Easter Island Travel GuideBrowse 40 travel reviews, 27 travel blogs and 2,636 travel photos from real travelers to Easter Island. Also known as: Rapa Nui
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Easter Island Overview
Officially a World Heritage Site with nearly the entire island itself protected within the boundaries of the Rapu Nui National Park, Easter Island is one of the most remote places on the planet, but also one of the most well-known. While officially a territory of Chile, Easter Island is a decidedly Polynesian place, officially known as Rapa Nui to the natives, and far out in the Pacific Ocean away from Chile, nearly halfway to Tahiti. First discovered by modern man in 1722 by a Dutch explorer named Jacob Roggeveen, the island has remained prominent on the list of places known around the world largely due to the 887 massive statues known as the moai which stand guard over the island, facing inward from the island’s perimeter.
These days, Easter Island is but a pale reflection of what once was. The island’s natural resources were all but wiped out by the growing population of the natives, and in latter part of the 19th century saw a series of violent uprisings and issues with Peruvian slave traders, followed by tuberculosis and other severities until all that remained was just over 100 Rapanui by 1871. Since then, it has been a slow, hard crawl back to the current number of around 3,000 natives, and the island’s resources are now protected under the blanket of the Natural Park status. Today, the economy of Easter Island is supported almost entirely by tourism, with daily flights out of Santiago bringing in supplies and visitors eager to see the cultural differences of a people so far removed from modern society. And while it’s true that Easter Island is one of the most remote places on Earth, accommodations here are what you could expect from any major tourist destination, and when you combine the culture with the natural beauty of the island, it’s well worth the time to travel to the island and enjoy the mystery of one of the most remote places on the planet.