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Ko Samui is believed to have been inhabited 1,500 years ago by fisherman. Itsexistence was first recorded by the Chinese in about 1500 AD. According to documents found from the Ming Dynasty, Ko Samui was in trade with China during this period.
During World War II, Ko Samui was occupied by the Japanese and held in isolation. During this period, very little historical documentation can be provided. Civilization was extremely far behind on the island and because of this, communities were self-sufficient with agriculture and living off the land. Roads did not even come to exist until the 1970s, before that, crossing the island took a week of jungle and mountain trekking.
Agriculture has been the main source of income for most of the island's history. Coconut production was for many years, was the main reason to journey to the island. Ferries from Bangkok regularly came to Ko Samui to stock up on the coconuts. The coconut continues to draw in money for the island at present and Ko Samui boasts more types of coconut palm than anywhere else in the world. A helping hand in the harvesting of coconuts comes fromtrained monkeys that are skilled at retrieving the nut from high in the trees. Today, watching these monkeys at work is a tourist attraction.
More and more tourists began coming to the island for its gorgeous beaches and wonderful cuisine starting in more recent years. Today, tourism rivals coconut production as an income source......