What Are Some Interesting Facts About Easter Island?


Quick Answer

Easter Island is comprised of three extinct volcanoes: Terevaka, Poike and Rano Kau. The island is regarded as a fascinating destination because of the massive statutes situated throughout the islands and the mysterious disappearance of the island’s earliest inhabitants.

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Full Answer

Easter Island, also known as Rapa Nui, covers approximately 64 square miles in the South Pacific Ocean. The island is located roughly 2,300 miles from Chile’s west coast. Easter Island got its name from a group of Dutch explorers who arrived there on Easter in 1722. Easter Island was a colony of Chile up until its annexation in the late 19th century. The island now maintains sovereignty.

Easter Island's economy is based primarily on tourism, largely due to its famous array of ancient stone figures. There are nearly 900 of these massive statues throughout the island. It’s a mystery as to what role the statues played in the early civilization’s culture or how they were transported and constructed. On average, the statutes stand 13 feet tall and weigh 14 tons. The largest of the statues, known as “Paro,” is roughly 32 feet tall and weighs over 82 tons. Although the origins remain unclear, carbon testing from the structures indicates that the statutes were built between 1100 and1680 A.D. Unfortunately, the vast majority of these great works were toppled over during wars between clans of the Rapa Nui population.

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