2025 Tapati Rapa Nui Festival Tour

4 days | 3 nights
Private tour
From 1770USD per person
Sorry, there are no prices defined for this date. Please contact us by clicking on "Free quote"


Tour Description

Welcome to the Tapati Rapa Nui 2025 Festival travel tour, where an extraordinary journey awaits you on the mystical shores of Easter Island! Prepare to be swept away by the vibrant rhythms of tradition, the captivating tales of ancient lore, and the breathtaking beauty of this remote Polynesian paradise. Join us as we embark on an unforgettable exploration of the Tapati Rapa Nui Festival and beyond, delving into a world of cultural immersion, artistic expression, and natural wonders.

Step into the heart of Rapa Nui culture as we witness the mesmerizing dramatization of ancestral stories, brought to life by local performers with passion and reverence. Experience the unique Tango Rapa Nui, a dance form that embodies the spirit of the island and its people, weaving tales of love, resilience, and connection.

Engage your senses in the excitement of the carving competition, where skilled artisans showcase their talents in wood and stone, crafting intricate masterpieces that pay homage to their heritage. Indulge in the flavors of Easter Island Curanto, a traditional feast cooked in the earth oven, offering a delicious glimpse into Polynesian culinary traditions.

Our journey takes us beyond the festival grounds as we explore the archaeological wonders of Easter Island. Marvel at the majestic Moai statues at Tahai, standing sentinel over the ancient ceremonial complex. Venture to the rim of Ranau Kau Volcano, where panoramic vistas of the island's volcanic landscape unfold before us in all its splendor.

Relax and unwind on the pristine sands of Anakena Beach, framed by swaying palm trees and turquoise waters, a paradise found at the edge of the Pacific Ocean. Discover the secluded beauty of Motu Kao Kao, Motu Iti, and Motu Nui, uninhabited islets brimming with natural charm and wildlife.

Trace the footsteps of ancient islanders as we visit the sacred sites of Ahu Vaihu, Ahu Tongariki, and Ahu Nau Nau, where towering Moai statues stand as silent sentinels, guardians of a rich and storied past. Delve into the depths of Ana Kai Tangata, a mystical cave adorned with ancient rock art and petroglyphs, whispering secrets of a bygone era.

Join us on this journey of discovery and celebration as we immerse ourselves in the magic of Easter Island and the Tapati Rapa Nui 2025 Festival. Let the spirit of this ancient land ignite your soul as we uncover the treasures of Rapa Nui together.



Trip at a glance


TAPATI RAPA NUI FESTIVAL: Ancestral Stories Dramatization, Tango Rapa Nui, Carving Competition,  Easter Island Curanto

EASTER ISLAND: Tahai, Ranau Kau Volcano, Anakena Beach, Motu Kao Kao, Motu Iti, Motu Nui, Ahu Vaihu, Ahu Tongariki, Ahu Nau Nau, Ana Kai Tangata

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Trip details


Day 1 TAHAI SUNSET, Ancestral Stories dramatization, Tango Rapa Nui


Visiting this ancient ceremonial center, located just a ten-minute walk from Hanga Roa, offers the opportunity to explore two moai platforms of significant heritage value and to witness the sunset from one of the most privileged vantage points on Rapa Nui, where the sun meets the sea.

One of these platforms features a solitary giant statue known as Ko Te Riku. This particular moai stands out as the only one on Easter Island with "possessed" eyes, which were replaced during the filming of the movie Rapa Nui (1994), directed by Kevin Reynolds. This restoration was carried out based on the belief that the eye sockets of these monuments were once filled with coral. The other platform at Ahu Tahai boasts five moai statues, each in varying states of preservation.


One of the primary attractions of Tapati is the dramatization of ancestral tales, recounting the island's origins, the legendary exploits of the seven explorers, and the reign of King Hotu Matua, among others. Islanders, deeply proud of their heritage, express this sentiment through vibrant displays of song, dance, and storytelling, illuminating why Rapa Nui holds the esteemed title of the world's navel.

Following these cultural showcases, visitors have the opportunity to witness The Rapa Nui Tango, a dance form that emerged from the adaptation of Argentine traditions. Characterized by its minimalist melodies and incorporation of local customs, this captivating spectacle enraptures audiences, leaving them spellbound at first sight.



We will see live the most traditional preparation on the island at Anakena beach. During Tapati, the Umu Rapa Nui or Easter Island curanto, is cooked in a hole in the ground with firewood and red-hot stones, the same way it was done hundreds of years ago. The hot stones are covered with banana leaves on which meat, chicken and fish are placed and covered again with leaves and stones. A second layer is placed on top with sweet potatoes, taro and cassava and covered again with banana leaves and earth. The heat cooks the food in a slow and long process that turns the curanto into a communal meal. This typical tradition is held on the beach to feed all those who came to experience the event. The local priest gives a blessing to the curanto before taking it out of the ground.


We start our tour from Hanga Roa towards the natural cave of Ana Kai Tangata where it is possible to see some cave paintings depicting birds such as the "manutara" and where it is possible to see the waves crashing on the cliffs. We will continue our tour visiting the Rano Kau volcano from where we can see the largest crater on the island and one of the largest reserves of fresh water in the place. Finally, we will visit the Ceremonial Village of Orongo, an ancient and magnificent ceremonial city located on the western summit of the Rano Kau volcano, composed of 53 elliptical houses with slab walls and a small square entrance facing the sea. In this place the most important ceremony of the second period of the island, the election of the Tangata Manu (bird man) which was stopped approximately 150 years ago, due to the arrival of the first Christian missionaries.


Free evening.

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Curanto lunch

Day 3 Full day tour Rano Kau


We will pick you up at your accommodation at 9.00 am to start the route that will take us to visit several moais and the famous Anakena beach.

We will start visiting the ahu Vaihu, located in the bay of Hanga Te'e, and then pass by the ahu Akahanga, a place full of toppled moais. Later we will continue to the ahu Tongariki, one of the most important, as it will be our first approach to the mais erected standing in front of the Pacific Ocean; finally we will visit the ahu Nau Nau, located in Anakena beach, where we will have time to enjoy the sea.


We will also take advantage of the day to visit the Rano Raraku quarry, where the moais were carved in the past. According to what is said on the island, there are 400 moais in that area between those found on the slopes of the quarry and those buried underground.

At the end of the tour we will return to your hotel.

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Picnic lunch



With their skillful hands and the help of chisels and gouges, they carve and carve, shaping a millenary memory, inherited from generation to generation by carving families. Moaís Piro Piro, Haka Nanai'á, tangata o, kava kava or tahonga are some of their best known pieces. Whatever the sculpture, once the rough work is finished, they proceed to sand it, smoothing every square centimeter of the wood surface.

The final touch is a sealing layer that gives the figure a unique shine, resistance and durability, preventing it from cracking or discoloration due to humidity and the sun.  

Of the five thousand inhabitants of Rapa Nui, today there are no more than a dozen artisan carvers who continue the legacy of the ariki Tu' u Ko Ihu, who prepare themselves throughout the year for the Tapati festival, when they share and spread the craft through a competition. The artisan with the greatest talent and speed to achieve complex designs and fine finishes is the winner. The biggest prize, they recognize, goes to the one who with his craft manages to enthuse a young person, who helps to perpetuate the ancestral knowledge of wood.


We leave by boat from Hanga Piko and head to the area of the caves formed centuries ago by volcanic eruptions and that served as shelter and housing for our ancestors, then we will see from the sea the area of Mataveri, then we will go to the islets or motus: Motu Kao Kao, Motu Iti and Motu Nui, where we will explain what was the competition of Tangata Manu and finally sail to the Tahai sector to see the ahu and moais of this important archaeological site. During the tour it is possible to swim and snorkel. All equipment (fins, masks, wetsuits, floats and ladders) is included.

  • Breakfast at the hotel



What's included


3 nights in premium hotels


Private driver and premium car for all transfers and visits


Private local English-speaking guides for all the visits

Entrance Fees

All entrance fees to mentioned sites

What's not included

  • Domestic Flights from/to Easter Island
  • International Flights from/to Chile
  • Travel Insurance
  • Extra Meals
  • Drinks
  • Tips


Important notes

The Tapati is an impressive festival of competitions and festivities that takes place every year in Rapa Nui. It is a tribute to the traditions of the island and one of the most impressive celebrations in Polynesia."Tapati Rapa Nui" means "Rapa Nui week" and it is a date where the people of Rapa Nui pause their usual activities to perform a series of competitions and choose a queen.


What does the Tapati consist of?

The Tapati consists of a competition between clans, where each clan chooses a candidate for queen for the festival. Throughout the festival, different events are held that add up points to choose the winner.   One of the best known events is the Tau'a, a marathon that takes place around the Rano Raraku volcano. It is a demanding three-part physical test: 

  • Vaka Ama, which consists of a rowing race in reed boats.
  • Aka Venga, which is a run carrying bunches of bananas weighing about 40 kilograms.
  • Swimming in the river with the help of a Pora, a small cane board.

Another famous event is the Haka Pei, where participants descend Pui Hill on their backs on a sled made of banana trunks. There are 120 meters of steep dirt, where the falls can reach 70 km/h. In addition, there are horse races in Vaihu, a must on an island populated by equines. 


Tapati crafts

But there are not only physical tests in Tapati. There are also handicraft contests with Mahute, a plant whose bark can be used to make canvases, ornaments and costumes.   In addition, there are sculpture exhibitions, where replicas of moai, Orongo petroglyphs and the Reimiro, the island's iconic pectoral ornament, are made.   It also highlights the making of necklaces with Polynesian flowers, such as the tipianie or the tiare, which are given at the welcome or farewells. 


An unforgettable celebration

Towards the evening, the spectacular dance contests begin, where the inhabitants of the island will dazzle you with their movements.The Takona also takes place here, where participants paint their bodies with natural dyes mixed with clay. Before a group of wise men, they must explain in a theatrical way the reasons for their designs.   Other competitions are the Kai Kai, where they must recite a story with the help of threads intertwined in their fingers; and the Koro Haka Opo, a confrontation of choirs where each group has to interpret its cast without repeating themselves or making mistakes. Everything is crowned with the Umu Tahu, a giant roast of meat and fish typical of the area.   The Tapati ends with the coronation of the winner. The ceremony takes place in Ahu Tahai, an archaeological site located north of the capital Hangar Roa. The place has become one of the major attractions of the island due to its large number of moais.  


The Tapati for Rapa Nui

Tapati is an experience not to be missed.  At first it was born as a celebration of the locals to celebrate their ancestors, but over time it has been opened to tourism.   It is an instance where the inhabitants of Rapa Nui connect with their traditions, history, music, gastronomy, art and physical abilities. Therefore, it plays a fundamental role in the rescue of their traditions.   The tests are inspired by the ancient competition in honor of the creator god Make Make.

Then, the participants had to obtain the first egg that the Manu Tara (Easter Tern) left on Motu Nui islet and then return to Rapa Nui to climb the cliff of Rano Kau. The winner is invested as Tangata Manu, the birdman. 

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