Easter Island Activities


For the vast majority of people who come to Easter Island they will be very interested to see the mystic Moai Statues and other archaeological sites. However, there are also some great activities to participate in as well. For example, hiking, scuba diving, horse riding, biking, kayak and snorkelling, as well as swimming in the sea.

Here we will briefly detail where some of the activities can be done.

Scuba Diving

The sea water around Easter Island is known for its clarity with visibility reaching as far as 60m under water. This, together with an agreeable water temperature make underwater diving a pleasurable experience.

It is true that the reefs around the Island are not, perhaps, as extensive or colourful with those around other Polynesian Islands, but nevertheless, there some reefs with coral such as the “Porites Lobata”, which can grow up to 5m in width and can be found in the Hanga Roa bay at 18m deep. In addition to the coral there are 160 species of sea creature living under water, of which 26% are endemic to Easter Island, as well as tropical fish and sea turtles around Hanga Roa bay.
And, apart from the life to observe, there are underwater volcanic caves, cliffs and lava platforms.

The scuba diving schools are located on the quay around Hanga Piko, the small harbour where fishing boats are located on the Hanga Roa coast.


Although there are no forests to walk through, or incredible, high mountains to wander between, Easter Island does offer some interesting trekking trails.
Due to its “easy geography”, walking on the Easter Island trails is not arduous and it does allow you, the visitor, to access parts of the island you would not otherwise get to see.

NOTE: Always take water and snacks with you, ideally in a small backpack, as well as hat, long-sleeved shirts and something in case of a rain shower.

Out of the many trails available, the following are suggested.

From Hanga Roa to Rano Kau Volcano (2hrs, 5km, rated easy).
The trail head is by the Hanga Roa Sernatur tourism office located by the coast by Pea Beach, and leads south in the direction to Rano Kau Volcano, passing by the Navy (Armada) Coast Guard office, where there is a compass on the exterior wall showing the distance from Easter Island to known cities around the world.
Follow the path along the coast and past the harbour of Hanga Piko (on your right). You will be able to get to the Ana Kai Tangata cave if you wish, and further along is the CONAF National Park Office. At this point the trail turns inward and a sign indicates the start of an incline up the side of the Rano Kau volcano. From here it is uphill all the way.

On this trail you will get elevated views down to Hanga Roa village and the airport. After about one hour you should reach the rim of the volcano crater and viewpoint. The trail also follows the rim of the crater to the ancient village of Orongo, therefore, this is a great way to get some exercise, take in some great views and arrive to one of the key archaeological sites on the island as well. To get back to the village you will need to return the same way or have someone collect you.

From Ahu Akivi to Terevaka (4hrs, 8km, rated medium difficult).
The good thing about this trail is that is starts and ends at the same place and will take you to the highest point on the Island at 511m above sea level where there is almost a 360° over the entire Island, and then you return to the start point.

The trail is marked only by the well-trodden wear of horses and other hikers. There are no other markers, but it goes up hill all the way until you reach the summit, whereupon there is a heap of stones marking the spot. Along the trail there are sectors that are littered with small rocks and boulders.

From Tahai to Anakena Beach (6 to 7hrs, 18km, rated medium difficult).
Note: No natural shade on this trek. Take a hat, and protection for arms and legs as well as bottled water and some snacks.

This is a trek along the northern coast of Easter Island whereupon the terrain and landscape are more or less as they have always been, in other words it has not changed for hundreds, even thousands of years.

The route, in reality, follows the natural, northern curve of the Island taking in more than half of the coastline.

If it is possible, try to have a guide who can not only accompany you, but explain about archaeological sites on the route, because these are not so easy to find.
Starting from Tahai (where there is an Ahu Tahai), which is in the northern coastal area of Hanga Roa, further along the coast (north) from Poko Poko Beach; the trail will follow the shore all the way to Anakena Beach (so take your bathing costume!).

Also, near to the start point is the Rapa Nui Museum, if you wished to check it out.

After the first 1km you will see the Ahu Te Peu, also on the coast, and here the path joins the almost sea level base of the Terevaka Volcano (the summit of which is the highest point on the Island). A further 1.2km will bring you to the ruins of the Ahu Maikati Te Moa, followed by the Ahu Vai Mata 3km later. This trail also passes a simple dwelling where a sheep farmer lives.

At around the 13km mark you will see the Hanga Oteo bay and 5km after this point is the sandy, Anakena Beach.

If you take your bathing costume you will likely feel like a dip in sea at Anakena beach, especially having generated a lot of body heat from the walk.

From Anakena you will need transport back to Hanga Roa, unless you fancy walking back the way you came.

Horse Riding

There are various local options to ride atop a horse to get to some of the sights. The best option is to consult locally, unless we have booked you into a top end hotel whereupon this activity will be arranged for you.


Cycling around enables quicker access to sites, compared to walking, as well as providing useful exercise. It also allows access to places that could be considered too far to walk to (and back).

There is bike rental available at a number of the tour agencies along the Hanga Roa main drag, or if we have booked you on an all-inclusive program the bikes will be provided.

The Main Bike Trails

From Hanga Roa to Orongo
Similar to the trek up to Rano Kau crater, but this time on a bike, you can follow the road that the cars use to get up to the same spot. It is about 6km from the village to the viewpoint at the edge of the crater.

From Puna Pau to Ahu Akivi to Ana Kakenga to Tahai
This is a circular route starting from Hanga Roa village towards the airport, however, instead of getting to the airport you turn left on the parallel road to the runway and head towards Puna Pau, whereupon the road surface changes to unpaved. This will lead to the Pukao Quarry where the red-coloured hats that sit on the Moais were created.

After viewing this area, you need to cycle back to the fork in the road and at this point turn left and ride for about 3.2km to Ahu Akivi, where there are 7 Moai’s.

After this there is a sequence of caves (Ana’s). At 1km beyond Ahu Akivi is the Ana Te Pahu, then a further 1km is the Ana Te Pora on the coast.

Here is the point to start the return, but following the coastal route all the way to Ana Kakenga (the cave of two windows) and then Tahai – an excellent place to view the sunset from.

From Hanga Roa to Anakena Beach
There is one, principal, paved road, that goes down the spine of the Island. To get to Anakena you need to get onto this road that leaves Hanga Roa at a point halfway along the road which is parallel to the runway where there will be signs indicating the way to Anakena.

The distance from here is about 16km involving some slight inclines, but also declines, especially the final part. It will take around 1.5hrs to cycle. As an option, 1km before arrival to Anakena there is a turn off to the other, smaller beach, called Ovahe (but less crowded).

In order to get back to Hanga Roa you will have two options. One is to go back the same way you came, but the first part will require a tough uphill sector. The other is to take the southern coastal route, but this involves rocky stretches and takes double the time to cycle.

From Hanga Roa to Rano Raraku to Ahu Tongariki
Following the road parallel to the airport runway, at a point halfway along will be the turn that leads on to the main Island Road. Then, after about 2km there will be a sign and turn right to the “coastal road”. On this road, after about 12km you will get to the Rano Raraku Volcano and Moai Quarry.

On the way you will be able to stop off at various archaeological sites such as Ahu Hana Te’e, Ahu Akahanga and Pap Vaka. Then, about 1.5km beyond the quarry, on the coast is the large Ahu Tongariki with its 15 upright Moai’s.

Boat Tours

Considering that Easter Island is smack, bang, in the middle of the vast Pacific Ocean, it would be surprising if there were no boat tours. Fortunately, there are! Departing from the Hanga Piko harbour, which is the key at Hanga Roa village, trips include getting out to a place on the ocean with a view to the Rano Kau volcano as well as near to the Islets (Motu’s) Nui, Iti and Kao, where participants in the Bird Man competition had to swim to. If the sea is calm, there are opportunities to snorkel in this area.

Seeing the Island from a point on the ocean offers a unique and interesting perspective of the geography.


Also available from the key at Hanga Piko harbour there are kayaks for hire whereupon you can kayak around to Ovahe and Anakena beaches, but the distance is many kilometres, and you need to get back – basically you need to be careful.

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