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Tour the Longest-Living Place on Earth

  • Pruning apple trees in Nagono, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano

    Wakaho, Nagano Prefecture, Japan

    En español l The Nakajima family takes a lunch break in their apple orchard while doing springtime pruning. Residents’ much improved diet and regular exercise have seen Nagano prefecture surpass Okinawa prefecture as having the longest life expectancy in Japan and hence the industrialized world.

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  • Sake shop owner, man in empty intersection, Nagano, Japan, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano

    Nagano Prefecture, Japan

    Sake shop owner appears to have historic district in Suzaka all to himself.

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  • Mrs. Hanegi, weeding garden plot, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano.

    Wakaho, Nagano Prefecture, Japan

    Mrs. Hanegi, 90, weeds her vegetable plot near Wakaho, Nagano prefecture.

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  • Mr. Ikeda, taxi driver, older worker, Nagano, Japan, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano

    Nagano Prefecture, Japan

    Mr. Ikeda, "retirement age," drives a taxi in central Nagano City.

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  • Woman works in snow, sunny snow clearing, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano

    Between Hakuba and Kinasa, Nagano Prefecture, Japan

    Anticipating the spring melt, an older woman living in a high mountain village clears drainage in what will become rice paddies.

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  • Mr. Kazu, walking at 96, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano

    Nakano, Nagano Prefecture, Japan

    Mr. Kazu, 96, a WWII veteran, still navigates the streets of his hometown of Nakano by foot.

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  • Older man working outdoors, paving sidewalk, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano

    Nagano, Nagano Prefecture, Japan

    In Japan, in general, and Nagano, in particular, it is not unusual for older residents to do work typical of much younger people.

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  • Man bicycling in city, Nagano, Japan, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano

    Nagano City, Nagano Prefecture, Japan

    Throughout Japan, bicycles have never ceased to be a viable transportation option (and a contributor to cardiovascular health). Age is no deterrent to cyclists here, even if most bicycles are one-speed clunkers.

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  • A red bridge in snowy tree covered hills, Yamada-Onsen, Japan, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano

    Takayama, Nagano Prefecture, Japan

    A bridge leads into the remote canyon where Yamada Onsen sits. A half-century ago, the mountains of Nagano prefecture isolated villages and limited food sources. Residents ate large portions of salt-cure vegetables leading to a low life-expectancy. Not so today.

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  • Woman pushes dog in wheelchair, Suzaka, Japan, Longest Living place on Earth
    Photo by James Whitlow Delano

    Suzaka, Nagano Prefecture, Japan

     Suzaka resident makes life easy for her dog.

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  • Health endslide
    Getty Images
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