Famous for having stunning landscapes, rich culture, and mysterious history – family travel to Easter Island is perfect for adventurous explorers willing to explore off the beaten path. While most people come for the Moai statues, they discover a home to so much more. From invigorating outdoor adventures to immersive experiences highlighting the Polynesian culture that flourished here. This bucket-list destination has something for every type of traveler, and it would make an amazing trip for families who are constantly chasing new experiences!
To help inspire your once-in-a-lifetime excursion, Kuoda’s guide for family travel to Easter Island. Learn what there is to do in this remote location, explore different accommodation options, and get travel tips from the experts. We’ll help you curate the best vacation imaginable to this one of a kind location.
– What is there to do on Easter Island?
Rapa Nui, the indigenous name for the island, may be small, but it has an abundance of unique activities to fill your itinerary with. There are some must-sees including the famous Moai statues, as well as some lesser-known adventures family travelers will love. Here are a few of the best activities to add to your itinerary if you’re traveling to Easter Island:
• Visit the Moai statues
Encounter what makes this destination so famous when you visit the Moai statues. Although these huge stone heads can be found all over the island, the Rano Raraku quarry is definitely the best place to learn about Moais.
Built by the island’s native inhabitants as early as 1400 A.D., these monolithic volcanic carvings have intrigued and mystified historians, archeologists, and travelers for centuries. Approximately 900 statues were erected, with almost 400 of those in the Rano Raraku quarry alone. As you explore, you’ll see the statues are in all different conditions. While some have been well preserved over time, many others were toppled or damaged throughout time.
See all the unique facial expressions of the statues, and learn about why the Rapa Nui built them in the first place! Take your family on a private tour of the quarry and uncover the history of Easter Island’s famous and fascinating artifact.
• Explore the Rapa Nui National Park
Spend a day wandering through the stunning scenery of Easter Island while learning even more about the atypical cultural landscape. At Rapa Nui National Park, travelers are able to interact with nature, wildlife, as well as history. This protected park is recognized by UNESCO for the incredible preservation and restoration of the Moai statues since the 19th century.
Covering about 40% of the island, this park is home to some of the most impressive archeological sites including the Rano Raraku quarry mentioned above! If you’re planning family travel to Easter Island, you’ll probably spend a few days discovering all the features of this park. Another astounding site is Ahu Tongariki, which is a particularly excellent sunrise location for families with older travelers who don’t mind getting up a bit early for remarkable views!
Or, you could head to the other side of the island entirely and catch epic sunset views at Ahu Tahai. This ceremonial site has several Moai overlooking the Pacific horizon, where you can watch the island light up with golden rays in the evening.
• Spend A Day At The Father Sebastian Englert Anthropological Museum
When you want to dig a little deeper into the story of Rapa Nui, head to the island’s sole museum: the Father Sebastian Englert Anthropological Museum. Named after a missionary who resided on Easter Island for 30 years, the museum highlights much of his extensive research into the indigenous community including the language, legends, culture, and evolution.
Preserved artifacts include some of the tools used to build and decorate the Moai statues, and even features the face of one statue whose coral eye still remains after centuries. Nearby, you can find one of the most charming restaurants on the island called Te Moai Sunset. After spending your afternoon in the museum, head over to the restaurant for stunning ocean views paired with amazing seafood and authentic Polynesian cuisine!
• Swim And Snorkel In The Crystal-Clear Waters
Get ready for an unbeatable adventure with a snorkeling excursion in the pristine waters of this remote island. Most people do not even know Easter Island has snorkeling available, but it’s truly a remarkable experience!
While Easter Island does not have any coral reefs nearby, there are beautiful underwater landscapes full of rock formations that provide many unique marine species a home, including the Easter Island Butterflyfish. The few snorkeling spots are well worth a visit if your family has any thrill-seekers or wildlife lovers. Anakena Beach is an excellent spot to snorkel and swim, with white sand beaches to relax on for any family members who prefer to stay dry.
• Enjoy A Traditional Polynesian Dance Show
It is estimated that Polynesian sailors and navigators arrived on the remote island sometime between 400 – 800 A.D. Over time, Rapa Nui began to develop its own branch of Polynesian culture that travelers can experience with a night of dance and tradition. Reserve a place for your family at one of the island’s shows and prepare for an immersive and exciting evening!
Dance and song have been particularly important to the Rapa Nui people. One night will explore all the different types of traditional performances, including the Hoko warrior dance and a Ute performance of old songs.
– Where To Stay On Easter Island
Because most of the island is protected parkland, a majority of accommodations will be found in the main town of Hanga Roa. But, if you’re looking for a little more privacy, there are several excellent accommodations across the island to consider!
If you want to be close to the island’s main town, Nayara Hangaroa is an excellent option that combines comfort with luxury, uniting the raw beauty of Rapa Nui with everything needed to enjoy and relax on your vacation. Featuring one of the best restaurants on the island, a spa on-site, and a beautiful swimming pool, families will feel totally at ease while staying here.
For something more disconnected from the central hub, consider staying in Explora Rapa Nui. This eco-luxury resort is ideal for more mature families who are constantly seeking immersive experiences, prioritize sustainable travel and want to disconnect on their adventure and really enjoy the peace and quiet of this remote location.
Family travel to Easter Island is an incredible experience for those who crave adventure, are willing to go off the beaten path, and are fascinated with unique cultural landscapes. You can choose to take your time here, or plan a trip to Chile that ventures to Easter Island and some other remarkable parts of the country! Whatever your preference is, be sure to organize your vacation with Kuoda to ensure a stress-free trip full of unforgettable experiences.
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