The first foreign backpackers started arriving on Ko Chang in the mid-1970s, using local fishing boats, when the island was still undeveloped.
In 1982, Ko Chang along with the surrounding area became part of the protected Mu Ko Chang national park, with approximately 85% of the island, together with nearby coral reefs, falling within the park.
It has since become a major tourist destination, both for foreigners and Thais, with a number of tourist resorts being developed.
Despite this, tourism on Ko Chang remains considerably less developed than on Ko Samui or Phuket.
The hilly nature of the island provides it with a number of popular waterfalls, including Klong Plu (น้ำตกคลองพลู). It is the only one on the west side of the island, and has an entrance
3 km from Ao Khlong
Waterfalls on the east side of the island include Klong Nonsi, Klong Nueng, Khiri Petch which is about
3 kilometers from
Salak Petch village, the 5 waterfalls of Kongoi near Bang Bao, and the
Thanmayom waterfall near Thanmayom pier.
Ban Salak Phet village has a temple, Wat Salak Phet, built in the reign of King Rama V on his visit to the island.
Bays include Ao Salak Phet, the largest on the island, and Ao Bai Lan (Thai: อ่าวใบลาน).
Ko Chang's beaches include Hat Kai Bae (Thai: หาดไก่แบ้) beach, and Hat Khlong Phrao-Laem Chaiyachet (Thai: หาดคลองพร้าว-แหลมไชยเชษฐ์) beach.
Popular activities include hiking, mountain biking, canoeing, elephant trekking, diving & snorkeling.
The island also has a number of spas offering various forms of massage, aromatherapy, and reflexology.
Ko Chang is also home to a number of cookery schools. (wikipedia)