Bama – The Longevity Village Part 1
JetStar Asia has lately launched a new service to Nanning, where it operates twice weekly service on board Airbus A320 aircraft. So I joined ASA Holidays to take this flight to Nanning, and visited Bama (巴马) – the longevity village.
Bama is a small county located in the southwest of China. It is also the holy land of longevity. More than 80 people who live here are above 100 years old and is one of the longevity villages in China.
Pingan village is the village with the greatest number of elderly people. It is surrounded by green hills and the clear Panyang River. Six of the villagers are above 100 years old.
The oldest centenarians in the village, which is also the only men, is Huang Bu Xin (黄卜新) who is 113 years old (MY GOSH!). He took part in the revolutionary movement when he was young. He was the postman. When we were there, he showed us his photos in the magazine. He has 5 generations of family members and many people visit him each day.
Then, I visited Huang Ma Gan (黄妈干) who is 106 years old. She has a sister who is about 103 years old but they are not real sisters. Both of them marry to the same husband, but they are often call as 姐妹花 in the village. Unfortunately, the sister fell down last year and her actions were limited. But Huang Ma Gan still looks very youthful and does simple housework sometimes.
Visitors who visit the centenarians will give them a small ang bao to wish them longevity and good health. These chirpy centenarians will then touch your forehead and say “健康长寿”, hereby wishing you the same too!
The villagers set up stalls on the street to sell some of their farm goods.
Because we were rushing to the next destination, we decided to walk by the shortcut by crossing this super rocky bridge. Sorry no photos of me because my legs were vibrating and I held onto the tour guide’s hands to cross the bridge. Thank goodness these photos weren’t blur!
We stayed in a Bama Holiday Villa (巴马华昱假日酒店, 新建路368号. Tel: +86778 6096888) which is a relatively new hotel in the city. So lunch was back in the hotel. Besides the hotel, the company also has a organic farm.
We first had a glass of warm organic pumpkin drink（南瓜汁）which was very thick and sweet.
Fragrant Pig, Oil Fish and Huoma are the three famous longevity treasures in Bama. Huama Soup (火麻芥菜汤，57RMB) tasted like some sesame soup. I drank lotsa of it so that I will live longer! haha
These are the two coloured pork, one is roasted and one is steamed. (正宗双色香猪，138RMB)
Sweet red dates are wrapped with glutinous rice. (糯香金钱枣，57RMB)
And this is vegetable pancakes. (所略野菜饼，28RMB)
There were a lot more dishes but I only shot some. Steam fish which was very fresh! (黄蜂鱼，156RMB)
Bama is a very small town and they only have one main road that links to the city, the village and everywhere else. So after lunch, we visited the organic farm ( 广西巴马华昱农业公司有机农场).
There is even a pretty white rose!
Then we took an hour ride on a bamboo boat to tour around the Panyang River (阳河吸氧漂游).
Trust me, this is one of the best thing. The water was so calming, and as we slowly sail past the mountains and trees, there breeze was so cooling that I nearly well asleep. The water is not polluted, everything is so beautiful. And every breath I take in, has a huge amount of oxygen!
Dinner was at a villager’s house. This is one of the attractions of Bama, to let tourists get involved in the life of the village and to make friends with the villagers. The villagers will have a shop selling some Bama products, and on the second floor, that is where the villagers live.
They don’t lock their doors because they trust and have a friendly relationship with neighbours. And usually they will close their shops at 7plus, and spend time with their family at night or have a dance night where all the neighbours will gather to dance in their pyjamas! 🙂
Dinner is definitely not the most fantastic but it feels reall great to have a taste of their home cooked food! We have the french beans here.
And the salted vegetables which is very salty but goes well with rice.
And each of us had a bowl of big pork bones soup.
Stir fried corn
Scrambled eggs with tomatoes, which we eat almost every meal!
They seldom eat meat but because we were guests, so they served us meat.
My 2 days in Bama felt like a very healthy retreat for me. The people here are friendly and the air is very fresh. In the next post, I will bring you to the most famous mountain in Bama, Baimo Tiankeng. 🙂