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/
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)