation and transport are also arranged meaning all you need to do is turn up with your passport.
Where to Stay in Iguazu
The decision over where to stay in Iguazu is relatively straightforward and you have two main choices:
Stay in Iguazu National Park
Firstly you can stay within the park itself, however, on the Argentinian side there is only one hotel. Because of its prime position it’s understandably pricey, but there are plenty of benefits to staying there.
The 5 star Gran Melia Iguazu Hotel is the ultimate in luxury when it comes to Iguazu falls. It’s stylish, modern, and has all of the mod cons you’d expect from a top hotel.
We’re not gonna suggest that you stay a few weeks here by any means. But a night or two will be a magnificent treat and the most special way to see the falls.
For the most incredible stay book a room with a view of the falls. Unsurprisingly these rooms get reserved well in advance and the hotel is often booked up. To avoid disappointment it’s best to book as early as possible.
Stay in Puerto Iguazu
Puerto Iguazu is what the local town is called and it’s a roughly 12 mile (20km) drive from the park. It’s where most visitors choose to stay as it’s conveniently just a short shuttle to and from the falls.
There are tonnes of great hotels in the town, the pick of the bunch are:
Selvaje Lodge Iguazu is a gorgeous ecolodge set in the surroundings of lush jungle. The modern decor and great location are what guests love the most. The sun terrace and outdoor pool are also an added bonus.
Iguazu Jungle Lodge is a stunning 4 star hotel featuring a huge outdoor pool as well as a hot tub. Balconies have lovely views over the surrounding jungle and the rooms are beautifully decorated and extremely comfortable.
Tupa Lodge has a wonderful riverside location with modern, well equipped suites with naturally inspired decor. The split-level pool is perfect for relaxing and sunbathing while the breakfast gets a top rating from guests.
Get an Airbnb
Alternatively there are lots of fantastic Airbnbs in Puerto Iguazu. If you’ve never used it before it’s a brilliant way of getting a more local experience.
Just a word of caution, when searching for accommodation do double check the location, because many are incorrectly listed. And the last thing you want is to be booking a place on the Brazil side, when you actually want Argentina.
Best Time to Visit Iguazu Falls
First off, it’s important to be clear that Iguazu falls are phenomenal no matter what time of year it is. Regardless of the weather or size of the crowds, you’ll forget all about any distractions once you lay eyes on the cascades.
That said, there are definitely times when it’s better to go and times when it’s worse. The main factors are the visitor numbers, weather, and costs which fluctuate depending on whether it’s peak season or not.
Best Time to Visit Iguazu
There are actually two periods that we’d suggest are the optimum times to hit Iguazu. These are the shoulder seasons between March and April, or August and September.
Temperatures are sunny but not too humid. The mercury is around 24C (75F) instead of the low 30s (90F). Rainfall is also pretty low and humidity is nowhere near the 90% it can reach at other times of year.
Another bonus is that there are no huge holiday crowds. You’ll find that prices for everything from transport and accommodation to restaurants are cheaper at this time.
Worst Time to Visit Iguazu
The most popular time of year to visit is over Argentina’s summer months, between January and February. But that definitely doesn’t make it the best. In fact I can tell you from experience that probably the opposite is true.
Prices around this time tend to be highest and the selfie-snapping crowds are at their biggest. On top of that, the weather ain’t great – it’s silly hot and super humid and tropical style showers are frequent.
The majority of summer visitors are domestic tourists. And the increase in numbers is because it coincides with vacation season meaning everyone is on their summer getaway.
June and July also have relatively high visitor numbers as again it’s holiday time. But if you’re looking for less tropical temperatures then this could be a good choice.
What to Wear to Iguazu Falls
When you’re visiting Iguazu Falls you need to prepare for two main type of weather conditions. These are hot and humid, and wet and rainy. Prepare for this and you’ve pretty much got it covered.
You’re gonna want to wear light stuff that dries quickly.
Other Things to Take to Iguazu Falls
Here are some extra items you should make sure are in your day pack for visiting the falls:
Refillable Water Bottle – because of the heat you’re gonna need to drink a lot of water to stay hydrated. Instead of buying loads of plastic bottles, get yourself a water filter bottle that you can refill from virtually any source.
Travel Towel – the spray from the falls is going to get you wet no matter what you do. A lightweight towel is perfect for drying yourself off once you’ve been soaked.
Water Resistant Day Pack – you’ll want to take a few items with you on your trip to Iguazu Falls, this water resistant day pack is ideal to keep them safe and wet.
Waterproof Bags – keep your valuables safe and dry in your day pack by going belt and braces with one of these waterproof drybags.
Waterproof Camera – if you want better photos than you can capture on your phone (which you won’t want to use if it’s not waterproof anyway), check out this amazing waterproof camera. It’s what we use for underwater shots and it stood up to everything that Iguazu had to throw at it.
Portable Battery Pack – don’t let your gadgets run out on your trip to Iguazu. Keep them juiced up with this handy power pack.
Sun Screen – don’t get burnt on your visit to Iguazu falls. Protect your skin with some quality, waterproof sun screen like this.
Don’t Forget Your Travel Insurance
Iguazu falls is extremely safe but accidents happen anywhere and anytime. It’s really not worth heading abroad without proper cover, we never go anywhere without it and neither should you.
World Nomads is our preferred choice for great cover and a no bullshit approach, grab yourself a quick quote below: