RAPA NUI – EASTER ISLAND
Everybody says: “You spent TWO WEEKS there?” Well, let me tell you, Easter Island, better known as Rapa Nui, is utterly fascinating. It is the most isolated inhabited place on earth … its nearest neighbors, tiny Pitcairn Island (of Muntiny on the Bounty fame) 1,600 miles away. It is 2,300 miles off the coast of Chile. We were there in 2011.
I had always wanted to travel to Patagonia … at last, in February 2011, we made it, following a marvelous two weeks on Easter Island, Rapa Nui. We traveled up the pampas from Punta Arenas to Puerto Natales, finally to Parque Nacional Torres del Paine.
Chile’s capital, Santiago is a sophisticated city honoring its architectural and cultural past. It sits in the central valley in the shadow of the Andes to the east. Santiago was founded on the banks of the Mapocho River, by Spanish conquistador, Pedro de Valdivia, February 12, 1541. The metropolitan population is in the range of 7.5 million. Our visit was in 2011.