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Presenter : Ian Wright

Chile and Easter Island

Ian Wright‘s journey down the length of Chile takes him from the driest desert in the world to the southern-most point before the Antarctic Ocean. Nearly three thousand miles of stunningimage: ian wright in chilecountryside encompass a vast and beautiful country with a variety of terrains and climates.

The scorching aridity of the Atacama Desert is a great preserver of history and Ian sees beautiful hillside geolyths made hundreds of years ago and ancient mummies, their glossy black hair still neatly braided.

From the northern deserts where the llama farmers continue their forefathers ways; to the modern technology of the largest telescope in the world; to the spectacle of a pilgrimage of thousands of devotees… finally reaching the countryís geographical and commercial centre – Santiago.

From Santiago Ian continues south to Temuco on a luxurious wood panelled 1930’s train to visit the indigenous Mapuche Indians who still Magellenic penguin colonystruggle to retain their own language and identity in their on-going fight against Chilean colonisation. Nearby, across the lakes and volcanoes, live 8th generation German ex-pats who have been allowed to retain their native language along with their distinctive architecture, music and strudel.

Patagonia is penguin country. The wind and weather conditions here can be brutal but the astounding natural beauty of the glacier-streamed mountains in Torres del Paine National Park more than makes up for the chill factor.

Aerial view of Juan Fernandez chain of Islands, including Robinson Crusoe IslandNearing the end of his trip, Ian flies north to Robinson Crusoe Island, named after Daniel Defoe’s famous novel Robinson Crusoe, which was set there. He finds it’s not as exotic and palm-lined as the book would have you believe, but the local people are hospitable and lobsters are excellent.

Finally, 2,000 miles west of Santiago, Ian ends his journey on Easter Island, the most remote inhabited place on earth. The people here are Polynesians who are segregated from mainland Chileans and the island is also home to huge protective moais that continue to be one of the biggest archaeological mysteries of all time.

Places Mentioned - Chile

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