Ha! You’d never catch us on an ATV at home. But on Easter Island, we spent an entire day zipping across the island the small four-wheeled wonder.
Easter Island is pretty small. The guidebooks all say you can walk everywhere on the island. But we found out on our first walking adventure that this was not something we could keep up, day in and day out, during our stay on Easter Island. Some people, when they say “you can walk there”, actually mean that you can make an intense gruelling 17-hour hike if you so choose. Like, it’s possible. But just because you “can” walk somewhere doesn’t mean it’s the best option for us. But, the idea of being shipped around by tourist bus seemed like overkill. So, we rented an ATV for our trek to the other side of the island.
The best thing about this was that we could stop whenever we wanted to take photos. Such as this breathtaking photo of one of the volcanic craters. Not sure which one. But it takes my breath away. Wow. Our world is amazing!
We enjoyed riding the ATV straight down the middle of the paved road. At one point stopped for a cattle crossing…
And arrived at Anakena beach. This is the only beach on Easter Island (unless you count the patch of beach in Hanga Roa). And it’s gorgeous. The Moai statues make it a little surreal.
Also there is this lone Moai, who looks exceptionally disapproving.
Here I am, with all the statues. Gives you an idea of the layout…
And this was the scene at the beach the day we stopped in. Perfect weather. Waving palm trees. Silky sand. Waves rolling lazily in, lapping at my feet. In the background you can maybe see where the restaurant/tiki bar is. You can camp at Anakena too. It looked fantastic and I decided to enthusiastically recommend to everyone that you all go and camp there. Even though we totally didn’t. We probably spent about 30 minutes at this beach. We’re not beach people. I spent about three minutes with my feet in the water before I popped my shoes back on and we hopped back on the ATV. But we surveyed the scene and agreed it was wonderful. The epitome of “beach paradise”, complete with the lack of a crowd. We agreed that our friend Mark (who had booked a trip to Easter Island, due to arrive a few weeks after our departure) should definitely come relax on that beach, he would love it. Kind of hilarious that we decided other people should come enjoy this, as we abruptly took off.
But we did not linger. We were focused on exploring. We hopped back on the ATV and I suggested to Andrew that we leave the paved road and instead follow what was obviously an ATV trail in the opposite direction. It turned out to be a terrifying decision. It was so steep I thought we’d flip backward and the terrain wasn’t getting any easier for unskilled off-roaders such as ourselves, so we finally stopped to turn around. Looking back the way we had come… you can see the beach far in the distance:
Coming back a little closer… this is the beach we had just been on, from the other side of the inlet:
Today is a snowstorm day here at home. If you happen to be from my part of the world and you happen to be reading this today… I invite you to join me in daydreaming about the stunning, serene Anakena beach… and maybe even raise a glass of Anakena wine. (I’ve noticed they even serve it at our local downtown pub, Sawney Beans!)