Easter Island (or Rapa Nui) is a Chilean island in the Pacific Ocean, though the original inhabitants were Polynesian. 🗿
It's believed that the Rapa Nui people arrived on the island around 1200AD and thrived there, as evidenced by the many Moai heads which were painstakingly carved and moved around the land. It's still a mystery as to how these heads were made and transported - a technology that was perhaps lost when the Rapa Nui people began to decline due to excessive land clearing, deforestation and the introduction of the Polynesian rat.
When Europeans arrived on Easter Island in 1722, the island's remaining population of 2,000-3,000 was quickly depleted to around 111 people by disease, Peruvian slave trading and emigration to Polynesian neighbours, such as Tahiti.
Today, Easter Island is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most remote inhabited islands in the world. The mysteries of the Moai heads, the island's severe isolation and its troubled history are what draw visitors to discover this intriguing and unique Pacific isle.