Tourists flock to Chinese capital of longevity

2012-10-10 08:00
Beijing - People travel to certain destinations for many reasons: watching wildlife, indulging in seaside fun, partying it up and feasting on exotic foods are just a few of that come to mind.

However, eTurboNews reports that the Bama county in China is drawing flocks of travellers for a whole different reason: old people. Like really old people.

This remote mountainous county is famous for having the most centenarians in the whole of China and has seen an influx of more than 180,000 tourists this year who hope to experience the local "longevity culture."

Bama, predominately inhabited by the ethnic Yao group, is recognised by the International Natural Medicine Society as the "hometown of longevity".

The county now boasts 73 centenarians and 252 people over 90 years of age. The ratio of centenarians is 30.8 per 100,000, which exceeds the international standard of 25 per 100,000.

Li Meixiao, director of a tourism group, attributed the county's growing popularity to tourists' changing tastes.

Many people come "with a wish to see the centenarians in person, taste what these centenarians have every day and breath in the fresh air we have", he said.

Officials hope to cash in on the phenomenon to drive up tourism and help reduce poverty in the area.

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Read more on:    travel international

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