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Overview

North of Buenos Aires, the Paraná delta is the outlet of one of the world's great river systems and Argentine Mesopotamia — between the Paraná and Uruguay rivers — contains some of the country's lushest landscapes. Internationally, its highest profile destination is Iguazú falls, a subtropical string of thunderous cataracts that are four times the width and half again the height of Niagara. The region earned cinematic notoriety in The Mission, which depicted life in the 18th-century Jesuit settlements whose redrock ruins lie scattered along both sides of the Brazilian and Paraguayan borders.

Those in ...

North of Buenos Aires, the Paraná delta is the outlet of one of the world's great river systems and Argentine Mesopotamia — between the Paraná and Uruguay rivers — contains some of the country's lushest landscapes. Internationally, its highest profile destination is Iguazú falls, a subtropical string of thunderous cataracts that are four times the width and half again the height of Niagara. The region earned cinematic notoriety in The Mission, which depicted life in the 18th-century Jesuit settlements whose redrock ruins lie scattered along both sides of the Brazilian and Paraguayan borders.

Those in the know, though, don't leave Mesopotamia without visiting the Iberá marshes, a slow-flowing river of grass and floating islands that's the place to get close to the capybara (a Rottweiler-sized rodent), marsh deer, caymans, and an infinity of birds. There are several national parks in addition to Iguazú, but none of them can match Iberá.

Culturally, Mesopotamia shares a history with Brazil and the city of Gualeguaychú enjoys Argentina's liveliest Carnaval celebrations. Across the Paraná, in Santa Fe province, the city of Rosario is the "Chicago of Argentina," a major port with a lively cultural scene.

Wayne Bernhardson
About the Expert

Wayne Bernhardson is the author of Moon Handbooks to Argentina, Buenos Aires (including coastal Uruguay), Chile (including Easter Island), and Patagonia (including the Falkland Islands).

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Wayne Bernhardson for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    All year, but January and February (when Carnaval takes place) get smotheringly hot and humid.