As long as I can remember I have dreamt about visiting the Easter Island. Probably, since the age 6 when I learned about Thor Heyerdahl in school.
Heyerdahl was an Norwegian adventurer and archaeologist, who in 1947 crossed the Pacific Ocean on a primitive balsawood raft called “Kon-Tiki” to prove his theory that South Americans could have originally populated Polynesia. This including Easter Island, where he lived many years doing research.
When first learning about this in school, I remember I was thinking “Wow, there I want to travel one day!”. I also saw the original raft used in his experiment in Oslo when I was very young, and I remember it as it was yesterday.
Though most of Heyerdahl’s theories are proved wrong today. There are still more questions than answers when it comes to the island, the local people Rapa Nui and the giant moais you find all over the island.
It was the moais, and all the mystery around them that dragged me to Easter Island, which is one of the most remote inhabited islands in the world. Why did they make them? How did they move them? No one knows. And that is what make it so interesting.
But besides the Moais, the island have so much more to offer, which I was not aware of before I found myself there.
Firstly, it has some beautiful beaches with warm water all year around. The island also have very clear water due to that there is almost no pollution. This makes it one of the best places on earth to go diving and snorkeling. We were supposed to try this and booked our trip, but the day we wanted to do it, the waves where too big, and it was canceled to our disappointment.
The waves are always pretty big outside the island, and that is also why this makes it a great destination for surfers.
In addition, the island have delicious local food to offer made of all kind of fresh fish.
The island also offer beautiful green nature. It has three volcanos that are not active anymore, but they are stunning.
It is a great place to see the sunrise and sunset since you have sea on all sides. See on the picture that a street dog is joining us during the sunset. There are many street dogs on the island but they are very friendly.
In addition the local people Rapa Nui are amazing. They have kept their culture with dancing and singing very well. Some still use typical clothes. They are very friendly and helpful, and I personally like them much more than the Chileans that live on the main land (which I felt wanted to trick us all the time). The Rapa Nui do not consider themselves as Chileans, and told us that this is because the Chileans came and promised to give them a lot of privilege if they gave the island to them. When they signed the paper, instead of giving what they promised, they killed the Rapa Nui people, and burned down their houses. They wanted to destroy the moais as well. They wanted to ruin all prove that the Raoa Nui excited, we were told. After this I understand well that they do not consider themselves as Chileans. It is also located so far from the rest of the country, and that can be another reason.
One of the things they did that I appreciated a lot, and show the hospitality of the locals was that the people we were going to stay with met us on the airport and greeted us with a necklace made of flowers (Hawaii-style).
All in all, it was great to follow in the footsteps of Thor Heyerdahl – a big inspiration. A place still full of mysteries, mostly consisting of theories only and several unanswered questions.