Tung Dap Story

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The tale of the village name reveals some history of Siam and Burma. Some time long ago, the Burmese army invaded many southern cities along the approach the town of Talang, in Phuket. However, the Thai army fought back, pushing Burmese army to the area of Koh Ko Kao and Koh Phra Thong. As the Burmese army retreated, they left behind their swords. The place was referred as “Tum Dap” or throwing away swords, and later on became “Tung Dap,” which means "field of swords."

The island that is home to Tung Dap, Koh Phratong, translates as "Island of the Golden Buddha," taken from the legend of a pirate who buried a looted statue somewhere on the island. In Moken lore, it is known as the "floating island" and plays a central part in a tsunami story.

A long time ago, the Moken of Koh Phratong received a warning from the spirits that a tsunami was coming. The whole village fled to the nearby mountain, Po Tao, also known as Khao Phra Mii. Once at higher ground, the Moken villagers looked down as the wave covered the entire island. The island of Koh Kho Khao, just south of Koh Phratong, was not submerged. When Koh Phratong emerged from the waves the Moken returned and went on with life. That is why, in Moken language, Koh Phratong is called "Floating Island" and Koh Kho Khao is known as "anchor."

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