Easter Island, or Rapa Nui as it was originally known, is a Polynesian island located in the Pacific Ocean. One of the most remote islands on earth, Easter Island holds a richness of history and mystery. It is over 2000km (or 1242miles) away from its nearest neighbors, and Easter Island is filled with unsolved questions about its history and early inhabitants. Most famous for its iconic statues called moai, constructed by the early inhabitants, Rapa Nui is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There is much controversy over the beginnings and decline of the Rapa Nui people. It is believed that this civilization began over 1200 years ago when a canoe transported these people upon the shores of this isolated island. What arose from this was a remarkable civilization, existing on an island only 163 square kilometers wide (101 square miles). It is unknown why the early inhabitants began carving the giant statues which would later become iconic, or why the civilization declined so rapidly, and had practically disappeared by the time the first Europeans arrived on the shores. Many of the mysteries surrounding Easter Island are still being investigated. Today, Easter Island remains an enigma waiting to be explored.
Discovering Easter Island, The Center of theWorld ( 3 Nights / 4 Days )
Day 1: Transfer from your selected hotel in Santiago de Chile to Santiago´s International airport.
Upon arrival your driver will be waiting for you at Easter Island airport for your transfer to selected Hotel. After checking in we will enjoy a welcome dinner at the Hotel restaurant.
Day 2: Today, after our breakfast we will enjoy a full day tour at the Island.
We will visit Vaihu, Tongariki, Te Pito Kura, Nau Nau and Rano Raraku
These ceremonial Centers correspond to “Ahu”, or platforms where the majestic, seated Moais statues are found. One of the most spectacular areas is the Ahu Tongariki, comprised of 15 restored moais that make up the largest ceremonial infrastructure on the island. Almost all of the island’s existing moais were carved in the Rano Raraku Volcano quarries. From the peak of the volcano you have an incredible view of the four cardinal points of the island as well as the nearby ceremonial villages.
After these interesting visits we will enjoy a picnic lunch at Anakena beach located 30 km from Hanga Roa, this is a beautiful wide beach with white sands, palm trees and turquoise water. According to the legend, this was where the kings and the royal family lived. The beach is guarded by seven nostalgic moai, with their hats restored. The biggest ahu here, known as Nau Nau, was restored between 1978 and 1980 by Sergio Rapu.
Next we will drive back to our hotel to freshen up and later enjoy a delicious dinner at the Hotel restaurant.
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Day 3: After our breakfast we will enjoy a half day tour visiting Rano Kau village and the ceremonial village of Orongo. Orongo lies 6 km from Hanga Roa, on the western edge of Rano Raraku volcano, and is set in some of the most beautiful scenery on the island. It occupies a narrow strip 250 meters wide between the crater of the volcano and a cliff which falls into the sea. It consists of 53 structures with walls made of slabs of basalt. The walls inside each structure are painted with symbols of government, oars for ceremonial dances and figures of birds, with red and white predominating. We will also visit Vinapu, and Ana Kai Tangata.
Next we will come back to our hotel to enjoy lunch.
In the afternoon; we will visit Ahu Akivi. This was the first site on the island to be scientifically restored, between 1960 and 1961. It is located 10 km from Hanga Roa.
It is one of the few platforms or Ahu which seem to look towards the sea. It has seven moai, which are said to represent the first sailors sent by king Hotu Matua to reconnoiter the dream of the seer Hau Maka, before their colonizing voyage.
Next we will visit the Puna Pau quarry located 15 km from Hanga Roa. Puna Pau is a crater of red volcanic rock where the islanders quarried the pukao or headdresses with which the moai are crowned.
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Day 4: After our breakfast our driver will take us to the island airport to check in to flight to Santiago de Chile for your connection flight home.