One of our favourite paddle tours is across to Koh Som (literally translated that means “Orange Island”). Koh Som is the small island that’s overlooking the north-east corner of Koh Samui. There’s actually two islands over there, but it looks like one because there’s a small reef joining the two islands (Koh Som and Koh Lum Mu Noi). Both of these islands are uninhabited.
You’d normally cruise past these islands on the ferry across to Haad Rin, Koh Phangnan. And a quick Google search tells me could buy the island of Koh Som for a cool $3.8m. But the good news is we can give you a close up paddle tour around the islands for just 1200 Baht (around US$35).
November is officially rainy season in Samui but we had a glorious sunny day yesterday. We took advantage of the blue skies and light winds and paddled over to the islands. We’re having high tides at the moment, which makes it easier to access the the beach in Plai Laem, close to our SUP HQ. We paddled around 500m across the channel and then went around the north side of the island first. We found some swell and a little chop, but nothing big enough to make either of us fall in. Once we got around to the southern side of the islands – facing Koh Samui – it was lovely and flat. We cruised along the shore and stopped for a water break on the beach of Koh Som, and then kept paddling home.
- Koh Samui is just one hour away from Bangkok by plane
- Paddle Tours operated by iSUP Samui, the only mobile SUP school in Koh Samui
- Paddle Boards: Starboard Astro 12’6 Touring inflatable paddle boards
- Paddling distance: 5km
If you are interested in trying out Stand Up Paddling, we are usually at Choeng Mon beach on Tuesday mornings from 10am for our iSUPtastic! sessions. We will be offering 15 minute “taster” sessions for a small fee to anyone who turns up, it’s a great way to discover just how easy and fun paddling can be.
The weather was a bit overcast on Tuesday, which meant it was a bit cooler than it has been for the previous couple of days – perfect paddling weather! Consequently there were a few more people strolling up and down the beach – including Greg and his wife from Melbourne, Australia. Greg had previously spotted us on the water during last Sunday’s SUP5.0 session, and was keen to give SUP a go.
10 minutes (and only a couple of “splash downs”) later, Greg was competently paddling and chatting with me on the water… it’s hard to express in words the pleasure we get seeing previously dubious first time paddlers gaining confidence and enjoying themselves on the water – great job Greg!
Whilst relaxing afterwards with Greg at our favourite beachside restaurant (Crystal) we were approached by Kurt, who along with his wife Kerry are experienced paddlers from California. They had never paddled on inflatable Stand Up Paddle boards before, and were pleasantly surprised with the stability and performance of our Starboard Astro’s during their quick trip around the bay.
All in all, a successful start to the iSUPtastic sessions, looking forward to next week – see you on the water!
Inflatable SUP’s are super convenient if you don’t have anywhere to store a hard board, and they are fairly light which makes it easy to lift onto your car’s roof racks. The best part is that they pack into a backpack that’s small enough to be your check-in luggage on a plane, which means you can take your paddle board on every holiday!
We have been paddling on inflatable Stand Up Paddle (SUP) boards for a couple of years, and we love them! When it came to buying our own boards, we decided to buy the Starboard 12’6 x 30″ Astro Touring boards. They are great for gliding along flatwater and provide enough balance when you’re the chop. In the right conditions, you can even catch a few small waves.
We’ve travelled with our inflatable boards on long haul flights to Singapore, Thailand and Tonga; and domestic flights from Sydney to Hamilton Island, Byron Bay and the Gold Coast. We even took them on a 5 day live-aboard sailing charter around the Angthong Marine Park, Koh Tao and Koh Phangnan in the Gulf of Thailand! FUN!
Bring your family and friends along to one of our iSUPtastic sessions, held at Cheong Mon beach every Tuesday at 10am, and we’ll show you our range of Starboard inflatable paddle boards.