It seems wierd that such a tourist tropical paradise should have been originally earmarked as a prison.
There is a wide range of Bungalow Resortson Ko Tao for differnt type of budget, availible to book in advance on this website.
Ko Tao islandis situated about 75 kilometres east of the coastline inbetween Suratthani and Chumporn in the Gulf of Thailand and is about 22 kilometer in size - so small but not too small.
During the last 10 odd years the island has changed in many ways as it developed to become one of the major dive destinations in Thailand, attracting all levels of divers and water lovers alike.
The name Ko Tao means Turtle Island; some say that the name is due to the islands shape which is meant to look like an inverted down turtle whilst others maintain its from the days when the sea surrounding the island were rich with turtles and Koh Tao was their main breeding ground.
From the days of being a prison, through to its current re-development, Turtle islandhas retained it's charm, though it now caters for everybody's needs and budgets.
The most visited of the bay, Sairee Beach most of the time are crowded with sun worshippers but there's also quieter, more hidden beaches and bays.
Immediately following the horrible events of the December 2004 Tsunami, the type of tourist coming to Ko Tao have changed, previously it had been a Mecca for back packers, year out students along their way North to Bangkok and beyond.
In the beginning of 1980's brought to KohTaosome of the first travellers from Koh Phanganwho were looking for something innovative away from the crowds and masses who were going nuts for the Full Moonparties on Ko Phangan. Here they found something more than just a new islandto explore and soon the back-packer network was energetic about the breathtaking newly found island paradise. Mesmerised by the stunning powdery white beaches, the back of beyond aura, and of course the cheap living, backpackerssoon came in droves. Departure and arrivals were on the local fishing boats, and even then hold-ups of several days were common. Back to the hammock and a world of dreams; The boat comes another day . As a result, as its reputation for beautiful nature, excellent marine life and astonishing landscapes grew, easier access was obtainable when improved and safer boats were brought in to handle the number of back packers, being engrossed to the island.