The big survey about naturism
we’ve done a while a go showed us that the large majority, more than 60% of our participants, have started with nudism out of curiosity. A huge number. And it made us wonder… these people were curious and actually made the step to give social nudity a try. How many others are out there who haven’t taken the step yet?
From the messages we receive on Facebook
and this website it seems like there’s still some confusion about the how, where, when and with whom to start with nudism. Some “experienced” nudists will tell you that the first step is nothing. Just take off your clothes and that’s it. From our own first experience
we know that it’s not always that easy. We have tackled this topic a couple of times before, but our knowledge is scattered among different blog posts. So we thought it was about time to put it all together in on big complete guide.
Before you start
Why are you interested in nudism?
It’s important to consider this question for a couple of minutes. We’re not going to give you a philosophical disquisition about what nudism and naturism is, but you can have many different reasons to start with this great lifestyle. Finding the perfect place for your first nudist experience depends a lot on the answer to this question.
There are only a few wrong answers. If you want to become a nudist because you think it’s easier to find a sex partner among nudists or because you think it’s fun to spend your free time looking at naked people, nudism is nothing for you. Other than that, pretty much all answers are good ones.
A couple of common reasons why people are interested in nudism are: connecting with nature, improving body confidence
, the positive lifestyle, to get rid of stress
, to get a nice equal tan, a feeling of freedom
, an escape from the daily rat race, a more comfortable way of living, no restrictions while swimming or doing sports or just because they just don’t like wearing clothes.
Are you used to being naked?
One of the things about nudism is obviously that you’ll have to be nude. It sounds like common sense but you would be surprised about how many people are only naked a couple of minutes per day in the bathroom. Getting comfortable wearing nothing else than your own skin can make the jump into social nudity a lot smaller. And it’s something you can easily do at home. Just wander around naked in the house and do some average things you’d otherwise do clothed. You can find some tips in this blog post
If you have a partner and you want to get into nudism together, it’s even better because you can already start with a little social nudity at home. It’s important to get used to not wearing any clothes and to see your naked body (and the one of your partner) more frequently.
If you’d love your partner to join but you haven’t asked him/her yet. In this post
you can find some tips about how to tackle the subject.
When is a good time to start?
Actually, there isn’t a bad time to start. Nudism can be practiced all year round and when you feel you’re ready to give it a try you can certainly find a good spot to start.
But in general, the summer months are often the best timing because there will be more options and you can be naked outside without getting frost bite. Many nudists had their first experience during a holiday in another country. This is also something you might want to consider.
The most important thing is to take your time. Getting into nudism is not something you do during your lunch break or when you have a free half hour in the weekend. Plan to take half a day or a day or maybe a whole week.
Who to take?
Your first steps into nudism are an experience and experiences are better when they are shared. It’s always easier if there’s someone with you to hold on to, someone who’s going through the same steps and someone to talk to while you’re there. And of course someone with whom you can afterwards chat about the whole thing. We had the luck to step into nudism together
and if you have a partner this is certainly the best choice. If you happen to have a friend of family member who’s already a nudist, that’s also pretty convenient. Not only can they tell you about how things will go but they might also know some great places. But anyone you feel comfortable with (friends, family, colleagues, whatever) are good to go. And there’s nothing wrong with having your first steps into nudism on your own, if that’s what you prefer.
Picking the right place for your first time nudist experience
This is probably the most important step of them all and the only negative experiences we’ve ever heard were because people picked the wrong spot. They ended up on a beach with only a handful of retired people or they accidentally went to a gay resort or swingers hotel. There is such a difference between places, you can’t imagine. So please do a little bit of research before you go.
Clothing optional or clothing prohibited?
Both have their pros and cons and there are different opinions about which one is better for your first time. Basically, the main difference is that at a clothing optional place you and the others have the choice between being naked, being partially naked or not being naked at all. While at a clothing prohibited place you have to be naked (although there are exceptions you’ll read about further).
The advantage of a clothing optional place is that you can take things at your own pace. Before you decide to go full monty you can keep your bathing suit on for the first 5 minutes, 30 minutes, 2 hours… and here we get to the disadvantage (at least to us) of a clothing optional place: The longer you wait, the more difficult it can get. Sometimes it’s much better to jump into cold water than to walk into it one little step at a time.
Another difficulty we see with clothing optional is the fact that some/many/most of the others may be clothed. Being nude among other nude people might be a big step but being nude among clothed people is an even bigger one.
But this is completely personal, we’ve met lots of nudists who preferred taking their first steps at a clothing optional place.
The advantage of a clothing prohibited place is that you can expect everyone to be nude. We often joke about the “I show you mine if you show me yours” idea but in the end it does create a harmony which you’ll find less at a clothing optional place. Another advantage is that the first thing you’ll have to do is get rid of your clothes. So that’s settled then, no need anymore to worry about how or when to take them off. You put them in a locker or a bag and can start relaxing. A disadvantage of clothing prohibited places is that they are very rarely for free.
Sauna, spa or wellness
At many saunas, spas and wellness centres
, especially in Europe, bathing suits are prohibited. Mainly for hygiene reasons. This might sound a bit weird but when you think about it, it makes perfect sense. You don’t want to know what a bathing suit absorbs.
But you’re only supposed to be naked in the swimming pool, hot tub, steam room, sauna or whatever other facility. While wandering around or relaxing in a chair it’s perfectly common to wear a bathrobe. Many of these centers will even ask you to wear a bathrobe in their restaurant or bar. This makes the spa a great place for starters. Yes, you will be naked among others but you can also wear at least something in between.
Nude spas are especially great if you want to de-stress, get away from the rat race and experience the comfort of being nude.
If you want a nice natural tan, you better pick another place.
This is the oldest nudist facility existing. Back in the day the so called”nudist colonies” were mainly campings or clubs. The time when you had to pick berries for dinner and shower in the river are long gone though. Most nudist campings these days have swimming pools, sports facilities, often a sauna or hot tub, electricity, hot showers and wifi.
Nudist campings come in all forms and sizes. Read more about the differences between large and small campings here
Nude campings are especially great to get back to nature, to camp comfortably (no need to get dressed in a tent or to keep your clothes dry in a way too small shower cabin) and to experience a feeling of freedom.
If you want luxury and lots of comfort, they might not be the best place.
Because more and more people turned towards nudism, the range of expectations also grew. Some nudists don’t feel much for sleeping in a tent or mobile home and like to have some additional comfort. So the nudist hotel was born. These are more or less the same as any other hotel you’ve ever been to except that you (and everyone else) is naked. Also with hotels there’s a huge difference is size and facilities ranging from a 4 room naturist bed and breakfast to a 100 room all-inclusive resort with several swimming pools and its own nude beach.
Nude hotels are especially great if you like a decent level of comfort and get rid of stress and daily life. They are also a good place to meet other nudists.
If you’re short on cash, you may want to go somewhere else.
Nude beaches and other outdoor places
This is a favourite place to start for some nudists because nude beaches in general are clothing optional. So you can go there, have a look around, see what’s happening and eventually decide to take off your clothes (or not). A major downside of nude beaches is that they are not monitored like private places and that one really differs from another. For example, we were on a nude beach recently where 90% of the people wore bathing suits. We don’t really care but for first timers this could be terrifying. An advantage is that they are most of the time for free.
The most negative nudist experiences we hear about happened at a nude beach, so if you decide to have your first nude time at one of these, make sure to read online what previous visitors said about the place before visiting. In the Destinations section
of this website you can read our experiences about the nude beaches we’ve visited.
Nude beaches are especially great if you like a great natural tan, if you want to connect with nature or if you want to experience the amazing feeling of skinny dipping.
If you like to meet other nudists you might want to go more social places.
Just like naturist campings, naturist clubs are often still linked to the old-fashioned “nudist colony” idea. Truth has to be said, some nudist clubs are in urgent need of a fresh and young wind. To visit a nudist club you’ll often be required to become member (and pay a membership fee) but many clubs these days will give you the chance to try the place once or twice before you have to put cash on the table. There are two main types of nudist clubs: The “landed clubs” have their own place, often with some facilities and the “non-landed clubs” organise events at campings, other clubs or beaches.
are especially great if you want to get to know other nudists, of you want to learn more about the nudist lifestyle and if you want your first nudist experience to be in a very secure environment.
If you like more freedom, you may want to go for another option.
More and more nudist events are being organised lately and many of those come from a local naturist club or federation. The range is huge, from naked bowling nights to swim events to volleyball tournaments to cooking classes to festivals to bike rides in many capitals of the world. Events that are organised by a club or federation often apply the same rules as the club does. The rules at a privately organised event tend to be more loose. Very large events like the World Naked Bike Ride
often get quite some media attention as well.
Nudist events are especially great to experience something in the nude which you otherwise only do clothed and to meet other nudists.
Don’t participate in the World Naked Bike Ride
if you don’t want to risk that your mom sees you naked on TV in front of the Eiffel Tower.
Nude yoga or pilates
Yoga has become very popular the last several years in all different forms. Also in the form of nude yoga
. Following this hype are nude pilates
and other forms of naked workouts. Although we think that naked yoga is a pretty cool thing to do, we’re not sure if it’s great for a first experience with nudism. But then again we’ve met several others who became nudists after taking nude yoga classes. Our main concern about naked workouts is that they are a bit in your face. You move your body in a way you would never do at a naturist camping or a nude beach and the others are often less than a meter away (which also rarely happens at other nude venues). On the other hand we do believe that if you feel comfortable doing nude yoga, you’ll feel comfortable at every other nudist place.
Nude yoga is especially great to meet likeminded people, to improve your body confidence, to relieve stress and to experience the joys of naked workout and sports.
It might feel pretty uncomfortable at first though and it won’t get you a tan.
How to find a nudist place?
The best place to start your journey is online, but you already knew that since you’ve found this guide. For a complete overview of nudist campings and hotels around the world, have a look at NUDE
. Most nudist federations around the world can be found on the website of the INF-FNI
, except for the ones in the USA which are AANR
and The Naturist Society
. Click through to the federation’s website and there you will normally find an overview of all its affiliated nudist clubs.
Beaches and spas are more difficult to find and there are no websites that contain all of them. Your best friend here will be Google. Just type “Nude beach in YOUR COUNTRY” and you’re likely to find some article about it. For spas you type “Spa in YOUR CITY” and then you’ll have to check on their website whether they’re with or without bathing suits.
If you want to be sure to go to a great place for your first time, have a look at our Destinations page
for the places where we’ve been and for complete country guides.
Ready… Set… Get naked!
There you go, there’s little more you can do to prepare yourself for your first nudist experience. You got used to being naked, you marked the date(s) in your agenda, you’ve found some company or decided to try it on your own and you’ve found the perfect place to go to.
But yet you have no idea about what’s going to happen.
And you might have quite some more questions.
If you want it all to be a huge surprise, please stop reading now. If not, we’ll guide you through that first experience.
What to take?
There’s no need to spend hours in front of the mirror before going to a nudist place, everything goes into a locker or a bag anyway. Pretty convenient, no?
But there are some things you might want to take with you on your first nudist getaway.
✅ Sunscreen: Especially if you’re planning to spend some time outside, this is very important. Some of your body parts have rarely seen sunshine before and might need some extra attention. We’ve seen several cases of overripe tomatoes and red peppers, it looks pretty funny, but not for the owner.
✅ A towel/Sarong: The nudist etiquette says that you always put some fabric in between your naked butt and any kind of furniture. You can also use the towel or sarong to cover up a bit if you’re not yet confident enough.
✅ A bag/purse: We’ve seen several first time nudists standing in the locker room looking baffled with a wallet, car keys and cell phone in their hands. Where on earth am I supposed to put these? A small bag or a purse is the answer.
✅ Something to read: Many people go to nudist places to disconnect from the outside world. You don’t want to spend your time scrolling through Facebook, bring a good book or magazine instead.
✅ Flip-flops: If you try nudism, you want to go all the way. No clothes at all. Keep in mind the soil of some places though. Hot beach sand and a gravel path are not the best friends of your feet.
✅ An open mind: It’s a whole new experience, come with little expectations. Just let go and enjoy your first naked moments.
Will everybody look at you?
A nightmare of many is standing in a crowd where everyone is watching you and you suddenly realise that you’re naked. Well, at the nudist place there will be other people and you will be naked. But keep in mind that nudity is the dress code and that the majority of the others have seen lots of naked people before. Although your nudity will be special to you during your first time, it won’t be to the others.
Will you look at everybody?
Yes, you will. And that’s completely normal. Until this moment the only people you’ve ever seen naked in real life are your partner(s) and maybe some family and friends. Now there will be a bunch of naked strangers in all shapes and sizes. Of course you will look at them. Just try not to stare, that makes people feel uncomfortable.
Will there be awkward situations?
We can’t promise that there won’t be any, but it won’t be bad. Just try to see the fun of it. The first time a naked person walked up to us to have a chat will probably be a moment we’ll never forget. There she was talking about the weather while the only thing we could think was “keep your eyes on the right level”. The more comfortable you become with nudity, the less awkward those situations will seem. Here’s an overview of other funny situations we’ve run into.
What’s really going on with the sex thing?
Naturism and nudism are about non-sexual nudity. Which does not mean that you have to swear off sex. The same rule applies as to everywhere else in the world: if you want to get things going, get a room. There are places that do allow sex in public
, but those are not genuine nudist places.
Can I touch my partner?
The whole non-sexual thing has been taken a bit into the extreme at certain places where even holding hands is considered borderline. But those are few. In all other places just use your common sense and do what you would do at a “textile” spot. Yes, you can put sunscreen on your partner, yes we’ve said that some places will need some extra sunscreen but that’s something they can do themselves.
Can I use my cell phone at a nudist place?
Until some time ago, everything that has a camera was forbidden at nudist venues. Now that has become pretty impossible because people want to have their phone with them or read a book on their tablet. So that policy is gone at most places. But still politeness says that you don’t take pictures of others without their permission. Yes, you can take a selfie but only of yourself. You might receive angry looks or comments when you’re pointing your phone towards someone else, even if you’re just reading your latest WhatsApp messages. A good trick is to put a small sticker on your back camera so people see that you can’t use it.
Will there be people with wrong intentions?
We’re not going to lie to you, unfortunately this could happen. Although we’ve only noticed it a couple of times in our whole nudist life. The most common cases are the couple who only get excited when there are spectators, the single man watching from afar and touching his penis like he has some very itchy disease and the couple or single who invite you to “watch a movie” in their room. If this happens at a private place (sauna, club, camping, hotel) always notify the staff, they will take appropriate actions. At a public place like a beach there’s often nobody with authority. You could walk up to the person(s) and give them a talk, you could move away to another spot or you could call the police. In any case, don’t let such an event ruin your experience.
Is there a nudist etiquette?
Yes, there are some unspoken rules which we like to call our “etiquette”. We’ve already mentioned that you have to sit on a towel or a piece of clothing. Unlike at some textile beaches where people pack like sardines, at a nude beach it’s polite to leave some space between yourself and your neighbours. Another one is to try not to let your full moon rise only centimeters from other people’s faces and to keep your legs in a somewhat decent angle. Also make sure that you’re only naked in the designated areas. Don’t take off your clothes while you’re still on the street and remember to put them on again before you leave.
Can you take the children?
Nudism in general is a family friendly lifestyle and many resorts will encourage you to bring your kids
. For many (especially young) children being naked is also a very natural experience. There are naturist venues that only allow adults though, so do check with them before.
Do naturist places take care of first timers?
Often they do, if you tell them that it’s your first time they might give you a tour around the property, explain some of the habits and the etiquette and look the other way if you’re still wearing some clothes at a place where you’re supposed to be naked.
We’ve been to places where first timers are shown a quiet area where they can adjust to the environment and their nudity before mingling with the others.
Don’t be afraid to tell the staff that it’s your first time. They will appreciate it.
Do you have to undress in front of everyone?
Being naked is one thing, getting naked is a complete other thing. Many beginning nudists struggle with the idea that they have to undress while there are others around. If you’re at a camping or hotel you can of course take off your clothes in the privacy of your tent, camper or room. At a place with dressing rooms, you could linger a bit until the others are gone. At public places like a nude beach it’s a bit more complicated. You could undress in the toilet if there is one or go to an end of the beach away from the others. A great tip we can give you here is to wear as little as possible when you arrive. Don’t dress like you’re going to the north pole… A loose dress with no underwear for the ladies and a swim short for the men are completely legal on your way to the beach an only take a second to get rid off.
For him: What if things start to get up?
This is probably the biggest scare of every first time male nudist, what if you get an erection while you are naked among others? First of all you need to know that this is very unlikely. It has never happened to Nick and we’ve seen it happen to others less than a handful of times. But we can’t promise that it won’t happen to you. The nudist etiquette says that if it happens to you, be discrete. Lay on your stomach, get into the sea or swimming pool or put something over it until it goes away. When you see it happen to others, the polite way is to just plainly ignore it. Unless they are proud of it, then it’s time to notify the staff.
For her: What if you’re in your period?
The best tip here is to not try nudism for the first time when you’re in your period. Plan for another day. Period (pun intended). But of course you don’t want to avoid getting naked those days of the month for the rest of your life. Many women will use a tampon and get naked anyway. If you don’t feel comfortable doing so, it’s also accepted at most places that women wear bikini bottoms when they’re in their period.
To shave or not to shave?
There are some theories circling around the internet about pubic shaving for nudists, we believe that all of them are nonsense. Some people just like to have an opinion about everything, also about your haircut down below. We’ve seen many different styles and all are accepted. There is a slight difference between the more alternative nudist campings in the woods where the majority leans to a wilder look while at the more fancy nudist resorts many visitors prefer to have things smooth. But even there, you won’t fall out of tone. No matter if you like bold or bush or anything in between, do whatever you feel like.
This counts for both men and women by the way.
Can you have tattoos and piercings?
It’s a rather old rule that nudists should not have body decoration and most places don’t care about this anymore. But it still happens though, especially at clubs. Make sure to check this in the rules of the place where you’re planning to go. Piercings can be taken out most of the time if necessary but tattoos aren’t hidden that easily. Especially when you’re not allowed to wear clothes.
The number of nudist venues that don’t allow tattoos are limited at the moment, especially if they’re not aggressive or suggestive. A big swastika on your back will probably get you kicked out and we heard stories about a guy with a bunch of arrows on his belly pointing south. If you’re that guy, you may have a problem.
Can you remain clothed at a clothing prohibited place?
We’ve made the difference between clothing optional and clothing prohibited earlier in this guide, but in fact there’s quite a grey zone in between. At some places nudity is only obligated in or around the swimming pool, some places will allow clothes in the restaurant and at some places you’ll be asked to be naked all the time. But even then there are exceptions. Like women in their period. Or when it gets too cold. The first time we went camping naked we found it extremely awkward to be setting up our tent (which required a lot of bending over) in the nude. Only later we heard that it’s perfectly accepted to get installed first and get undressed afterwards.
Post-First time nudist experience
There you go!
Another new experience in your life!
How did you like it?
What if you didn’t like it?
We have to say that we rarely hear about people who try nudism and don’t enjoy it. But it could happen. Important here to know is that nudism is not like a tattoo on your face. Just put on some clothes and only the people you were with will know that you’ve tried it. It can happen that you just don’t like to be naked, there’s little to do about that. It could also be that there are other factors, maybe a creepy person kept watching you or you ended up at a naked retirement home or maybe after 2 hours you still didn’t feel the confidence every nudist keeps talking about. In those cases we would advise you to give it another shot. Think about what went wrong, you didn’t like the place, it was too large or too small, you didn’t like the other people, they were too many or too few, you got a terrible sunburn (told you so),… and pick a new place based on that experience. Chances are that you will like it the second time.
You did like it, now what?
A whole new world has opened up! Now it’s all up to you. We don’t think that people can be more or less nudist than others so whether you only want to spend one day a year at a nude beach or you’re planning to start living nude 24/7, that’s all the same for us. If you want to dive deeper in the nudist lifestyle, head back to the section of this guide with the different types of nudist places and try another one. Or have a look on NUDE to find more nudist resorts in your country. Or you can start ticking off things on our Ultimate Nudist’s Bucket List.
Who are you going to tell about this?
Unfortunately, even in the 21st century nudism still remains some kind of taboo. People feel confident telling their colleagues about how they spent half of their wage on a new pair of shoes or about the kinky thing they did in the bedroom last night. But telling someone you like to sunbathe naked… that’s one bridge too far.
For us it wan’t any different, for the first 2 years in our nudist life we didn’t tell anyone about it. We were scared that our friends and family would think that we’re weird or hippies or perverts. Convincing them about the misconceptions
that still exist around nudism was not really something we considered possible.
We were wrong. Once we started telling people, we were surprised how little of a deal they made about it. Some plainly ignored it, some told us that they would never dare to get naked around others, some were very curious and asked a lot of questions and some smiled and told us that they had been hiding the same secret.
Most important, you don’t have to tell anyone if you don’t want to. Nudism, although it’s a very social thing, remains your own choice. If you’re really excited about your first time nude and you have nobody to talk about it, feel free to send us a message! We’ll be your listening ear. Also if you still have questions after reading this guide, don’t hesitate to get in touch! We’ll hold your hand through the first steps and you can thank us later (and buy us a beer or two).