SacredSitesJourneys-Logo-Sm.jpg (15505 bytes)SACRED SITES JOURNEYS
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Sacred Journey to Mysterious Easter Island 
April 29 - May 5, 2018

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According to the indigenous record keepers of Easter Island or Rapa Nui (its ancient name)
this Pacific island was once part of a much larger island called Hiva.
This truth is apparently corroborated by the ancient roads of Rapa Nui
that seem to suddenly disappear into the surrounding ocean waves.
The ancient inhabitants of Rapa Nui left behind their mysteries
 in the form of towering statues or moai that they covered their island with.
What is the story told by the moai?
Can they tell us about the ancients who made them?
Will they provide information regarding ancient Hiva?
Will you be the one they share their secrets with?

Few places have captured the imaginations of world travelers like Easter Island.
Imagine having the opportunity to walk among the towering moai statues on Easter Island.
For many of us such an event is the fulfillment of a lifelong dream!

During our Sacred Sites Journey to Easter Island we will not only walk among these guardians of the past,
but seek to unlock their most hidden mysteries through meditation and ritual.
We will also learn the most current and esoteric theories regarding Rapa Nui’s past,
as well as its function in the new era….while at the same time creating a few of our own!

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During our time on Easter Island we'll see numerous Moai or mo‘ai, the monolithic human figures carved by the Rapa Nui people from the native rock on the island. Conventional history gives the years of their carving as between 1250CE and 1500CE. The moai were either carved by a distinguished class of professional carvers who were comparable in status to high-ranking members of other Polynesian craft guilds, or, alternatively, by members of each clan. The oral histories show that the Rano Raraku quarry was subdivided into different territories for each clan.

Nearly half are still at Rano Raraku, the main moai quarry, but hundreds were transported from there and set on stone platforms called ahu around the island's perimeter. Almost all moai have overly large heads three-eighths the size of the whole statue. The moai are chiefly the living faces (aringa ora) of deified ancestors (aringa ora ata tepuna). The statues still gazed inland across their clan lands when Europeans first visited the island, but most were cast down during later conflicts between clans.

The production and transportation of the 887 statues are considered remarkable creative and physical feats. The tallest moai erected, called Paro, was almost 33 ft. high and weighed 82 tons. The heaviest erected was a shorter but squatter moai at Ahu Tongariki, weighing 86 tons. And one unfinished sculpture, if completed, would have been approximately 69 ft. tall with a weight of about 270 tons. After civilization collapsed on Rapa Nui, the islanders themselves tore down the standing moai.

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Characteristics: The moai are monolithic statues, their minimalist style related to forms found throughout Polynesia. Moai are carved in relatively flat planes, the faces bearing proud but enigmatic expressions. The over-large heads (a three-to-five ratio between the head and the trunk, a sculptural trait that demonstrates the Polynesian belief in the sanctity of the chiefly head) have heavy brows and elongated noses with a distinctive fish-hook-shaped curl of the nostrils. The lips protrude in a thin pout. Like the nose, the ears are elongated and oblong in form. The jaw lines stand out against the truncated neck. The torsos are heavy, and, sometimes, the clavicles are subtly outlined in stone. The arms are carved in bas relief and rest against the body in various positions, hands and long slender fingers resting along the crests of the hips, meeting at the hami (loincloth), with the thumbs sometimes pointing towards the navel. Generally, the anatomical features of the backs are not detailed, but sometimes bear a ring and girdle motif on the buttocks and lower back. Except for one kneeling moai, the statues do not have clearly visible legs.

Though moai are whole-body statues, they are commonly referred to as "Easter Island heads". This is partly because of the disproportionate size of most moai heads and partly because, from the invention of photography until the 1950s, the only moai standing on the island were the statues on the slopes of Rano Raraku, many of which are buried to their shoulders. Some of the "heads" at Rano Raraku have been excavated and their bodies seen, and observed to have markings that had been protected from erosion by their burial.

The average height of the Moai is about 13 ft 1 inch high, with the average width at the base around 5 ft 3 inches across. These massive creations usually weigh in at around 13.8 tons a piece.

All but 53 of the 887 moai known to date were carved from tuff (a compressed volcanic ash) from Rano Raraku, where 394 moai and incomplete moai are still visible today. There are also 13 moai carved from basalt, 22 from trachyte and 17 from fragile red scoria. At the end of carving, the builders would rub the statue with pumice.

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With the exception of the seven at Ahu Akivi, the statues always had their backs facing the ocean.

Eyes: In 1979, Sergio Rapu Haoa and a team of archaeologists discovered that the hemispherical or deep elliptical eye sockets were designed to hold coral eyes with either black obsidian or red scoria pupils. The discovery was made by collecting and reassembling broken fragments of white coral that were found at the various sites. Subsequently, previously uncategorized finds in the Easter Island museum were re-examined and recategorized as eye fragments. It is thought that the moai with carved eye sockets were probably allocated to the ahu and ceremonial sites, suggesting that a selective Rapa Nui hierarchy was attributed to the moai design until its demise with the advent of the Birdman religion, Tangata Manu.

HoaHakananai.jpg (18173 bytes)Markings (post stone working): When first carved, the surface of the moai was polished smooth by rubbing with pumice. Unfortunately, the easily worked tuff from which most moai were carved is also easily eroded, and, today, the best place to see the surface detail is on the few moai carved from basalt or in photographs and other archaeological records of moai surfaces protected by burial.

Those moai that are less eroded typically have designs carved on their backs and posteriors. The Routledge expedition of 1914 established a cultural link between these designs and the island's traditional tattooing, which had been repressed by missionaries a half-century earlier. Until modern DNA analysis of the islanders and their ancestors, this was key scientific evidence that the moai had been carved by the Rapa Nui and not by a separate group from South America.

At least some of the moai were painted; Hoa Hakananai'a (left) was decorated with maroon and white paint until 1868, when it was removed from the island. It is now housed in the British Museum, London.


Featured Speaker: Mark Amaru Pinkham
Author, Researcher of Ancient Megalithic History, Visionary and Shamanic Practitioner

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Co-Founder of Sacred Sites Journeys
Founder Director of The Order & Mystery School of the Seven Rays

Mark Amaru Pinkham has been traveling the globe for nearly 40 years while studying the secret mysteries of the ancient lands and civilizations of ages past, including Easter Island. Mark's research has been published in his six books: Sedona: City of the Star People, The Return of the Serpents of Wisdom, Conversations with the Goddess, The Truth Behind the Christ Myth, Guardians of the Holy Grail: The Knights Templar, John the Baptist and the Water of Life and World Gnosis: The Coming Gnostic Civilization. Mark is also a guide and shaman trained in helping people access altered states of intuitive and visionary consciousness.

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Throughout our spiritual pilgrimage Mark will lead the group in shamanic rites, as well as share his in-depth knowledge of esoteric history of Easter Island.

For more information about Mark, Click here

Tour Director/Featured Speaker/Meditation Facilitator: Andrea Mikana-Pinkham
Shamanic Practitioner and Researcher of Ancient Megalithic History

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and Director of Sacred Sites Journeys

Andrea Mikana-Pinkham is an avid researcher of the world's ancient megalithic sites. She is also a trained shamanic practitioner, Reiki Grand Master of Ichi Sekai (One World) Reiki, and a spiritual counselor.

Andrea has over 23 years of experience in the sacred travel field. Her journey began in 1993, with the founding of Sacred Sites Journeys. She is familiar with the operations of sacred programs on all levels.

Andrea is the Tour Director as well as the Speaker and Meditation/Sacred Ceremony Facilitator on Sacred Sites Journeys  to the world’s most important sacred sites.

In addition, Andrea is an Initiate of and Teacher in the The Seven Rays Order and Mystery School and The Sisterhood of Sophia.

She is a trained shamanic practitioner, Reiki Grand Master of Ichi Sekai (One World) Reiki, and a spiritual counselor.

During our spiritual pilgrimage Andrea will facilitate meditations and shamanic rites to assist you in reaching altered states of consciousness where you may tap into the ancient energies and history of Easter Island.

A Message from Andrea: I invite you to join our smaller group of spiritual pilgrims as we explore mystical sacred sites on Easter Island. The ancient energies are still palpable today and are inviting you to come and engage them! During our week on Rapa Nui we'll explore the most important sites, examine both the mainstream and alternative history for them, and access the powerful energies through meditation and shamanic ritual. Mark and I will be honored to support you to make your perhaps lifelong dream of traveling to this distant island a reality!

For more information about Andrea, Click here

April 29 – May 5, 2018
(B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner)

Day 1. Sunday, April 29. Arrive; Group Meeting; Welcome Dinner (D)
TahaTaiHotel-1.jpg (29494 bytes)ARRIVAL: Please arrive on Sunday, April 29, 2018 at Easter Island, Chile Mataveri International Airport (IPC). For those coming from North and South America, Lan Airlines operates flights from Lima, Peru (LIM) through Santiago, Chile (SCL) that arrives on Easter Island at 1:10PM.

Upon arrival meet our local tour representative for our group transfer to the hotel. Check in. Take some time to rest.EasterIsland-TahaTaiHotel-Room.jpg (10218 bytes)

Welcome Dinner with the group at the hotel. Overnight Taha Tai Hotel.
The Taha Tai is one of the long-established hotels on Easter Island. The name of the hotel means "next to the sea", which explains its location by the ocean. Located a short distance from Hanga Roa, the main village on the island, it's centrally located.
Services: Reception, lobby, restaurant, bar, room service, swimming pool, wifi in public areas, phone, shop
Room Amenities: Ensuite bathroom with shower and tub, toilietries, air-conditioning, safe deposit, television (local programming), telephone, desk area

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Day 2. Monday, April 30. Group Meeting; Rano Kau, Orongo, Vinapu and Ana Kai Tangata (B)
Have a leisurely breakfast. Our first Group Meeting will be this morning. Our Featured Speaker Mark Amaru Pinkham will present "The Secret History of Easter Island and the Continent of MU".

Afterwards you have free time. Lunch is on your own.
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In the afternoon we set off to visit several different sites. Our first stop is at Rano Kau and Orongo,
a 1,063 ft tall extinct volcano that forms the southwestern headland of Easter Island. It was formed of basaltic lava flows in the Pleistocene with its youngest rocks dated at between 150,000 and 210,000 years ago.

Rano Kau has a crater lake which is one of the island's only three natural bodies of fresh water. Most of the volcano is on the coast and has been eroded back to form high sea cliffs which at one point have started to bite into the crater wall. On its northern side, the volcano slopes down to Mataveri International Airport.

Rano Kau is in the world heritage site of Rapa Nui National Park and gives its name to one of the seven sections of the park. The principal archaeological site on Rano Kau is the ruined ceremonial village of Orongo which is located at the point where the sea cliff and inner crater wall converge. One ahu with several moai was recorded on the cliffs at Rano Kau in the 1880s, but had fallen to the beach by the time of the Routledge expedition in 1914.

The crater is almost a mile across and has its own micro climate. Sheltered from the winds that wet most of the rest of the island, figs and vines flourish at Rano Kau. The inner slope was the site of the last toromiro tree in the wild until the specimen was chopped down for firewood in 1960.

Orongo.jpg (43210 bytes)We then visit Orongo, a World Heritage site and part of Rapa Nui National Park. Until the mid-nineteenth century, Orongo was the center of the birdman cult, which hosted an annual race to bring the first manutara (Sooty Tern) egg from the islet of Motu Nui to Orongo. The site has numerous petroglyphs, mainly of tangata manu (birdmen).

This stone village and ceremonial center is at the southwestern tip of the Island. The first half of the ceremonial village's 53 stone masonry houses were investigated and restored in 1974 by American archaeologist William Mulloy. In 1976 Mulloy assisted by Chilean archaeologists Claudio Cristino and Patricia Vargas completed the restoration of the whole complex which was subsequently investigated by Cristino in 1985 and 1995. Orongo enjoys a dramatic location on the crater lip of Rano Kau at the point where a 250 meter sea cliff converges with the inner wall of the crater of Rano Kau.

In the Rapa Nui mythology, the deity Make-make was the chief god of the birdman cult, the other three gods associated with it being Hawa-tuu-take-take (the Chief of the eggs) his wife Vie Hoa and Vie Kanatea. Birdman religion: Contestants were revealed in dreams by ivi-attuas, or prophets. The contestants would each appoint a Hopu who would swim to Motu Nui and fetch them the Egg, whilst the contestants waited at Orongo. The race was very dangerous and many Hopu were killed by sharks, drowning or by falling.

Once the first egg was collected, the final task would be for the unsuccessful contestants to return to Orongo, the winner allowed to remain in Motu Nui until he felt spiritually prepared to return. On his return he would present the egg to his patron, who had already shaved his head and painted it either white or red. The successful man would be declared Tangata-Manu, would take the egg in his hand and lead a procession down the slope of Rano Kau and on either to Anakena if he was from the western clans or Rano Raraku if he was from the eastern clans. Once in residence there he was tapu (sacred) for the next five months of his year-long status, and allowed his nails to grow and wore a headdress of human hair. The new Tangata-Manu was given a new name, entitled to gifts of food and other tributes (including his clan having sole rights to collect that season's harvest of wild bird eggs and fledglings from Motu Nui), and went into seclusion for a year in a special ceremonial house.

The Birdman cult was suppressed by Christian missionaries in the 1860s. The origin of the cult and the time thereof are uncertain, as it is unknown whether the cult replaced the preceding Moai-based religion or had co-existed with it. Katherine Routledge was, however, able to collect the names of 86 Tangata manu.

AhuVinapu.jpg (36434 bytes)Our next stop is at Vinapu, which is part of the Rapa Nui National Park, which UNESCO has declared a World Heritage Site. The ceremonial center of Vinapu includes one of the larger ahu on Rapa Nui. The ahu exhibits extraordinary stonemasonry consisting of large, carefully fitted slabs of basalt. One of the polished basalt slabs measures 8 by 5.5 ft and weighs 6 or 7 tons. Thor Heyerdahl wrote in Easter Island: The Mystery Solved that he believed that the accurately fitted stonework showed contact with Peru. The cyclopean masonry of Ahu Vinapu and certain other platforms is reminiscent of the pre-Incan construction that we see in Cuzco, Sacsayhuaman, Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu. The stone wall faces towards sunrise at Winter Solstice.

John Macmillan Brown writes in Riddle of the Pacific: The colossal blocks are tooled and cut so as to fit each other. In the Ahu Vinapu and in the fragment of the ahu near Hangaroa beach the stones are as colossal as in the old Temple of the Sun in Cuzco. They are as carefully tooled, and the irregularities of their sides that have to come together are so cut that the two faces exactly fit into each other. These blocks are too huge to have been shifted frequently to let the mason find out whether they fitted or not. They must have been cut and tooled to exact measurement or plan. There is no evidence of chipping after they have been laid. Every angle and projection must have been measured with scientific precision before the stones were nearing their finish.


AnaKaiTangataCave-1.jpg (29823 bytes)Next we visit Ana Kai Tangata, a cave on the outskirts of Hanga Roa. Here are the paintings of manutara or sooty tern, the bird closely associated with the birdman cult that centered in nearby Orongo. The Rapanui may have created the red, white and black pigments by mixing volcanic dust and powdered coral with shark oil. You can see the layers of the flakes of rock in the cave. Unfortunately, they are unstable, salt spray aggrevates erosion, and chunks fall off from time to time. There used to be more paintings and over time there will be fewer and fewer.

This is also known as the cannibal cave. However, the name of the cave is ambiguous and it could mean the cave where men eat as well as the cave where men are eaten. It has even been suggested it means the cave that eats men because they disappear into its black mouth. There are many locations in Polynesia where cannibalism occurred to at least some extent; it is possible that cannibalism occurred on Easter Island and in this cave. There are also some references to cannibalism in some Easter Island legends. However, there is no archaeological evidence that cannibalism occurred on the island.

Return to hotel. Evening free. Dinner on your own.
Overnight Taha Tai Hotel.

Day 3. Tuesday, May 1. Free Day; Group Meeting (B)
EasterIsland-TahaTaiHotel-Pool.jpg (19066 bytes)Today is Chile's, and thus Easter Island's national Labor Day holiday. So we're honoring it by taking a free day to rest and relax ourselves. You could stay at the hotel and lay out by the pool. Or walk along the beach. Or stroll into nearby Hanga Roa, the main town, harbor and capital of Easter Island, for some shopping and sightseeing. Or perhaps you'd like to explore more of the island that we'll not be visiting during our daily tour activities. The concierge at the hotel will be happy to arrange this for you.

Lunch on your own.

Later in the afternoon we'll have a Group Meeting to share about our experiences.

Take time to enjoy the evening on this island paradise. Dinner on your own.
Overnight Taha Tai Hotel.

Day 4. Wednesday, May 2. Vaihu, Akahanga, Rano Raraku, Ahu Tongariki, Te Pito Kura, Ahu Nau Nau and Anekena Beach (B/Box Lunch)
This is a full day of exploration! Our first stop this morning is at Vaihu a platform of well-worked stone. Vaihu.jpg (33473 bytes)There are eight statues lying where they fell and eight pukao scattered about nearby. In front of the ahu there is a circle of stones for the paina ceremonies in which dead were honored.

Next we visit Ahu Akahanga where there is a ceremonial center consisting of several ahu. This settlement is one with the most numerous moai. It is an expanse of about 60 ft. long in which there AhuAkahanga-1.jpg (36179 bytes)are a dozen statues with sizes ranging from 16 to 22 ft, although some have been unable to maintain balance throughout the centuries and are lying the edge of the sea. The area is decorated with red rocks, giving shelter to the statues. A little further away from the others, along the coast, is a solitary figure, the smallest of all, with only two feet high. In addition to the statues, there are vestiges of ancient civilization, such as caves or primitive buildings.

Ahu Akahanga is popularly known as the “Platform of the King”. According to one popular legend, in this exact point in the southeast coast of the island are the remains of Hotu Matua, the first king of the Rapanui, who came to govern the island by the fourth century AD. Apparently, the place chosen by Hotu Matua for his final rest is not accidental, since by its situation, Ahu Akahanga the deceased monarch allowed to continue spreading their good vibes equally to both sides of the island, to favor crops alike of the inhabitants of each side.

RanoRaraKu-MoaiFactory-Med.jpg (27079 bytes)Onward to the Rano Raraku Moai Factory, the quarry that supplied the stone for almost all of the Moai on the island for over 500 years. It's commonly known as the “Moai Factory” as you can see the different stages of how the Moai were carved directly out of the rock. There are 397 moai in this area, some half buried, some just abandoned over time. That’s about 45% of all the Moai ever created.

RanoRaraKu-MoaiFactory-3.jpg (33855 bytes)The Largest Moai: What was going to be the largest Moai ever carved can still be found at Rano Raruku at the top of the trail that leads up the hill. It was going to be twice the size of any other completed Moai, being 72 ft high. It was never completed and is still “attached” to the rock of the volcanic crater. 

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Our next stop is Ahu Tongariki, the largest ahu on Easter Island. Its moai were toppled during the island's civil wars and in the 20th century the ahu was swept inland by a tsunami. It has since been restored and has fifteen moai including an 86 ton moai that was the heaviest ever erected on the island. All the moai here face sunset during Summer Solstice.  Ahu Tongariki was the main center and capital of the Hotu Iti, the eastern confederation of the Rapanui.Its moai were toppled during the island's civil wars. Ahu Tongariki was substantially restored in the 1990s by a multidisciplinary team headed by archaeologists Claudio Cristino (Director) and Patricia Vargas (Co-director, in a five year project carried out under an official agreement of the Chilean Government with Tadano Limited and the University of Chile.

AhuTePitoKura.jpg (42233 bytes)Te Pito Kura is a rock structure along the north coast is called “The Navel of the World”. According to legend, the large central stone was brought to the island by King Hotu Matua with the first settlers around 450CE. It emits mana (spiritual enery) to those who sit on the small rocks and place their hands on it. The large rock is said to be weakly magnetised: if you move a compass around its surface, the needle goes crazy.   Inland from the Navel is the Ahu Te Pito Kura platform, with the largest moai ever transported from the quarry and erected on a platform. The moai, almost ten metres tall, has toppled and now lies on its face with its topknot next to it. Inland from the Navel is the Ahu Te Pito Kura platform, with the largest moai ever transported from the quarry and erected on a platform. The moai, almost 32 ft tall, has toppled and now lies on its face with its topknot next to it.

Ahu Nau-Nau is located in the north coast, in front of Anakena beach. It was restored in 1980 by Rapa Nui archaeologist Sergio Rapu HaoaAhuNau-Nau.jpg (27441 bytes). It is one of the best preserved ahu, since it was formerly buried in the sand, accumulated by the wind erosion. It has seven moai, four of them in big size, two medium size (one with no head) and the seventh with less than half body. The four big moai are outstanding because of their special pukao (topknots) made of rocky red material. They are completely weil preserved and have a fine polishing; the piece fixes perfectly on the statues' heads. The platform of ahu Nau-Nau is one of the most beautiful ones on the island. It is decorated perfectly along its forehead. According to scientific research this ahu was erected on two former ahu. One of the moai characteristic is their calm attitude, with their thin hands resting on their womb. Between their hands is "hami" or loincloth that was worn under the navel. Behind the moai are several petroglyphs that represent fishes and the tangata moko, the lizard man. This last mentioned figure suggests a personage from another world. A moai head can also be observed in the stone platform of ahu (paenga).

AnakenaBeach-Med.jpg (23736 bytes)We end the day at Anekena Beach, a white coral sand beach which has two ahus. Ahu-Ature has single moai and Ahu Nao-Nao has seven, two of which are deteriorated. It also has a palm grove and a car park. Anakena is unusual for Easter Island in that it is one of only two small sandy beaches in an otherwise rocky coastline.

Legend and History: According to island oral traditions, Anakena was the landing place of Hotu Matu'a, a Polynesian chief who led a two-canoe settlement party here and founded the first settlement on Rapa Nui. It was later a ceremonial centre where islanders read from Rongorongo boards. Anakena featured in the Tangata manu or Birdman cult as in years when the new Birdman was from the western clans, he would end his celebrations at Anakena.

Archaeology: Modern archaeology has found signs of human settlement at Anakena as early as 1200 CE, though linguistic and other analysis indicates a range of dates for first settlement of Rapa Nui between 300 and 1200 CE. Anakena has been the site of several archaeological digs including those of Katherine Routledge in 1914 and both William Mulloy and Thor Heyerdahl in the 1950s, and both of its ahus have been restored.|

Popular culture: Anakena was used as one of the film locations for the 1994 Kevin Reynolds film Rapa Nui, starring Jason Scott Lee, Esai Morales, Sandrine Holt, George Henare and Cliff Curtis and produced by Kevin Costner.

We return to the hotel. You have the evening free. Dinner on your own. Overnight Taha Tai Hotel.

Day 5. Thursday, May 3. Group Meeting; Free Time; Cultural Performance/Dinner (B/D)
After a leisurely breakfast we will gather for a Group Meeting. Mark Amaru Pinkham will present "Easter Island and the World Grid." And we'll also take time to discuss the still-unsolved mysteries of Rapa Nui.

Afterwards you have free time. Lunch on your own.

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In the later afternoon we depart for a Cultural Performance and Dinner at the Te Ra'i Restaurant, including the option to participate in a Polynesian dance class and ancestral Polynesian body painting. Before dinner there will be a Food Blessing Ceremony. Dinner is a buffet of meat, local fish, salad and dessert, with a drink and one glass of wine included. After dinner, we’ll enjoy a cultural dance performance.

Return to the hotel. 
Overnight Taha Tai Hotel.

Day 6. Friday, May 4.
Ahu Akivi; Ahu Huri a Urenga and Puna Pau Quarry; Free Time; Group Meeting (B/D)AhuAkivi.jpg (33419 bytes)
After breakfast we leave to visit the Ahu Akivi, an ahu with seven moai. These were restored in 1960 by the American archaeologist William Mulloy and his Chilean colleague, Gonzalo Figueroa García-Huidobro. Mulloy's work on the Akivi-Vaiteka Complex was supported by the Fulbright Foundation and by grants from the University of Wyoming, the University of Chile and the International Fund for Monuments. Ahu Akivi also gives its name to one of the seven regions of the Rapa Nui National Park. The Moai face sunset during Spring and Autumn Equinox; and have their backs to the sunrise during Spring and Autumn Equinox. Unlike other ahus, the Akivi-Vaiteka Complex is not located on the coast. In contrast to the monumental statuary at other sites on the island, the moai at Ahu Akivi face the ocean.

Next we stop at
one of the island's hidden gems - Ahu Huri a Urenga, a solitary moai with 4 hands. What could that mean? As an ancient solar observatory, it's built on a 20° angle to its platform so that on the winter solstice it's precisely aligned to face the sunrise.

The last stop for the morning is at the Puna Pau (Top Knot) Quarry, a quarry in a small crater or cinder cone on the outskirts of Hanga Roa. It was the sole source of the red scoria that the Rapanui used to carve the pukao (topknots) that they put on the heads of some of their iconic moai statues. The stone from Puna Pau was also used for a few non-standard moai including Tukuturi and also for some petroglyphs.

British scientists discover the origin of the crowns worn by the enigmatic statues:  British scientists have finally explained part of the mystery of the red crowns worn by the moai of the Puna Pau quarry in Easter Island (Chile), thanks to the discovery of a road that was used to transport them. Today, Professors Sue Hamilton of the University College in London and Colin Richards of Manchester University said the crowns were made of volcanic rock from an ancient volcano in the area, and that they were manufactured by the Polynesian inhabitants of the island between the years 1250 and 1500.

PunaPauQuarry.jpg (23916 bytes)According to a press release from Manchester University, the way in which the inhabitants carried these rocks of several tons in order to place them on the moai remains an enigma. Hamilton and Richards directed the first British team to visit the island since 1914, and they were the first archeologists allowed to conduct an excavation in Puna Pau. "We now know that the crowns were rolled along a road built with a cement of compressed red slag dust with an elevated side", explained Richards, who said that “probably, they were pushed by hand, although it is also possible that wooden logs were used.”

Hamilton pointed out that Puna Pau lies inside the crater of an extinguished volcano, and that “one third of the crater was used to produce these crowns.” “Until now, we have located over 70 crowns in the ceremonial platforms and along the road. Many more may have been broken and incorporated to the platforms,” he added. They also discovered an obsidian ax with a 17 centimeter blade, possibly owned by one of the workers in charge of transporting the crowns. Allegedly, he abandoned the blade as an offering to the gods.

According to the British researchers, the ax and the way in which the broken crowns are aligned along one of the sides of the road suggest the road was a ceremonial avenue that led to the quarry. “It is clear that the quarry was sacred, but also industrial,” said Professor Richards, who recalled that “the Polynesians saw the landscape as something alive, and considered that after sculpting the stone, the spirits became part of the statues”.

Richards said that, initially, the inhabitants of the most remote place in the planet (the island lies almost 2500 miles away from the Chilean coast) built the moai with different types of local stone, and that it wasn’t until the years 1200 and 1300 that they stopped making the statues and started manufacturing crowns. The investigation set to last 5 more years also offers details about life in Easter Island 500 years ago, where people "lived in a successful and well organized society, in a well managed vital context."

"70% of the island was transformed into open gardens and agricultural land, where a complex system was used in order to keep the surface moistened,” he said. As for Puna Pau, they concluded that it was a secret place that could not be seen from other parts of the island and where the production could not be heard, since it took place within the crater. Everything seems to also point out that different teams worked in the quarry and competed in order to have their own areas of production within Puna Pau", says Richards.

Return to hotel. Lunch on your own. Free time.Moai-Sunset.jpg (18612 bytes)

We'll gather in the later afternoon for our final Group Meeting, a time for sharing. Andrea will lead a closing meditation to assist you to carry home the power transformative energies that you've engaged during our spiritual pilgrimage.

We'll enjoy our Farewell Dinner tonight at the hotel, a time for more sharing and saying our fond Good-byes to Easter Island and our fellow travelers.
Overnight Taha Tai Hotel.

Day 7. Saturday, M
ay 5. Depart Easter Island (B)
After breakfast we we check out of the hotel. Group transfer to the airport for our departure from Easter Island.

DEPARTURE: For those departing to North and South America, for your departure on Saturday, May 5, 2018 Lan Airlines operates a flight departing Easter Island at 2:10PM, which connects through Santiago, Chile to Lima, Peru and points onward.

We invite you to join us for our Sacred Sites Journey to PERU,
which will begin immediately after the EASTER ISLAND trip,
on May 7 - 13, 2018
For more information, visit

Note: This itinerary is subject to change due to conditions beyond our control.


Your Sacred Sites Journey to EASTER ISLAND Includes:
- Roundtrip group transfers between the airport and hotel on Easter Island
- Accommodations at
Taha Tai Hotel, including daily breakfast (vegetarian available)
- Welcome and Farewell Dinners (vegetarian available)
- Sightseeing tours
with local English-speaking guide, including entrance fees
- Escorted on arrival at
Easter Island, Chile Mataveri International Airport by Sacred Sites Journeys Director Andrea Mikana-Pinkham
- Pre-Paid Gratuities for driver, guide, waiters at group meals, etc.

- Travel in a smaller group of other spirit-centered people with author Mark Amaru Pinkham and SSJ's Director Andrea Mikana-Pinkham
- Presentations by Featured Speaker author Mark Amaru Pinkham
- Meditations at sacred sites facilitated by Andrea Mikana-Pinkham and Mark Amaru Pinkham
- Cultural Performance and Dinner at the Te Ra'ai Restaurant, including the option to participate in a Polynesian dance class and ancestral Polynesian body painting
- Welcome and Farewell Dinners

- Roundtrip international air to Easter Island, Chile Mataveri International Airport (IPC)
- Meals not included, as indicated in the itinerary
- Cost to obtain valid passport
- Any items of a personal nature such as laundry, drinks, internet access and telephone calls. Any item that is not specifically detailed on the Sacred Sites Journeys website or final trip itinerary


This tour is LAND ONLY. You are responsible to book your international flights to and from Easter Island, Chile Mataveri International Airport (IPC).
ARRIVAL: Please arrive on Sunday, April 29, 2018 at Easter Island, Chile (IPC). For those coming from North and South America, Lan Airlines operates flights from Lima, Peru (LIM) through Santiago, Chile (SCL) that arrives on Easter Island at 1:10PM.

DEPARTURE: For those departing to North and South America,
for your departure on Saturday, May 5, 2018 Lan Airlines operates a flight departing Easter Island at 2:10PM, which connects through Santiago, Chile to Lima, Peru and points onward.

Per Person, double occupancy, land only:

$1,989.00  for payments via check or bank wire

If you'd like to use your credit card to pay for this journey, please contact Andrea Mikana-Pinkham at for more information.

ROOMMATES: Would you like to meet and make a new friend on your journey? If you're not traveling on the journey with anyone you know, and would like for SSJ to try to match you up with a suitable roommate, we'll be happy to try to do so. Over the last 24 years we've been operating these spiritual pilgrimages we've seen many people become friends for life. (As well, we've had several marriages result from people meeting on our journeys.) Be open! Be flexible! It will be a rich and wonderful experience!
Per our Terms and Conditions, we will hold the registration for the trip open until 60 days before the departure date (or later if possible) in order to try to match you with someone. If by that date we have not been able to match you with a roommate, you will be responsible to pay the single supplement. If you would like to be matched with a roommate, please register early.

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: This is the additional price you will pay to have your own private room throughout the journey.
$439.00 for payments via check or bank wire


Our 2018 Sacred Sites Journey to EASTER ISLAND ended on May 5th.

To receive information about our upcoming Sacred Sites Journeys in 2018 visit our Homepage
OR email

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and a Travel Discount Coupon that you can use to save $$ on an upcoming spiritual journey with us,
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NOTE: All text on this webpage are the Copyright of Sacred Sites Journeys/ Heartlight Fellowship.

Sacred Sites Journeys is NOT affiliated with any other sacred travel company.
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are using our text and photos. We did not give them permission to do so.
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Updated 2/23/2018

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