AHU TAHAI, AHU TONGARIKI AND RANU RARAKU - THE GREAT MOAIS
We feel like modern Gullivers in the land of the giants as we walk among the moais, large monolithic statues located in one of the most mysterious and fascinating archaeological sites on the planet.
What we will see
- Ahu Tahai site
- Rano Raraku site
- Ahu Togariki platform
What we will do
- A unique opportunity to admire two of the main attractions on the island - the ancient moai complex of Ahu Tahai and Rano Raraku, the crater where the monoliths were extracted to be carved and erected.
- Ahu Taha dates back to the 7th century b.C. and is home to 3 platforms (ahu in the local language) supporting the giant moai statues.
- Ahu Ko Te Riku supports a moai that is over 4.5 metres tall and weighing approximately 20 tons. The Ahu Vai Uri platform supports 5 stones of various shapes and sizes, while Ahu Tahai, the central platform, supports a solitary moai with no hair.
- We then reach Rano Raraku, a unique place steeped in mystery. It is a volcanic crater nicknamed “the nursery”, as the tuff blocks used to carve the moai were extracted from there.
- In such an ancestral natural scenery, which emanates a vibrant emotional intensity, we stroll amazed and incredulous under the static gazes of partially-carved moais that are still prisoners to the stone and others that are buried up to their shoulders or tilted.
- Each statue represents a stage of the long and strenuous process employed to carve the monoliths. We admire the different shapes and sizes, the smallest decorative details and the holes used to lift and move the statues.
- The most striking monoliths are a gigantic 21 metre high moai, the largest, and the squatting moai, which was almost entirely buried when it was discovered.
- There are over 390 statues on the site, scattered in a wild scenery that exalts the magic of their mystery.
- We finally reach the Ahu Togariki platform, the most majestic of the island with 15 extraordinary moais erected as a sort of invincible army near the ocean. Only one still has the original headdress.
- Our excursion does not end before seeing the petroglyphs near the platform, which depict a turtle with a human face, a tuna, a birdman and other symbols part of the rongo-rongo culture.
- Our walk among the moai comes to an end - a cultural and emotional adventure we will never forget!
What you need to know
- Do not forget to bring a hat and sun cream, bearing in mind the latitude.
- We recommend wearing comfortable walking shoes and to bring a waterproof jacket in the case of unexpected bad weather.
- The itinerary may be subject to change.