James,I was there last year for 3 weeks in July. Stayed in Royal Sakalava although I did book on line and pay a deposit for the other place on the beach I booked the cheap rooms that were shit really(I've lived in Asia for 10 years so I think I'm in a position to judge).We just turned up,looked and walked up the beach to Royal Sakalava,the rooms were a lot nicer if you get the newer ones.The food was OK there but obviously same same the longer you stay.There was no phone signal there which was nice and no internet.
I used a 7 and 9 fuel and I'm 80kg the water's flat going to super flat and there's waves at the edge of the bay.Plenty of room,most kites I kited with was probably 15/20 and a few wind surfers but they're out towards the waves as there's more water.
There wasn't "a scene"there but there were kiters,mostly families.Royal Sakalava had a French instructor and used Cabrinha Kites,the other place had Airush.There were also some groups that come out from Diego Suarez everyday.
Staying in Diego would be an option,it's about 35 mins out to Sakalava Bay by taxi or you could rent a motorbike,accommodation is more varied in price and there's more selection in food.There's also a supermarket that we used for wine and stuff to take to Sakalava . Bars have Wi-fi and there's an Italian guy who has a great ice cream shop and the big hotel there does good pain au chocolat and pastries.
The Emerald Sea was stunning,we stayed at La Paillottes and there's Babaombi next door. They say the wind's a few Knots stronger on The Emerald Sea,the water isn't as flat as Sakalava Bay but the sea's more open.From La Paillottes the launch is sketchy but they do have a little bit of beach a couple of minutes walk away.Last year there was a great Italian guy called Evo looking after the kiting and a Mexican instructor,both were very helpful. Everyone went out to the reef together,windsurfers and kiters as it's behind an island and a fair way out .If you went back in you told someone,so they didn't go looking for you.You have a problem there and it's a long way back! Good thing was the 4/5 kiters and 2/3 windsurfers looked out for each other,then we all ate together at lunch and dinner,food at La Paillotte was better unless you were a veggie(one of us was).Funny thing is they had internet there and it seems like it's in the wilds.The "scene' there was very quiet all 40 year olds plus .
We are planning on going back this July as it was blowing all day every day.
I've kited in Phuket,Bali 3x,Sri Lanka and now Madagascar at this time of the year and it is by far and away the best of the places for wind and nature,the place is unspoilt truly amazing.
Sri Lanka gets pimped on here by a lot of people with interests there,it's really not that special Madagascar for me blows it away.
I just hope this doesn't lead to a stampede!
Flights,we flew Air Madagascar which means you get a number that you then quote for your internal flights,this gives you a good discount on internal flight. you don't get the discount if you fly in with another carrier.I'm not sure if the internal flights are cheap if booked when you're there in a travel agent it would be something to check.Diego Suarez didn't seem bad to wander around at night but we didn't walk too far in Antananarrivo it's not the safest feeling place I've ever been.
Hope this helps,it really was an amazing place to kite.