Strange, but true, from 1933 until 1947 the islandhoused political prisoners. Being positioned approximately 65 km from the mainland meant it was very hard to escape from! Alcatraz...piece of cake.
KoTao now has twenty four hour electricity on the islandtoo and finally they have had a water reservoir constructed to ensure that even in the dryest periods there is enough water for all.
It seems wierd that such a tourist tropical paradise should have been originally earmarked as a prison.
Native farmers and fishermen recognised that merchants from outside the island were building up their island to provide all these new clients and they too immediately opened a businesses to fulfil the clients demands.
Despite KohTaostill being under Royal Patronage, plots of land were claimed, and cleared for coconut plantations. You will still see lots of evidence of the large plantations all over the island.
In those days getting to KohTaorequired a treacherous boat trip from the main land or near by islands, if and when the weather& seas permitted but the population of the islandcontinued to grow firmly all the same, even when simple life was hard without much reward.
This small islandwas still under Royal Patronage in the early days, but it did not stop those fortune hunters from making their claim. The first generation of today's community started settling when they brought their families to Ko Toa and began to farm and harvest the rich earth and natural resources on offer. Notwithstanding it still being under Royal Patronage, plots of land were claimed, and cleared for coconut plantations. You can still see lots of evidence of the massive coconut plantations everywhere on the island.
Suddenly the island ferries were disgorging people with suitcases, not backpacks, laptops not guitars, and what is this; sneekers not flip-flops?!, and some had children too.