I was travelling to Santiago, Chile purely as a mileage run to maintain airline elite status. There were no plans, but Chile has many options for activities. On other trips to Chile, I had thoroughly enjoyed Santiago and Patagonia including Punta Arenas, the Strait of Magellan, and Torres del Paine National Park. Trying to come up with something different, Easter Island popped into my head as an intriguing last-minute target of opportunity.
From the prior trip to Santiago, I recalled attending a show featuring dances native to Chile. The show included some of the dancing I’m familiar with and also Polynesian dancers. Wake-up call. It was then I first realized Easter Island was part of Chile. Bingo! So Easter Island – why the heck not?
This won’t be a “17 things to do” or “23 things to pack” type of post. Those posts are very helpful and are good for generating traffic. But there was no research or planning for this trip other than determining the feasibility of flights, accommodations, and costs. For a trip with practically no forethought, it later sparked a considerable amount of thought about a number of things I don’t often think about.
To reduce the length of my posts, I’m dividing the experience on Easter Island into several parts. This post will be mostly pictorial. I’ll save most of the heavy thoughts for the last post. Please take a look.
Other posts from the Easter Island trip:
Easter Island (Isla de Pascua Sp.) got its European name because it was first sighted by Jacob Roggeveen, a Dutch explorer on Easter in 1722. In the language of the natives, it is called Rappa Nui.
Hanga Roa is the capital of Rappa Nui. Almost 90% of the island population of about 5,000 lives there.
All of the archaeological sites are in Rapa Nui National Park which occupies about 50% of the island. Tickets must be purchased at an office just off the main street. The cost is $80. Tickets are good for seven days and multiple entries.
The waterfront is very close to the primary business district. There are restaurants, a few shops, and a public park.
Food is wonderful but more expensive than on the mainland as might be expected for a small, remote island.
A burger joint just off the main street boasts the world’s largest hamburger. It is certainly the largest I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen my fair share of hamburgers worldwide. However, I think a burger isn’t really a burger if it must be eaten with a knife and fork.
There are at least two Polynesian music and dance shows. I went to the Varua Ora show located on the main street.
As I was walking to the show Jerome drove by and offered a lift to town. I learned that he managed the show. He arranged a seat in the first row.
The show is performed in a small theater in back of Kanahau restaurant. I dined there before the show. The Pisco sour, ceviche and beef fillets were outstanding.
The show consisted of a demonstration of Polynesian dancing, music, and singing. Saying the show was energetic is a big understatement.
Here are two short videos from the show. Sorry ladies I just videoed the women.
During the show some audience members are invited on stage and given an opportunity to show off their skills or lack thereof. After the show, all are invited to meet the cast and pose for photos.
Have you been to Easter Island or plan to go? What questions do you have that I did not cover?