Easter Island 🗿

· 11 min read
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Easter Island Tips 👏

  • The island is very wild, with a lot of free chickens, dogs and horses.
  • 100£/day/person is a decent budget if you want to make the most of your stay (dinner 20£, activity 40£, hotel 20£, scooter 20£).
  • There’s a pass to visit all the attractions for 80$. Buy it at the airport since it’s easier. It’s also available to buy close to the Cruz Verde pharmacy in the centre (Atamu Tekena Street).
  • The first langage is spanish 🇪🇸, but most people understand english 🇬🇧.
  • Two intense or three more relaxed days are enough to visit the whole island.
  • Hangi Roa is only one village with hotels and shops.
  • If you’re an early bird, go and see the sunrise at Tongariki.

Budget 💸

We spent 580£ in 4 days, which means 145£/day, and that was perfect. The banks to withdraw without extra-fees are (full list):

Transportation 🚃

  • You can rent a scooter/car/quad/bike easily. There’s no famous rental agencies but all the shops and hotels offers this service.
  • Make sure to arrange an airport pick up and drop off up-front with your hotel.
  • Doing the tour of the island in scooter take around 5 hours, including stops.
  • Visit the island is very easy and do not requires a guide.
  • Touristic sites close early, around 6PM, so start your day early.

Apps 💾

  • Netflix: Perfect for rainy days.
  • XCurrency: Offline and up-to-date currency rates.
  • TravelSpend: Log and budget your expenses day by day.
  • Maps.me: Free offline map of the world, including trail paths.
  • FourSquare: Perfect to find the best restaurants in a very easy way.
  • AirBnB and Booking.com: The best to find cheap accommodations.

Food 🍗

  • There’s plenty of restaurant at the main village. Opening times are normal and prices are slightly above mainland. You can count around 15000CLP for a delicious tuna ceviche in a good restaurant.
  • There is a lot of small supermarkets on the island. Prices are a bit more than usual (1000CLP for two local beers at the liquor store).
  • You can find cheap empanadas to take away, which is handy if you plan to do a picnic (3000CLP for a massive one with meat).

Telecom 📞

If you come from UK as we do, you can use your own sim card with Three for data roaming at no extra-cost, since it’s a go roam destination. We didn’t investigated the local sim situation.

Visas 🛂

It’s very important to fill the form online before arriving on the island. Usually, the staff at your origin airport will ask you if you did it, and help you if not. Pay a visit at https://ingresorapanui.interior.gob.cl, fill the informations for each passengers and you’ll be fine.

On arrival, they’ll check your luggages for organic substances (fruits, cheese, meat…) since the island have a delicate eco-system. Be sure to not carry anything like that with you to avoid troubles or fines.

Hotels 🏠

The first thing to check while searching for an hotel is if it’s approved by the tourism government, called SERNATUR. If you look on Booking.com, you should be fine but double check on the official website before booking or at least check the reviews.

We spent our three nights at Petero Atamu Hostal. A bit far from the centre (15 minutes walk), but with everything you need at your disposition. We rented a scooter for 20000CLP/day (quad/car also possible), and booked our day trip on horse with them for 45000CLP/person.

The room was basic, but spacious and clean. They also had common areas and kitchen, free breakfast, and free airport pick-up/drop-off. If you don’t know where to go it’s a good option for around 50£/night.

Tourism 🏄🏽‍♀️

Most of the tourists are from Chile and speaks Spanish, but all the signs are also translated in English. Everyone comes to see the touristic sites, go to the beach and surf.

There’s not really luxury tourism on this island, unlike French Polynesia.

Packing List 📦

  • Beach gear (towel, swimwear, flip-flops…)
  • Rain jacket
  • Foldable towel
  • Moskito repellent
  • Re-usable water bottle
  • Warm clothes for the evening
  • Hikking shoes and trouser

Facts 📝

  • Most of the sites are dated between 800AC and 1200AC.
  • The locals care a lot about their heritage, so make sure to respect the rules (stay on path, no touch…).
  • It’s part of Chile, so you’ll pass the chilean immigration on arrival. If you carry on your journey back to Santiago, the second leg will be a internal flight.
  • The heads statues, or just heads, are called Moai.
  • The island real name is Rapa Nui, and is called Easter Island because it has been discover on Easter day. Naming skills on fire.

The island by scooter 🛴

We started our day early and left the hotel at 10AM, since a lot of sites close early. We first went to the city to buy empanadas for picnic. There’s one place located in front of the SERNATUR office which opens early and do big meat empanadas for very cheap.

We then started our drive on the coast up to Tongariki. It’s a very scenic road where we felt alone, and helped us to appreciate the wilderness of the island. We stopped in many places to enjoy the view and do some nice pictures of the landscape.

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Our first serious stop was at Rano Raraku site, which is where the Moais where built. You can enter only one time with your ticket, so take your time while visiting. It’s very impressive, and you can see Moais un-finished, broken or half buried. It took us around 1h30 pictures included to visit the whole site. Make sure to go at the far end, on the left when you look at the mountain. You’ll see a tiny path, which after 15 minutes walk, lead to a very scenic big volcanic crater right behind.

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We then carried our heads-tour to Tongariki. Same deal here, you can enter only once. It’s way faster to see, but probably one of the most impressive. You’ll find 15, I think, Moais looking at you, on a platform in front of the sea. Crazy if you’re into heads. The biggest one is around 4 meters height.