|The spectacular mirador (scenic view) overlooking the crater of volcano Rano Kau. The notch in the far side of the rim is caused by the ocean eroding into the volcano from seaward.||The entrance to the restored village at Orongo, atop volcano Rano Kau. This was the only attraction that had an attendant collecting an admission fee (the fee covered all other attractions, too).|
|The receipt for the $5,000 park admission fee ... actually, it's in pesos, which is about $8 US.|
Monday, June 14, 2004 (Day 5 Ashore)
After a dreary and wet afternoon yesterday, today the weather is absolutely gorgeous—a few high clouds in a blue sky, warm but not hot, with a pleasant breeze.
I plan to visit the restored ceremonial village at Orongo, which was used during the Birdman culture that came after the moai-building culture. The plan is to take a cab south from Hanga Roa to the park entrance at the top of volcano Rano Kau, then explore the park on foot and walk back down to Hanga Roa.
After breakfast, I walked into the center of town and caught a cab (6,000 pesos). It was a fairly long ride up a rough dirt road, passing through grasslands with an occasional grove of trees; to seaward Rano Kau ended in sheer cliffs. Near the top the driver stopped to let me enjoy a mirador (scenic view) that had a spectacular view of the deep circular crater in the center of the volcano. At the end of road, he dropped me off in a parking lot and I went into the office to buy an admission ticket (5,000 pesos); it was good for multiple visits to all areas of Parque Nacional Rapa Nui.
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