A Sukamulya septuagenarian sits in front of her house. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)

Village of Longevity


MARCH 13, 2019

Bogor. Residents of Sukamulya, a small village in Sukamakmur near Bogor, West Java, have one of the highest life-expectancies in Indonesia. The tiny hamlet has 30 septuagenarians and octogenarians who still keep themselves busy collecting firewood in the forest or going to the field to farm everyday. Just last year, a centenarian at the village passed away at the ripe old age of 110.

According to Statistics Indonesia (BPS) records, life expectancy in Bogor increased from 70.33 in 2010 to 70.70 in 2017.

A traditional way of life, simple diet and a still pristine environment seem to have allowed the people of Sukamulya too reach the age of 70 quite easily—and gracefully..

Makmun, a resident of Sukamulya, said people here live longer because they live a simple but active life and stick to a modest diet of rice, vegetables and fruits. The village did not have electricity until the 1980s and was pretty much isolated from modernization. 

"Back in the '80s, we had to walk for six hours to find fried foods or snacks. The elders don't like them anyway. They also don't like sweets and never drink alcohol."

Most Sukamulya residents walk at least three kilometers every day to collect firewood from the forest. It helps their bodies remain strong.

A hand of an oldster in Sukamulya, Bogor, West Java on Saturday (02/03) Some of them is senile and can
The hands of a septuagenarian in Sukamulya. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
The only road to go to Sukamulya village in Bogor, West Java on Saturday (02/03) Before the 80
The lush terrain of Sukamulya. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
An oldster still doing agricultural activity on a daily basis in Sukamulya, Bogor, West Java on Saturday (02/03) Many older people working on the farm by economic necessity. They take firewood and harvest crop from their family farm as a routine since they were young. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A woman collects firewood from the forest. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Koyah (75) an oldster and the ageless icon in Sukamulya, Bogor, West Java in front of her house on Saturday (02/05) she looks young and still likes to make makeup and dress up. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Koyah is 75 years old, though you'd never know it. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Women of Sukamulya taking care of her child after collect firewoods in the forest on Saturday (02/03) Women in the village are more long-lived than men because of their good habits and lifestyle. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A typical stress-free afternoon in Sukamulya. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Urma (90) and her granddaughter and great-granddaughter in fron of her home in Sukamulya, Bogor, West Java on Saturday (02/03) Lucky oldster will live with their children and grandchildren. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
90-year-old Urma and her granddaughter. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Eunab (80) sits alone in front of her home in Sukamulya, Bogor, West Java on Saturday (02/05) After her husband passed away she lives a lonely life.  (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
80-year-old Eunab lives by herself after her husband passed away last year. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
H. Ijum and his wife are the next centenarian seen in Sukamulya, Bogor, West Java on Saturday (02/03) Over the past seven years, Statistics Indonesia recorded life expectancy in Bogor increasing from 70.33 in 2010 become 70.70 in 2017. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
H. Ijum and his wife are Sukamulya's latest centenarians. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Chidren playing around in Sukamulya, Bogor, West Java on Saturday (02/05) Children adapt with their environment at a very early age. They engage and interact in the world around them to be the next generation of cenetarian in Sukamulya. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Chidren playing at the entrance of a school. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)