Dimen Dong Village

Dimen Dong Village

Scene Introduction

Dimen Dong Village, the uninterrupted well in Dong language, was set up around 1000 years ago in the Tang Dynasty, by the immigrants from the lower reaches of the Pearl River. It is the 2nd largest Dong village in China. Due to the fairly recent road construction, Dimen village has been little touched by tourism and commercial activities.

On the first step into the village, you would think this is another world, self-sufficient though lacking in modern facilities. Rice is grown in the paddies surrounded by densely wooded mountain slopes. Fish is farmed inside the rice paddies. Cotton is woven into cloth and dyed with natural plants. Paper is made in the most original way. And houses are built with timber from nearby mountains by the skilled carpenters in the village.

Tranquil Dimen Dong Village

Respected elders in the village are elected to be the decision makers. Convention is made under the Drum Tower by the Elder Committee who does not have a fixed term of service. This primitive but effective democratic governing system proves to be the best way for the local villagers.

Trees are planted when people are born. People will prepare their own coffins when they turn 40 years old with the tree planted when they are born. Coffins made of good timber is regarded as a gift between family members. Like any other piece of furniture, they are found at some corners of the house, often husband's and wife's side by side.

Wooden Coffins of Dimen Dong Village

Pond God and Fish God are among the major Gods the villagers worship, in addition to the Sa, a heroine in the history of Dong people.

The primary school (6-12yrs old) is a nice sight in the village. In addition to the major courses taught all over China, the school does offer Cultural Heritage classes like the Dong musical instrument, singing and dancing.

Dimen Village, at the time of writing, does not offer easily accessible comfortable accommodations. A certain organization from Hong Kong runs a Dong "museum" and a lodge charging some USD150 a night at the edge of the village but sometimes no one is there to serve you. Another choice is to stay overnight in Rongjiang County, around 1 hour ride by car. There is no restaurant in the village, except for a basic family run guesthouse who do offer local dishes of meat and vegie. Reservation must be made in advance.

Walking toward the Wind and Rain Bridge

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