We were en route to the Longji Rice Terraces in Guanxi province when we stopped to have lunch in a small village called Huangluo.
The village is inhabited by the ethnic minority Yao and it has become a popular stop for tourists. Hence there was an array of minority clothing, jewelry, artwork and intricate embroidery for sale
What makes this Yao village unique is that its women have the longest hair in the world. Really, it's been certified by the Guinness World Records.
We had no inkling of this when we stopped here, but just as we were finishing lunch, I heard a bit of a commotion outside. I grabbed my camera and this is what I saw: a row of women standing on the edge of the river modeling their long hair and how they style it.
By tradition the Yao women cut their hair only once in their lifetime, at an age between 16 and 18 when they are considered adult and ready to get married. The cut hair is kept as a headpiece and is twisted into their standard hairdo.
The longest of the women's hair can grow up to 1.9 meters (6 feet) and the average is about 1.2 meters (4 feet). Imagine washing that every day... in the river!
Seeing these women later in modern street clothes tells me the tradition won't remain pure for long.
Longsheng, Guangxi, 2007
Location - the red bubble:
If you would still like to see the hair being piled up, there is a short video (not mine) HERE. I posted an earlier photo of a Yao woman HERE.
The letter at Alphabe-Thursday is H.