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“Good kite spot for those living in SE Asia”

Seabreeze Kite Club
Ranked #1 of 6 Tours in Banda Aceh
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Seabreeze Kite Club in Aceh, Indonesia and Siargao, Philippines brings kiteboarders from complete beginners to riders who come to take kite surfing lessons,rip-up the waves, or just chill out and watch the show that is Kite Beach. This is just a few minutes walk from your accommodation at Yudi's Placein Lhoknga, Aceh, Indonesia and Kermit Surfcamp in Siargao, Philippines. Comprised of a friendly staff of fully qualified IKO Instructors Seabreeze Kite Club offers the very best of kite lessons.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Food available for purchase
Reviewed 12 July 2016

With its good wind, warm water, big beach and friendly, professional kite school/rental shop, this is a nice place to kite if you're living in SE Asia and want a very chilled out kite vacation for a few days. If, however, you're from somewhere farther afield, I don't think it would be worth hours of transit time and expensive flights to get to - you might find it a bit disappointing. But for those of us living in SE Asia and suffering from wind withdrawals, this is a pretty nice nearby spot. Here's what we experienced:

The wind: The windy season is from about June through August, but note that there are periods when they will have zero breeze for a week at a time. If you want the best shot at getting wind, book your trip at the last minute after confirming the forecast. When it's windy, it's pretty consistent. In our 6 days there, I rode the 7, 9 and 13. Most days, the wind is side-on or sometimes side-shore (so not idea for wave-riding, but good for freestyle). Note: there's really not much else to do in the area, so if you get some no-wind days, you might go a bit stir-crazy.

The water and waves: The water is warm and clean, and pretty choppy on the inside before you get to the waves. Upwind, there's a small jetty, and in its shadow, the water is pretty smooth (but not butter-flat). About 200 meters from shore are the waves, which are reef-break and nice shape, and there's a keyhole/channel to get out. But the prevailing side-on wind direction makes it not ideal for wave-riding.

The spot, shop and kite school: The beach is long, wide and clean. Maurice and Jo have set up a nice little bungalow school and rental shop on the beach, where you can relax and have some cold water in the shade on swings, hammocks or picnic tables when taking breaks from kiting. They're super friendly, helpful and very good instructors, and they've got good gear for rent. As for a former kite instructor myself, I can attest to their proficiency as teachers - they were getting students up and riding very quickly, and they kept everyone quite safe.

Local cultural considerations: The locals are very nice, especially if you speak a little bit of Bahasa. Several asked to take photos with me - they were so excited to talk with a Westerner who spoke their language. :-) You should note though that Banda Aceh has very conservative Islamic hudud laws, so that means there's no alcohol (except for what you can smuggle in yourself), and all women - including non-muslims - are supposed to wear conservative clothing that covers everything but your face, hands and feet. (I wasn't keen on wearing a hijab or long sleeves, so I wore a hat and a light beach coverup over my tank top - locals seemed to be fine with that.) If you go during Ramadan, note that you will be kept up at night by prayers or singing that's blasted from mosque loudspeakers.

All in all, we had a nice kite trip there and we'll be back for sure...but it's only a 80 minute flight from where we live. Some kiters who flew from further away seemed to be a bit disappointed though. So that's why I'd say it's great as a local kite destination for those living in SE Asia. Maurice and Jo are fantastic - they're really great people and they're putting their heart into Seabreeze.

Thank C-RonSanFrancisco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (59)
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"beautiful spot"
in 3 reviews
"wind direction"
in 3 reviews
"beach bar"
in 2 reviews
"few weeks"
in 2 reviews
"cold drinks"
in 2 reviews
"learning environment"
in 2 reviews
"quiet beach"
in 2 reviews
"great company"
in 2 reviews
"learn how"
in 2 reviews
"great vibe"
in 2 reviews
"yudi's place"
in 2 reviews
in 35 reviews
in 18 reviews
in 18 reviews
in 10 reviews
in 7 reviews
in 5 reviews

23 - 27 of 59 reviews

Reviewed 11 July 2016 via mobile

Pretty fun kite spot. We got wind everyday, one day on the 9, one day on the 11 and two days on the 13. Fun waves on the outside and some more mellow water on the inside for tricks or learning. The wind isn't as consistent as say, Brazil, but it's very uncrowded, the water is warm and the people are friendly. Nice and safe for learning. Easy weekend trip for folks living in the area. Stay at yudis for cheap clean simple lodging and good food, walk to the beach.

1  Thank Adam R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 July 2016

I’ve known Maurice and Joanna since a holiday in Paros a few years ago, they are kind, helpful and enterprising people who have set up their own kite school at Llokgna near Banda Aceh on the northern tip of Sumatra.
To give an example of how helpful they are my kite sustained a leaking valve on the first day, Maurice quickly sourced the part and got it repaired for me that night so that I was able to use it the next day. Joanna is also a lovely person and always willing to help with tips, advice and to launch or land the kite.
They have worked hard to provide a good set up on the beach, a hut with plenty of shade, tables, chairs and hammocks, cold drinks are available and wi fi.
Trip Advisor is there for contributors to provide an honest opinion though and therefore I have to say that the spot was not in any way worth travelling 7000 miles for and upon leaving after a total of 6 days I felt very disappointed. I’ve kitesurfed in the UK, Brazil, Greece, France, the Dominican Republic, Kenya and Sri Lanka and I have to say that Llokgna was the worst place that I’ve experienced by a long long way. Had I not spent time in other parts of Sumatra on non-kitesurfing activities I would have been very unhappy indeed.
The area is also described as a spectacular huge lagoon on the Seabreeze website thats ideal for beginners, I’m sorry but at best there is a little bit of poetic licence coming in to play! To explain firstly for wave riding conditions are reasonably good with waves from 1-2.5 metres breaking on the outside reefs. The wind is excellent cross onshore with no gusts. For the average intermediate rider who likes to blast over flat water though the area is very limited and I was advised to stay away from particular areas in order to avoid being swept out on to the reefs by the rip currents which further restricted the space, the distance between the beach and the reefs ranges from 80-200 metres at most with very choppy water or waves which makes a good blast over the water to practise technique difficult. I lost my board on a couple of occasions and it was taken way away from where it started by the currents. Had it not been retrieved by another kiter on both occasions I feel sure that I would have lost it. There is also a current close to the shore which takes you downwind quickly before you can even launch which will be in deep water as the beach shelves steeply. I understand that the learning area is confined to the upwind end of the beach in a shallow section which appears very small indeed and in no time the beginner would be downwind and having to walk back. Personally I don’t agree that it is an ideal area for beginners having seen other places on my travels with far more room and suitability. In fairness we did not see anyone learning (the instructor was complaining about the lack of business and that he had not earned any money at all since getting there a few weeks earlier at the beginning of the season).
I was informed that there are different beaches that can be used but this appeared to be the only one for the prevailing wind direction. We did take a scooter and explore some other beaches, the ones we found were strewn with rubbish, used tampons etc. We were aware that Joanna cleans their beach every three days just to keep it in order as the locals appear to have no concept of the importance of preserving and maintaining what could be an undoubted asset. Whilst there are some scenic locations the area is not the paradise described.
All in all Llokgna was a huge disappointment and I feel sorry for Maurice and Joanna who are trying to make a go of it there, they are also not helped by the fact that the area is staunch Muslim, beer has to be smuggled in to the affiliated guest house Yudi’s and is relatively expensive, (see my separate review) and it would be extremely difficult to get any other alcoholic drink. In fairness to Joanna the restriction of alcohol availability was pointed out to me beforehand, but nevertheless if you do like a tipple in the evenings after a day on the water you will be disappointed unless you bring some duty free. Ladies will also be made to feel quite uncomfortable in public if they wear shorts and/or their head and shoulders are not covered. A tip is to dress appropriately and carry a headscarf, the latter made all the difference for my wife. We went during Ramadan, unaware of the fact that amplified prayers are blasted out at full volume sometimes all night, we lost three nights sleep out of the 7 we stayed in the area so do check Ramadan dates and unless you really want the total cultural experience avoid it.
There is also zip to do in the evenings but to sit around in your guest house, apart from a couple of trips there is also nothing at all to do for any non kitesurfing partners so you’ll need to bring something to amuse yourselves.
Conforming to local requirements, lack of alcohol, nothing to do apart from kiteboarding, being kept awake all night during Ramadan with prayers blasting out would not have been so much of a problem had the kiteboarding been good enough to make it all worth it, the trouble was that it just wasn’t. Llokgna will never be a decent kitesurfing resort because the spot isn’t up to it and the surrounding infrastructure does not support or encourage tourism.
Sorry Maurice and Joanna but there it is.

3  Thank M00sej00se
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MauriceKruytzer, Owner at Seabreeze Kite Club, responded to this reviewResponded 11 July 2016

Dear Ken,

Thanks for the personal review.
First of all we would like to say: We do not understand that you came back for the second time to our kitesurfing spot if the spot was not up to your standards.

We understand your point of view however this review is purely based on the kite location and not the quality of the kitesurfing school. We have many repeat clients of all levels returning to us as they tell us they love the conditions here.

The spot has a reef far out in the water otherwise there would not be the possibility of waveriding here. We explain the spot to each person who visits us like yourself and the "reef area" is not for beginners. We have a beginner area for guests who can express themselves and it can hold up to many kites and is perfectly safe without any current.

We are a kitesurfing school and it is natural for beginners to losing their board and this a common factor in the learning process. We teach all our students to be able to perform this task efficiently as per the IKO standards, however you did not take lessons from us. It is all in the learning process and we always get the board back to the client if you can not manage to retrieve the board by yourself.

We have many guests coming and returning year after year loving the kitesurfing spot and visiting us here. They all enjoying the tranquility, strong winds, nature, Indonesian culture and the family vibe that we create. We offer beer and soft drinks but if you are looking for party or bars then this is not your place to visit as clearly stated on our website so I do not think we have mislead anyone on this fact.

At our kitesurfing spot on the beach you can lay in your bikini, no problem! However
respecting the local culture in town is nothing more then normal but wearing a headscarf is definitely not necessary for Non muslims. Check our common faq. where we highlight the most common questions: http://seabreezekiteclub.com/faq-and-contact-us/

We are proud as a undiscovered kitesurfing spot but we see already year after year the increase of kiters including beginners who stay with us to learn the sport and interdependently kite. We currently have a full guest house and many lessons with a great atmosphere at our beach hut with wonderful wind, warm water, music, electricity, wifi, hammocks and other seating and lunch delivery and many satisfied customers.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 June 2016

The Kite-school is perfectly located on the beach with a cool hut at the beachfront offering a shelter from the winds and where you can simply chill out in the hammoks, have a drink and recover form an exhausting kite session.
Maurice and his wife Joanne are very kind people who respond very fast to any requests (facebook, e-mail, etc)and ar ehappy to give advice for lodging in Lhoknga. Maurice and his instructors are very experienced in kitesurfing providing the best teaching possible to their students. I think it is very important to metion that they pay high respect to safety. The courses offered (also advanced freestyle and wave lessons) are very good value for money.
The spot at the beach offers conditions for everyone, usually the wind is cross-onshore with awesome waves at the outside and flat water closer to the beach. This makes it a good spot for advanced riders as well as for beginners.

In a nutshell I can highly recommend a kitesurf adventure at Seabreeeze Kite Club you will love it.

Btw I've been here for six days now and we had 17+ knots for five days ;-)

Thank DavidM255106
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 14 June 2016

The Seabreeze team was very helpful, fun, kind and professional! I spent 4 days with them on the beach, learning everything about kitesurfing, wind and safety! My instructor was very patient and knew a lot. He made me feel safe and comfortable in the water, which gave me confidence. I loved it so much I'm going back in August!! Can't wait to learn more and get my own kite surf equipment!! I strongly recommend them !

Thank islandgirl4ever2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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