152 - 19th June 2006 - A Driving Tour of Easter Island


Ahu Vinapu - Our first stop of the day


They believe that the Rapa Nui may have had a link with the Inca people - this wall is very precise


and is angled as well


Toppled Moai


This type of stone used to sit on top of the Moai statues


The rising sun brought out a face on this rock that I didn't see before


Raro Raraku


This is the birthplace of the Moai statues


They were all carved in the cliffs above and then moved up to 15 miles across the island to their Ahu platforms


The ones here are believed to be unfinished or abandoned


There are 396 moai surrounding the volcano


Steve should recognise these chaps - The one on the right is called Hinariru.
It is these two moai I really, really wanted to see. This shot is pretty much why I came to Easter Island - hence the huge grin.
and all because of...

...this photo by Cliff Wassman which I found whilst researching Moai heads because...

...when I was about six years old I used to play this game.
Funny how cause and effect works sometimes.
Several thousand miles just to see a few statues because of a game I used to play over twenty years ago.


Another shot of Hinariru


Some broke and were left where they fell


This one is fairly unique in that it is in a kneeling pose


Moai Tukuturi - The kneeling moai, with Ahu Tongariki in the background


If this moai had been finished it would have been the largest moai in existence (the top one)


Here you can see how they were carved from the rock face - lying down


At all sorts of angles


Pip at Raro Raraku


how the statues were taken out of the rock


Some were even carved upside down!


Carving them this way maximised the use of the rock


Walking up towards the crater


The crater of Raro Raraku - You can swim in here if you want - but it was too cold for us - and INCREDIBLY windy


Moai on the inner crater


I liked this one


So I took lots of pictures of him


and another


This moai had a ship carved on the front and is believed to signify contact with the spaniards


Note to park rangers: I was very careful not to touch this statue - it is just clever use of angles.


Ahu Tongariki


This Ahu was restored - in the 60s a tsunami wave knocked them all a hundred meters inland


You can see the hand carvings quite clearly here


The whole Ahu


one of the ones which didn't make it back to the platform with rano raraku in the background


Chris and Pip at Ahu Tongariki (it's still very windy)


top knots with rano raraku in the background


Chris at Ahu Te Pito Te Kura


Ahu Te Pito Te Kura - This moai was the largest to have been stood on it's Ahu - away from the quarry


Our Suzuki Samurai


Our companion Vinicius / Vinnie - He liked to take photos of signs to remind him where he'd been


Our wheels


The beach at Anakena


The Ahu there


it's still very windy! so we got covered in sand.


Ahu Anakena - Restored with top knots in place


Looking inland


Looking towards the lands they protect


Another Ahu at the beach


The beach itself - it was incredibly cold and rainy but people were swimming!


Ahu Akivi


Ahu Akivi from the back


Ahu Akivi is the only exception to the rule - These moai look out to sea


Yay we're on Easter Island


Ana Te Pahu - Entrance to the caves


Chris goes caving


Inside the cave - oooooo spooky


Banana tree at the entrance


The far end of the cave


This is what you had to climb through to get there


more inside the cave


Ahu Akapu


A typical Easter Island road - Although in all honesty this one was pretty smooth