Another year has ended and we have 365 days ahead of us to make the most of the new year. It’s another year full of potential to make a difference or to do things differently than before. It’s when we all start even with a blank slate. It’s another year to make the world or at least our little place in it better.
So what would I like to give everyone this year? I know asking for world peace is too much. Probably the same with making sure no one goes hungry? I wish all of that was truly possible, but in this day and age, that’s asking too much.
So what do I ask for this year? I’d like everyone to experience a naked day. A day without clothing to play and relax and enjoy the warmth of the sun all over your body. A naked day in the buff to see what it feels like to be free. A naked day without judgement from others and a day without blame. A naked day without body shaming. A naked day where you’re not too fat or too skinny. Too pale or too dark. A day when you’re perfect just the way you are right now. A day where simply being naked is simply enough.
A naked day to make new nude friends and to realize it’s more important to judge someone by their character and personality rather than what they wear. A naked day to talk to someone who when you’re both nude appears to be the same as you. A naked day to spend time with your spouse, your partner, your friends or your family.
A naked day to do what you want to do, just without your clothing. A naked day to take a walk in the woods.A naked day to go skinny dipping and to feel like a child again. A naked day to fall asleep in the sun. A naked day to read a book or the newspaper. A naked day to enjoy a drink. A naked day to enjoy a bite to eat. A naked day to do what you enjoy most. A day to let it all hang out without a worry in the world.
Why do I want to give everyone a naked day? It’s simple really. If we remove our clothes and our inhibitions, we are all the same… naked and pure. We are all equal. It’s a day when you don’t need to worry about what others think. It’s a day to be one with yourself and nature.
For more than 20 years, my wife and I have enjoyed nude vacations, beaches, resorts, clubs, and time together. We’ve made friends. We’ve made wonderful memories. We’ve enjoyed ourselves and realized it’s not a sexual experience but rather a deeply emotional one that brings us together. We are better off because of the time we’ve spent nude together and the people we have met while we’re nude.
I’m guessing, just guessing that after spending the day nude with others, you’ll see that we’re all pretty much the same. That we have more incommon than what divides us. That when you remove your clothing, you remove the stress and anxiety that comes with living in a world where we hide behind our clothing. That is my wish. A wish for a perfect nude year.
Look online and you’ll see a lot about Saint Martin’s world-famous Orient Beach. It really is a wonderful beach to visit and explore. It’s also a must visit beach if you’re looking for a great place to bare it all for the first time with your spouse or partner. Many couples experience social nudity for the first time here. Orient Beach is actually one of five beaches in Orient Bay that together total nearly 1.3 miles of sand and surf paradise for vacationers.
In the middle of the day, Orient Beach actually feels crowded. Add cruisers (people from cruise ships) walking in the surf and checking out all of the nude sunbathers who number in the hundreds; naked couples and families enjoying the sun and surf and yes, it is very crowded. While I can tell you the only time you truly stand out on Orient Beach is when you’re wearing a bathing suit, some newbie nude couples might not want to strip with a hundred strangers. Although when you’re comfortable with being naked on Orient Beach, a challenge many nude vacationers try each year is walking the entire beach in the buff.
Although I would still put Orient Beach on your must visit naked bucket list (there really is nothing like it), there are other beaches on Saint Martin that are quieter and more private to explore recreational nudity with your spouse or partner. Happy Bay Beach is a perfect place to drop your swimsuit or bikini bottoms in a quiet and relaxed setting.
Happy Bay Beach is the site of a former resort that was destroyed in a hurricane and never rebuilt. Mother Nature has reclaimed the cabanas and hotel buildings. What’s left is a quiet beach used by families and couples of all ages.
You’ll see it all on this beach. There are couples, gay couples, young families, old couples, vacationing teens from France (this is the French side of Saint Martin), and jet ski tours and sailing boats that stop by the beach throughout the day. On the beach, you’ll see people in conservative and skimpy bathing suits. You’ll also see women laying out topless and on the North side of the beach, you’ll see mostly nude couples enjoying the sun, peace and quiet.
While Orient Beach is loud and flashy, Happy Bay Beach is relaxed and more intimate. For the couple who are unsure about trying social nudity but want to try it, this is the perfect beach to get comfortable and get naked. Before I show you our pictures so you can enjoy the beach when you visit, here are suggestions for first timers to make the most of their first nude beach experience.
When you get to the beach go right. Head North towards the rocks and away from the BBQ snack and beverage shack. Once you pass the large tree in the middle of the beach, you can find the perfect place to soak up the sun without your bathing suit. There is no bad location. You can remain on the beach or set up your towels closer to the trees and brush at the back of the beach. The choice is yours.
Once you get through the anticipation and then the excitement when you take off your bathing suits, you’ll feel a little crazy. You’ll wonder why you felt so much anxiety for something that is so simple and feels so natural. Amazing how good it feels when all you’re wearing is a smile. In an hour, it will feel like you’ve been doing this your entire life. By the end of the day, you’ll be walking the entire beach in the buff and holding hands playing in the ocean.
As you’re headed from Grand Case to Frairs Bay, you’ll see a basketball court on your right. Take the first right turn (Rue Happy Bay) after going by the court. You’ll see a gate at the end of the road. This is was the entrance to the resort. If you can, there is a parking lot on the right. If not, park on the street. It’s about a 10-15 minute walk to the beach. It’s on a road/path the entire way that is well marked and not at all strenuous. There is also a path from Frairs Bay but I’ve never taken it and don’t know the route.
Rather than tell you where to go next, I thought our pictures would be best:
We brought our lunch, snacks and plenty of wine during our visit. You can also go to the snack bar which provides water, beer, soda and BBQ foods. We of course packed up our trash so that future visitors can see the beach as beautiful and unspoiled as we did.
Regarding nudity and Saint Martin, technically nudity is only permitted on Orient Beach and all beaches can be used top free. There are however many unofficially nude/clothing optional beaches like Petites Cayes, Cupecoy beach and others. If someone asks you to cover up, you should out of respect for the locals and the law.
Please note that Happy Bay is used by the locals on the weekends and on Sunday’s the Police do patrol the beach to make sure everyone covers up (go to Orient Beach on Sunday’s).
Perhaps even more important is preserving Happy Bay Beach and keeping it natural and pristine. Respect the beach and nature and please don’t leave any garbage. Or better yet, pick up what others have left behind. And while Happy Bay is unofficially clothing optional, it is not a place to get it on with your spouse or partner. Nudity does not mean sex or intimacy. Enjoy your time together naked but keep intimacy for your bedroom. Trust me, after spending the day naked together, your alone time will be extra special later on.
This is the second of three blogs detailing our recent trip to Saint Martin. Look for blogs about another wonderful quiet clothing optional beach called Petite Cayes and a blog post about taking a naked vacation with friends. Have you been to St. Martin? We’d love to hear your thoughts on your experiences on the island and why it’s a perfect destination for couples to try nude recreation.
Say “Saint Martin” to any nudist or frequent Caribbean traveler and you’ll immediately hear about the most well-known and popular clothing optional beach in the islands: Orient Beach. It has it all. Beautiful sand. Easy surf. Lots of dining, drinking and lounging opportunities. It also has lots of people on it and to the couple trying nude sunbathing for the first time a crowd can be intimidating.
To the couple ready to drop the swim suit or bikini bottoms and try nude recreation, Orient Beach is a wonderful place to try it. Simply put, you won’t stand out. You’ll be lost in a sea of nakedness. Tan bodies really do seem to blend together when there aren’t any tanlines or bold swim suit colors to make your body stand out. You’ll also have access to liquid courage with lots of bars on the beach and numerous lunch/snack locations.
My wife and I first traveled to Saint Martin nearly 15 years ago and we spent most of our time naked at Orient Beach. It really was wonderful to enjoy our naked time together without the concern of offending anyone or being part of someone’s holiday photo collection. And while I’d recommend to any couple headed to Saint Martin for the first time to try spending the day nude together at Orient Beach, there are several other less crowded and unbelievably beautiful clothing optional beaches on the island to visit too.
If this is your first time reading our blog, my wife and I have been going on nude vacations for nearly 20 years. What started as a, “Do you want to try it” discussion when we were dating has turned into many great memories visiting beautiful beaches and resorts around the Caribbean, Pacific and U.S. The purpose of our blog is to provide information to other couples interested in trying nude recreation. It has been a wonderful connection point for my wife and me. It is intimate but not in a sexual way. Sexual touching and intimacy are not appropriate at the nude beaches and resorts we attend. That’s better for time spent together in the privacy of your own room.
I often say how do you make a beautiful beach or resort better… make it clothing optional and then you truly are relaxed. We’ve also met many wonderful couples through our travels. Many who are friends of ours today. Our nude vacations are our little secrets and Petite Cayes is one of those quiet, secret beaches that most people will never see but to me, capture all that is wonderful about experiencing a nude beach with your spouse and friends.
Rather than tell you about the hike, we thought it best to show it to you. It really is an amazing hike to a fantastic quiet little beach.
So after your 30-45 minute hike, (there is a second route from Anse Marcel but it is more strenuous), you’ll find yourself on a beautiful half moon beach. Find your spot in the sun and get comfortable. For many first timers, this is the hardest moment. Time to get naked. Take a deep breath and do what you’re comfortable with. Bare as much as you’re comfortable with on the beach or do what I’d recommend. Drop your swimsuit, bikini top and bottom and sit down and apply lots of sunscreen. Remember, body parts that have never seen the sun before tend to burn very easily.
By the time you’re done putting on your sunscreen or suntan lotion, you and your spouse will realize that you’re naked. No one is staring. It feels wonderfully natural. Enjoy the warmth of the sun and breeze on your naked skin. For me, sitting beside my wife and feeling warm all over is one of the most amazingly freeing and relaxing feelings ever. When you’re ready, head down to the surf and splash in the waves. The wave action can get rough depending on weather and time of year. We were able to body surf in the waves.
The day we visited, there were no more than 20 people on the beach at any given time. While we and our friends were the only ones naked the entire time, everyone was friendly and gave each other plenty of space. More than a few other couples hiking to the beach saw us, stripped and went skinny dipping in the water with us. It’s hard not to be friendly when you’re naked.
We enjoyed lunch, snacks and plenty of wine and punch during our visit. We of course packed up our trash (remember, we did park next to the trash dump) so that future visitors could see the beach as beautiful and unspoiled as we did.
Regarding nudity and Saint Martin, technically nudity is only permitted on Orient Beach and all beaches can be used top free. There are however many unofficially nude/clothing optional beaches like Petites Cayes, Happy Bay,Cupecoy beach and others. If someone asks you to cover up, you should out of respect for the locals and the law. Beaches like Happy Bay are often used by the locals on the weekends and on Sunday’s the Police do patrol the beach to make sure everyone covers up (go to Orient Beach on Sunday’s).
Perhaps even more important is preserving Petites Cayes and keeping it natural and pristine. Respect the beach and nature and please don’t leave any garbage. Or better yet, pick up what others have left behind. And while Petites Cayes is unofficially clothing optional, it is not a place to live out your beach sex fantasy. Nudity does not mean sex or intimacy. Enjoy your time together naked but keep intimacy for your bedroom. Trust me after spending the day naked together, your alone time will be extra special later on.
This is the first of three blogs detailing our recent trip to Saint Martin. Look for future blogs about Happy Bay Beach and taking a naked vacation with friends. Have you been to St. Martin? We’d love to hear your thoughts on your experiences on the island and why it’s a perfect destination for couples to try nude recreation.
Top image from USA Today article: Caribbean in the Buff: Top Nude Resorts… http://experience.usatoday.com/caribbean/story/best-of-caribbean/2015/03/26/best-nude-resorts-in-the-caribbean/9879267/
It was our honeymoon to Tahiti/French Polynesia where my wife and I got comfortable with social nudity. It really wasn’t what we expected. Knowing that topless beaches were the norm in Tahiti, we thought we could find our own private little island (motu) and leave the bathing suits in the canoe. I thought of us exploring the island naked and enjoying the sun and surf of our own tropical paradise. That didn’t happen, but what did, we still laugh about today.
That said my beautiful bride shed her bikini top on day one and didn’t put it back on until we got home to the Midwest USA. This was one of our first experiences with one of us/both of us being nude in front of others and it was wonderful. The irony was even though we were around topless couples all day for more than a week, it was the time we spent together and my wife enjoying the freedom of not wearing her bikini top that made it so memorable.
Would we have considered a nude honeymoon at a nude, not clothing optional resort like Hidden Beach Resort in Mexico? Probably not, but we were only in our 20s then. Going to a nude beach was on our list. If we were getting married today though, a nude resort would be our first choice for our honeymoon and there are lots of locations across the world to consider.
Recently I received an email from a young woman we’ll call “Busy Bride.” She is in her late 20s and was planning her dream honeymoon to match her beautiful wedding later this summer. She and her fiance had booked a cruise but were having problems with the cruise company. After souring on a cruise, she started to look at all-inclusive resorts and came across our blog post on Couples Sans Souci in Jamaica. She hadn’t considered a nude honeymoon before. She contacted me to say she loved the idea of it but had lots of questions. Busy Bride provided the following blog post about her honeymoon planning and why she and her fiance are excited about their nude honeymoon this summer. Enjoy. I’m really excited for the honeymoon she and her fiance have planned.
We had booked a cruise for our upcoming honeymoon. Neither of us had ever cruised before and were really excited. There was a glitch during their cyber Monday sales and they would not honor the price. Everyone I spoke was hospitable and patient but unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, one manager was particularly rude, harsh, and was the deciding factor on our choice to cancel our cruise and look elsewhere.
After coming across an article on TripAdvisor about the differences between Sandals, Couples, and Secrets, I came across a review about Couples Sans Souci that mentioned a nude beach on the resort. Not clothing optional. Nude only. I was intrigued and Googled Couples San Souci nude beach. The third search result was a blog entry titled, “Jammin Naked in Jamaica: Couples San Souci Perfect for First Timers.”
I was intrigued and read through the blog. I had never before even considered going to a nude beach. Sure, I had skinny dipped a few times as a teenager and when I was a little, I ran through the sprinkler butt naked too. What kids don’t? But I’d never considered being nude as an adult, in public, much less socially.
Something about the blog entry struck a chord in me though. Thinking about being naked with my new husband was thrilling. Not in a sexual way, but in a scary way, like the feeling you get at the top of a roller coaster you’ve never been on before. So I started researching nude all-inclusive resorts.
Hidden Beach Resort looked amazing and very luxurious like a spa resort! My only issue with Hidden Beach Resort was that it was all nude, all the time. No exceptions. I was ready and willing to jump in without a life jacket at this point after reading quite a few entries from TC’s Clothing Optional Trips blog, but I had yet to bring up the topic with my fiance.
So I posted a question to TC to see if he had been to these resorts and what his opinions were. We connected and he gave me all sorts of valuable input about his experiences and opinions of different beaches/resorts he and his wife had been to and also a few very important questions and some advice. He asked questions like, “Had I spoken to my fiance about this? Were we equally interested in trying social nudity? Had either of us tried it before?” He also pointed out things not everyone might think of, but everyone would wish they had thought of: for example, sunscreen is your best friend for pale areas that see little to no sun. Nobody wants sunburn on their privates. What a way to ruin a honeymoon, right?
Speaking of honeymoon, the reason we had initially chosen a cruise was because we wanted exotic, we wanted different, we wanted unique. We thought a Caribbean cruise that hit more than one location would be ideal. More bang for the buck, plus included, bottomless drinks! The more we thought about it, after the customer service slip up, we realized we hadn’t thought of the multitude of other passengers, possible screaming rowdy children, tight cabins, and the feeling of being herded off the boat and back on the boat once in port. Not really a romantic honeymoon situation.
We do want to cruise, just later. Probably when we can afford a suite, so many years from now…. haha. When I posed the idea of “au natural honeymoon” to my fiance he was initially shocked. The fact I was asking him was what shocked him most. After the initial surprise he said he was interested, but that Hidden Beach Resort seemed a little too much to start with.
I was disappointed I admit. The resort looks so luxurious and I love the idea of being nude all day every day and can’t wait to try it, but it will be a trip for later. I want my fiance to be comfortable and enjoy our first time together naked and not to cringe and dread it.
After ruling out Hidden Beach we looked into St. Maarten, which was recommended to us by TC because of budget. We initially wanted an all inclusive because we thought we’d save money that way since it was ALL INCLUDED. But, we looked into VRBO.com and found a gorgeous 2 bedroom vista right on a cliff on the Dutch side of the island. It had a private pool, gorgeous views, private deck, no neighbors in sight, and a beautiful feature window in the master bedroom in front of a long soaking tub. Yes please! We checked with the owner and they said it was fine if we wanted to ditch clothes and lounge au natural all day, every day. There were no neighbors to offend, and we would have the schedule of the service people who clean the home twice a week. We would save quite a bit of money by sacrificing being waited on hand and foot as we would have been at Hidden Beach. Its definitely a luxury we will need to indulge in for an anniversary maybe in the future. We still get to honeymoon someplace exotic on a beautiful island, laying out naked, poolside, with ocean views. And if we are brave enough to want to try more (which I think we will be) there are nude, or topless, beaches all around St. Maarten! There were many other reasons we chose St. Maarten that TC pointed out for us, and we researched deeper after his recommendations, and we are so excited for our upcoming honeymoon!
I am so happy I stumbled across Clothing Optional Trips blog. I never would have considered trying social nudity with my fiance, much less for the first time and on our honeymoon, if I hadn’t come across the blog.
When it comes down to it the honeymoon is supposed to be this unforgettable experience that you remember fondly year after year. It’s supposed to be possibly the best trip a couple takes together, or one of the best at the very least. When resorts like Sandals market to future honeymooners they’re selling that “unique, one-of-a-kind” experience that couples can get only at that resort!
When I thought about whether we were cancelling our cruise and pursuing someplace where we could be nude publicly and socially together, what sold me was this: What’s more unique, more romantic, more unforgettable than going au natural for the first time, together as newlyweds? And so we cancelled the cruise and booked that home on St. Maarten! We can’t wait! Thanks again for all your help and recommendations TC!
I can’t wait to hear about their trip and yes, I’m telling them about all the great places to enjoy nude on St. Martin (French side)/ St. Maarten (Dutch side).
So did you enjoy a nude experience on your honeymoon and no I’m not talking about what happens in your bedroom. Where would you recommend newlyweds go to experience nudism after their big day? Resorts, beaches, all-inclusives? Let us know your thoughts and what you would recommend to couples like Busy Bride and her fiance.
The following is a guest blog from my friend Charlotte (named changed). I have been looking for a firsthand woman’s perspective on trying nudism. We are good friend with Charlotte and her husband Carlos and she very willingingly wrote the blog post below. She hits on so many questions that women (and couples) struggle with when considering social nudity. And more importantly, the benefits of it, especially when your spouse is sitting naked right next to you. I’m proud of her. What a great blog. Let us know what you think.
Raised in the Midwest, I never thought ditching your clothes in public could be an enjoyable pastime. Truthfully, I was never aware it was even an option. I had no preconceived notions or expectations about nudism. Growing up, my father taught me respect of all living things and led by example, going so far as to set live mouse traps for mice that wandered into our horse feed storage. These values significantly helped foster the carefree attitude I live by today – ‘Live and let live.’
Though I don’t consider myself a true nudist, I particularly enjoy baring it all on vacation and when our time allows. Several times during the summer, my husband and I will visit local nudist clubs and enjoy socializing with the crowds that gather there. And later this month, we will be enjoying a nude first for us – renting a private Caribbean villa with another couple who loves to be naked as much as we do.
My first experience with nudism was rather spontaneous. My husband Carlos and I began dating midsummer several years ago, excitedly and hurriedly falling in love, which was a surprise and uncharacteristic of us both. He was a lifelong bachelor and me, a recent divorcee. The almost immediate sense of security and comfort we found within each other allowed us to communicate candidly about everything, from our political views to some of our deepest revelations.
One conversation that seemed so innocent at the time now strikes me as my first introduction to nudism. After travel plans to the sunny island of Saint Martin were in the works, Carlos asked if I would ever try nude sunbathing, considering it is a popular activity on Saint Martin’s beaches. I paused and thought out loud, “I honestly have no idea.”
I recalled my days as a teenager, lying in the sun topless in my backyard. High school dances and tan lines are long-time foes. Privacy was ample in my backyard and the only risk of exposure was the occasional airplane flying overhead.
‘Stripping off my swimsuit in front of other people though? Would I have the courage?’ As I gave the idea more life, I asked, “Would you be ok with other men seeing me naked?” Carlos said, “Of course,” without hesitation. In my naiveté, I struggled separating nudism from its sexual connotation. My only previous encounter with nudism was skinny dipping at a local quarry after a high school football game with several friends – girls and boys, one of whom I had a small crush on. The moonlight was scarce, which allowed us to shed our clothes without much fear of being seen jumping into the cool water. I shared my experience with Carlos, slightly nervous he may pass judgment, but he just smiled in sweet amusement. Our conversation digressed and we rambled about other things. We did not suggest nudism again until we were lying out at Happy Bay, a sandy and secluded beach on Saint Martin.
After dating a little less than a year, Carlos had proposed. Suddenly, we were engaged and jetting off to the Caribbean. Carlos’ confidence and enthusiasm were more reassuring, attractive and contagious than ever before. I couldn’t help but be swept away in his excitement as he showed me around his favorite island, drove us to his favorite beach, and carefully picked out a semi-secluded spot by the water. He poured us each a generous glass of red wine, and we sat on the beach soaking up the sun. Shortly after finishing our wine, in what seemed like one swift motion, Carlos slid down his swim shorts and reached over to untie my bikini top. I let the straps fall to the sand and without moving to stop him. He untied the string that was holding my bikini top somewhat in place. My eyes locked on his, and any sense of uneasiness was gone. He then rather sweetly and hopefully asked, “Will you slide off your bottoms too?” Without saying anything, I did and smiled.
A wave of excitement immediately washed over me and with the rush, my senses became acutely aware of everything. I had never felt the sun’s warmth so completely or the ocean’s breeze so freely. A new sense of liberation consumed me. For several minutes, I just stared at the ocean in complete awe and shock.
No one was yelling at me to dress myself. No one was staring at me. No one seemed to notice or even care. As I looked around, it dawned on me we were not the only ones lying naked on the beach. How had I not noticed? Carlos interrupted my self-examination and asked if I would join him for a swim. Apprehension started to creep in. ‘Wait, I have to get up? Surely people will stare.’ Carlos noted my hesitation and without words, offered me the reassurance and courage I needed. ‘So what if they stare?’
He stood up first and offered his hand, helping me off of my cloth sanctuary. For some reason, leaving my towel behind affirmed my display of public nudity. But with Carlos by my side, I had strength and courage I never had before. In no hurry, we walked down the beach holding hands and entered the warm ocean water for our first nude swim together. The water seemed to feel more slippery than I’d ever felt before and my body offered no resistance as I gracefully glided through the water. One single moment lasting no more than a few minutes had just completely opened my eyes to a new state of mindfulness.
The rest of the evening, I unleashed a fury of questions that had been brewing all day at the beach and Carlos shared his story and confirmed a few of my suspicions. This was not his first experience with nudism, but it was his first experience sharing it with someone he loved. Though it was not an overtly sexual experience for either of us, we shared a heightened degree of intimacy that brought our relationship to another level. I excitedly and curiously listened to Carlos share his prior experiences.
He first arrived to Saint Martin aboard a popular cruise ship. Walking along the shores of Orient Beach, he was one of the few American tourists who removed his shorts while walking the nude side of the beach. When I asked him why, his reply was simple, “It just seemed like fun!”
Enjoying the experience so much, he decided to visit a local nudist club. Coincidently, he ran into a coworker there. I can imagine the odds of this happening are extremely low. Within the nudist community, there is a healthy level of respect for privacy, and their meeting followed suit. Neither ever mentioned the incident at work and they remain friends today.
Not wanting to give up nudism, Carlos eventually returned to Saint Martin for a second time with his then-girlfriend. Together they explored more of the island, but for the entirety of the trip, she remained clothed. Curiously, I asked if it would bother him if I decided that nudism might not be for me. Carlos confidently insisted he would accept my decision, but my preferences would not change his own. I greatly appreciated the lack of pressure I felt in that moment. Carlos would love me no matter my decision and would continue to respect me. Ultimately, like my husband, unwinding anywhere au natural is just too much fun not to partake.
Since my first experience with nudism, my body has seen several changes. Carlos and I returned to the Caribbean for our honeymoon, both of us carrying a few extra pounds that came with the stress of planning a wedding and enjoying life a little too much.
The third time we left our swimsuits behind, I was 25-weeks pregnant and displaying a very recognizable baby bump. Surprisingly, I enjoyed the freedom of leaving behind my clothes. I have yet to find clothes that are truly comfortable for any expecting mother.
Shortly after delivering, we decided to visit a local nudist club, one that was new to both of us. I was three months postpartum, still carrying around extra weight from pregnancy, leaking breast milk and nursing my infant. Though I had reservations, I refused to let anything stand in my way of enjoying my life. As a new mom, I was unprepared for the amount of attention we would receive with such a young baby, but it allowed us to become more sociable and leave behind the isolation we previously maintained by nature of our Type B personalities.
After our visit, Carlos and I both shared a longing to return to Saint Martin. After the trip was already booked, we learned we were expecting. Again, I shed my swimsuit underneath the sun with a baby bump on display. To my surprise, I found my pregnancy, though fairly small at the time, to be quite a conversation starter. Strangers would congratulate us and ask the typical follow up questions.
In fact, it was this very topic that broke the ice and gave reason for small chit chat with someone who has since become very close friends of ours. As fate would have it, the man standing directly behind us in line during an Orient Beach Bar happy hour lives less than 10 minutes from our home. After quickly discovering the proximity of our homes, TC excitedly introduced us to his wife Mindy and we all immediately hit it off.
Upon our return, we stayed in contact. After finding time for a brief escape from busy schedules, we reconnected with TC and Mindy during the winter months over dinner. With like minded personalities and shared interests, it was easy to plan a couple visits to our local nudist clubs with them as soon as the summer weather allowed. Our friendship continues to flourish and has allowed us to try something new to all of us – share a private villa with another nudist couple.
Too often, as women we criticize ourselves and each other. Our insecurities become motivating factors preventing us from doing things we once loved or may grow to love. In my neighborhood alone, even the most petite mother wears a very modest one-piece swimsuit at our neighborhood pool. Instead of celebrating our imperfect bodies, we regularly try to hide the things we detest – scars, stretch marks, cellulite, imperfect breasts, unwanted pounds, and the list goes on. Any idea of perfection is relentlessly brandished everywhere we turn – television, literature, advertisements, movies, pornography, etc. That quantifiable idea of perfection just doesn’t exist in the natural world.
I do not carry a perfect body. Simply put, I am quite average. My body still carries the extra weight brought on during pregnancy, my breasts aren’t as perky as they once were, cellulite has claimed many parts of my body, and my stomach has lost the tightness it once had before children. Physically, my body has transformed into something new with almost every nudist experience I have had, but each instance has given me the opportunity to confront a new set of insecurities and practice self-acceptance, an important concept I hope to pass to my own children.
Carlos has been incredibly patient and completely supportive throughout these life changes, putting up with my crying episodes (mostly hormonal) and not once shaming me if I felt the need to cover-up for whatever reason. Despite it all, one of the reasons I am still able to confidently strip down my clothes and walk down the beach for all to see is my ability to not just accept my body as it is, but celebrate it. I am a mother of three beautiful children, and I am proud that my body shows signs of motherhood. It’s the role I am proudest to fill. And though there are times I wish I had my pre-pregnancy body back, I am grateful that my experiences have made me stronger and more confident than I ever was when I was a size 2. I am happier now in my average body than I was then. I am more confident naked now than I was then. And with that confidence and those new life experiences, I have met some interesting people along the way and made a couple amazing friends.
All of our bodies tell stories. Each story is truly unique and deserves to be cherished by ourselves and respected by others. Don’t be afraid to share yours. The truly beautiful thing about nudism is the welcoming attitude and feelings of overwhelming acceptance. In my experiences, I have found the people who judge the most are often the ones wearing the most clothes. Perhaps they are afraid their insecurities will be noticed if they don’t first point out the flaws in others. Regardless of what others think, your opinion of yourself is the only one that truly matters and the only one you have the power to control.
If you’re thinking of trying nudism for the first time, go for it! If you’re single, what have you got to lose? If you’re married and hoping to convince your partner, sit down together and have an open and honest conversation. Leave judgments behind and listen to each other’s doubts, fears and insecurities with sincerity and respect. Accept that he or she might be hesitant or resistant. Explore each other’s fears and work to overcome them together. And absolutely do not forget to affirm your love for one another.
When I think of that summer with my husband, I’m reminded of a quote I once read:
“I want to live everything with the most density possible…I am so conscious that life might escape me at any moment, that everything has become keener and more distilled…I tell myself: All this happiness still, but for how long? So I devour life.” (What French Women Know: About Love, Sex, and Other Matters of the Heart and Mind)
Yes this post is my opinion as to why every beach should have a clothing optional section but my reasons for this are probably not what you would think. Follow me and see if you agree. /Cover photo from PeterGreenberg.com
Nothing about the Kardashian family and their “reality” is real. Yet they are undeniably the hottest thing in Hollywood and are role models (dear God did I just write that?) to countless fans including many young women. Their fashion, their product endorsements and their bodies sell.
While I disagree with a lot about what the Kardashian sisters represent, it’s their bodies that I have the most trouble with and why I wrote this post. I know you’re asking, “What do the Kardashians have to do with promoting access to clothing optional/nude beaches across the U.S.?”
Simply put, the Kardashian girls’ bodies are fake. They are fiction, while the bodies on a clothing optional beach are real. In this time when women and men struggle with body image and being positive about themselves, why would we ever promote the Kardashians or any other Hollywood stars or models as having normal bodies.
Google Kardashian and plastic surgery and you’ll see their bodies are more fiction than fact. The “look” they are creating is focused on body perfection and sex. Ironically two things you should never see on a nude or clothing optional beach. Yet, as a society we promote them as symbols of what is beautiful or sexy in the world today even though their bodies literally come with a price and set a standard that most women will never achieve nor should they try.
So why should every beach have a clothing optional section? Because on nude/clothing optional beaches you see real bodies. You see people with all types of body types and ages who are perfect in their own special way. Yes, some people have had “work done.” If you thought it was easy to identify fake breasts while clothed, trust me it is even easier on a topless beach. I’m trying not to judge, but my point is that when you spend time on a nude/clothing optional beach you become part of a shared community. By bearing all to everyone, you see quickly that no one is perfect by Kardashian standards, but perfect they are perfect in their own special way.
Yes you will see lots of different looking people. I always tell people to understand what a nude beach is like, go to a mall or other crowded place and watch the next 100 people who pass you by. Now imagine them naked. That’s it. Some people you would find attractive, others not so much, but that’s not the point. They aren’t there for your viewing pleasure. Just like a community, most people are wonderfully average. And when you do see them naked, you’re all equal. That said, you don’t go to a clothing optional beach to see or be seen. You go because of how it makes you feel when you’re there. Writer Emma Sloley captures the sights of a Croatian nudist resort beautifully in her article, Nudist Always Play Volleyball. Give it a read and you’ll see what I mean.
Perhaps the most important reason why every beach should have a clothing 0ptional section is so that young adults and children can see their bodies are beautiful just the way they are. They don’t need to be ashamed of how skinny or large they are. They don’t need to worry about their breasts or hips being too big or too small. They don’t need to measure their tummies or thighs. Young men don’t need to be concerned about being too skinny or too weak. They need to see all bodies as beautiful and not imperfect. We need to de-sexualize a woman’s breast and hips and a man’s penis and see them for what they are… skin, bone and muscle. We need to provide women with equal rights to decide when and where they want to shed their clothing and at the very least enjoy the same rights men do.
We all need to see the badges we wear on our bodies that come with age. These are badges of honor. I am always amazed by what I see when I’m on a nude beach. I see the scars from life saving surgeries. I see healed wounds from accidents. I see pregnant women glowing from future motherhood in the sun. I see women who have had mastectomies. I see men with large bellies. I see c-section scars and stretch marks. I see amputations. I see the effects of living a long, wonderful life such as wrinkles and sagging butts, boobs and balls, not to mention muscles and skin. I see birthmarks. I see burns. While it might not all be pretty like the Kardashians, it’s real and this is what we all should appreciate and accept.
Equally important is that clothing optional beaches need to be everywhere so that they are easy to find, easy to access and easy to enjoy. Today in the U.S., clothing optional beaches, nudist clubs and nude vacations spots carry an unfair stigma. They are not dens of odd people doing immoral things that children should be kept from. Instead, they are filled with people spending time with their loved ones and friends while enjoying the freedom to be nude and to celebrate the sun without being judged or threatened.
Perhaps most important to why all beaches should have a clothing optional section is access to information. The internet today provides pictures (clothed or naked) of the Kardashians at the click of a button. Anyone can see these images, yet we can’t all go to a clothing optional beach or place and see what real people looks like.
So why am I writing this post today? First off because of women like Chelsea Covington (@gingerbread) and her efforts to bring topless freedom to all women through her actions #freethenipple and her blog: Breasts are healthy. She has been arrested for her belief but continues to change opinions and promote discussion about topless freedom for all women.
Second, because of nudist advocates like Felicity Jones and her efforts to educate not only for topfreedom but positive body image and body acceptance for all. She speaks to young adults and demonstrates all of the positives of today’s nudist/naturism messages. Her blog is youngnaturistamerica.
Third, because of a DM I received from a twitter follower with nice comments about our blog while pointing out how extremely negative body image has become. He mentioned a friend who said she’d love to try nude recreation but was concerned about the look of her labia. Really? What society has done to women and their bodies is unacceptable. Furthermore, it sickens me that their our doctors who will profit from this surgery.
Finally, I’m selfish. I live in the Midwest US by the Great Lakes (Lake Erie) and there are no public, legal, approved clothing optional beaches on the U.S. side of the Great Lakes anywhere. We are an hour from Cleveland and there is no where we can go nude in public on Lake Erie without the risk of breaking the law. My wife and I instead go to Haulover Beach in Miami or Black’s Beach in San Diego. We love it, but wow, what a long way to go to enjoy the sunshine.
Alright, I’m off my soapbox. But before I leave you, I read a beautiful quote from the blog Meandering Naturist about naturism in France. Read and see if you agree.
“France will always be the place where naturism genuinely made sense to me – in a way that I had dreamt it should be – and for that, I am forever grateful to the people who are able to say “a breast is a breast, a penis is a penis, and it appears everyone sports a remarkably similar pair of buttocks!” Viva la France.
So what’s the perfect way to relax and literally soak in Mother Nature and all of her beauty? There is no better place to take it all off and try nude recreation than a hot spring. It is the perfect low/no stress environment to see what getting naked in nature really feels like for you and your significant other.
I was visiting Santa Fe on business and had an extra day. Rather than stay in town, which is tempting because it’s a really great city to explore, I decided to see what hikes were recommended in the mountains. I quickly discovered that New Mexico is known for many amazing hot springs including several with fantastically scenic hikes to reach them and most of them clothing optional (you can be naked, topless or in your swimming suit… the choice is your’s).
The hot springs I read about really were all different. Some were very remote and hard to reach, while others were right off main roads and very crowded. Some had been purchased and turned into spas, while others were “trashed” by tourists and locals. Here is a list I found very helpful.
The one hot springs I kept reading about that appealed to me the most was the San Antonio Hot Springs. It features an amazingly scenic and beautiful five-mile hike by a creek up a canyon. The hike goes over a variety of landscapes but you’re climbing with every step up the canyon. The views are amazing.
I did the hike in early October and it was warm. I did it in late afternoon/early evening because I wanted to sit out and watch the stars fill the sky (bring a flashlight). The hike will take between 1.5-2.5 hours or however long it will take you to walk five miles up hill. Bring water. There is no water available on the hike. The hike alone was the highlight of my day, but that’s when I got to the hot springs.
The hike ends after passing an abandoned barn and cabin with four beautiful pools of water cascading down a hillside overlooking the creek and cliffs of the canyon. A hot spring fills the top pool and the water flows from one to the next. The top pool is 105 F and the temperature falls with each pool.
I was alone when I got to the springs. I took off my clothing and jumped into the top pool and enjoyed the soak while looking out at the cliffs, stream and the forest all around me. The water was crystal clear and actually a bit too warm for me. After 15 minutes, I had to take a seat on the rocks surrounding the pool to cool off. Sitting in the hot springs with stunning natural surrounding all around is an amazing feeling. The water is unbelievably comfortable and the four pools have sand bottoms so you can sit in them without the pain of a rock pinching your bottom.
I would call the San Antonio hot springs a little gem hidden in the New Mexico wilderness. You’ve really got to want to be there because it’s not an easy hike to it. From what I saw online, the springs can be very crowded. The area around the hot springs was a little beat up from the summer hiking season, but I found very little trash. The hot spring pools themselves were wonderfully maintained.
I stayed and soaked for nearly two hours, watching the sunset give way to the stars. It was an unbelievable night. My only complaints were that my wife wasn’t with me to enjoy it and that I was the only one there. The best part of social nudity is just that… social. I have yet to meet another person or couple nude in a hot tub that I didn’t enjoy talking with and sharing stories. While I was there for me, I would have enjoyed talking to other people too.
Sound like something you might want to try? I’m sure you have questions.
First off, there is nothing more wonderful than getting naked with your significant other on a beach, pool or in this case, hot springs. While you’ll be anxious at first, most people quickly realize that it really feels great. You’ll feel “exposed” and uncomfortable for a few minutes. Once the, “Are we crazy, what are we doing feeling wears off,” you’ll feel very comfortable and actually will get a rush from it. Sound cliche I know, but you’ll feel free, open and once the anxiety wears off, really good. And yes, because every guy asks about this, it isn’t uncommon to get an erection the first time you watch your significant other get naked. It will pass. Simply put a towel over your penis till it calms down or jump in the water and relaxi. This too shall pass. We recommend either going early or late to avoid other people. Just be prepared with a flashlight, etc.
Second, while I’m sure most couples who have never tried social nudity would want to be by themselves to start, if another couple or group of people are there already and naked, don’t worry about it. Just take your time and do what feels right. From our experiences most guys are all for getting naked and skinny dipping. It might take a little time for your wife/girlfriend to get comfortable. Step into the pool and relax. Once she feels comfortable (and she probably will but on her time frame) let her decide if she wants to take off her bikini top or drop her bathing suit completely. Be encouraging but not demanding. Let it be a shared experience and I promise you, it will be relaxing and fun for both of you.
So what do you do if there are other people there and they aren’t naked? Well, the decision is yours. Nudity is legal on U.S. Park Service lands so you are breaking no laws. Do what you’re comfortable with. We’ve been doing this for years and I have no problem taking my clothing off in a place where it is legal and recognized as clothing optional. That said, if someone was there with children, I would ask how much longer they were going to be there to see if we could wait them out or tell them that we intend on using the hot springs naked and discussing where we want to be and where they are. Again, the choice is yours. You’re in control.
I can tell you from what we’ve seen if there are other couples there with their bathing suits on, usually the other couples are waiting for someone to break the “nude” ice. This is what I mean. Read this Yelp Review of the San Antonio Hot Springs from Anthony J, “The three pools are out in the open on a hill side. If you are lucky like we were we saw some nudist in the springs. They were quick to get out and put on bathing suits when they saw us, but when we got to the pools they were very nice. We all had some really good conversation. After an hour of talking we all decided to go skinny dipping. The women were mid 30s and my friends and I were early 20s. That was the first time I’ve ever gone skinny dipping, and it was very enjoyable.” This happens a lot. Nudity is a big deal until you experience it and find it’s not a big deal at all.
We had something similar happen the first time we went to a very small, clothing optional beach in St. Maartin. There were four other younger 20/30 something aged couples, all in their bathing suits and bikinis on the beach when we arrived. As soon as we laid out our towels, I dropped my bathing suit and went skinny dipping in the ocean. By the time I got back to my wife, she had already taken her bikini top off and five minutes later put her bikini bottoms in her bag for safe keeping. By the time I had gotten out of the ocean for my swim, half the guys had already taken off their bathing suits and one woman her top. Within 30 minutes of my wife taking off her bikini and the two of us jumping in the ocean, all four couples were naked. By the time we left the beach, the four other couples were playing in the waves and walking down the beach in the buff like they had done it all their lives. The beach actually became pretty crowded and everyone was naked. This is a long example, but I’m surprised at how often all it takes is just one couple to get naked and everyone joins in.
Finally, and this is really important, so wouldn’t this hot spring be a wonderful place for romance, especially since you’re both naked already?
Nudity does not equal sex. All nudist will tell you one of the first surprises of social nudity is that while it can be romantic for you and your spouse, it isn’t a sexually charged environment. There is a time and place for everything and intimate touching and sex should be done in private, NOT in the open. If you’re lucky enough to have your own private pool or hot tub, go at it. But if you’re in a public place (beach, resort or in this case hot spring), it is a big no-no! Don’t ruin it for others (including families) that may surprise you by jumping in the hot spring while the two of you are getting hot. Sorry, it’s not acceptable.
So are you interested in trying a hot spring for you and your significant other? There are clothing optional hot springs in Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon to name a few locations. There are a lot of reviews and locations. Some have been commercialized and you can rent your own private pool to be naked in or simply away from others. For the San Antonio Hot Springs, the address is: Forest Rd 376 (4 Miles N of FR 126) Jemez Springs, NM 87025. There is no cell phone service in this area.
More importantly, since I’m new to hot springs, if you have been to one and would recommend it as a great first time place for others to try social nudity, please send us a review and your thoughts on why it was a great first time experience for you both.
As anyone who has read our blog before knows, my wife and I are big supporters of enjoying nude vacations and getaways. For more than 20 years, we’ve found our clothing optional trips and adventures to be wonderful shared experiences for the two of us. To a couple who has never tried it before, it’s not what you would initially expect. It should be fun, exciting, freeing and relaxing. It is romantic too, but not sexual.
We started our blog nearly three years ago to encourage, answer questions and provide honest information and support to other couples who are interested in taking a nakation or trading their bathing suits for their birthday suits on an upcoming trip. We’ve found our trips to be very relaxing, romantic and freeing. It really has been a wonderful experience for us and potentially for you too.
Everyday our blog receives visits from 300-500 people interested in learning more. We invite and encourage you to ask questions. There are wonderful beaches to visit, clothing optional resorts to enjoy and completely nude vacations to discover. Please read our blog and let us know your questions and more importantly, share where you would recommend other couples go and what it was like for you.