Mer d Emeraude (Emerald sea)
Why: Markus told me that the F one video (Addict part 2) was shot here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4IxS5cexSzc
The waves in this video triggered me because they curve like tubes in knee deep translucent water
HOW TO GET THERE:
The owner of Royal Sakalava (lodge) calls one of the fisherman who arranges a pickup by boat or by taxi to a village of fishermen named Ramena. Rate of the Ariary is 1 Euro = 2.600 Ariary. For 50.000 Ar (20 Euro) the fishermen take about 6 people into their boats cross over the sea into Mer d Emeraude where you get food and drink on a bounty island.
Wind here is at least 5 to 10 knots higher than in Diego Suarez (Baie de Sakalava). If guru predicts a non windy day then you can still kite in Mer d Emeraude.
A group of 4 French kiters asked us (me and Flower, a Spanish photographer) to join them to their trip to Mer d’ Emeraude. They arranged everything, we followed. They made wild plans to sleep on the beach for 2 days. At night they would sleep under their kites, covered them with a mosquito net. At day time they d kite till you drop dead. I love these wild plans but as soon as I heard that there were rats on the island my enthusiasm dropped. I m scared.
When we left Ramena (Diego Suarez), the fishermen use the motor to get out of the bay and then pull out a big white sail. The color of the sea is dark blue and the waves are small to medium size. They confirmed that in the deep parts of the sea there are sharks, but there were no records of any attack. For 45 minutes we continuously asked them if we were already there. They did not answer. Only smiled with bright white teeth. Then the boat entered a gate where you see fishermen standing in knee deep water, diving into the sea with a rope around their ankles. They were catching yelly fish with bare hands. The boat stranded and the fishermen and the French kiters had to pull the boat into deeper water. What then happened I can only describe as entering into a dream. Everyone became silent because the beauty of the water is astonishing. I was not able to speak for half an hour. The boys were silent too. The scenery is so pure so unspoilt. The water is so clear, luminous baby blue that it hurts the eye. The fishermen take you to an island with the whitest sand I ever saw. I counted 8 sheds were guests can relax and wait for the food that the fisher man cook you. It is a simple meal with Marina fish, rice, bananas and you get drinks as well. The boys went out kiting far away till their kite became very small. I was scared and only dared to stay close to the shore, wind was blowing offshore. Also the coral cut my toe in 2 and the water was pretty red. There are 2 lodges at the Emerald sea: Babaomby> http://www.babaomby.com
and Les Paillottes de babaomby > http://www.mer-emeraude-hotel.com
. I asked the fishermen which lodge they thought was the prettiest. They told me that Babaomby has a windmill for electricity and that the owner was Belgium. They also told me that the owner of Les Paillottes was Irish. Close to the lodges there is spot they call “la piscine” (translation: swimmingpool). Water is butterflat there and wind onshore. The Emerald sea is huge. The French kiters planned a downwinder from 1 end of the Emerald sea to the other end