My visit to Rapa Nui

 

“One of the most remote inhabited places on earth, some 3800km from the closest civilization”

Easter Island, Chile


I walked along the green and brown grassy plains, while the wind wrapped around me. The view in front of me was magnificent, navy blue and aquamarine foamy waves constantly crashing into the rugged coastline. A coastline that seemed to go on forever – well I guess I was on an island! Isla de Pascua (Easter Island) to be precise, one of the most remote inhabited places on earth, some 3800km from the closest civilization. I wanted to stop and keep looking, take in the views slowly but something made me keep walking and then I saw him – Ahu Ko te Riku – one of the biggest Moai´s on the island noticeable by it’s red hat and white eyes. Impressed – most definitely and this was only my first day!!I have spent about 5 days on the island so far and there has been so much to take in and so much to see that I am still trying to decided between a number of things what my favourite place was and what activity I enjoyed the most? Was it…

Thinking @ Playa Pea
Aptly named Pea – it is probably one of the smallest beaches on the island. It became my haven for hours while I put my thoughts together so that I could share some of the magic of the island with you.

Relaxing @ Anakena Beach
Well you should all know me by now – if there is a beach around I will find it. Anakena is the most beautiful beach on the island, I spent the day relaxing either staring at the turquoise water or admiring the Ahu Nau Nau Altar – the best preserved alter on the island only for the fact that it was hidden for many years under the sand.

Driving @ slow speed
Maximum speed was 60km on the tar road and there is only two! I was lucky enough to meet some lovely people at the hostel and hire a 4×4 for the day. I drove around the island for about 8 hours stopping at some wonderful sites: Maoi, Ahu, fallen Maoi, volcanoes and beaches all the time giving ourselves enough time to take photos, explore and have lunch – far more than if we joined a tour for the day.

Taking Pictures @ Volcano Rano Raraku
Nicknamed the ´Quarry´ or the ´Nursery´, this is where it is believed the statues were built and you can still see many in different stages of development. My favourite part of this site was walking into the volcano to see the many undisturbed statues amoung the yellow flowers and of course taking lots and lots of photos.

Just looking @ Ahu Tongariki Alter
The most well known or photographed alter, standing tall with 15 statues. These remarkable Moai´s have twice been toppled in their life time – once during inter-war fighting and then again when a tsunami hit the island. You must admit they are in pretty good shape for taking such a beating.

Exercising @ Volcano Rano Kau
Taking a 1½ hour walk along the coast and through many trees up to this Volcano was great exercise. All made worthwhile by the beautiful view – a blue and green crater reflecting in the sun.

I have not mentioned everything on the island you will be pleased to know! There are about 900 Moai and 270 Ahu´s scattered around the coastline and judging by my photos I have done a good job in trying to snap them all. Probably it was a good idea not having captured them all but I will definately be leaving this spiritual place feeling relaxed, content in knowing that I have experienced all the elements the island had to offer. But it will seem that I will still be leaving the island asking myself one question – Why do all the statues face inland?

Where I stayed:
Kona Tau Youth Hostel

Definitions:
Moai = Statues
Ahu = Alters

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