Travel Blog for Fredrik and Gunnhild

Chile

Santiago to Mendoza

Santiago to Mendoza

We got up early for our drive over the Andes to Mendoza.

We had some great views of the Andes with fresh snow on the peeks and no clouds in the sky at all. We where driving more or less directly to the Argentine border, with a few stops for stretching our legs and a short stop for lunch. The border passing took a bit more than an hour, that supposedly are fast 🙂

The longer we got into Argentina the less steep and more rounded the mountains were.

A few kilometers into Argentina we stopped by the Inca bridge. The Inca empire stretched down here from Peru. The mountains changed when we where driving longer into Argentina. they got less steep and more rounded.

Just before we where going onto the highway to Mendoza, we where told that there was a blockade on the highway so we had to take a longer way into Mendoza, of course when you get off the highway it is more to see 🙂 So I was happy about that.

We had a prepaid dinner at the hotel.

Easter Island day two

Easter Island day two

I got up at 0600 to find out that May Hege and Marianne had a taxi waiting to take them to Ahu Tongariki to see the sunrise. I grabbed my camera and joined them. When we arrived 20 minutes before sunrise it was raining, we staid in the car until it stopped raining (about 10 minutes before sunrise). but the sky did not clear so we had no sunrise at Ahu Tongariki 🙁 but we got some fun pictures!

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When we arrived back we had about half an hour to get ready for the sightseeing with the group. We had a short drive to a site named Ana Kai Tangata witch was a cave in a small bay. In the sealing of the cave we could see remains of paintings related to the birdmen cult.

From the bay we walked up the volcano Rano Kau. It was a good climb up and half the way it started raining. But we continued with a smile, it was worm and some rain can’t hurt anyone.

When we arrived at the top (GPS height at 284 meters) we looked down to the volcano and it was huge! It was starting to be at bit windy so some of the group got into a car to the next site, Orongo. The rest of us was walking on the volcano edge.
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The Orongo was a religious, social and political site, where the chosen one from each village came to live and to be part of a competition to find the leader of the island.
The competition was to snatch the first tern egg on Motu Nui (island south of the volcano). The leader of the village will then be the birdman for the next year.
It was raining hard and the wind was a bit to much from time to time, but I enjoyed the site 🙂

We were driven back to have lunch and then free time.
Some of us found a nice restaurant down by the harbor where we had some drinks and talked about all the amassing sites we had visited.

After dinner we had some beers before some of us decided to take a swim in the pacific (I think it was around 0300). This was the last night at Easter island so there were no reason to sleep before flying back to Santiago.

Easter Island day one

Easter Island day one

I did forgot to change the clock on the phone, so I was up 2 hours to early 🙁
we had a schedule to start early so we could see the sites before it was crowded by other tourist (I like solutions like that).

We started our tour with a visit to a site that was not escalated by archaeologist, so it was more or less the same as when Captain Cook visited Easter Island 52 years after Jacob Roggeveen that discovered the island in 1722. All the statues was pushed over most of them face down but some of them faced up.

Our next stop was the quarry, all moai statues where carved out here and then moved around the Island by tree logs and other primitive equipment.
we used a long time on this site and saw a lot of moais, excavated and the ones that we only see the head of.
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When we were almost finish whit the quarry it started to rain, so we got a bit wet on the way up to the Vulcan crater where they also carved out statues. It was very hard to see anything because of the rain and the mist (you can’t win them all).

The last site before lunch was the amazing Ahu Tongariki witch are the biggest resaturated ahu (stone platforms with moais) on the island.
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After a very good lunch we went to the beach where Thor Heyerdahl stayed when he was at Easter Island. We looked on a smaller ahu and on a Moai that Thor Heyerdahl decided to rise whit a solution that involved stones, levers and ropes.

Then we had 30 minutes of free time, so most of us decided to have a swim in the Pacific, same temperature as last time, nice again 🙂

In the evening we had ordered a moai show with diner, we arrive early to see the ceremonial opening of the “oven”. Witch was a ditch in the ground where they put worm lava stones in first, then they rap the food in banana leaves and put the food on top of each other in layers. then they close the “oven” with dirt. After they had digged upp all our food, we went inside and had a lovely dinner (I am glad that we had salt on the table).

After dinner there was a show with some short stories and a lot off dancing (I was dragged up on stage to dance with one of the lovely ladies).

Ariving at Easter Island

We got up early in the morning to fly out to Easter Island. We arrived at airport 2 hours early to find out that our flight was one hour delayed.
No problem, some of us found the Diners lounge.
After a five hour flight we arrived at Easter Island, it was a lot warmer and more humidity than Santiago, Nice!

Our fist day was mostly free time, the fist thing we did was to go to the bar and have a beer, after a few more beers we decided to go swimming. The guesstimate was that the water was around 22-23 degrees Celsius, great! Next on the agenda was to go shopping for water and more to drink 🙂

We had a pre booked diner and continued after the diner to drink some more of what we shopped for earlier in the day.

Santiago

After the long flight to Santiago we were looking for a shower at the hotel , but the rooms were not ready. So we started with a city tour, mostly with bus. But also a short walk in the city center. We had a great lunch with sea food.

We got a small extension on the tour where we drove by the national stadium, and our tour guide told us about how it was to live in Chile under the dictator ship time.

In the evening we had a great dinner where we presented our self to the group.

Now it is 0900 and we are waiting for our flight to Easter Island.