South America is one of the 7 continents of the world. It is located on the western hemisphere and is bordered by the Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and North America. It has many countries which boast natural and architectural wonders, historical relics, stunning landscapes, colourful and vibrant cities and diverse culture and foods.
The natural wonders of South America include some of the most wonderful waterfalls you’ll be able to see anywhere in the world – here’s five of the best.
The Iguazu falls are among the 5 most amazing waterfalls in South America. These falls originate from Iguazu River and are considered to be among the new seven wonders of nature. They are located on the border of Brazil and Argentina and have many islands that divide them into numerous cataracts and waterfalls. Tremendous amounts of water thunder over cliffs to form an awesome, thick mist in the surrounding area – it is certainly a key stop for anyone thinking about organising either Argentina holidays or holidays in Brazil.
Angel Falls, located in Venezuela, is the highest waterfall in the world with a plunge of 807 metres and a total height of 979 metres. Rapids and sloped cascades are formed as the waterfall drops over the edge of Mt. Auyantepui, in the south east of the country. One amazing feature of the falls is that it does not originate from a major river or lake. Rather, rainfall that is synonymous with tropical, equatorial climates accounts for all of Angel Falls’ discharge, which means that visiting during the wet season is strongly advised.
The Kaieteur Falls originate from River Potaro in Guyana, and while remote, are certainly worth a visit. Punging over 200 metres from conglomerate cliffs and sandstone before flowing over very steep cascades, the drop pool area of the waterfall forms a stunning semi circular overhanging break in the surrounding rainforest – making for one of the more spectacular waterfalls anywhere in the world. They are unique in that they combine both water volume and height – rare among waterfalls.
Another amazing waterfall is Semuc Champey in Guatemala. This stunning natural monument is surrounded by humid tropical forest inside a steep walled valley. It has a limestone bridge measuring about 300 metres with the River Cahabon passing under it. On top of the bridge there are a number of turquoise, stepped pools and small ponds full of crystalline, spring mountain water. Water from these pools rejoins the river as it falls at the end of the limestone bridge. The water of this awesome waterfall is known for its dark blue sapphire and light green emerald colouration.
The list is not complete without mentioning Gocta Cataracts located in Peru. These perennial waterfalls flow into River Cocahuayco and have two drops. The top drop is about 230 metres while the bottom drop is approximately 540 metres. Interestingly, the water from these cataracts does not hit the ground. Instead, it dissipates into a mist and swirls down eddies and waves creating a chilly wind of its own.
South America is a wonderful continent and each of its countries has something great to offer visitors. Most of those who visit this continent make a point of seeing these 5 amazing waterfalls. All these waterfalls resemble paradise inside a tropical jungle.
The author is a huge fan of South America and has blogged widely on subjects ranging from holidays in Argentina to the booming food scene in Peru