Koh Samui kayaking, diving and snorkeling, Thailand
Koh Samui kayaking, diving and snorkeling, Thailand

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Koh Samui Activities

Diving, snorkeling, sailing and kayaking

Diving:

 
Can the sea be any clearer?

Koh Samui and Koh Tao offer great diving opportunities and the area is a popular dive training center for the South East Asia region. Several reefs are located off the island's shores, with two of the most popular sites for advanced divers being Sail Rock and Angthong National Marine Park off the northern end of Samui. Plenty of fun for first-timers, accredited training can be undertaken with dive shops located in Chaweng, Lamai and Nathon for quite reasonable prices. (Read more...)

Snorkeling:

The bays of Samui contain many interesting coral reefs abounding with tropical fish and other creatures. Equipment can be rented from dive shops around the island or from your hotel.

Sailing:

 
Koh Samui Regatta

Koh Samui Regatta
The Koh Samui Regatta will be held off the shore of the Tradewinds Bungalow Resort on Chaweng Beach. The Regatta is timed to cater to the racing community after the China Sea Race and Manila's President's Cup Regatta. It also gives southern competitors the Easter break to make the voyage north and the Pattaya/Gulf of Thailand-based yachts the Songkran holiday to travel south. The website containing all relevant information is now up and running at www.samuiregatta.com. Please check in for Notice of Race and other updates on entries and sponsors.

Sea Kayaking:

 
A dream for kayaking...

Samui's shoreline and nearby islands harbour a wealth of marine, animal and plant life. For a close and leisurely look, there is no better option than to spend a few hours or a day in a sea kayak. Half-day, day and overnight guided trips are available through agencies in the Chaweng area. Kayaks can also be rented at the more popular beaches. Two companies can take you to the most scenic locations: Blue Star Kayaking and Sea Canoe.

 
  Blue Star Kayaking010205

Enjoy an amazing and unique experience among the breathtaking dream islands of Angthong National Marine Park. Explore caves and secret beaches by kayak under the supervision of our professional guides. Venture on foot through rainforest and narrow ravines to the “Green Lagoon,” a beautiful emerald saltwater lake with delightful rock formations. Discover the marine life as you snorkel in the sea from our fully equipped 23 meter escort vessel. Unforgettable!

 

Hiking:

Inland, Koh Samui features some scenic waterfalls that afford the leisurely hiker a pleasant few hours of exploration. Hin Lat Falls can be found south of Nathon. After arriving at the entrance to the falls, a 30-minute hike will take you to the top. Na Muang Falls is further south again, about a 2-Km walk from the marked turn-off.

Thai Cooking Lessons:

Learn how to prepare some famous Thai specialties, such as tom yam soup or red curry with chicken. More and more restaurants are now revealing the secrets behind their dishes during 2-hour lessons in fully-equipped, modern kitchens. Prices are around 900 Baht including lunch for two persons. Fruit and vegetable carving lessons are also quite popular. These will often include instructional booklets and carving tools in 6-hour courses for about 3000 Baht.

Muay Thai (Thai Boxing)

If you don’t mind the violence, a Thai boxing match is worth attending for the pure spectacle and the wild musical accompaniment, the ceremonial beginning of each match, and the frenzied betting around the stadium.

The training of a Thai boxer, particularly the relationship between the boxer and teacher, is highly ritualized. As the boxers enter the ring, they perform a special pre-fight dance known as the "ram muay". During the dance, they wear a headband given by their trainer. It is a sacred talisman earned after years of dedication to the art. The dance starts with "wai khru" -- each boxer kneeling and bowing three times, which is a show of respect to his teacher. With the ceremonies complete, the fight begins.

A match consists of five rounds of three minutes each. Accompanying the fight is music stimulated by action in the ring, rising and falling as the boxers battle it out. All surfaces of the body are considered fair targets, and any part of the body except the head may be used to strike an opponent. Common blows include high kicks to the neck, elbow thrusts to the face and head, knee hooks to the ribs, and low crescent kicks to the calf. A contestant may even grasp an opponent’s head between his hands and pull it down to meet an upward knee thrust (ouch!). Punching is considered the weakest of all blows and kicking merely a way to ‘soften up’ one’s opponent; most matches end with a knee or elbow strike.

The origins of this martial art and sport are thought to stretch back to the wars with the Burmese during the 15th century. Thailand’s first famous boxer was ‘Nai Khanom Tom’, who was said to have single-handedly defeated a dozen Burmese fighters in a wager for freedom. A Thai King, Phra Chao Seua (The Tiger King), is said to have been an incognito participant in many boxing matches in the early part of his reign. The sport has changed a lot from the days when boxers would wrap their fists in thick horsehide trimmed with cotton then soak them in glue and broken glass for maximum impact. The many changes initiated to make the sport safer have reduced the high incidence of death and injury. But Thai boxing is still a violent contact sport and considered by many as the ultimate in unarmed combat.

Thai boxing matches are held every Monday and Friday night at the stadium in Chaweng. Occasional matches are held on other days (usually announced by pick-ups with loud speakers). Demonstrations of Muay Thai are held in many of tourist areas but they are mostly for show.

     

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