Who discovered Iguazu Falls?

Well, in fact, the Iguazu Falls were not “discovered” by any one person, as they have been known to the indigenous Guarani people who have lived in the area for thousands of years. The amazing falls that are located on the border between Brazil and Argentina were first documented by European explorers in the 16th century. The Spanish explorer Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca is believed to have been the first European to see the falls in 1541, but it wasn’t until the late 19th and early 20th centuries that the falls became known to the wider world, thanks to the efforts of explorers, scientists, and adventurers who traveled to the region and publicized its natural wonders.


Iguazu Falls: When were discovered? First europeans in the area

Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca was a Spanish explorer who, along with a group of 300 men, set out from Spain in 1527 to explore and colonize what is now Florida in the United States. However, the expedition was beset by disasters, and after a shipwreck, Cabeza de Vaca and a small group of survivors were left to wander for years through what is now Texas and Mexico, living among various Native American tribes and learning their languages and customs.

In 1541, Cabeza de Vaca and three other survivors of the expedition set out on a new expedition to explore the interior of what is now Argentina, Paraguay, and Brazil. They traveled along the Paraguay River, eventually reaching the Iguazu Falls, which they called the “Great Waterfalls.” Cabeza de Vaca’s account of the expedition, published in his book “La Relación” (The Relation), is one of the earliest European descriptions of the falls and helped to bring them to the attention of the wider world.

During his travels, Cabeza de Vaca also observed and documented the customs and practices of the indigenous peoples he encountered, including the Guarani people who lived in the region around the falls. His writings provide a valuable historical record of the ways of life of these indigenous cultures, many of which were later destroyed by European colonization and conquest.


La Lorenza Iguazu: Rainforest & Cultural Experience


Ramiro Rodriguez

Ramiro Rodriguez

25 years working in the travel industry, as Sales & Marketing Manager at RipioTurismo. Marketing Manager at Nuevas Ideas Travel Consulting Group. Writer and travel lover.

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