Easter Island

Easter Island Accommodation and Hotel Reservations, Tours for Easter Island Sites with over 28 years local knowledge Local Santiago Office & Partner Based on Easter Island

What We Do

Our speciality is to design easter island, custom travel easter island itineraries within your budget as well as arrange reservations for easter island hotels, rent a car and tours. Easter Island is also known as rapa nui by the locals. Please enter the site for lots of information about easter island or supply us with details on what you want and send your enquiry here…

Our sole objective is to create an exceptional travel experience for you, or your group.

Easter Island - Why?

Easter Island / Rapa Nui

The principal reason why people come to Easter Island is to see some of the 887 mystic Moai Statues that are dotted around the Island in various degrees of preservation.

Unique to Easter Island, the Moai is a stone-sculptured, human-form statue, showing a face with big eyes, a long nose, a closed mouth with thin lips and large ears on a relatively large head (sometimes topped off with a red-stone hat), on a block-carved body, ranging between ten to twenty feet in height. There are many areas around the Island where Moai Statues are positioned in rows on ceremonial, stone-covered, earthen platforms, mostly facing inward from the sea.

Easter Island is a place for “thinking people”, or “educated people” who appreciate the mystery of ancient cultures and who like to get away from it all and relax on a remote Island in a secluded environment, well away from the constant noise, pollution, crowds and manic pace of modern-day living.

The Island itself is not a Pacific “tropical paradise” such as Tahiti or Hawaii, but it does have one, white-sand beach (Anakena) offering superb swimming in the Pacific and soft sands to lie upon.

Other activities offered are scuba diving, horse riding, hiking, cycling, visits to all the cultural sights and sea fishing (if you meet the right person). In the evening there are impressively powerful and sexually-suggestive Indonesian cultural dancing shows offering a first-hand view into the male-female courtship ritual and power hierarchy among the men.

It does not offer fancy cocktail bars, restaurants, luxury villas, paragliding, motor boat rides, boutique shopping and the like. It is distinctly “undeveloped” in that sense, which is a positive in many respects. What it offers is an opportunity to “stop”, appreciate a completely different pace of life, learn about a fascinating culture and see the now extinct volcanoes and how they merged to create this tiny dot of land in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

The main town on Easter Island, which in reality is a village, is called Hanga Roa. It is a very small conurbation with a population of around 4,000 inhabitants, offering few modern facilities such a bank and one or two ATM’s and only two or three “rustic” style restaurants, a village green (or plaza), some grocery stores and a handful of clothes stores.

Ideally a three or four night stay is recommended. We suggest, if you have the budget, to enjoy the all-inclusive package offered by our partner the Explora Hotel, where we will offer you, in any 5-star level (or closest to) hotel in Chile or Argentina a room for two people free of charge (to a value of USD250 for the room, for the night) for a reservation you make with us. Alternatively we can make reservations at any of the hotels on the island, organize tours and car rental too

What Can we do for You?

The simple answer to “What can we do for you?” is: take away the hassle.

Our speciality is to design custom (or bespoke) travel itineraries to your personal requirements for Easter Island.

Think of us as your personal travel organiser as you would by having an interior designer for your house or a professional gardener for your garden. We are a supplier with specialist knowledge and trusted partners at the destination.

Using our maintained and frequently-updated local knowledge on Easter Island we will select the right hotel for your taste and budget, and then suggest tours and activities as well as the right time frame for your stay.

We can also just make a hotel reservation and / or book a car rental.

In addition to our overall service we are also often in a position to offer a credit towards certain reservations made through us.

Should you be visiting the rest of Chile and / or Argentina, we can also build a full travel itinerary.

Antarctica – Why Come?

Antarctica is not going to be for everyone (thank goodness), but it is the optimum for those who venture here. It can be said that it is the last frontier on Earth that has not yet seen the wonton chaotic destruction that man has unleashed on every other continent.

Steeped in exploration history, it is a massive continent without cities, towns or villages – no indigenous inhabitants and no population centers. It is covered in an almost unbelievably deep blanket of ice, which has been measured up to 1.6km (1 mile) thick in places. Antarctica is the coldest, driest, cleanest continent on Earth. It is remote, almost inaccessible and inhospitable; yet it is also incredibly beautiful. This is the place for pioneers, adventures and nature lovers.

Antarctica is nature in its full glory, where everything wild is still functioning in its natural, unspoiled habitat. The landscape of incredible, towering, wind-carved ice sculptures, enormous ice bergs, immense glaciers and pristine water; and marine fauna including seals, whales and penguins. It is tranquil, it is like no other place on Earth and it offers a totally new experience if you haven’t yet been.

Antarctica Marine Fauna
The seas around Antarctica are nutrient-rich in marine micro organisms such as phytoplankton offering a delicious feeding ground for marine fauna such as seals, whales and penguins and large flocks of seabirds, including the wandering albatross – all of which visitors will see during their voyage.

Penguins
There are 17 species of penguin that feed in the Antarctic region, but only four species breed on Antarctica itself and these are:
Adeline, Emperor, Chinstrap and Gentoo penguins.

Seals
Weddell, Leopard, Crabeater and Ross.

Whales
Humpback
Southern Right
Minke
Orca (Killer Whale)
Blue Whale

Antarctica Information
Antarctica is the southernmost continent on Earth. It is a solid land mass, over which about 98% of its surface is covered by a permanent layer of ice, measuring in places to a depth of around 1.6 km, locking in about 90% of the world’s fresh water, and near its centre is the geographic South Pole. It is located in the Antarctic region of the Southern Hemisphere, almost entirely within the Antarctic Circle, surrounded on all sides by the Southern Ocean. It covers an area of almost 14.0 million km2 making it the fifth-largest continent in land mass after Asia, Africa, North America and South America and is almost twice the area size of Australia. In the winter months the surrounding sea also freezes over almost doubling the surface area of the ice sheet.

Because of the fact that Antarctica is at the South Pole and covered in freezing-cold ice, it is the coldest, but also driest (not much moisture in the air – annual rain fall is at 200 mm on the coast and far less in its interior) and the most windy of all the continents, which makes it a formidable, hostile, isolated and inhospitable environment for most living creatures in which to survive. In many places the ice cap is constantly moving into glacial rivers that then flow from the land onto the sea where vast areas of ice float until they break into enormous icebergs that then float around its coastal perimeter causing a difficult obstruction for shipping to navigate around, and an almost impenetrable barrier to the early explorers.

There is no permanent human city or conurbation on the land mass, except for a number of small scientific research settlements from the various countries that claim disputed territorial rights to the continent. These research stations are scattered across the continent, with most located near the coast, where cumulatively, between 1,000 to 4,000 scientific researchers from varying countries live during the year.

The name Antarctica is attributed to the Scottish cartographer John Bartholomew, and comes from the Greek word “aviapktikn” (“antarktike”), feminine of “aviapktikoc” which means “opposite to the north”.

In 1959 the Antarctic Treaty was signed by twelve countries to prohibit military activities, mining and general “development” on the continent. Today the number of signatory countries has risen to forty six and, unfortunately, some are now discussing the possibilities of mining for minerals.

Early Human Antarctic History
Since the 1st century AD, the Greeks calculated that the world must be I the shape of a globe and that there must therefore be a southern land mass (“Terra Australis”) in order to “balance out” the vast northern lands of Europe, Asia and North Africa; the general idea being that there had to be a “symmetry” between the then known land masses in the world.

This large, “hypothetical”, southern land mass had been depicted on maps since the early 16th century. However on 17 January 1773, Captain James Cook became the first-known person to navigate across the Antarctic Circle on board HMS Resolution, accompanied by its sister ship HMS Adventure. Cook tried to get past the perilous natural floating ice barrier of giant icebergs on more than one voyage, but he was prevented from doing so. Nevertheless, Cook unwittingly “promoted”, via his ships logs, that this newly-discovered area contained an abundance of marine fauna, specifically seals and whales, which in turn led to the arrival of seal and whale hunters to the region shortly after. The fur pelts from seals and blubber from whales converted into easy money back in Europe and North America, although the journey to these waters and actual hunting in treacherous conditions was anything but easy. It was common for these pioneer hunters to find sought-after seal breeding grounds on Antarctic land, but such information they would keep secret for fear of a competitor coming in to take some of the bounty. As a consequence there were no official records logged of when the Antarctic land may have actually been first sighted.

It was therefore not until 1820 when the first officially-recorded sighting of the Antarctic Peninsula land mass was logged. Officially the sightings were made by Russian Naval Captain Thaddeus von Bellingshausen (27 January 1820), followed three days later by British Royal Navy Captain Edward Bransfield (30 January 1820) and a little later by a North American seal hunter called Nathaniel Palmer from Connecticut (November 1820). With regards to an actual landing on the continent, the first logged landing on Antarctica mainland was on 7 February 1821 by sealer-hunter John Davis, but this is disputed by a number of historians.

In 1909 an expedition led by Ernest Shackleton aimed to reach the South Pole, but ended just short, leaving this accomplishment to Norwegian Roald Amundsen who, on 14 December 1911 became the first explorer to reach the geographic South Pole, followed by the Scott expedition a month later.

Antarctic Geography
Antarctica is the highest continent on earth with an average height of 2,500m (by comparison the average elevation of Australia is only 340m) and it contains one of the longest mountain ranges in the world called the Transantarctic Mountains that stretch for a distance of approximately 4,800km (longer than the length of Chile), mostly buried under the Antarctic ice cap, but exposed in some places, with the highest peak above the ice cap called Vinson Massif at a height of around 4,897m. The height at the South Pole measures 2,835m and the highest point on the icecap is in the claimed Australian Antarctic Territory, at 4,100m.

The Transantarctic mountains run from the north-west tip of the Antarctic Peninsula near the Weddell Sea down to Cape Adare in the south west, forming a natural dividing line between west and east Antarctica, but whilst the larger area of land under the ice cap on the east is at an elevation higher than sea level, the western-side land under the ice cap is mostly at an elevation below sea level. It has also been recently discovered that under the ice sheet are 70 lakes.

About Easter Island

Easter Island Introduction

Easter Island gained its English name from the first recorded European visitor to the Island – Dutch sailor Jacob Roggeven, who arrived on Easter Sunday in 1722 and referred to it as “Paasch-Eyland”, which was 18th century Dutch that translated into Easter Island in English. In Spanish this translates to “Isla de Pascua” and the Polynesian, locals call it “Rapa Nui”, but it is also affectionately referred to as the “belly-button” of the World due to its tiny size amid the vast expanse of the Pacific Ocean and its remote location as well as historic references to it being “the navel of the World” by the original Polynesian settlers. The closest inhabited land is Pitcairn Island (with a population of around 200 inhabitants) which is approximately 1,900 km northwest, and central mainland Chile which is approximately 3,500 km due east.

There is one village on Easter Island and it is called Hango Roa, home to approximately 4,000 people, and also where the airport is located (the run way of which was extended and paid for by NASA a number of years ago in order to have an emergency landing run way at this location for the space shuttle).

Chile annexed Easter Island in 1888 and retains political and economic administration to the present day, which is often contested by a small minority of the locals. It is also a World Heritage site as determined by UNESCO (United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization), and declared a National Park of Chile. Such dual status means that there is little development or investment into infrastructure on the Island and if there is any it is strictly controlled. It also means that Hanga Roa is, in many respects, still a “rustic” village that appears, in many areas, to lack care for its appearance, giving a natural, but “unkempt” impression.

Location
The Island is located just south of the Tropic of Capricorn and enjoys a maritime sub-tropical climate that is heavily influenced by maritime sea currents and sea breezes. Average annual temperature is 21 C (70ºF), with most rain falling in April and May and the hottest months being January and February. Daily rain showers are common.

There are two natural, small sandy beaches, offering the Pacific Island stereotype image of white sand and palm trees, albeit the palm trees here have been planted by man. The principal of these two beaches is called Anakena, about 8 km from Hanga Roa and where most Islanders and tourists come to visit.

Easter Island is famous for its Moai Statues (there are 887 dotted around the Island). These are mystic statues of human-like figures carved out of rock from specific “quarry” locations and mostly erected, at various locations around the Island. Some are erected in a single line on top of ceremonial earthen mounds that are covered in stones. These stone-covered mounds are called “Ahu’s” by the locals (and are similar to the importance of an Alter in a Church). Each “Ahu” has the Moai’s faces looking inwards from the sea, bar one “Ahu” where the Moai’s face outward to the sea. Many Moai’s are now lying on the ground having been purposefully toppled and ceremonial platforms are damaged, but many have been resurrected back into their original ceremonial positions and the “Ahu’s” restored. Apart from the many “Ahu” ceremonial locations it is also possible to see Moai’s that have been left part carved, but still in the original rock face at the quarry on the outer side of Rano Raraku volcano crater. The path, used to transport the Moai’s that leads from the coast to Rano Raraku quarry is also lined with Moai’s that have either fallen, or are still upright.

Origins of the People (Rapa Nui)
According to anecdotal history original settlers arrived to the Island around 300 -400 AD (around the same time Hawaii received its first settlers), however, carbon dating of soil containing evidence of human activity suggests a date of between 700 – 100 AD
Theory has it that the island was likely populated by Polynesians who navigated in canoes or catamarans from other Pacific (Polynesian) Islands. Supporting this suggestion is a story from when Captain Cook visited the Island and a Polynesian crew member from the Polynesian Island of Bora Bora was able to communicate with the Rapa Nui people. The language most similar to the Rapa Nui language is Mangarevan (one of the Islands where the settlers likely came from), with an 80% similarity in vocabulary to the language of the Rapa Nui people. In 1999, a sea voyage using replica Polynesian boats sailed from the island of Mangareva reaching Easter Island in just nineteen days proving that such a journey could have been possible.

According to visiting missionaries who came to Easter Island in the 1860’s the Island operated a social hierarchy system (or Ancestral Cult), with an appointed “Ariki”, or high chief, wielding great power over other clans and their own respective chiefs (a little like a king having power over local dukes and princes). The high chief was the eldest descendent through first-born lines of the island’s legendary first chief, “Hotu Matua”.

The Moai statues are the most visible remnant of the “Rapa Nui” culture. It is said that each Moai represented a deified ancestor. It was believed that the living, through respect and homage paid to the dead via the Moai (similar to Christians praying to a religious icon like the Virgin Mary for the well being of the living) would enable a symbiotic relationship with the deceased whereby the dead would provide protection, health, food, good karma en general to the living. Most settlements were located on the coast and Moai were erected all along the coastline, watching over their descendants in the settlements before them, with their backs facing toward the spirit world beyond the sea.

Bird Man Cult Easter Island
As the island became increasingly overpopulated and resources diminished, warriors known as “Mataoa” gained more power and the Ancestor Cult ended, making way for the Bird Man Cult (“Tangata Manu”). This Bird Man cult maintained that, although the ancestors still provided for their descendants, the medium through which the living could contact the dead was no longer through statues, but human beings chosen through a rigorous physical competition (similar to the “iron man” sporting challenges in the modern world). It was believed that the God responsible for creating humans (“MakeMake”) played an important role in this process. In 1919 an expedition led by Katherine Routhledge, investigated the origins of Bird Man and discovered that the competition started around 1760, after the arrival of the first recorded Europeans and ended in 1878 at the time of the construction of the first Roman Catholic church. The Bird Man petroglyphs found on rocks on Easter Island are exactly the same as some petroglyphs in Hawaii, suggesting that the same competition was held on other Pacific Islands.

Destruction of the Moai
There is much debate as to why the Moai’s and “Ahu’s” were destroyed and what caused the drastic demise of the native population. Since the arrival of European visitors to the Island there has been a sporadic record of the state of the Moai’s and the health of the local people. For example in 1722, when Dutchman Jacob Roggeven arrived, and later in 1770, when two Spanish ships arrived, each of the visits noted that the Island was largely uncultivated and with a shore lined with statues. However, when Captain Cook arrived in 1774 he reported that many statues were lying face down. Later, in 1825 the HMS Blossom arrived and recorded that there were no standing statues in the places where the crew visited.

One theory has it that due to overpopulation and famine that “war” broke out between the different local cults and that this resulted in the Moai’s being toppled and “Ahu’s” destroyed, and that this, according to historians, continued through until the 1830’s. In 1838, the only seen Moai’s that were in a standing position were at these locations: Rano Raraku, Hoa Hakananai’s, Orongo and Ariki Paro.

However in contradiction to the above theory it was reported in 1722, by Dutchman Jakob Roggeveen that Easter Island was exceptionally fertile writing that “fowls are the only animals they keep. They cultivate bananas, sugar cane, and above all sweet potatoes”. Then in 1786 Jean-Francois de la Perouse visited Easter Island and his gardener declared that “three days’ work a year” would be enough to support the population. Rollin, a major in the Pérouse expedition also wrote that “Instead of meeting with men exhausted by famine… I found, on the contrary, a considerable population, with more beauty and grace than I afterwards met in any other island; and a soil, which, with very little labour, furnished excellent provisions, and in an abundance more than sufficient for the consumption of the inhabitants.”

Indeed, the above view is supported by pathologic and archeological studies that have been carried out at various locations on the Island where there is no found evidence of a pre-European societal collapse. It looks far more likely that it was the arrival of the Europeans that led to the rapid decline in local population as a result of introducing previously unknown (to the locals) disease and illness they inadvertently introduced to the local population. In addition, during the 1860’s a combination of events resulted in the death and eradication of most of the native population. It is reported that in December 1862, slave hunters came from Peru and captured 1,500 men and women – (half of the island’s population at the time), including the island’s chief, his heir and those who were literate in “Rongorongo” (Polynesian script).

When the slave raiders eventually repatriated the people they had kidnapped previously they knowingly disembarked carriers of smallpox among the survivors onto various other Polynesian islands as well as Easter Island, resulting in devastating epidemics from Easter Island all the way to the Marquesas Islands. In the case of Easter Island the population was reduced to such a low level that some of the dead were not even buried. If this wasn’t enough later, around the mid 1800’s, it was visiting whalers who unwittingly introduced tuberculosis to the Island resulting in the death of over a quarter of the remaining population.

Europeans who had since settled on the Island set up sheep farms or missionaries and began to buy up land vacated by the deceased Rapa Nui people. This land acquisition led to a confrontation between the sheep farmers and the missionaries. With financial support from backers in Tahiti, sheep farmer Jean-Baptiste Dutrou-Bornier secured most of the land outside of Hanga Roa, but in return he was forced to send to his financers (based in Tahiti) a couple of hundred Rapa Nui people. In the meantime the missionaries settled for the land in and around Hanga Roa and in 1871, having fallen out with Dutrou-Bornier, sent all but 171 Rapa Nui to the Gamber Islands.

Needless to say, after the “ethnic cleansing” of the Rapa Nui people by the Dutrou-Bornier and the missionaries not many Rapa Nui were left on the Island. Those who remained were mostly older men. Six years later, there were just 111 Rapa Nui people living on Easter Island, and only 36 of them had any offspring. From that point on and into the present day, the island’s population has slowly recovered. But with over 97% of the population dead or having left in less than a decade, much of the island’s cultural knowledge had been lost.

Political Control Easter Island
From the late 1800’s to 1953 the Williamson-Balfour company was given considerable administrative control over the Island through a lease agreement that permitted the company to use most of the land for sheep grazing. After this date the Chilean Navy was then appointed to administer the Island until 1966 when all “Rapa Nui” people, or “Pascuenses”, were given Chilean citizenship. Today they also receive subsidized air travel to the Chilean mainland. On July 30, 2007, a Chilean constitutional reform gave Easter Island along with the Juan Fernandez Archipelago (located closer to the Chilean coast) the status of “special territories of Chile”. Pending the enactment of a special charter, the Island will continue to be governed as a province of Valparaiso in the Chilean V Region.

Geographic Creation Easter Island
The Island was created by the eruption of undersea Pacific volcanoes around a period close to 750,000 years ago, with the last eruption detected as being around 100,000 years ago (very young in geological terms) and, according to geologists, the most recent volcanic activity of any kind was 10,000 years ago, despite steam seen to be emitting from the walls of the Rano Kau crater in the early 20th century by the then Island “manager”.

These volcanic undersea eruptions rose up from the ocean floor spilling molten lava all the way to the surface until breaching sea level, where a land mass in the shape of an almost perfect triangle was formed. The longest line of this triangle, point to point, is only 24 km with the shortest line 12 km wide, and the area covered is 166 km squared, reaching a height of 507 metres. There are no natural rivers or streams, but there are three fresh-water-filled distinct volcano craters at Rano Kau, Rano Raraku and Rano Aroi.

There are three principal extinct volcanic craters that dominate the Island. These areTerevaka, the highest at 507 mt, positioned in the central northern sector forming the main bulk of the Island; Poike in the eastern end and the water-filled Rano Kau in the south-western corner. Their combined volcanic sides combine to provide an undulating landscape covered in varying degrees of vegetation. At the lower levels the land is mostly covered in grass peppered with a continuous number of loose volcanic rocks. On the higher elevations and sides of the volcano slopes the terrain is a mixture of heath and moorland. Apart from a few isolated areas of foreign-introduced Eucalyptus trees the Island is predominantly treeless.

Vegetation Easter Island
This, however, was not always the case. Ecologists have discovered that Easter Island, together with its closest neighbor, the tiny island of Isla Sala y Gomez 415 kilometres (258 mi) further east, is a distinct eco region of Rapa Nui subtropical broadleaf forests. Botanical studies of fossil pollen and tree moulds left by lava flows indicate that the island was formerly forested, with a range of trees, shrubs, ferns, and grasses but unfortunately the original subtropical moist broadleaf forests are now gone.

Fossil evidence shows that there used to be a tall Rapa Nui palm tree (Paschalococos disperta) related to the Chilean wine palm (Jubaea chilensis), which was one of the dominant trees of the Island. It is assumed that like its Chilean counterpart it probably took around 100 years to reach its full height. Research has shown, too, that the Polynesian rat, which the original Polynesian settlers brought with them, influenced the disappearance of the Rapa Nui palm. Rat teeth marks can be observed in 99% of the nuts found preserved in caves or excavated at different sites, indicating that the Polynesian rat impeded the palm’s reproduction. That, together with the fact that palms were cleared to make the settlements, led to their extinction almost 350 years ago.
Another tree, the Toromiro tree (Sophora toromiro) was prehistorically present on Easter Island, and is now extinct in the wild. However, the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew in the UK, and the Gotenburg Botnical Gardnes in Sweden are jointly leading a scientific program to reintroduce the Toromiro to Easter Island.

With the palm and the Toromiro trees gone, rainfall was significantly reduced as a result of there being less condensation over the Island. Sheep farming also changed the biodiversity of the Island as grasslands were cultivated for sheep grazing.

It has also been argued whether or not the native Rapa Nui’s deforested the island in the process of transporting and then erecting their Moai statues as well as using trees to provide fuel, building materials and creating agricultural land for an overpopulated island.Experimental archaeology has demonstrated that some statues certainly could have been placed on “Y” shaped wooden frames called “miro manga erua” and then pulled to their final “Ahu” destinations. Other theories involve the use of “ladders” (parallel wooden rails) over which the statues could have been dragged. Rapa Nui traditions metaphorically refer to powerful spiritual power (mana) as the means by which the Moai were “elevated” from the quarry.

In the water-filled volcanic craters of Rano Kau and Rano Raraku there are Totora reeds (as found in the high lakes of the Andes) which suggested a South-American origin of early settlers, but pollen analysis of lake sediments shows these reeds have grown on the island for over 30,000 years, well before the recorded arrival of humans.

Easter Island has suffered from heavy soil erosion in recent centuries, perhaps aggravated by agriculture and massive deforestation. This process seems to have been gradual and may have been aggravated by the extensive sheep farming of the Williamson-Balfour Company throughout most of the 20th century.

Getting Here

Getting to Easter Island

There is only one way to get to Easter Island and that is by 5-hr flight, unless you like rowing!

Lan Chile operates flights directly to Easter Island from Santiago de Chile and also from Papeete in Tahiti.

Climate & Clothes

Easter Island Climate

Easter Island is positioned just south of the Tropic of Capricorn and influenced heavily by both maritime sea currents and ocean winds creating a sub-tropical maritime climate. In the winter months of July and August the lowest temperature gets down to around 18°C (63F) and in February (high summer) up to a humid 28°C (82F). Most rain falls in the months of April and May, but the Island receives constant sea breezes (that keep it cooler than it otherwise would be) and rain showers.

Clothes

For the hotter months of November to March it is suggested to bring summer clothing such as shorts and summer slacks, jeans as well as a wind-breaker; an outer, light, water-proof jacket with hood (for rain showers); a light, warm top like a fleece or a sweater; hiking shoes or boots. For the cooler months of April to October, less of the summer clothes and more of the warmer clothes would be appropriate.

Places of Interest

Places of Interest Easter Island

The number one main reason why people come to Easter Island is to see the Moai statues. There are 887 Moai’s dotted around the Island, most in disrepair, but a good number stand upright in a line atop a ceremonial earthen mound covered in stones (the mound is called an “Ahu”).

Moai

There are certain locations around the Island where “Ahu’s” with Moai can be viewed, the best regarded viewing locatins are at:

Huria Urenga (outskirts of Hanga Roa)
Te Ata Hero (in Hanga Roa)
Te Peu (in Hanga Roa)
Tongariki (near to the Rano Rarku Moai Quarry)
Nau Nau (Anakena Beach)

Quarry

The quarry where the Moai were carved from is at Rano Raraku.

Places of Interest Easter Island
The number one main reason why people come to Easter Island is to see the Moai statues. There are 887 Moai’s dotted around the Island, most in disrepair, but a good number stand upright in a line atop a ceremonial earthen mound covered in stones (the mound is called an “Ahu”).
 
Moai
There are certain locations around the Island where “Ahu’s” with Moai can be viewed, the best regarded viewing locatins are at:
 
Huria Urenga (outskirts of Hanga Roa)
Te Ata Hero (in Hanga Roa)
Te Peu (in Hanga Roa)
Tongariki (near to the Rano Rarku Moai Quarry)
Nau Nau (Anakena Beach)
 
Quarry
The quarry where the Moai were carved from is at Rano Raraku.
 
Volcanoes
The island is entirely volcanic, but there are two water-filled volcanic craters that warrant a visit. The largest and most impressive is the Rano Kau with a reed-covered lake in its crater. Visible from a number of view points.
 
The other volcanic water-filled crater is the Rano Raraku, where reeds grow and birds nest.
 
Petroglyphs
At the Orongo ruins, located on the south-western rim of the Rano Kau volcano, there are clear “Bird Man” petroglyphs on some of the rocks.
 
Dwellings
There are many volcanic caves around the Island where Rapa Nui will have lived at one time as well as the restored ruins at Orongo, where the Bird Man competition was observed from. Also, at many of the “Ahu” there is often evidence of what could have been a dwelling.
 
Beach
There is one principal, sandy beach, frequented by locals and tourists alike. It is called Anakena, located about 8 km from Hanga Roa, offering a white-sand beach, clear, warm sea for bathing, but only 300 mts long.
 
Horse Riding
They say there are more horses on Easter Island than people! This is because they are allowed to roam freely and breed equally as freely. Horse riding is easily arranged and is a good way to get around, take in the views and explore the Island.
 
Evening Polynesian Song and Dance Shows
There are two types of Polynesian song and dance shows depicting the tribal dance routines between man and woman in the courtship ritual. The shows are incredibly invigorating, full of energy, filled with song and rhythm and are well worth it.
 
Hikes
There are many hikes to enjoy on Easter Island, The Explora hotel (the best all-inclusive service hotel on the Island) offers guided hikes and excursions in general, and among the hikes offered by Explora are:
 
Walk to Hanga Oteo
Duration: 4.5 to 5.5 hours (half-day). Walking 4 to 5 hours. Length: 13.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Te Peu by van (15 min). Walk along a trail that borders steep cliffs and offers spectacular views. Visit natural bathing pools, cross locally owned fields and view numerous archeological sites. Arrival at Anakena Beach. Picnic on the beach. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (20 min). Level: Medium.
 
From the Te Peu to Hanga Roa
Duration: 2 to 3 hours (half-day). Walking 1.5 to 2.5 hours. Length: 6.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Te Peu by van (15 min). Walk along a trail that borders steep cliffs and offers spectacular views. View Motu Tautara and the astonishing Las Dos Ventanas cave. Arrive at Hanga Roa, first passing Tahai and ending at Pea. Numerous archeological sites along the way. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (5 min). Level: Easy.
 
Ara O Te Moai (The Moai Route)
Duration: 3 to 3.5 hours (half-day). Walking 2.5 to 3.5 hours. Length: 7 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Hanga Tetenga by van (15 min).
Walk along Ara O Te Moai, the trail once used to transport the moai sculptures; view numerous overturned moai along the way. Climb to Rano Raraku, the moai stone quarry, with views of the interior of the crater. Walk along the volcano’s edge and arrive at the natural rock pools at One Makihi. Picnic lunch. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (20 min). Level: Easy.
 
Alturas del Poike
Duration: 4 to 4.5 hours (half-day). Walking 3 to 4 hours. Length: 8.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Piko Mahore by van (30 min). Walk along an upward sloping trail (300 meters) that borders a steep cliff, and pass through Maunga Parehe and the Maunga Tea-Tea. View the Vai Aheva fountain. Climb to Puka Katike and then walk down to Tongariki to view 15 moais. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (25 min). Level: Medium.
 
Climb to Tereveka
Duration: 3 to 4 hours (half-day). Walking 2 to 2.5 hours. Length: 6 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Rano Aroi by van (20 min). The
walk begins at Rano Aroi, then climbs from Maunga Kuma to Maunga Terevaka to appreciate spectacular views of the island from its highest point. The trail continues northeast toward Anakena along high coastal ridges that gradually descend to the beach, where guests may swim. Return to explora Rapa Nui
by van (25 min). Level: Medium.
 
The Tangata Manu Route
Duration: 2 to 3 hours (half-day). Walking 2 to 3 hours. Length: 7 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Vinapu by van (5 min). View Ahu Tahira. Walk along a trail that borders ascending steep cliffs (250 meters), arriving at the edge of the Rano Kau crater. Spectacular views of the ocean and the interior of the volcano. Walk along the crater to Orongo. Visit the significant ceremonial site of Tangata Manu (Bird Man) worship. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (5 min). Level: Easy.
 
Te Pito O Te Henua (The Navel of the World)
Duration: 3.5 to 4.5 hours (half-day). Walking 3 to 3.5 hours. Length: 9.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Ana Okeke by van (40 min). Walk
along a descending trail that borders the northern coast of the island. View Ana Okeke, Maunga Parehe. Fishing cove “La Perousse,” local villagers and archeological sites along the way. Arrive at the Ovahe beach. Return by van to explora (25 min). Level: Easy.
 
Walk to Te Miro Oone
Duration: 2.5 to 3 hours (half-day). Walking 2 to 2.5 hours. Length: 6.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora to Te Miro Oone by van (15 min). Walk along a trail that offers panoramic views of the southeast side of the island. Climb along Maunga Kahurea and continue along Ara o te Moai. Numerous moai along the trail, arrive at Hanga Te
Tenga ahu. Return by van to explora (15 min). Level: Easy.
 
To Te Miro Oone by Bicycle
Duration: 2 to 3 hours by bicycle (half-day). Length: 18 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora to Te Miro Ooneon bicycle, along the principal route that crossesthrough pretty forested sections of the island. Descendtoward the southern coast, with views of variousmotu and archeological sites, following the coastal
route until reaching Tahira. Return to explora from Vinapu. Level: Easy.

The island is entirely volcanic, but there are two water-filled volcanic craters that warrant a visit. The largest and most impressive is the Rano Kau with a reed-covered lake in its crater. Visible from a number of view points.

The other volcanic water-filled crater is the Rano Raraku, where reeds grow and birds nest.

Petroglyphs

At the Orongo ruins, located on the south-western rim of the Rano Kau volcano, there are clear “Bird Man” petroglyphs on some of the rocks.

Dwellings
There are many volcanic caves around the Island where Rapa Nui will have lived at one time as well as the restored ruins at Orongo, where the Bird Man competition was observed from. Also, at many of the “Ahu” there is often evidence of what could have been a dwelling.

Beach
There is one principal, sandy beach, frequented by locals and tourists alike. It is called Anakena, located about 8 km from Hanga Roa, offering a white-sand beach, clear, warm sea for bathing, but only 300 mts long.

Horse Riding
They say there are more horses on Easter Island than people! This is because they are allowed to roam freely and breed equally as freely. Horse riding is easily arranged and is a good way to get around, take in the views and explore the Island.

Evening Polynesian Song and Dance Shows
There are two types of Polynesian song and dance shows depicting the tribal dance routines between man and woman in the courtship ritual. The shows are incredibly invigorating, full of energy, filled with song and rhythm and are well worth it.

Hikes
There are many hikes to enjoy on Easter Island, The Explora hotel (the best all-inclusive service hotel on the Island) offers guided hikes and excursions in general, and among the hikes offered by Explora are:

Walk to Hanga Oteo
Duration: 4.5 to 5.5 hours (half-day). Walking 4 to 5 hours. Length: 13.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Te Peu by van (15 min). Walk along a trail that borders steep cliffs and offers spectacular views. Visit natural bathing pools, cross locally owned fields and view numerous archeological sites. Arrival at Anakena Beach. Picnic on the beach. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (20 min). Level: Medium.

From the Te Peu to Hanga Roa
Duration: 2 to 3 hours (half-day). Walking 1.5 to 2.5 hours. Length: 6.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Te Peu by van (15 min). Walk along a trail that borders steep cliffs and offers spectacular views. View Motu Tautara and the astonishing Las Dos Ventanas cave. Arrive at Hanga Roa, first passing Tahai and ending at Pea. Numerous archeological sites along the way. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (5 min). Level: Easy.

Ara O Te Moai (The Moai Route)
Duration: 3 to 3.5 hours (half-day). Walking 2.5 to 3.5 hours. Length: 7 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Hanga Tetenga by van (15 min).
Walk along Ara O Te Moai, the trail once used to transport the moai sculptures; view numerous overturned moai along the way. Climb to Rano Raraku, the moai stone quarry, with views of the interior of the crater. Walk along the volcano’s edge and arrive at the natural rock pools at One Makihi. Picnic lunch. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (20 min). Level: Easy.

Alturas del Poike
Duration: 4 to 4.5 hours (half-day). Walking 3 to 4 hours. Length: 8.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Piko Mahore by van (30 min). Walk along an upward sloping trail (300 meters) that borders a steep cliff, and pass through Maunga Parehe and the Maunga Tea-Tea. View the Vai Aheva fountain. Climb to Puka Katike and then walk down to Tongariki to view 15 moais. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (25 min). Level: Medium.

Climb to Tereveka
Duration: 3 to 4 hours (half-day). Walking 2 to 2.5 hours. Length: 6 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Rano Aroi by van (20 min). The
walk begins at Rano Aroi, then climbs from Maunga Kuma to Maunga Terevaka to appreciate spectacular views of the island from its highest point. The trail continues northeast toward Anakena along high coastal ridges that gradually descend to the beach, where guests may swim. Return to explora Rapa Nui
by van (25 min). Level: Medium.

The Tangata Manu Route
Duration: 2 to 3 hours (half-day). Walking 2 to 3 hours. Length: 7 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Vinapu by van (5 min). View Ahu Tahira. Walk along a trail that borders ascending steep cliffs (250 meters), arriving at the edge of the Rano Kau crater. Spectacular views of the ocean and the interior of the volcano. Walk along the crater to Orongo. Visit the significant ceremonial site of Tangata Manu (Bird Man) worship. Return by van to explora Rapa Nui (5 min). Level: Easy.

Te Pito O Te Henua (The Navel of the World)
Duration: 3.5 to 4.5 hours (half-day). Walking 3 to 3.5 hours. Length: 9.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora Rapa Nui to Ana Okeke by van (40 min). Walk
along a descending trail that borders the northern coast of the island. View Ana Okeke, Maunga Parehe. Fishing cove “La Perousse,” local villagers and archeological sites along the way. Arrive at the Ovahe beach. Return by van to explora (25 min). Level: Easy.

Walk to Te Miro Oone
Duration: 2.5 to 3 hours (half-day). Walking 2 to 2.5 hours. Length: 6.5 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora to Te Miro Oone by van (15 min). Walk along a trail that offers panoramic views of the southeast side of the island. Climb along Maunga Kahurea and continue along Ara o te Moai. Numerous moai along the trail, arrive at Hanga Te
Tenga ahu. Return by van to explora (15 min). Level: Easy.

To Te Miro Oone by Bicycle
Duration: 2 to 3 hours by bicycle (half-day). Length: 18 km. Itinerary: Travel from explora to Te Miro Ooneon bicycle, along the principal route that crossesthrough pretty forested sections of the island. Descendtoward the southern coast, with views of variousmotu and archeological sites, following the coastal
route until reaching Tahira. Return to explora from Vinapu. Level: Easy.

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