From naked cruises, nude hikes and nude beaches to luxury accommodation where you walk around in the buff, nakations are taking the world by storm.
Nakations – a fancy word for naked holidays – allow travellers to enjoy “clothing optional” holidays while they explore the sights of a particular destination.
Countries like France, Germany and Brazil offer nakations. According Nick de Corte and Lins van Wambeke, aka Nick and Lins, more destinations are creating bespoke options for travellers.
The Belgium couple stumbled upon nakations by chance. The thirty-somethings, who travel the world in search of the best places to get naked and to learn more about naturism and nudism, arrived at a camp ground in Luxembourg a few years ago hoping to find accommodation in the clothed section of the camping spot.
But that section was full and rather noisy, prompting the couple to book in the naturist section.
The couple, who are behind the Naked Wanderings website that promotes nakation holidays, said they decided to give it a try.
“The experience opened our eyes to a whole new world,” they said.
Here's what they said:
How are nakations defining the way people travel?
A nakation is a clothing-optional holiday that allows people to spend at least some part of their holiday without clothes. Nakations differ from person to person. Some prefer being nude for the duration of their holiday, while others like to sunbathe nude or skinny dip. Almost all holidays today can be done in the nude.
The options range from large naturist villages (huge domains with shops, restaurants and all types of accommodation) to top-notch all-inclusive resorts to boutique hotels, bed and breakfasts and camping spots. The variety of activities has grown tremendously. There are nude sports activities, hikes, festivals, and in South Africa, it’s even possible to go on a nude safari.
What are the benefits of nakations?
Nakations offer comfort. For example, during nude camping, you simply step out of your tent naked, wander to the shower with just soap and a towel, and walk back to your tent. There are no hassles about packing or dirty clothing. It also offers mental benefits. Many people struggle with body-confidence issues. When you’re around naked people, you soon realise that everyone has their strengths and flaws.
You don’t need to feel the pressure of looking like a celebrity. Nakations also create conversations and help remove the barriers between people. Without clothes, everyone gets the chance to meet people who they would otherwise never meet when clothed.
Nakations remains a taboo subject.
We’ve met people who won’t tell their friends, family or even children about it in fear of being misunderstood. Others assume those who embark on nakation trips engage in orgies or polygamic relations. We started NakedWanderings.com to show the world that nakations have nothing to do with sex, and it’s not something to be ashamed of. It’s a very natural and fun thing to do.
What are some of the misconceptions about nakations?
That nakations are for hippies and elderly folk. We’ve met people of all ages and backgrounds, including young families, elderly couples, postmen, lawyers and managers.
The demand for nakations has grown. Do you have any stats?
We’ve seen a steady growth in nakation accommodation, which indicates the market is growing. During our trip through Europe last summer, we noticed a growth in young families turning towards nakations.
Have you been to South Africa before? What are some of the spots naturists can visit here?
South Africa is on our bucket list. Although there’s been an active naturist community in South Africa for years, only a handful of resorts focus on the nude tourist. Most resorts are near Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town.Some tour companies now offer nude safaris. It’s one of the reasons we want to visit South Africa!
What’s your advice for people who want to go on a nakation, with a friend or solo?
People tend to take being nude among others very seriously, which makes it seem much scarier than it is. We tell people that going on a nakation is not like putting a tattoo on your face. If you don’t like it, you just put your clothes back on and leave.
The stories on the internet sometimes paint nakations as trips filled with perverts, which is not the case. If this is something that scares you, visit a private resort rather than a public nude beach.
The first time going nude among others is a bit weird. Most people have never seen others naked in real life, so it’s a step out of their comfort zone.To keep things comfortable for everyone, naturists/nudists adhere to some basic etiquette. Some rules include no gawking at others, no pictures of others without their approval, no sex in public spaces, and always sit on a towel.
Where are you travelling to next?
We want to visit nakation resorts in Jamaica and Florida before moving on to Europe for the summer.
Picture: Instagram/Naked Wanderings.
Nick and Lins share their favourite nakation spots:
This country is a top spot because it caters to the nakation market with more than 250 resorts.
Zipolite in Mexico:
The sleepy, laid-back beach village is home to Mexico’s only official nude beach.
South America, especially countries like Brazil and Colombia, offers the world’s most picturesque nude beaches.
Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany offer a nude spa culture which makes it possible to go on a nakation even when the weather is bad.
This is nakation heaven. Many of the resorts in this liberal US state are in the middle of nowhere, making it possible to have endless nude hikes in the desert.
Those who love yoga can take a nude yoga class that boasts some of the Big Apple’s most picturesque views. The couple, who participated in a nude yoga session on the 11th floor of a building in Manhattan, label the experience “unforgettable”.