Rapi Nui: Easter Island

Rapa Nui, also known to visitors as Easter Island or Isla de Pasqua, is the world’s most remote inhabited island.

Its position is 2,200 miles west of Chile’s Pacific Coast—a rough midpoint between South America and Tahiti.

Although the island has been under Chilean administration since 1888, Rapa Nui’s heritage is unmistakably Polynesian.

The original inhabitants of Easter island are believed to have sailed from the Cook or Marquesas islands around 800 AD.

In the centuries that followed, they developed a complex culture with written language and monumental architecture.

Terevaka, Poike, and Rano Kau

Rapa Nui’s 63 square miles are distributed in a triangle between three extinct volcanoes: Terevaka, Poike, and Rano Kau.

Mossy blue crater lake inside the crater of Ranu Kau Volcano on Easter Island

The only residential township, Hanga Roa, rests on the western coast.

Rapa Nui National Park

Outside Hanga Roa, nearly all of the island is protected as Rapa Nui National Park, established in an effort to protect the 20,000+ archeological sites that dot the island.

These include 887 moai—massive volcanic stone statues originally finished with white coral eyes, obsidian pupils, and red stone topknots.

Tahitan palm trees shading Rapa Nui, photographed near the beach on a Family Vacation to Easter Island

Other noteworthy sites include:

  • Rano Kau “Bird Man” Petroglyphs
  • Orongo Ceremonial Center
  • Quarries at Puna Pao and Rano Raraku
  • Various Caves
  • Unique Boat-House Settlements

Most visitors stay for at least three or four days, touring the archeological sites, trekking, mountain biking, and diving.

Surfing and Snorkeling

Surfing lessons and snorkeling excursions can also be arranged.

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The island’s main beach, Anakena, invites travelers to linger and enjoy the gentle surf, pale sand, and transplanted Tahitian palms.

Easter Island can be reached by air from Santiago (five hours and 40 minutes), and Papeete, Tahiti (seven hours and 20 minutes).

Rapa Nui Climate

Easter Island’s climate is marine subtropical, with little precipitation and fairly constant temperatures year-round.

Rapa Nui guardians

During the Easter Island summer months—November through March—highs reach into the low-80s and dip into the mid-60s.

The June through August winters bring highs in the mid-70s and lows near 60° F.

While cloud cover and light rain can arrive at any time of year, the winter months typically bring more precipitation and a more verdant landscape.

The high season for visitors is December through March. Lodging for those months should be booked well in advance.

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Have you dreamed of visiting Easter Island? When you travel with LANDED, you’ll be relaxed, prepared, and delighted. In fact, more than 90% of our business is repeat or referral. Speak with one of our expert travel planners today at 801.582.2100. Soon, you’ll have LANDED.

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