Discover Easter Island
Easter Island or Rapa Nui, a Chilean territory, is a remote volcanic island in Polynesia. It’s famous for its nearly 900 monumental statues, called moai, created by the early inhabitants during the 13th–16th centuries. The stone blocks, carved into head-and-torso figures, average 4 meters tall and 14 tons. Some of these rest on massive stone pedestals called ahus. Ahu Tongariki with 15 moais, is the largest ahu on Easter Island.
This tour is a wonderful combination of Chile’s vibrant capital city and spellbinding Easter Island. In Santiago, you will also have a chance to sample first-hand the delightful and highly-regarded New World wines of Chile. Then travel to Easter Island whose ancient inhabitants called it Te Pito o Te Henua (the Navel of the World). Visitors today often call it the world's largest open-air museum. Explore this fascinating island with an interesting and yet tragic history.
TRAVEL UNTAMED ON THIS 7-DAY EASTER ISLAND TOUR…
And, see spectacular moais, huge statues carved from volcanic stone.
Almost 3800km west of the Chilean mainland and midway to Tahiti lies subtropical Easter Island (Rapa Nui), where an extraordinary culture has developed since the first seafarers landed here 1200 years ago. A wonderland of volcanic craters, crystalline waters and archaeological sites, Rapa Nui is most famous for its mysterious moai statues that offer a fascinating glimpse into the ancient and unique civilisation of the Pacific islanders.
Easter Island, the most isolated island in the world, is believed to have been settled by Polynesians who ventured across the Pacific from the Marquesas Islands. Settling on Rapa Nui (the Polynesian name for Easter Island), they tilled the land and used the native palm trees both for their houses and fishing boats. But their most spectacular and permanent constructions were the moais, huge images of gods carved from volcanic stone and set all around the island, facing the sea. (The moais are estimated to weigh 50-90 tons/45,000-80,000 kg.)
The islanders believed the gods conferred mana, or spiritual power, keeping their fields fertile and the ocean fishes plentiful. All went well until the last palm tree was chopped down - then, all the mana on the island was insufficient to prevent soil erosion or to provide construction material for fishing boats. In about 1580, famine swept the island, and a series of civil wars followed, lasting 250 years. It was during these wars that Dutch navigator Jacob Roggeveen first saw the island on Easter Sunday, 1722.
Apart from the famous stone statues, or maoi you will find friendly people, wild beaches, and a wild, trelles volcanic landscape. The island is just 45-sq-mi/115-sq-km and a fascinating destination for rest and recreation.
Flights from the UK and Ireland: There are currently no direct flights from major UK airports. Most flights are via a European, Latin American or US city; LAN, Iberia, British Airways and Air France are all options. It’s worth paying attention to the routes used by the different airlines; even the shortest and most convenient ones via Madrid or Buenos Aires entail a total travelling time of over 16 hours. Flying via the US is longer still (though sometimes cheaper).
Flights from the US and Canada: US travellers shouldn’t find it too hard to get a fairly convenient flight to Santiago. American Airlines, Delta and LAN offer non-stop flights from airports such as Miami, Dallas-Fort Worth and Atlanta. It is also possible to travel via other Latin American countries such as Peru and Brazil.
Discover Easter Island
Santiago, Easter Island
(7 Days – Travel Any Day)
Day 1 – Arrive & City Sightseeing
Santiago On arrival at Santiago Airport you will be met and transferred to your chosen hotel for your three-night stay. This afternoon, discover this wonderful city on our Santiago sightseeing tour.
Overnight – Galerias Hotel Deluxe or The Ritz-Carlton.
Day 2 – Valparaiso Tour
Vina del Mar Spend an unforgettable day at Vina del Mar, Chile’s most fashionable beach resort. Discover nearby Valparaiso, a place bursting with character where hundreds of brightly coloured wooden houses cling to the hillside, and which is recognised by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site for its historic architecture and role as a merchant port. (B)
Day 3 – Vineyard Excursion
Vina del Mar Today you will have a chance to sample first-hand the delightful and highly-regarded New World wines of Chile. Your fascinating guided half-day tour, a wine lovers’ delight, to one of the areas leading estates such as Concha y Toro or Vina Undurraga, will cover every step of the winemaking process and will culminate in some well earned wine tasting. Enjoy spectacular scenery and views of the magnificent Andes on your return to Santiago. (B)
Day 4 – Transfer
Easter Island Upon arrival on the mystifying, volcanic island of Rapa Nui (Easter Island) you will receive a traditional welcoming before your transfer to your chosen hotel for a three-night stay. The remainder of the day is at leisure.
Overnight – Explore Rapa Nui or Hangaroa (D)
Day 5 – Anakena and Moai Statues
Easter Island This morning you head out for the dramatic, volcanic coastline along the 'Camino de los Moais', the route on which the ancient stone Moais were moved. After a picnic lunch at Ranu Raraku, where many of the moais were quarried and sculpted, you will climb the Ranu Raraku volcano before heading to the iconic restored giant Ahu Tongariki (ceremonial platform) with its line-up of 15 imperious moais. The journey back to the hotel takes you via Anakena where the Pacific waters lapping the beautiful palm fringed, white sand beach invite you for a refreshing dip.
Overnight – Explore Rapa Nui or Hangaroa (B, L)
Day 6 – Rano Kau, Orongo and Ahu Te Pahu
Easter Island This morning visit the volcano of Rano Kau, measuring about 1,600m in diameter. Admire its perfectly round crater lake, before heading to the ceremonial village of Orongo to view the petroglyphs (rock carvings) and learn about their history. This afternoon takes you to see the giant Moais of Ahu Tahai, Ahu Tepeu and Ahu Akivi, the quarry of Puna Pau and the volcanic caves of Ana Te Pahu.
Overnight – Explore Rapa Nui or Hangaroa (B)
Day 7 – Depart
Easter Island Transfer to the airport for your flight back to Santiago or onwards to Papeete, Tahiti. (B)
The true price is customised based on final choice of hotels, travel dates, and other custom preferences. All prices exclude international flights.
Price Includes: hotels, airport transfers and transportation within the country, unique experiences guided by local experts and 24X7 support during your trip.
Make this your holiday
Overview Shaped like a long and narrow strip, along the western edge of South America, Chile is a country of startling contrasts and extreme beauty. Travellers are drawn to this country because of its magnitude in natural attractions, from the towering volcanic peaks of the Andes to the ancient forests of the Lake District. It has some very good parks, and plenty of opportunities for fine adventure travel. Chile is justly famous as the location of Torres del Paine, considered by many to be the finest nature travel destinations in all of South America.
Where to go Chile is a long, narrow sliver of land, clinging to the edge of a continent. The Andes, the great mountain range forms its eastern border, are a formidable barrier of rock and ice that cuts the country off from Argentina and Bolivia. To the north, the Atacama Desert, a 1000km stretch of parched wasteland, separates it from Peru. And to the west, only a few islands dotted in the Pacific Ocean break the waves that roll onto Chile’s coast from Australasia.
You will probably start in Santiago, the Chilean capital, a city of nearly six million inhabitants, yet it has an almost provincial atmosphere, dramatised by the constant backdrop of jagged Andean peaks looming over the smog on the horizon. Its main highlights for visitors are its Cathedral and the leafy hillside parks of Cerro Santa Lucía and Cerro San Cristobal.
Most travellers who prefer a wine tour, head to the picturesque country town of Pirque, which is the home of one of Chile's most well-known vineyards. The owners' original country estate and mansion can be seen from the road, surrounded by the smaller cottages of the vineyards' workers.
In the middle is the Lake District is Chile's natural wonderland. Implausibly symmetrical snow-capped peaks reflected in looking-glass lakes, quaint wooden hamlets steeped in healthy alpine air. One of the most breathtaking journeys in all South America, from Puerto Montt to San Carlos de Bariloche in Argentina, traverses lakes Llanquihue and Todos los Santos.
Lying at the far south of the Andes mountain chain, Torres del Paine is Chile's most impressive national park, bursting with glaciers, lakes and gnarled Magellanic trees, and providing some of the most magnificent walking trails in the world.
At the land southernmost tip of South America is Tierra del Fuego, the bleakest, stormiest part of the continent, yet it exerts a constant fascination for travellers who want to visit the last land-call before Antarctica.
Not to forget the Easter Island, Chile's Polynesian possession, nearly 4,000 km west of the mainland, is one of the world's most intriguing islands, dominated by more than 600 giant stone statues of unknown origin. The first inhabitants of Easter Island called their home Te Pito o Te Henua - the Navel of the World.
When to go Nov–Feb (High Season): This is best and most expensive time to visit Patagonia. Early in the year as temperature begins to warm up the beaches throng with crowds.
Mar–May & Sep–Nov (Shoulder): March is the period for grape harvest and wine festivals and April is fall. Between September and November is possibly the best time to visit Santiago, the temperatures are pleasant and good value for money.
Jun–Aug (Low): A good time to visit the North but the mountain passes may be blocked due snow. The best time for ski resorts.
Between mid-December to end February and two-middle weeks of July and Holy Week (Semana Santa), the week proceeding Easter Sunday is holiday time for Brazilians and Argentines. Popular destinations are Pucón and Viña del Mar.
Visas If you are a British passport holder visiting Chile for less than 90 days, you do not need a visa. On arrival in Chile the immigration authorities will issue you with a ‘Tarjeta de Turismo - Tourist Card’, an A5 sized white form. You must retain this document and present it to immigration when you leave.
Passport validity: Your passport should be valid for the proposed duration of your stay. No additional period of validity beyond this is required.
For further information check with the Chilean Embassy.
Visa information source: www.gov.uk