EIFlogo The Easter Island Foundation was founded in 1989 with the mission of building a library on Easter Island and promoting awareness of the island’s fragile heritage. This 501(c)(3) organization has partnered with the Rapanui people and other groups and has achieved the following goals:        

  • supported the creation of the William Mulloy Library at the Museo Antropológico P. Sebastián Englert Museum on Easter Island
  • established a process to provide annual scholarships for Rapanui students who wish to continue their education
  • established a process to provide grants for research and environmental projects on Easter Island
  • sponsored International symposia about Easter Island and Polynesia
  • published books about Easter Island and Polynesia as well as the Rapa Nui Journal
  • provided books and materials for the Indigenous Guides Association and for schools on Easter Island

We invite you to join with us to help preserve this special island in the center of the world. 

Please help the Easter Island Foundation!

We hope you will consider supporting the Easter Island Foundation and it’s mission with a donation today (click on the link below to make a donation). We deeply appreciate your support!

Easter Island Foundation
P.O. Box 6774
Los Osos CA 93412
(805) 528-8558 


We can be reached via email at: “books” at “islandheritage.org”

Easter Island Foundation Donation / Membership Form

2019 EIF Scholarship Recipients Announced

We are pleased to announce that the following 13 students will receive scholarships from the Easter Island Foundation in 2019:

Guillermo Alvarez Rivera (Industrial Engineering & Applied Mathematics); Lene Troncoso Riroroko (Medicine – Surgery); José Calderón Fati (Engineering in Conservation of Natural Resources); Mahani Salinas Atan, (Law); Maeha Leon Duran (Fashion Design); Brayan Pate Tepano (Physical training – Nutrition and Dietetics); Terangi Riroroco Oyarzun (Logistics & Transportation); Rodrigo Araki Rojas (Dentistry); Tea Tuki Pakarati (Culture & Tourism); Micaela Anakena Cofré Pakarati (Phonoaudiology);  Ariki Merino Rapu (Medicine); Tipanie Blanco Velásquez (Medicine); Henua Pakarati Díaz (Business Administration). 

We thank all of our generous donors who have contributed to the Easter Island Foundation Scholarship Program, especially the Fraternal Order of Moai Foundation! Visit the link below to read more about our EIF’s Scholarship Program and our past and present recipients.

Easter Island Foundation Scholarship Awards

EIF’s best-selling guidebook, Easter Island, the Essential Guide


Kay Sanger, ISBN: 978-1-880636-30-5; Soft cover, 214 pages, color photos with black & white illustrations, 2015 – $22 [#KS15]    

The most complete and up-to-date guidebook to Easter Island, this unique publication will provide readers with information about exploring the island, important sites to visit, history, archaeology and the Rapanui people, along with where to stay, play, eat and shop. Click on the link below to order. Very Limited availability.

Book Order Form

Rapa Nui Journal Volume 31:1 & 2 is here!

rnj_cover Articles include: Revisiting Rapa Nui Mataà (Torrence et al.) and Sailors’ “Bring-Backs” From the Nineteenth Century New England Whaling Industry: A Wooden Moai From Rapa Nui (Richard Michael Gramly). Reports & Commentaries include: Comparisons of Moriori, Maori, and Easter Island Cognates (Rhys Richards) and Terevaka Archaeological Outreach (TAO) 2017/2018 Field Report: Archaeology Provides Future Opportunities (Britton L. Shepardson et al.) For  Rapa Nui Journal subscriptions (print/digital), please contact UH Press: 

Subscribe to the Rapa Nui Journal – UH Press

Read about our partnership with University of Hawaii Press below: The Easter Island Foundation is thrilled to announce a new partnership with University of Hawaii Press to resume publication of the Rapa Nui Journal. The Rapa Nui Journal (RNJ) serves as a forum for interdisciplinary scholarship in the humanities and social sciences on Easter Island and the Eastern Polynesian region. Abstracts for RNJ articles are published in English, Spanish or Rapanui. “We are very excited to work with the Easter Island Foundation to publish Rapa Nui Journal and to assist in managing their membership process,” said Pamela Wilson, Journals Manager at UH Press. “We look forward to connecting with Foundation members and bringing their journal to a larger audience.” “As a nonprofit publisher known for our publications in Pacific Island studies, we feel particularly compatible with the mission of the Easter Island Foundation,” said UH Press Interim Director and Publisher Joel Cosseboom. RNJ joins other established Pacific Island studies journals published by UH Press, including The Contemporary Pacific: A Journal of Island AffairsAsian Perspectives: The Journal of Archaeology for Asia and the Pacific and Oceanic Linguistics. Through UH Press, back issues of the Rapa Nui Journal can be read online at Project MUSE. Readers may also receive e-mail alerts of new RNJ content posted online. As part of the agreement, UH Press will offer the Foundation assistance with managing its member database, journal archives, marketing, subscriptions, warehousing and shipping. EIF memberships, RNJ subscriptions, and RNJ contributor guidelines may be found on the UH Press website. “The Easter Island Foundation is pleased to be welcomed into the family of publications of the University of Hawaii Press as they assume the publication of the Rapa Nui Journal,” said David L. Rose, President of the Easter Island Foundation. “Rapa Nui Journal has a long history of supporting the publication and dissemination of Polynesian research starting with the hand-typed Rapa Nui Notes over 30 years ago. From that humble beginning, the Rapa Nui Journal became a strong, peer-reviewed voice of research about Rapa Nui and Polynesia. We look forward to a long and successful partnership with UH Press as we begin this next phase of the Rapa Nui Journal. For more details, please contact The Easter Island Foundation office (books “at” islandheritage.org), or UH Press Journals Manager Pamela Wilson at (808) 956-6790 or pwilson6@hawaii.edu. Volume 32 will be published sometime in fall of 2019.

Important information for visitors to Rapa Nui

Two forms are now required for visiting Rapa Nui:

1.  A print out of your reservation for accommodation authorized by SERNATUR, indicating the address of the place where you will be staying or a letter of invitation from a person belonging to the Rapa Nui community (or another authorized person).

2. Three days prior to arrival, you must complete an online Unique Entry Form (FUI).  It cannot be completed sooner than that. After filling it out, you will receive a confirmation e-mail that you must present before the Chilean Investigation Police (PDI) at the airport. Remember that if you don’t have the form, you won’t be able to board.

Please note that tourists can stay a maximum of 30 days, and that the form can only be filled out 3 days prior to your arrival. If you have any questions, contact your hotel or visit the website of the Ministry of the Interior and Public Security of Chile link below:

Ministry of the Interior and Public Security of Chile

Below is a link with additional travel information:

Travel requirements to Easter Island (Rapa Nui)

Image result for mau henua

Update from Parque Nacional Rapa Nui

Currently, the only sales point for the purchase of tickets to enter the sites in Rapa Nui National Park is the official ticket office (Boleteria) on the main street, Atamu Tekena. Please note:

  • For international visitors, passes cost $US80 for adults and $US40 for children under 18. 

  • Each visitor must have a pass to enter the Rapa Nui National Park

  • National Park hours are 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday through Sunday

  • The ticket will be checked at each of the tourist sites in the National Park

  • Tourists may visit the sites of Rano Raraku and Orongo only once each during the ten day period for which the ticket is valid.

A link is included below to a video produced by Ma’u Henua with important details about the National Park ticket and access.

Visitor Information for Rapa Nui National Park

Eating Up Easter, a new film by Sergio M. Rapu and Elena Rapu


The iconic statues and sensationalized mysteries of Easter Island (Rapa Nui) have drawn the interest of the world for centuries, attracting curious visitors to its shores. Today, this tiny, barren island is experiencing an economic boon as tourism skyrockets. Yet the indigenous culture and the island’s fragile environment are suffering. EATING UP EASTER, directed by Rapanui filmmaker Sergio Mata’u Rapu, explores the dilemma his people are facing. Crafted as a story passed down to his newborn son, Sergio intertwines the authentic history of the island with the stories of four islanders. In their own voices, these Rapanui reveal the reality of modern life and the actions they are taking to preserve their culture and environment amidst rapid development. A local ecologist leads recycling efforts to tackle the mounting trash arriving with tourists and the waves of plastic washing up on shore. Two musicians struggle to build a free music school they hope will preserve cultural practices and reunite their fractured community. Sergio’s father, the island’s first Rapanui Governor, attempts to balance traditions against the advantages of development while building a mini-mall in the island’s only town. EATING UP EASTER reveals and suggests ways forward in tackling the universal complexities of balancing growth and sustainability faced by local communities worldwide (text from the website eatingupeaster.com

Link below to the trailer and an interview with filmmaker Sergio Mata’u Rapu:

Eating Up Easter


Bring Back Hoa Hakananai’a!

Inspired by a request from the Council of Elders and the Easter Island Development Commission, the Chilean government has formed a committee to ask for the return of Moai Hoa Hakananai’a from the British Museum, where it has been on display for decades. The statue was removed from a house at the ceremonial center of ‘Orongo in 1868 by the crew of the HMS Topaze. It is a unique moai, sculpted of basalt with the back of the statue decorated with intricately carved bas-relief designs, including birdmen. The request states that as representatives of the Rapanui people, they ask the Chilean Government officials to initiate negotiations with the United Kingdom to recover their moai and return it to their island as an important symbol to close the sad chapter of abuse of the rights of the Rapanui people by foreign navigators in the nineteenth century. Rapanui people yearn for Hoa Hakananai’a to return to the island, and feel that there is mana (spiritual power) that resides within it. The film Te Kuhane o te Tupuna: El Espiritu de los Ancestros (The Spirit of the Ancestors), a 2015 documentary by Leonardo Pakarati and Paula Rossetti, deals with this subject.


Watch the documentary online via KCET:

Te Kuhane o te Tupuna


Norway plans to return items from Kon Tiki Museum to Rapa Nui

Art Daily reports that Norway’s Kon Tiki Museum has agreed to return thousands of artifacts removed from Easter Island by the explorer Thor Heyerdahl during his trans-Pacific raft expeditions in the 1950s. An agreement was signed by representatives of Oslo’s Kon-Tiki Museum and officials of Chile’s Ministry of Culture at a ceremony in Santiago as part of a state visit by Norway’s King Harald V and Queen Sonja. “Our common interest is that the objects are returned and, above all, delivered to a well-equipped museum,” said the museum’s director Martin Biehl. He stated that the repatriation process will take time, however. Heyerdahl’s family said he had long wanted to return the pieces collected in expeditions in the mid-1950s and mid-1980s, that are currently exhibited in the Oslo museum. The signing ceremony was also attended by Thor Heyerdahl Jr. who accompanied his father on one of his expeditions to the island in 1955, when he was 17.  “The repatriation is a fulfillment of my father’s promise to the Rapanui authorities that the objects would be returned after they had been analyzed and published,” he said.  Chile’s Culture Minister Consuelo Valdes said in a statement, “As a ministry, we have the mission to respond to the just demands of the Rapanui people to recover their cultural heritage. Today, one more step has been taken through this historic agreement with Norway, which will enable the return of valuable cultural and symbolic pieces.” 

Educational Programs we support:


Terevaka Archaeological Outreach Program

tao   TAO’s mission is to offer experiential learning opportunities specific to cultural and natural resources that surround the local community; to promote awareness and expertise in conservation measures and sustainable development; and document and study both cultural and natural phenomena of the past and today.  TAO’s successful 2017-18 field season and descriptions of their latest projects, including 3-D photography and modelling, use-wear analysis of obsidian blades, and design and construction of vertical hydroponic gardens using recycled materials are detailed in the upcoming issue of  Rapa Nui Journal Vol. 31. EIF supports TAO and their commitment to education and preservation of the natural and cultural heritage of Easter Island. With generous donations from the Fraternal Order of Moai Foundation, EIF is able to continue to provide support to Terevaka Archaeological Outreach’s educational mission. Please visit the link below to watch a new video about the 2017 TAO program:

TAO Promotional Video 2017


 Toki Rapa Nui School of Music and the Arts


In a 2015 fundraising campaign, Toki Rapa Nui raised over $60,000 towards the first phase of building their first project, the School of Music and the Arts. Toki Rapa Nui is a non-profit organization that seeks to protect the social, cultural and environmental heritage of Rapa Nui. (Pictured above: Mahani Teave, Director of Toki Rapa Nui, with a student). 

With generous donations from the Fraternal Order of Moai Foundation and our members, EIF is able to continue to provide support for Toki Rapa Nui’s educational mission.

For more information about Toki Rapa Nui, please visit the link below. 

Toki Rapa Nui Facebook page

Visit the link below for the Toki Rapa Nui Newsletter:

Toki Rapa Nui Newsletter March 2019

New Publication from Rapanui Press


Rapanui Press website: 

Rapanui Press


Saints on Easter Island

Joan Seaver Kurze

Saints on Easter Island, by Joan Seaver Kurze, tells the history of the carving of the most prominent statue, Maria, Madre de Rapa Nui and her Son, housed within the Church of the Holy Cross on Easter Island along with other carved saints. The book begins with the story of how Seaver Kurze came to Easter Island and initiated her research on the woodcarving tradition. Seaver Kurze details the history of Catholicism on Rapa Nui and describes the political climate in Chile and on the island when the statue of Maria was carved in 1970. Later she explains how Father David Reddy, who arrived in the 1980s, is thought to be the inspiration for the continuing tradition of creating carvings for the church, as he proposed the idea to the island’s carvers of replacing the church’s plaster saints with carved wooden statues. The notion of cultural overlay, with relation to the church carvings, is introduced as a concept that allowed the islanders to maintain their traditional values, while incorporating and adapting to the modern influence of outsiders. The book also includes versions of the legend of Tu‛u Ko Iho, as recorded by Katherine Routledge and Alfred Metraux, along with the lyrics to “Maria Rapa Nui”, a beautiful hymn familiar to everyone who has had the opportunity to attend Sunday Mass on Easter Island. This book is recommended for those interested in contemporary Rapanui history and the woodcarving tradition of the island. Seaver Kurze’s previous book, Ingrained Images. Wood Carvings from Rapa Nui, accompanied an exhibition of carvings from Easter Island at the Maxwell Museum of Anthropology in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1997. She has a PhD in Anthropology from the University of California, Los Angeles and was the founding President of the Easter Island Foundation.

To order this book:

Saints on Easter Island