A Bike Ride around Easter Island

Trip Start Jan 09, 2008
Trip End May 15, 2008

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Where I stayed
Kona Tau

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Monday, March 24, 2008

Oh Nelly! My dream of going to Easter Island has finally arrived. I took a 24 hour bus ride from Buenos Aires in order to get to other side of the continent in Chile. I spent about a week in Vina Del Mar and Valparaiso and made a lot of new friends and got to reconnect with the coast of Chile. I didnīt have too much time the first time, so i was able to redeem myself this past week.
Back to Easter Island or Isla De Pascua or Rapa Nui, i arrived here yesterday and it was just so surreal that i didnīt feel like i was alive, but in a dream. Iīve always wanted to come here and to finally arrive, it feels like a great accomplishment. The climate here is similar to Hawaii, but has the look of what maybe Hawaii was like about 100 years ago. Of course, they have the amenities of a modern society, running water, sewer system, shops, and even internet access (which is expensive), but life is still simple here. Everyone pretty much knows everyone and the entire economy here is based on Tourism. It feels nice being here, but i now understand how a tourists feels like in Hawaii.
As for our current climate, yesterday was beautiful and a perfect day. I decided to take a bike ride around the island. I rented a bike at this place on the main road for about 20 bucks for the entire day. Pretty expensive, cause i donīt think the bike was worth that much, but what are you going to do? When options are low and demand is high, guess what? prices skyrocket. Anyways, it was a wonderful ride, i pretty much saw at least half the island in my trek along the south coast. Here, there were crystal clear water with a slight breeze hitting my face as i zoomed down the rolling coastline of Rapa Nui. The coast is deserted, i felt like i was the only idiot on easter island doing this ride, cause people in scooters kept zipping past me every so often and a passing car from the opposite direction would wave at me. Speaking about that, everyone waves at you which gives Easter Island a very warm welcoming.
So the bike ride had its ups and downs, which made my legs tired. I pretty much rode straight to the Volcano at Rano Raraku where i was able to observe how the natives of Easter Island carved out the Moai (large heads) which decorate the coastline of the entire island. This volcano has a lot of large rocks and you could see some remaining Moai that has yet to be stood up. In this area, there were a good number of Moai just jetting out of the ground. As surreal as it seemed, i needed to touch the Moai to make sure it wasnīt an illusion. After going camera crazy and just looking at these massive pieces of stone, i jumped on my bike to the next destination.
The next stop was Ahu Tongariki which is the area where 15 Moai stand along the coastline together. I saw Ahu Tongariki from a distance and i just couldnīt believe my eyes cause no one can explain how they moved these massive pieces of stone. Plus, there were 15 of them and each one was different. I guess mystery is what makes the place so special and the reason behind what draws people to this wonder of the world by the masses. I mean, seriously, how could humans have constructed this with no technology. I guess until we invent a time machine, we will never know. I chilled at this 15 Moai view for a while until i realized that i wasnīt dreaming and moved on.
I was running out of water and i needed to get a move on towards Anakena. This was not good. Everyone warned me to take enough water. I had about 2 bottles and i was almost through the 2nd bottle. I was concerned that i would run out completely before i arrived at Anakena Beach. What i didnīt know was that the bike ride would be more difficult cause the road was no longer paved. This made my bike ride twice as hard and i needed more water than ever. However, i didnīt have it. concerned, i tried to conserve some energy by walking and biking. The whole time on the dirt road i was thinking how stupid i was and that i should have rented a scooter instead. However, i preservered and took on the challenge. Suddenly after a half an hour of dirt road, i arrived at a fork with pavement. It was the driveway to Anakena!!! I had made it and i called the drink lady my hero! I relaxed my legs at Anakena along side the Moai that was there and ate my lunch. It was a very peaceful lunchtimes, but i couldnīt get to comfortable cause i needed to get back to town and i was only half way.
I loaded up with the waters this time and i took off for Hanga Roa (main town). This would be the hardest bike ride of my life cause half of it was uphill. Iīm no bicyclist and i guess you could consider me in shape, but a 32 kilometer bike ride after partying in both Buenos Aires and Vina Del Mar, i was definitely not the best candidate to do this. I struggled and struggled up the hill and cursed as i ascended up these hills. They werenīt very steep hills, but very long. I kept cursing at the people who flew past me in scooter and cars. I figured as long as iīm going up there must be a good downhill as well. I was right, halfway on the way back it was all downhill. i was so happy!! This is when i enjoyed the bike ride the most and started to just contemplate as i descended down towards Hanga Roa. I guess now i was being rewarded for my hardwork and realized how lucky i am to be hear. A lot of people here waited til they were retired to arrive, but here i am a 27 year old exploring the island on a bicycle. I felt so fortunate for being physically and financially able to do this trip. This is truly a blessing.
Anyways, life is going great and making strides. i do miss you guys. So a big hug to all my family and friends and please take care of yourselves. I will do the same. Till next time. Ciao!
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amyleigh on

My Jealousy
I have to say that I am unbelievably jealous of your latest adventure on Easter Island. The place is on my top 10 list of places I must discover on my next journey back to this beautiful and enchanted continent. Glad to hear all is well, and I am very excited to be able to read about someone else's experiences down here!

Your Canadian Friend.

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