Returning from our ship’s tour about 14:15, we still had 4 hours until the last tender was scheduled to depart the dock, so lots of time for some additional exploring. Judi didn’t want to go for a hike, so she spent some time browsing the ample supply of local junk on display around the harbour. With no interest in the looking at the same stuff we saw a few days ago, I set off along the waterfront road, with no plan other than walking for a couple of hours to wherever the road took me.
Easter Island 09:00 to 17:00
Yes, we beat the odds, as the weather cooperated. In the almost initial millpond, Sea Princess anchored just offshore, transporting everyone ashore to Easter Island, using the ship’s tender service. We booked one of the sold out tours that visited Vinapu, a Moai site still awaiting restoration, Ahu Akivi with 7 standing Moai and Orongo Village, the ceremonial village that hosted the birdman contest with the winner’s tribe ruling the island for the next year. With getting ashore a very remote possibility, this was one of the highlights for both of us and it certainly didn’t disappoint.
Easter Island – 09:00 to 19:00
Yes, we finally beat the odds, as the frequently inclement winter weather relented, permitting us to visit Easter Island. This is a common port on the World Cruise, but we are the first ship in about 5 years to succeed in getting passengers ashore. With the poor success rate you would think the government officials and local businesses would be welcoming us with open arms. Alas, local officialdom threw up roadblocks and made frequent changes, sometimes less than hourly. Being a Sunday, most businesses, other than a couple of restaurants were closed. Regardless, we thoroughly enjoyed the experience and actually seeing the Moai statues was amazing.
Easter Island – Approaching the Anchorage
This morning on checking out on the balcony we were amazed to be welcomed by a sky full of twinkling stars, a good omen for today’s visit to Easter Island. As I write this update, it is now 08:25 and we are on our final approach to the anchorage at the west end of the island. Currently about 1/2 mile from shore we have no wind and a very low swell. We have slowly passed the town and a small coaster lying at anchor and are now manoeuvring into position. Basically, it is as close as you will ever get to a mill pond, on a remote island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.
No guarantees until the ship is brought up to the anchor, after the splash, and rumble and the tenders are actually in the water. However, at the present moment I would say it looks good for getting ashore at Easter Island. Still with fingers crossed, as only about 1 in 7 ships actually manage to put people ashore.