Lerik: The Azerbaijani Village of Long Life


Would you like to live for 100 years? I’m sure many of us would or at least would love to prolong our lives. I can’t give you the secret to long life, but I can tell you about the place where all the centenaries live.

Beautiful waterfall in Lerik countryside

Welcome to Lerik

Lerik, a region on the south border in Azerbaijan, is not only famous for its wild beauty of breathtaking mountains, waterfalls, unique types of trees, and preserved holy places and sanctuaries. There is another special reason: the oldest people in Earth’s history are from this land. Eminent intellectuals, scientists, writers and poets from around the world don’t stop praising the miraculous nature of Lerik and trying to discover the secret of this phenomenon.

In the past, there were more than 500 centenarians who lived in mountainous area, today, there are only 20 left. Their age exceeds 100 years and they are all recorded in the Guinness Book of Records. According to specialist research, the main reason for their longevity is the healthy environment – clean air, pure water and abundant flora and fauna. This fact became the inspiration for the world’s only Museum of Long-livers.

Passport showing 1870 as the year of birth


Based in the nearby town of Lerik, it has 2 halls and includes over 2,000 exhibits including interesting information, documents and photographs of 50 centenarias. Every display tells a little story about each of them, full of unforgettable moments and experiences. For example, there is a portrait of the oldest person on the planet Shirali Muslumov, who lived in Barzavu village and died age of 168 years. Indeed, some of the centenaries featured are still alive.

Reports have noted that residents from Lerik are dying younger (though many still live beyond 100 years old) – I still think, that is truly magical and deserves admiration. I wonder how the world would change if each of us would be able to live few generations longer…

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Natalia Satunova

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