Easter Island‘s extraordinary archaeological heritage has earned it international renown. Try your hand at unlocking the mysteries of the ancient Rapanui civilization! Other activities are also available, combining culture, sport and Polynesian dreams. Discover the best things to do on Easter Island.

1. The Moai of Rapa Nui National Park

Ahu Akivi with 7 Moai on Easter Island

Iconic figures of the Pacific, the statues of Easter Island bear witness to the grandeur, decline and revival of Rapanui culture. Their presence imbues the site with an aura of mystery and ancient legend. The colossi, averaging 4.5 m in height, stand majestically on ceremonial platforms designed according to the most advanced astronomical schemes. Encountering them is sure to send a shiver of wonder down your spine.

Most of these stone giants, known as Moai, are located in Rapa Nui National Park. Entry is subject to a fee, and you can only visit them in the company of an official guide or an adult member of the Rapanui community. These restrictive measures serve to perpetuate the site and preserve this unique heritage. A guided tour of Rapa Nui National Park is therefore the best thing you can do on Easter Island.

2. A Day at Anakena

Beaches on Easter Island: In the shadow of the Moai

Despite the absence of a lagoon, Easter Island’s beaches promise plenty of fun in the water and some surprising discoveries. Such is the case of Anakena beach in the north of the island. The setting is marvellous, worthy of the most beautiful beaches in Polynesia: white sand, coconut palms and the intense colors of the ocean.

The setting becomes even more enigmatic with the presence of the Moai, which turn their backs to the ocean. Ahu Nau Nau features seven stone statues, four of which wear the pukao. Most have been finely restored, giving the site an incomparable cachet. A half-day at Anakena beach is one of the best things you can do on Easter Island, where culture and relaxation come together perfectly.

3. Rano Raraku Quarry

Easter Island statues: The legendary Moai

The Rano Raraku site is the former construction quarry where the island’s statues were carved out of volcanic rock. It is now littered with some of history’s most recent Moai. Although it’s in Rapa Nui National Park, the atmosphere here is far more sombre than that surrounding the ahu that have been restored since the 1960s. The quarry becomes a cemetery.

The lack of historical certainty leaves some doubt, but one thing is certain: the Moai culture came to a sudden and abrupt halt, and no one can explain it. To walk through the Rano Raraku quarry is to encounter hundreds of abandoned, unfinished and even toppled statues. It’s a disturbing experience that raises questions about the fate of past civilizations.

4. Hiking Rano Kau Volcano

Hiking on Easter Island: among the volcanoes

Overlooking the town of Hanga Roa, Rano Kau is one of Easter Island’s three main volcanoes. A hike of just a few kilometers takes you to its immense crater, now occupied by a strange lagoon. The panoramic view over the ocean, Hanga Roa and the rest of the island is splendid.

This magnificent panorama is not the only reward. Along the way, you’ll come across the historic site of Orongo, the keystone of the ancient cult of the Birdman. It was from this village that the egg trial, as incredible as it was dangerous, began. This section is accessible by guided tour only.

5. Sunset at Ahu Tahai

Rapa Nui National Park on Easter Island

Enjoy a magnificent sunset over the ocean and the Tahai Moai. For the occasion, this area of Rapa Nui National Park remains open until 9pm. The last rays will illuminate the site under an orange sky. Expect an unforgettable, mystical spectacle.

Others prefer to watch the sunrise. This experience starts at 6:30 a.m. on ahu Tongariki. Once again, you’ll be treated to a spectacular spectacle of color. Both adventures are available as part of an organized tour or in the company of an adult member of the Rapanui community.

Bonus: Visit Hanga Roa

Natural ocean pool at Hanga Vare Vare

As the starting point for your Easter Island adventures, the town of Hanga Roa also deserves your attention. Discover the town’s sights by visiting the Rapa Nui Museum, the beautiful Santa Cruz church and its surprising cemetery. Taste local and Chilean specialities in one of the town’s restaurants…

For your shopping, take a trip to the artisan market and find fruit and vegetables, clothes and souvenirs. Then continue on to Hanga Vare Vare for a refreshing dip in a natural pool. The day ends in style with a Rapanui dance performance.

Discover Things to Do on Easter Island

Now all you need to do is find out how to get to Easter Island and start planning your Pacific holiday. Contact us to explore the Polynesian Triangle for yourself.