Easter Island, Rapa Nui, or "Tepito Ote Henua" ("Navel of the World", as its ancient inhabitants named it), is the most remote inhabited island on the planet and one of the most fascinating places in Chile. Located in Polynesia, roughly 2,200 miles from the Chilean coast, it is the only place in the country with a tropical climate.
Some 900 moai can be found throughout the vast open-air museum that is Rapa Nui National Park, which comprises 40% of the island. The famous moai are huge, stone heads, carved from lava rock some 1,200 years ago. The mystery of how these megaliths were created and transported remains unsolved. The island’s unique archaeological and cultural heritage, and its unusual ecology, led UNESCO to declare it a World Heritage Site.
Today the spirit of this culture lives on in the traditions of its people, with their own language, music, dance, clothing, and a contagious joy. During the first two weeks of February, the Tapati festival provides an opportunity to better understand the island’s rich heritage with cultural performances and competitions in traditional sports. The island has attractions beyond its age-old culture: first-class hotels and resorts, beautiful beaches, volcanoes and caves for trekkers to explore, and some of the clearest waters in the world for diving.
Sponsored by Tourism Office of Chile
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