The monsoon is not just one big storm that engulfs November in rain. Rather it is a season of higher than average rainfall and stronger winds. The monsoon builds as it were. You start to notice the higher tides from April on. As summer turns to autumn the leaves don’t change colour but the sea goes from calm to more choppy conditions.
By October the winds and the heavy rain showers are apparent. By the middle of November it is starting to lash it down with rain. In a bad monsoon villages along the coast get flooded. Suddenly the bungalows on stilts make more sense as they keep your bed far from the sodden ground. The rains start to ease up by mid-December. By Christmas the weather is great again but the sea sometimes has a few waves.
During this time there are moments when the conditions are perfect to kiteboard close to Mae Haad at the famous sand spit off the coast of Chaloklum called Malibu beach. Other than during the storm season the sea at Chaloklum is calm with little wind, but when the winds start up adrenalin junkies from all over the island appear at Malibu beach to zip up and down the coastal waters propelled by air-filled kites. For those good at the sport, there is the chance of lots of air time.
The waters off Malibu beach offer a shallow reef and a sandy bed. The bay catches the best wind. These two factors make this the best kiteboard surfing spot in Koh Phangan for a brief time.
Kiteboarding is a great sport. It is quicker than surfing and quicker to learn. Once you have mastered the basics it is very addictive. You can get up and being pulled by the wind in about 3 days tuition.
There are 3 kiteboard schools in Koh Phangan – Kiteboarding Asia in Ban Tai, One2Kite at Phangan Beach Resort (Bantai) and Cuttlebone Kiteboarding Centre in Thongsala. You can easily find their websites and Facebook pages (if they aren’t ‘down’). Another good place to look is on Wind Guru. It is the best site for following weather conditions.
To get from Mae Haad to Chaloklum takes about 10 minutes in a car or on a motorbike. Just take the road that heads east. It is a main road and impossible to miss.
A word of caution – cheaper travel insurance policies won’t cover sports like kiteboarding; although, the chances of getting injured are minimal.
Finally, the video above is interesting as it is filmed at Malibu beach, Ban Tai and Mae Haad. Near the beginning of the Youtube clip you see him fly over the sandbar that connected Koh Ma to the mainland.