Ko Samui is neighbour to a few small islands in the southwest: the Five Islands, known in Thai as Ko Si Ko Ha, which means Four Islands-Five Islands — one island is hidden behind another.
Ko Si Ko Ha are home to swifts, known for their famous nests which are the main ingredient in birds’ nest soup. The birds are protected as their nests sell for thousands of dollars.
Sea Gypsies are the only human inhabitants of the Five Islands, their small wooden homes perched on rocky outcrops – much like nests themselves. The gypsies are employed to guard the nests from poachers trying to get their hands on this precious commodity.