May 27 2012
For some, a holiday on the beach is meant to be a relaxing, low-energy affair. Wake up late, shuffle to your beach chair, and never break a sweat. For others, a trip to the beach is a time for adventure and extreme sports — like kite surfing. If you’re a kite surfer, or a wannabe kite surfer, one of your top wanna-go destinations may be the sands of Mui Ne. Several places along Mui Ne offer equipment rentals and lessons for beginning kite surfers.
Mui Ne provides an ideal habitat for a wind surfer — six out of seven days a week enough wind blows to fill a kite’s sail. As well, during the low season — and the high season for that matter — very few people need to be avoided swimming in the waters.
At first glance, while watching kite surfers jump and twist over the waves, you may get the idea that kite surfing is easy. In truth, it is extremely complicated; one must expertly manoeuvre the waves while using a large kite to capture the wind as a means of propulsion.
Just watching people getting lessons on the beach on how to control the kite seems difficult enough. Luckily, this isn’t something you have to jump in the deep end to start; you can find lessons at the beachfront of almost every resort. Although there are many to choose from, two of the more reputable kite surf shops are the Rip Curl Surf School and Kite-N-Surf. Both offer lessons in multiple languages with certified instructors at comparable prices.
If you choose to take lessons you should realise you’re making a couple of commitments, the first of which is time. Every teacher I talked to said that a beginner would require at least five to 10 hours of instruction, broken up over between two and five days, before they were even ready to hit the water. During this time you will learn about the equipment, how to use it and proper surfing technique.
This brings me to the second kite surfing commitment, money. Kite surfing isn’t the cheapest thing to do in Vietnam. The average price for an hour of instruction with equipment is 1,000,000 VND, with five-hour packages slightly discounted at around the 4,250,000 VND price point. That might be a tough pill to swallow for a backpacker on a budget but if you have the cash to spare lessons here are likely half the price of what they’d be at a beach in the West.
Rip Curl School of Surf & Kitesurf
T: (09) 1805 7816
T: (012) 8601 3101
Travelfish.org always pays its way. No exceptions.