5 Places Where People Live the Longest and Healthiest Lives
Jul 06, 2023 By Juliana Daniel

If you want to increase your chances of a long, healthy life, look no further than the places around the world where people live longer than anywhere else, from islands in Okinawa to small villages in Greece and Italy.

We'll explore some surprising regions with impressive longevity - and plenty of wisdom for us all! Join us as we deep dive into ancient secrets for expanding our days on this planet.

We'll talk about what locals are doing right that goes far beyond simple genetics or nutrition – more nuanced than that – and practical tips you can use yourself at home.

10 Best Places Around the World Where People Live the Longest

1. Okinawa, Japan

This small island chain in the East China Sea is home to some of the longest-lived people on Earth. Okinawans have an incredibly healthy diet, including many grains and vegetables, and keep active with tai chi and karate.

2. Sardinia, Italy

Located off the west coast of Italy, this Mediterranean Island is known for its warm climate, beautiful beaches—and long-living inhabitants. The local diet consists mainly of locally grown fruits and vegetables and ample sheep's milk, cheese, and olive oil.

3. Loma Linda, California

This city, in San Bernardino County, has one of the highest populations in the world of Seventh Day Adventists—a faith that emphasizes a vegetarian diet and regular exercise. As a result, the average life expectancy here is ten years longer than the national average.

4. Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica

The inhabitants of this region are thought to owe their longevity to a combination of diet and lifestyle: mainly fresh fruits and vegetables, local seafood caught in nearby oceans, daily physical activity, and strong social relationships and spiritual connections.

5. Icaria, Greece

This small Greek island in the Aegean Sea has one of the world's highest percentages of people aged 100 or older—a phenomenon attributed to its Mediterranean diet based around locally grown olive oil, vegetables, and fruit; low-stress lifestyles; and a strong sense of community.

6. Hunza Valley, Pakistan

This remote mountain valley in Pakistan is home to people who live an incredibly long life. Locals here eat a diet based on fruits, nuts, grains, and vegetables; keep active with daily chores and recreation; and enjoy strong social ties within the community.

7. Vilcabamba, Ecuador

This small town in the Andes Mountains is filled with healthy retirees who have chosen this area as their retirement destination due to its temperate climate and access to fresh produce from nearby farms.

Studies have shown that locals can expect to live up to 10 years beyond the average lifespan of their peers elsewhere in South America.

8. Ogliastra Province, Sardinia

This lush coastal area of Italy is home to a culture that emphasizes healthy diets and active lifestyles. Locals here eat plenty of fresh fish, vegetables, and fruit (especially olives), keep active with daily hikes, and make time for social gatherings.

9. Bama County, China

Bama is located near the Vietnam border in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region of southern China.

It has one of the highest concentrations of centenarians in the world thanks to its diet centered around whole grains, vegetables, and fruits; regular physical activity like qigong; and strong social networks within local communities.

10. Nicoya, Costa Rica

This mountainous region is home to a culture known for its strong focus on healthy lifestyles and diets. Locals here eat plenty of fresh fruits, fish, vegetables, and legumes; keep active with daily chores; and enjoy community through local festivals and gatherings.

These are the world’s most successful longevity hotspots, and they have much to share with the rest of us. By understanding their secrets for long and healthy life, we, too, can gain insight into living longer and better.

Enjoy exploring these amazing places worldwide—and their ancient wisdom!

10 Amazing Things About Places Around the World Where People Live the Longest

1. Eating lots of fresh

Local diets in the longest-lived places worldwide are rich in fresh fruits, vegetables, grains, and fish.

2. Exercising regularly

Daily activity is a way of life for people living in some of the longest-lived regions, from tai chi and karate to gardening and hiking.

3. Developing strong social ties

Having supportive relationships with family and friends plays an important role in longevity. People living longer have close bonds with their communities that they cultivate through regular social gatherings and festivals.

4. Practicing meditation techniques

Mindfulness has been shown to provide many benefits associated with longevity, including improved mental clarity, better sleep quality, strengthened immunity, reduced stress levels, and increased life satisfaction.

5. Prioritizing sleep

In many of the longest-lived regions, getting a good night's rest is a priority—people go to bed early and wake up with the sun.

6. Spending time outdoors

People living in some of the longest-lived places in the world spend much of their days outside enjoying nature and taking in the fresh air. This has been linked to improved mental and physical health, lower stress levels, and better overall well-being.

7. Embracing spirituality

A spiritual connection is important in many of the world's longest-living cultures, from prayer and meditation to attending religious services regularly. Connecting with something higher than oneself has been linked to improved mood, enhanced sense of purpose and meaning, and longer life.

8. Enjoying life

People living in the world's longest-living regions practice an optimistic attitude toward life infused with humor and playfulness. They celebrate their successes, find joy in small moments, and savor each day without worrying about tomorrow.

9. Connecting with nature

Many of the oldest cultures strongly revere nature and express this through rituals, festivals, art, music, and stories—a connection linked to better overall health and well-being.

10. Practicing healthy habits from childhood

In many of the world's longest-lived places, elders pass down healthy habits to the younger generation from an early age, like eating fresh foods, exercising regularly, and prioritizing relaxation. These habits make their way into adulthood and are further reinforced through the community.

These 10 things demonstrate that living a long life doesn't have to be complicated. By making small changes in our lifestyle, such as eating better, getting regular physical activity, connecting with nature and others around us, and embracing spirituality—we can live longer lives full of vitality and joy.


What cultures have the longest lifespans?

Some of the world's longest-living cultures include Okinawans in Japan, Sardinians in Italy, Adventists from California, Vilcabamba in Ecuador, Bama County in China, and the Nicoya Peninsula in Costa Rica.

These regions emphasize healthy diets, regular physical activity, strong community social networks, and spiritual or religious practices.

What foods should I eat to live longer?

Eating a balanced diet that contains plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, protein (such as fish and legumes), healthy fats (like olive oil), and plant-based proteins can help you live a longer life.

What lifestyle habits promote longevity?

Lifestyle habits associated with an increased lifespan include regular physical activity; prioritizing sleep; emphasizing stress management techniques such as yoga or meditation; connecting with nature; developing strong social relationships; embracing spirituality; and maintaining an attitude of gratitude and joy.


This article has shown you that living a long and healthy life is within reach for anyone who embraces the lifestyle habits of people in some of the longest-lived cultures around the world. By taking small steps such as eating fresh produce, exercising regularly, developing strong social connections, and cultivating a spiritual practice, we can all live longer lives full of vitality and joy.