By the history, Con Dao Island is located in a favorable position on the famous marine route - connecting Eurasian continent, so that Con Dao was known and discovered by Westerners very early in their voyages. Con Dao is also known and called by different names such as: Con Son, Con Lon or Con Non... The European called it is "Poulo Condor" and has been shown in many English and French texts. Now Vietnamese call "Côn Lôn Island".
Under the view of the French colonialists, Con Dao was the ideal place for a prison system. With four sides face to the vast of ocean, nearly hundred nautical miles from the mainland, without boats - it is impossible for prisoners to escape, the revolutionaries will be extremely separated from their families and society… Unlike the prisons on the mainland, Con Dao’s prisoners were tortured brutally and forced to exploit the abundant natural resources on this island. Therefore, on February 1st , 1862, Admiral of the French Navy - Major General Bonard signed a decision to establish Con Dao prison system to detain Vietnamese political prisoners, making this place to be the hell on earth with the famous system “Tiger cages”.
After the country become peaceful and united. In 1977, the National Assembly of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam decided to officially call "Con Dao", a district-level administrative unit in Ba Ria-Vung Tau province.
Con Dao is an area of 76 km², is an archipelago of 16 different size islands. Currently Con Dao is a district of Ba Ria – Vung Tau province and the administrative center is the town of Con Dao located between Co Ong airport and Ben Dam port with a population of just over 8,500 people
CON DAO TODAY
Today, Con Dao becomes an ideal tourist destination for those who want to explore the pristine natural beauty and learn about the country"s history. Here, you can wander on the colonial streets to feel more deeply about the past and the heroic history of the nation, or you can go to the sea to explore the surrounding islands and vast ocean with colorful coral reefs and extremely unique marine eco-systems, or you can also explore the primeval forests – national park with the variety of flora and fauna in Con Dao. Indeed, visitors may be off the track where is called “Paradise on earth” or " The most beautiful and charming island on the planet".