Sitting Room

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ciudad del Este (Paraguay) International Bus Terminal: Buses in and out of Ciudad del Este, Paraguay

A list follows, more to come

La Paraguaya
Cometa del Amambay (Pedro Juan Caballero)
Sol del Paraguay (Bue,La Plata,S.Paulo,Rio de Janeiro)
La Carapegueña (Carapeguá, Villa Rica, Tebicuary)
Salto Cristal (Villa Rica, Iturbe, Ybycui)
Yacyretá (Bue,La Plata,Corrientes,Santa Cruz)
Garcia (Pedro Juan Caballero, Concepción, Curuguaty)
TransBolipar (Sta Cruz de la Sierra)
RYSA (ASU,Caazapá,Coronel Oviedo, P.J.Caballero)
San Luis (ASU)
Rapido Caaguazú (ASU, 21 horários diarios)
Crucero del Norte (Bue,Sao, Rio)
Guaireña (Villa Rica, Santa Rita, Naranjal, Salto del Guairá)
Pluma (São Paulo, Rio, Florianópolis...)
Beato Roque Gonzalez de Santa Cruz (Encarnación)
Crucero del Este (ASU)
Empresa Río Paraná (BUE)
Expreso Brújula (São Paulo)
Nuestra Señora de la Asuncion (ASU, São Paulo)
PYCASU (Bue,Iquique, Encarnación,ASU)
Crucero del Sur (Encarnación)
El Tigre (Encarnación)
Stel Turismo (Asunção com conexão para Loma Plata e Filadelfia)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Yes, there's Carnival in the Iguassu Falls Area

Magic and Splendor is the name of one of the Samba Schools to have taken out to the streets on Sunday. The photo by friend Chris Rizzi show the Queen of Carnival Lívia Costa Santos, 1st Princes Regina Aparecida Leopoldo and 2nd Princes Deise de Oliveira Freitas. The Momo King is Walmor Maciel.

Friday, February 20, 2009

The Foz do Iguaçu International Bus Terminal: buses into and out of the Iguassu Falls Foz do Iguaçu Area

Foz do Iguaçu International Bus Terminal (Rodoviária)'s photo has been taken from their site (link below)

The Foz do Iguaçu International Bus Terminal serves over 130 destinations throughout Brazil and into Argentina and Paraguay. Buses leaving Foz do Iguaçu travel to major cities like São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte, Florianópolis, Porto Alegre, Curitiba but also to far way capitals of Northeastern states like Maceió (Alagoas State), Aracaju (Sergipe), Salvador (Bahia) and Recife (Pernambuco) and hundreds of cities in between. Foz do Iguaçu's ties with North Brazil is also expressive. There are bus lines leaving Foz as the city is lovingly (and not so lovingly) called or reffered to, heading for Campo Grande (gateway to the South Pantanal), Cuiabá (doorway to the Northern Pantanal) as well as the Chapada Guimarães Plateau Area and locations in the Amazonian state of Pará. Lines to central Brazil are also plentiful: Brasilia and Goiania are at the top of the list.

Buses travelling South will include those going to the State of Rio Grande do Sul, mainly to Porto Alegre but serving different destinations between the two cities. If you are heading for Porto Alegre try the as-direct-as-possible UNESUL Bus (link below). Curitiba the capital of Paraná the State where Iguassu Falls are is served by a company called Catarinense - there are several buses a day, mainly, at night.

Here is list of link to bus companies presently operating in and out of FOZ:
Cattani Sul (PR)
Princesa dos Campos (PR,SP)
Catarinense Curitiba, SC
Gontijo (MG)
Expresso Maringá (PR,SP)
Reunidas (SC)
Viação Medianeira(MS,MT,PA)
São Geraldo (AL,PE,SE)
Nova Integração / Eucatur TO,RO,AC
Itapemirim PE,BA
Nacional Expresso (DF,BSB)
Helios (SC,RS,)
Unesul (SC,RS - Unica ligação c/ P.Alegre)
Eucatur Amazônia
Viação Garcia (SP)
Expresso Kaiowa (SP,RJ,MG)
Nuestra Señora de la Asunción (ASU)
Crucero del Norte BUE,
Rapido Yguazu S.A. (RYSA) (ASU)

Services at the Rodoviaria (Bus terminal). Here is the official site of the Rodoviária Internacional de Foz do Iguaçu Foz do Iguaçu International Bus Terminal

Snack bar /restaurant
bathrooms (R$ 50¢)
Shower (R$ 6.00)
Locker (R$ 2.00 per bag)
Bus into town (R$ 2.10)
Magazine Shop (Mostly Portuguese, newsweek etc, nothing Spanish)
Internet ( )
Telephone, fax booth
Bus ticket sales outlets (15 give and take)
Travel Agency (1)*
Exhibit room (1)
City Guard
Tourist Info (Official)

* The EcoFoz Turismo Travel Agency at the Bus Terminal sells tickets to those desiring to go further into Argentina mainly to Corrientes, Resistencia,Santiago del estero, Tucumán, Salta, Córdoba, Santa Fé, Rosario and Buenos Aires Terminal (Retiro) with the FlechaBus (ArrowBus) company.


All buses leaving Foz do Iguaçu are subject to be invited to go first to the Receita Federal (Federal Revenue Services) for inspection. Don't worry if you are clean (no drugs, please). The FRS is after smugglers - mostly Brazilians buying things in Paraguay to sell back in Brazil. There have been a considerable increase in the number of people arrested with drugs of all types, weapons and ammunitions.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Bus companies travelling into and out of Ciudad del Este, Paraguay

What I have posted here is just a list (for now) of bus companies travelling to and out of the Ciudad del Este International Bus Terminal. Links to sites will be given as soon as I discover them. If you know of a new site and want to share, please go ahead!

La Paraguaya
La Yuteña
Cometa del Amambay (Pedro Juan Caballero)
Sol del Paraguay (Bue,La Plata,S.Paulo,Rio de Janeiro)
La Carapegueña (Carapeguá, Villa Rica, Tebicuary)
Salto Cristal (Villa Rica, Iturbe, Ybycui)
Yacyretá (Bue,La Plata,Corrientes,Santa Cruz)
Garcia (Pedro Juan Caballero, Concepción, Curuguaty)
TransBolipar (Sta Cruz de la Sierra)
RYSA (ASU,Caazapá,Coronel Oviedo, P.J.Caballero)
San Luis (ASU)
Rapido Caaguazú (ASU, 21 horários diarios)
Crucero del Norte (Bue,Sao, Rio)
Guaireña (Villa Rica, Santa Rita, Naranjal, Salto del Guairá)
Pluma (São Paulo, Rio, Florianópolis...)
Beato Roque Gonzalez de Santa Cruz (Encarnación)
Crucero del Este (ASU)
Empresa Río Paraná (BUE)
Expreso Brújula (São Paulo)
Nuestra Señora de la Asuncion (ASU, São Paulo)
PYCASU (Bue,Iquique, Encarnación,ASU)
Crucero del Sur (Encarnación)
El Tigre (Encarnación)
Stel Turismo (Asunción and linking to Loma Plata and Filadelfia)

Cities within the Department of Alto Paraná served by buses leaving the Ciudad del Este International Bus Terminal:

Juan León Mallorquín, Domingo Martínez de Irala, Hernandarias, Iruña, Itakyry,Juan Emilio O'Leary, Los Cedrales, Iruña, Mbaracayú, Minga Guazú, Minga Porá, Puerto Indio, Ñacunday, Naranjal, Naranjito, Presidente Franco, San Alberto, San Cristóbal, Santa Rosa del Monday, Santa Rita, Yguazú, Santa Fe del Paraná.

This is good!
Local urban international buses leave the Ciudad del Este Bus Terminal for:
Foz do Iguaçu

Saturday, February 14, 2009

These were the pathways to see Iguassu Falls - The Iguassu Falls Memory Poject

Cognopolis - Iguaçu, Iguassu Falls Area newest neighborhood

Waldo Viera, in white, with white beard and me (Jackson Lima) also with a white beard in the Holotheque, CEAEC, Cognopolis, Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil

If you have been following my articles and postings about the Administrative regions of Foz do Iguaçu, you will have noticed that I have been writing about several of the city's "bairros" and their regions. Today I want to bring to your attention a very special neighborhood called COGNOPOLIS - Greek for "Knowledge City". It seems, from what I have gathered that the City Government has already approved most plans and for the new neighborhood of town to get its "Birth Certicate" all that is needed is for the City Council or Counsel to pass the law creating the barrio or neighborhood. Officially it is going to be part of the RURAL AREA SOUTH in Region 12.

The word Cognopolis has began to be used rather openly in correspondences, snail mail packages and postmen and postwomen, pizza delivery personnel and other people who specialize in address-finding are beginning to be acquainted with this "something new" happening in town.

Back in 1995, I met the gentleman dressed in white, with a white beard when he first moved to Foz do Iguaçu and said that the area had been chosen for a big investment and he said that the investment would be into the 13 million USD mark. At the time a little symbolic foundation stone was laid down. Soon small buildings began to show up. Among them several laboratories for self-experimentation in fields that might seem strange for most humans like: projectiology (out of body projection), multidimensional assistenciality (some of these appeared in my list of what-to-do for the Iguassu Falls Tri-National Area).

The laboratories were followed by a larger building that seems to snake along the terrain on the banks of the Tamanduazinho (Little Anteater) Creek. This waving and snaking kind of building received the name of Holocycle to house a Holotheque or a "thek" (collection) of "everything" (holos -in Greek). The Holotheque has a collection of thousands of dictionaries (language dictionaries, thematic dictionaries, special dictionaries) plus, books of all kinds on many subjects. There is one of the largest privately owned collection of comic books in Brazil. The holotheque is really worth a visit.

Back to the Cognopolis - the Holocycle is going to be just a litttle piece of Cognopolis. There are, as of this posting eight gated horizontal communities to house more than 600 people who have com from Brazil, Argentina and from as far as the US, Europe and China. The upper photo shows the newest project to be carried on in Cognopolis. It will be called Villa Conscientia and will be divided into a residential and a commercial sector. The commercial sector will have shops but also a  cultural complex. It will include a Theater, the City's first ever and - remember the Holotheque? It will come to Villa Conscientia - since the Holocycle has become too small for what is done there (The Conscientiology Encyclopedia, for instance).

The upper photo shows an artistic rendering of the area. The project brings to mind Lucio Costa's concept of a City with wings like a plane and like Brasilia where those business and residential sectors will be located on the plane's North or South Wings. It is interesting that the project for the theater and buildings in the commercial sector have been drawn by Brazil's best known architect and living legend Oscar Niemayer - remember Brasilia again? The new projects will cost another 20 million USD. "The money will show up" says Waldo Vieira "in the same way that the 13 million I announced that day did".

Friday, February 13, 2009

The hostels of Remanso Grande, Iguassu Falls

Photo 1: Ipelandia's swimmingpool area. Photo 2: bus stop serving the hostel areas across from Peace Square (Praça da Paz).

On the Brazilian Highway (BR) 469 or Avenida das Cataratas (Cataratas Avenue - Brazil's shortest BR Highway), there is a barrio (neighborhood) called Remanso Grande. Remanso is the name of those pool-like, calm areas that are commons to some river bends. In this case it is also the name of the neighborhood. Unfortunately there is no easy contact with the Iguaçu River below at the end of Remanso Grande main street. But what I want to call your attention to here is to the fact that this region of the city is beginning to be the Foz do Iguaçu Rural Hostel Area. The picture above is from the Bus Stop that serves three hostels but was mainly made by the Paudimar Campestre Hostel owned by an Argentina-born friend of mines called Miguel Allou. I have also learnt that there is a new Natura Hostel owned by a Palestina-born person whom I have not met yet (but I will). Thirdly and still in the make is the new hostel to be called Ipelandia (Ipêland) Park Golf owned by Naobuo Saito a Japanese friend of mine. Park Golf as I undesrtood is a kind of small bonsai-like golf course. Ipê is a tree that salutes you with yellow or pinkish-purple flowers.

The Greater Tres Lagoas Area of Foz do Iguaçu

Photos: Tres Lagoas' Saint Peter's Parrish (Paróquia São Pedro) and Bairro (neighborhood) pioneer Edmundo Roberto Kinner

The city of Foz do Iguaçu is divided into 12 regions or areas - for administration purposes. Each region is identified by a number (R-01) or the name of the most prominent bairro in the region or area. For instance, R-01 or Region One is known as the Greater Tres Lagoas Area. The main neighborhood in this case is called Três Lagoas which started out with somebody selling smaller land parcels mostly chunks taken off a small agricultural property and sold to Class E, wage earners to be paid in soft and nearly never-ending 100-installment plans. Some of the bairros in this and in other city areas were the result of invasions or occupations (the choice of either word will denounce political or ideological preference). There are over 9.000 basic education students (from ages 2 to 9) enrolled at 9 city schools.

Touristically speaking the area owns some of the city's smaller attractions like the Itaipu Dam Beach Area, some clubs, ultralight aircrafts owners' association of a sort, a newly-built katamaram boat for sunset cruises and so on.

Also, sadly and infamously, the Três Lagoas Area of town also owns the city's correctional district with a hell-on-earth type of horrible jail - that will soon be closed off for good. A new top security State Pennitentiary has been built and as of lately also a State Prison for people awaiting judgement. There will soon be a Female Pennitentiary and I also heard about somnthing like a Teenage Jail for adolescent "offenders". The Jail Sector of the Tres Lagoas Area is called Três Fronteiras Residential Park - and this is the kind of real estate enterprise that didn't prosper. Thanks to the abundance of jailhouses around prices, for land and houses around are going down.

Also what is going down is the once-flourishing city red light district. This district prospered during the Itaipu Dam Construction Days when 48.000 Paraguayan and Brazilian male hands joined to build the world's largest dam.

List of the 12 Regions of Foz do Iguaçu - may be good to someone, who knows? Numbers following region's name are about number of barrios in the region.

Region 01 - Três Lagoas Area (38)
Region 02 - Via "C" Area (27)
Region 03 - San Francisco Area (21)
Region 04 - The Porto Meira Area (31)
Region 05 - Jardim San Paulo Area (22)
Region 06 - Jardim America Area (19)
Region 07 - Imperatriz Park Area (22)
Region 08 - Vila "A" - AKLP Area (24)
Region 09 - City Center and Vila Yolanda Area (20)
Region 10 - Campos do Iguaçu - Fields of the Iguaçu Area (29)
Region 11 - The Carimã Area (10)
Region 12 - Rural Area

The purpose of dissecting the city like this is to make a point about the importance of barrios (neighborhoods) for local economies. IN the same extant that we live in the "city" and not in the Republic; as far as cities are cncerned, our lives happen in neighborhoods. Most of the attractions people see belong at first to the neighborhood where they are. Sometimes you may stay in top five-star hotel located in a neighborhood that the tourist will never learn about. Some times it is bad for business.

There is a Rural Area North and a Rural Area South
In the case of Foz do Iguaçu, here is a list of the possession of the Rural Area South:
a) The Foz do Iguaçu-Cataratas International Airport (Yes, hyphenated)
b) Over 106 hectares of land within the Iguassu National park
c) Park's Visitor Center
d) The Cataratas Hotel
e) The World famous Iguassu Falls
f) The Conscienciology Research Center
g) The Cognopolis Neighborhood - comprising
h) City's fishing and leisure farms

Thursday, February 05, 2009

The Iguaçu National Park-Brazil: a model to the world ?

Last year an English journalist who had already interviewed me before, so I can call friend, sent an e-mail asking me about the Iguaçu National Park and how I felt, how the local community felt to live near or around a Park that is a model to the world. A model to the world? - I thought. It can not even be a model for the rest of Brazilian National Parks. I don't know how this model idea has spread out, but a I hear this being repeated so much that I am affraid it might become the truth, you know the only truth. So let me tell what I remember about "our" Parks that also happens to be a World Heritage Sites.

Since January, 1st, 2000, the Iguassu Falls Visitation Area (VA) on the Brazilian side, and its counterpart on the Argentine side one year before, were handed over as concessions to privately-owned, especially-created companies for that specific purpose. That is the purpose of administering the new or improved infrastructures to cater to tourists needs. These have included: New Visitors Centers, Alternative Transportation Within the National Parks, food and catering, restaurants, bathrooms and similar services.

Before the aforementioned dates the tourism-related activities in the Visitation Area were the responsibility of the Administración de Parques Nacionales (National Parks Administration) in Argentina and of Ibama* (Brazilian Institute for the Environment) on the Brazilian side. This means that Park authorities had to be concerned with such wordly things as collecting entrance fees, making arrangements with travel agents and making sure that toilets were clean (they never were) and that toilet paper was not missing (they were always missing). In those days, Government concessions were nearly synonym of "free concessions" or very low, symbolically-priced permissions for friends or political allies to operate. There were big money concessions running for as little as 500 USD a year.

In the 90s Governments changed. Presidents Fernando Collor in Brazil and Carlos Saul Menem in Argentina were ellected and both announced that privatization was the way out of financial squeeze and was, as well, the passport to a First World Society. Argentina went ahead and sold everything from airports to water companies, from oil companies to road and the mail. Brazil also sold large companies in the mining and telecommunication fields among others. The environment was the next target and those money-making National Parks were the models to play and experiment with. The Iguassu Tri-Nation Area is seen as a Laboratory for the Mercosul countries (In tourism, police work, international conventions on crime, smuggling and integration). If it works here, should work anywhere else. In addition, both Parks, the Iguaçu (Brazil) / Iguazú (Argentina) National parks receive a million visitors a year (it may be that visitors are the same and not two million according to the 2 + 2 = 4 formula) and that means good money.

Next postings
Different prices and entrance fees
Parks' revenue increase
The local communities losses: Brazilian story / Argentinean story
Other parks to go
Alternative Transportation Brazilian and Argentine Versions
Ibama makes way to Chico Mendes Institute
And more

Monday, February 02, 2009

Bus companies into and out of Puerto Iguazu

Roomy Crucero del Norte Bus pictured somewhere in Brazil Source of photo

Puerto Iguazu is pretty well served by bus lines. The city is connected to most Argetninean capitals. I am working on an extensive list on bus travels to and from Puerto Iguazu - right across from Foz do Iguaçu where I live. In the list that follows, you find the city's name or destination and the bus companies serving. With the excepetion of Bariloche, all are capital cities. Company names appear within brackets and with links.

Rosario (Río Uruguay)
Córdoba (Rio Uruguay, Crucero del Norte, Merco Bus, Singer and Andesmar),
La Plata (Crucero del Norte, Singer and Tigre Iguazú),
Buenos Aires (Río Uruguay, Tigre Iguazú, Singer, Crucero del Norte and Vía Bariloche),
Salta (Andesmar),
Mendoza (Andesmar),
Corrientes (Río Uruguay and Singer),
Chaco (Río Uruguay and Singer),
Tucumán (Andesmar),
La Rioja (Andesmar),
Catamarca (Andesmar),
Jujuy (Andesmar),
Santiago del Estero (Andesmar),
Santa Fe (Río Uruguay),
Entre Ríos (Río Uruguay),
Formosa (Río Uruguay),
Bariloche (Crucero del Norte, Via Bariloche)

Land of Many Waters

Land of Many Waters
This is a secret little waterfalls where I often go and take a very few people for my ecopsychological nature-connecting experience