During our Easter break in Laos we had a very tough introduction to kayaking.
We were told that we would have two very experienced instructors with us on the water to teach us and that the river would be easy (perfect for beginners). What we weren’t told was the fact that one of the instructors couldn’t swim and the other one couldn’t speak English and between them they had just over two months of experience. Within the first 5 minutes we hit some rapids and Husband capsized and lost his kayak. I managed to go thru that one but during the next one I capsized as well (incredibly proud that I held on to my kayak and paddle). This happened several times more.
We spent an incredibly tough four hours kayaking. With no opportunity to give up (our transport had gone ahead and was waiting for us) we had no other choice but to continue to the pick-up point. The French family that joined us for those few days trekking and kayaking were very helpful and tired to do the instructor’s jobs and explain everything.
I remember when we signed up it, I was thinking: why only four hours? I wanted to do more! Hahahah after 3 hours of fighting with rapids and strong currents and trying to basically stay in the kayak I wanted to cry …and we still had more than an hour to go. My arms were killing me, there was no time to rest or relax and had to go on. It didn’t help that I wouldn’t admit to the fact that I was exhausted. It was probably the toughest four hours this year for me! I couldn’t move my arms for days and we had to have lots of massages every day for the rest of our stay in Laos (that was a good excuse).
Inspite of this experience, we came back to Hong Kong and booked an introduction to sea kayaking.
To learn, we headed to Stanley Beach to the HK Aqua-bound Centre and enjoyed a stress (and rapids) free two hour lesson. Our instructor spoke perfect English, was very experienced and knowledgeable, explained everything thoroughly and answered all our questions. It was a completely different experience compared to our incredibly stressful four hours in Laos and we both enjoyed it!
Last weekend we headed back to Stanley Beach. This time we booked kayaks in advance (only 50hkd per hour per kayak) and enjoyed a few hours on water.
That day we received regular hot weather warnings from the HK Observatory and it was good to escape the hot and humid city. Stanley is only a taxi ride away from central HK.
I’ve heard that the best place for kayaking in HK is in Sai Kung. Next time?