World Borders: Where Paraguay Meets Brazil and Argentina, Tres Fronteras – Three Frontiers/Borders

World Borders: Where Paraguay Meets Brazil and Argentina, Tres Fronteras – Three Frontiers/Borders

Tres Fronteras (similar to the English phrase Three Frontiers) is exactly that – a treble border and the place where three countries meet. In this instance, Tres Fronteras is a part of land where you can see Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina (and be in one of them). But it’s not just bits of grass you’re looking at. Each country has a concrete pillar at this area, each in the colour of their countries flag.


Most borders in South America, I found to be determined and decided by rivers, separating one land from another. Tres Fronteras is no exception, with the Iguazu River flowing between all three countries, with a fork to separate Brazil from Argentina, with Paraguay alone on the other side of the main river.


It was a magic wee moment. And all to myself. And lucky. And quick. Because I didn’t allow myself much time to actually see it and at one point that morning was almost decided to give it a miss and head straight to Paraguay.


However at the last minute I thought, I’m 3 kilometres from this viewpoint of three countries and may never be here again so I’m going to go. There was some informaton in the Lonely Planet book, but not enough for me to work out how to get there. I wasn’t about to fork out for a dear taxi, nor was I going to walk there as I had all my bags and in the rainy season everything would have got soaked that day.


However I checked out of the Hostel Iguazu Falls Inn and stood out on the highway hoping for a bus. The first one flew past without stopping. I think it wasn’t meant to stop there anyway – probably a direct bus from Iguazu itself.


The next driver I asked if he goes to Tres Fronteras and he said yes, so in I got, for 1.5 Pesos, a nice wee trip through the streets of Puerto Iguazu, all the way down to the quiet Tres Fronteras. 


On the bus journey down the driver stops at a wee shop and gets some cigarettes, while asking if the passengers want anything. A lady wants a drink. This aspect to Argentinian life is something I did like. No rush, don’t worry, we’ll get there type of attitude. If a bus driver in the UK stopped to buy himself a packet of cigarettes, he’d get lambasted and swore at by his passengers. These guys sit on a seat all day driving a bus – for God’s sake let them buy something from the shop!


Soon we arrived at the empty and quiet “Tres Fronteras” and I walk through the pretty gardens. There on the Argentina side are the three flags all together in a wee square. But looking out I see the clear borders and where the river separates the hat-trick.


Paraguay.


You can get a boat across – but later on I would get a bus there.


Brazil.


All three countries.


The Argentinian post.


Northern Ireland in town.


A lop sided photo. Nobody was around to take photos at 8.45 am…


Me at Tres Fronteras.


The wee square.


How deserted the streets were. A nice moment and worth seeing if you’re in the area.


A nice bit of kids art – I should know exactly what it means having a decent Spanish knowledge, but without looking it up something like “we continue to move into a new future.”

The street in front of the river separating Argentina from Brazil.

I got a bus back into the town centre – some 3 kilometres and within two hours of seeing all three countries, I had been in each of them…I crossed the Paraguay border to Ciudad del Este.


What Is It? – A Hat-trick of countries to be simultaneously viewed

Which Countries – Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay

KEY SONG:

ROBBIE WILLIAMS – SOUTH OF THE BORDER:



A DAVID HEALY HAT-TRICK:


AT TRES FRONTERAS IN ARGENTINA BUT LOOKING AT PARAGUAY AND BRAZIL:
Join 15,017 Monthly Readers! If you enjoyed this article and LOVE travel and SAVING money, get e-mail updates from Don’t Stop Living – a lifestyle of travel! (It’s Free) 😉 Jonny

7 thoughts on “World Borders: Where Paraguay Meets Brazil and Argentina, Tres Fronteras – Three Frontiers/Borders

  • Even though I was lucky enough to get a photo taken of the actual Triple Frontier itself from the bridge between Argentina – Brazil when I was there back in June 2014 (even though stopping on the bridge is technically illegal), I was trying to keep my eyes open for the marker where you got your photos taken in case I could convince my tour group to stop by for a couple of minutes to take photos there like you did. No dice!

    You’re right. It is rather difficult to find signs or any info to get to this place. But, it is oh so worth it if you do get here even just to admire the view for a few minutes. Glad you managed to get some good photos here!
    Ray recently posted…The Triple Frontier – Brazil, Argentina & ParaguayMy Profile

  • Hi Ray, just saw your article – looks cool. You mean you saw a “different marker”? If you were there with a tour group I would say it’s difficult as you end up having to do things they want without much flexibility. I got a bus out there myself and it was remote, I was the only tourist and it was right by the river. You could see all three flags and it was clear where you were. The weird thing is, I was almost there again this year as my parents, Panny and I went to Foz do Iguacu again, however due to the Germany v. Brazil match the Paraguay and Argentina borders were closed early that day and we were too hungover the next day to make it. Would be nice to see more of your photos of the triple border just to see if we went to the same place or not. Safe travels. Jonny

  • Actually, the photo I posted on my blog is the only photo I got of the Triple Frontier. That photo was taken on Tancredo Neves Bridge (Fraternity Bridge) that connects Argentina with Brazil. There’s no actual marker on that bridge, but it gives you the best vantage point to look straight down the Iguazu River until it converges with the Parana River. I was lucky to even get that photo as it is technically illegal to pull over the side of the bridge like that. No cops on the bridge, though, so we spent two minutes to get our photos and move on.

    Anyways, I do have plans to return to Argentina and Paraguay in the future with my Girlfriend to visit them properly! Who knows? I may end up here again like you nearly did during World Cup 2014! If I do, then I will do it on my own terms (i.e. no tour groups) and try to find this marker where you got your photos taken. Never close the door on places once traveled! You just never know when or if you may ever come back!
    Ray recently posted…The Triple Frontier – Brazil, Argentina & ParaguayMy Profile

  • Too true – we never know when we might be back – gives you a chance to check out Ciudad del Este next time and get that dreary wet bus over to Asuncion, something that I did back in 2010 and Carlo Cretaro did more recently. Safe travels. Jonny

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