Easter Island

On Easter Sunday, 1722, Rapanui Island (Te Pito Te Henua, “the world’s belly button”, according to its inhabitants) was renamed by Dutch sailors, the first representatives of the West who, landing on the island, gave it the name by which it is known today. This corner of Chilean Polynesia was actually discovered 1500 years ago when the Rapa Nui people, a civilization similar to the Egyptians in Africa and the Maya and Aztec in the American continent, began to develop on the island. The main vestige of those peoples that still delights us today are the “moai” (in Rapa Nui “to exist”), the incredible monolithic statues located in the middle of volcanic slopes that resemble giant heads. The island has only one city inhabited, populated by 5000 dwellers: Hanga Roa. In 1995 the territory was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Rapa Nui National Park was created to preserve the natural wealth. Triangular in shape and located in the eastern vertex of Chilean Polynesia, it is 180 km long. It bears a terrain that is of interest more and more to archaeologists, geologists and astronomers, who conduct their investigations there. The climate of the island oscillates around 20 ° all year, perfect conditions in which to enjoy its pink beaches, nautical sports such as scuba diving as much as taking paths that pass by volcanoes and through prairies on horseback or on foot. If you go in May, prepare for the rainy season, but if you have the opportunity to reach the island in February you can enjoy Tapati, a traditional festival in which the inhabitants will deploy, competing in teams, different skills: Vaka Tuai (recreation of a traditional Polynesian boat), Takona (body painting with a mixture of natural pigments), Riu (ritual songs and storytelling), among others!

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12

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19

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