Skip past the photos to the Easter Island tips, reasons to go and highlights here.
Easter Island – Should You Go?
YES. Easter Island (Rapa Nui) in the Pacific Ocean is not always included in definitions of Oceania. I wanted to include Easter Island here because it is so different from Chile – the politically recognised parent country. There is a declaration of independence from Chile, which can be seen in the main town, Hanga Roa.
Easter Island is of course famous for the Moai which are the iconic statues built by the Polynesian inhabitants over a period of several hundred years. These stone statues are dotted all over the island and you’ll need wheels to see them all. Plan on spending at least 2 days exploring the island and visiting the various Moai sites. Three or 4 days would be ideal to get the full experience of a fascinating island. I don’t normally go in for guided tours, but the one I went on was very good. The guide really knew her stuff.
The Solar Eclipse
Food and drink in Hanga Roa is good, and not too expensive. We camped there, which made accommodation quite cheap. As we were there for the total solar eclipse we had no choice anyway. The eclipse itself was utterly phenomenal. Well worth the high price of the flight from Santiago to get there for a once in a lifetime spectacle. To witness such a long eclipse on such a weird and wonderful island was an amazing experience. It was just mind-blowing. I can see how people get into chasing them all over the world and get all mystical about them. On the morning of the eclipse it was overcast – depressing! Luckily the clouds cleared about 30 minutes beforehand and we were treated to a perfect solar eclipse. I was on a mountain for the event, just overlooking Hanga Roa.
Overall Score – 10/10
The most remote island in the biggest ocean. A weird history and beautiful too. Eclipse or not, it’s worth every moment being there.