Want to plan a kiting trip? Just got back from one? Post you experiences, questions and information here.
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There are several nice beaches on N.E coast about 20 miles from Taipei. (Tamshui, Keelung, Kingshang...don't know the exact translastion spell) You can Google them. Also there are some local kite clubs very friendly for foreigners.
Any other question in more details please don't feel shy to ask.
I figured I'd write up my experience. I had major help from 3 different people. Hank from TKC and Kyle. TKC is located in Tainan and their webpage is http://www.kiteboarding.com.tw/ I contacted a number of instructors but Hank and Kyle were the most responsive.
Kyle connected with me on Skype and was an immediate source of knowledge. He noted a really great price on rental equipment and was very helpful. The plan was to meet down in Tainan, but the wind ended up not being great the weekend I was in Taiwan, so I ended up not going down from Taipei. Kyle suggested the same. No use wasting time sitting on the beach hoping for wind.
I was emailing with Hank as well. Once again, he was a great source of knowledge for kiting in Taiwan. Seeing as the wind wasn't going to pull through he suggested I stay up in the Hsinchu area and check out Zhunan. Specifically a place called SPOT: http://www.spot.com.tw/
From the SPOT website I got a hold of Hill. Once again, kiters are awesome and Hill was extremely helpful. Hill is the instructor at SPOT and setup a taxi for me from the HSR. It was really easy and the driver picked me up and dropped me off at SPOT. I met Hill and she showed me the club, which was nice. The club members pay a yearly fee for access to the showers, seating area, and storage locker for boards, kites, etc. The location is complete with a hostel for those who wish to stay and kite or take lessons. Not very large, but more than enough for a number of people. When I was there, 2 French guys were staying in the Hostel and 1 Taiwanese guy. They were great and we ended up going for dinner when our session was over.
I also met Tony, the owner of the club. He runs the bar located closer to the beach as well. Tony was very welcoming and made me feel right at home. He strives to create a very close environment were the club members can relax and socialize. All of the club members were great too. Easy going friendly people.
The rental from SPOT consisted of a seat harness (the only XL harness), Kite (15m Ocean Rodeo but they have new Best kites as well just not as large), bar, 145 Crazy Fly Twin Tip, pump. They had what looked like skim boards and maybe a surfboard or two. What else do you need :smile: ? The rental was 3000 NTD (~$100 USD), which is not bad at all for a whole day.
The beach is wide open and very safe. It would be a great place to learn. Not many local people use the beach, which makes it very accessible for wind sports or surfing if the conditions were right.
I would highly recommend contacting Hill, Hank, and Kyle if you are looking for a location to kite out of or to start taking lessons. I'm sure there are more places around Taiwan to kite and they will help you out.
Hopefully, someone finds this info useful. I don't know when I'll be back in Taiwan, but I will be bringing my gear if I ever return!
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