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The Tapati Rapa Nui Festival is for locals and by locals; however, tourists are welcome to be spectators. Easter Island comes to life with truly authentic festivities celebrating a deep appreciation and respect for the culture by the Rapa Nui people, complete with music, dance, traditional sports, competitions, feasts and fireworks.
It’s held in the magical setting of the Rano Raraku crater and consists of three traditional races: the Pora, the Aka Venga and the Vaka Ama.
The Pora is the first race of the Taua Rapa Nui triathlon; it consists of paddling across the lake inside the Rano Raraku crater on a reed boat. All competitors are dressed in traditional costumes and adorned with body paint.
The main events take place each night on the stage at Hanga Vare Vare, while daytime competitions such as horse racing take place at different locations all around the island. It is a fabulous festival that involves everyone who is on the island at that time, locals and visitors alike. Festival activities take place both during the day and each evening, and we can provide you with details of the exact timetable of events nearer the time. Highlights include the Haka Pei (sliding down the island’s steepest slope on banana trunks), the Rapa Nui triathlon, horse racing and the group dance competitions in the evenings.