Bare Neccessities: Where To Find 10 Of The World's Best Nudist Beaches
If you're looking to get an all over tan without the lines, then lying on the beach as nature intended is the best way of achieving that aim. And the good news is that there are plenty of spots for a cheeky bit of nude sunbathing, both at home and abroad. Here's our guide to some of the best nudist beaches on the planet - and to ensure you're covered (when you need to be) - here is the official Naturist Beach code.
UK nudist beaches
Despite being regarded as one of the more prudish nations, there are now more than 20 officially designated naturist beaches in the England, Scotland and Wales. Unsurprisingly the majority of the beaches are down on the south and south west coast where the weather is a little warmer.
1. Knoll Beach, Studland Bay, Dorset, UK
For 1km of sand, clothing is optional at the most popular naturist beach in Britain - in fact nude sunbathing has been happening down there since the 1920s. The designated naturist area of Knoll Beach is part of the National Trust's managed seashore on Studland Bay, a beautiful four kilometre coastline. They've recently expanded the beach's “buffer zone” for greater privacy for those on the beach and those walking past.
DID YOU KNOW? Coldplay’s ‘Yellow’ was filmed on Knoll Beach
Website Getting there: Studland, near Swanage, Dorset - Knoll Beach. It's half an hour walk from the Shell Bay and Knoll Beach National Trust car parksStaying there: Find hotels in Dorset More things to do near Bournemouth and Dorset
2. Brighton beach, East Sussex, UK
The first public naturist beach in the UK was opened in Brighton on April 1, 1980. Eileen Jakes, a local councillor and seaside landlady, came up with the idea in the late 1970s. And at the time, it caused quite a stir. But after it was approved, Brighton's then deputy Mayor, Alfred Feld, said: "It is a bold move ... but we feel we are just moving with the times." These days, the beach is one of the best known nudist beaches in Britain. It's really close to the centre of Brighton, and easily accessible by foot, bus and even tourist train.
3. Holkham beach, North Norfolk, UK
Down at the western side of Holkham Bay, you'll find the official naturist beach. It's been deemed one of the best beaches in Britain, and is a busy spot in the height of summer. Around 1,000 nude sunbathers turn up on a sunny day. For a short time in 2013, naturists were banned. But after imposing a new rule about the sand dunes, they've been warmly welcomed back (see here for the new beach rules).
DID YOU KNOW? Gwyneth Paltrow walked across Holkham beach during the closing scenes of Shakespeare in Love. It's also featured in All Saints's video for Pure Shores.
This part of the beach is exposed to the wind, so pack a wind breaker for added protection. Getting there: Head to the car park off Lady Anne’s Drive in Holkham, just off the A149, The nudist beach is to the west and it takes around half an hour to walk there.Staying there: Find hotels in North Norfolk
European nudist beaches
4. Spiaggia di Guvano, Corniglia, Italy
You have to be quite committed to get to this beach. There’s only one way and it's via a pitch black tunnel through a mountain in the Cinque Terre National Park. Once there, you'll find a small, secluded, black pebbly beach well out of the way of prying eyes. A nice thing to do while you're there is climb up the brick staircase to the village of Corniglia, an ancient Roman hamlet. Much of the area is a UNESCO World Heritage site, so there's lots more nature to see while you're there. Website Getting there: You can reach there by car, train or ferry - here's how. The nearest airports to fly to are Pisa, Genoa or Florence - see the latest deals on flights to Italy.
5. Bellevue Beach , Klampenborg, Denmark
Scandinavia has long had a proud history of naturism, so stripping off on the beach comes naturally to the Danes. This is a cool place to hang out for Copenhagen's bright young things in the summer, so expect a party atmosphere along the 700m sandy beach. The far end tends to have the fully nude sun worshippers, while the rest of the beach you can go topless if you want. You can jump into the water from one of the piers jutting out into the sea. If you're not a local - be prepared, it's going to be a bit nippy. Website Getting there: Strandvejen 340, 2930 Klampenborg - find flights to CopenhagenStaying there: The beach is only a few miles north of Copenhagen - here's some places to stay in the city More things to do in Copenhagen
6. Es Cavallet, Ibiza, Spain
Es Cavallet is a nudist and gay-friendly beach. It's also popular with kite surfers - so even though you're sheltered a little by sand dunes, expect a bit of wind. It's an official nudist beach so you can take your clothes off with confidence, it's even frequented by celebrities. Getting there: Es Cavallet, Ibiza Town, Ibiza, Spain - latest Ibiza flightsStaying there: Find hotels in Ibiza
7. Cap d’Agde, France
Cap d'Agde is the queen of all nudist resorts. You'll find around 40,000 people stripping off here every summer - it's frequently dubbed “the world’s biggest nude town”. You can do your shopping, have a hair cut and choose some fish for dinner - all in the buff. The area is just west of the Riviera and Montpellier, and has been linked to naturism since it opened in the 1960s. Website Getting there: Cap d'Agde, 34300, France - find flights to MontpellierStaying there: Find hotels in Montpellier
8. Kampen Beach, Germany
Kampen is one of the best known nudist beaches in the country. It's on the island of Sylt, which is just off the west coast of Germany and Denmark. This beautiful golden beach lined is with striking red cliffs, and dotted with “strandkörben”, which are basket-like seats (see image above). Many of the nudist beaches in Germany are looked after by the Freikörperkultur (FKK) which translates as Free Body Culture - a movement that supports Germany's passion for getting their kit off. Website Getting there: Tourism site - Hauptstraße 12, 25999, Kampen. The nearest big city is Hamburg, and then it's a good five hours drive - see latest flights to Hamburg.
The rest of the world
9. Praia do Abricó Beach, Brazil
Abricó is the only nudist beach in the city of Rio. Nudists have been coming here since the 1940’s, but it's only very recently been made official. Now legislation is in place to protect those who wish to fully undress, so you can dare to bare without possible prosecution. Getting there: Grumari, Barra da Tijuca, Rio. Find flights to Rio
10. Orient Beach, St. Martin
This paradise beach on the Leeward Islands in the Caribbean Sea is the only naturist resort in the island. You'll find these white sands on the racier northern French side of the island (the southern side is Dutch and is spelt Sint Maarten) There are several “clothing optional” beaches in this family-friendly area, and you can even take a nude cruise to hone your tan on the water. Getting there: Club Orient Aveenue des Plages, St. Martin, Caribbean Staying there: Book the resort here
Have you visited any of these beaches?
Our research shows us that more and more Brits are daring to bare all on the beach - read our European survey results here and get more tips on visiting nudist beaches with our map. We'd love to hear your experiences of visiting nudist beaches. Let us know you're favourite nude sunbathing spots by leaving a comment below.