Easter Island, Chile

You’ll probably know Easter Island for the Moai: mysterious, giant sculpted heads that peer out from their foxholes over the countryside. However, if you’re more interested in adventures than archaeology, this remote spot is also renowned for its climbing and diving opportunities – there are more Moai underwater too. The island's landscape is a marvel that's been naturally sculpted over the centuries creating an ever-present mana (energy), said to attract travellers – and who are we to argue?

When to go

The island’s at its loveliest during the summer months from December to February; however, hikers will find quieter slopes in October, November, March and April, when temperatures drop to the low 20s. Visit in the first two weeks of February to experience the Tapati Festival, where loin-cloth clad men partake in the Haka Pei race and ride tree trunks down a volcano slope.

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Getting there

  • Planes

    There are no direct flights to Easter Island’s Mataveri International Airport; instead, board a five- and- a- half- hour flight, with Chilean airline Latam, at Santiago’s Comodoro Arturo Merino Benitez airport. You can get direct flights to Santiago from Australia and the US, but travellers arriving from Europe and Asia will need to get connecting flights.
  • Automobiles

    You will see very few cars during your stay and there’s no public transport on the island. Taxis are abundant in the city centre and can be found roaming the island between tourist sites. Alternatively, hire a 4x4 and driver during your stay and let a local navigate the island’s dirt tracks. Your other option is to hire a mountain bike in the capital – and the island’s only town – Hanga Roa, and pedal up and down the island’s lava peaks – strong thighs are an advantage here.