What we learned from working in a clothing optional campground

One of the items high on our nudist bucket list was to experience living naked. Like really living, for days and weeks in a row not to wear any piece of clothing. It’s not easy unless you’re a multi-millionaire. Or if you work on a nudist campsite of course. That’s how we ended up 2 weeks helping out at clothing-optional eco campsite Full Monte in Montenegro. Since it was the first time that we actually worked on a campsite, we did learn a lot of course. A lot about the eco thing for sure. But most of all we learned about nudity, about how it feels to spend a long time naked. And about the clothing-optional aspect. Because we were soon going to find out that being naked among clothed people is completely different than being naked among nudists.


Some of you might remember our blog post Is clothing optional the new nudism, in which we wondered if we shouldn’t move forward to clothing-optional in order to secure a future for nudism. We received a wide range of reactions to this post, some found it an excellent idea, some were sure that it would be the end of nudism. And of course, there were many in between. We love it when we receive different opinions because that proves that there are different types of nudists who all have different needs, wishes, and requirements. If you ask us, we’re actually quite fans of clothing-optional, even more since we got straight into it.

clothing optional

Becoming a full-time nudist

Steve, the owner of campsite Full Monte is what people call a 24/7 nudist. He is literally naked all day and all night. Only when he had to leave the property, which didn’t happen very often, he put on some pants. The first thing he did at his return was to take them off again. It was almost as if he had an allergy to textile. We don’t really consider ourselves the same. Back in Belgium, we’re only naked when it’s more or less convenient. When we know we won’t have to leave the house and nobody will visit us, because we find it a bit too much of a hassle to put our clothes on and off ten times a day. Over here, as we were always inside the campsite, clothes didn’t seem like an option anymore. Without knowing we had become 24/7 nudists as well. But that’s because we had nowhere to go of course.


Different kinds of nudists

The visitors of the campsite did of course spend a lot of time at the other side of the fence. Exploring the nearby sights or spending their afternoons on the beach. That’s when you see the different kinds of nudists. Some remained undressed until right before they left and got their clothes off the first minute of their return. Others were naked in the morning but didn’t bother to undress again when they returned and others did things exactly the other way around. Some enjoyed being naked among others while some preferred being dressed or topless. Others were only naked around their tent or when they walked to and from the shower. There are nudity who like to eat naked and nudists who like to wear some clothes at the table. Some spent one whole day nude and the next day clothed. Since Full Monte is a clothing-optional campsite, all of this is perfectly possible. Everyone had the option to be nude or not.

clothing optional

New Cambium intext 3

Adjusting to be naked among the clothed

One of the biggest concerns about clothing optional is of course the fear that textiles will take over the place. That suddenly you will be the only naked person. Actually, it did happen a couple of times to us that after breakfast everyone got clothed to go out and that at a certain point we were the only ones in our birthday suit. And we have to admit, in the beginning, it did feel a bit uncomfortable. Even though we knew that many of the others were also nudists and we had seen them naked before, suddenly we felt more vulnerable. Funny enough, that feeling passed quite quickly and in the end, we did feel more confident about ourselves. Right now we don’t have the slightest problem anymore with being naked among the clothed, even not when everyone else is clothed, even not when everyone else isn’t even a nudist.


Nudists and textiles going hand in hand

It does happen of course on a clothing-optional place that other visitors aren’t nudists. Especially in this place, which was also visited for its eco-friendliness and because it’s completely self-sustainable. One of the most important lessons we’ve learned here is that most of the textiles who visit a clothing optional place are not perverts. Of course, we believe weird things can happen but we can’t say that we’ve seen a single person at Full Monte with the wrong intentions. In fact, all textiles we met were open-minded people with whom we’ve had great discussions about all kinds of topics. That’s another thing which we appreciate a lot about clothing-optional environments, you talk about other stuff than the common nudie chit chat.


We’ve all been there, when you meet another nudist the first questions are often “How long have you been a nudist?”, “What are your favorite nudist spots?” and “How much time do you spend naked?”. In the end, the conversations are 95% of the time about being a nudist. This is normal of course, because you know that it’s the one thing you have in common. But it gets a bit boring after a while. We noticed that in a clothing-optional place we often talked about other topics, completely ignoring that one is naked and the other one clothed. In a way, everyone considers the fact of being nude as the most normal thing in the world.

clothing optional

When textiles become nudists

We can certainly say that every textile we’ve met at “our” campsite was totally fine with our nudity. They acted completely normal about it but just didn’t feel the need to go naked as well. At least not in the beginning.
Some nudists have struggled a long time before they dared to take the step into social nudity and for others, it just went automatically. Because we’ve spent quite some time at the campisite, we got the chance to see people evolve. It’s a beautiful thing to see how someone, who had no intentions at all to go nude, suddenly does take the step.


Maestra Banner
We have to say that the familiar and secure environment probably did the trick and we saw it happening a couple of times during the time that we were there. There was a young couple who was attracted to the ecosystem and decided to stay two days in the camp. During the first day, they hung around in their swimsuits. In the afternoon of their second day, the girl had taken off her top. Then there was the family with two kids who stayed four days. The first two days they were completely dressed. The third day we spotted them being naked around their tent. On their last day, they all hung around the common areas in the bare as if they had been nudists forever.


Everybody clothing optional!

And there were several others. We even (and we know it’s not very nice of us) started to play a game called “will they go nude or not”.
Of course, we didn’t always know before if people had the intention to become nudists or not. It’s not really polite to say “hey, we didn’t think you’d have the guts to drop your pants”. Neither is it something you actually talk about. You just let it happen. This proves again that a clothing-optional spot is an ideal start for beginning nudists. And maybe even more important, it’s also the perfect (and probably only) place for mixed textile-nudist couples. Also if you want to introduce your friends or partner to nudism. There were two girls at the campsite of which one got naked the minute she arrived and the other one needed two days until she felt comfortable enough. In the end, there was at least one new nudist in the world. Now try to convince us again that clothing optional is bad for the future of nudism.


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23 thoughts on “What we learned from working in a clothing optional campground”

  1. I do think that clothing optional is the only way to move the nudist movement forward. Most clubs are struggling to attract new members .especially younger ones.so making clubs clothing optional is a viable option. The big nudist resorts will always cater for those who can afford them but ordinary people who want to try nudism could be drawn to clothing optional clubs and beaches. The problem with the beaches is that too many clothed people could drive out the nudist people. Nudist beaches should be just for nudists.make it a rule that to be there you must be nude.

    • Indeed, the danger is that textiles will overtake the clothing optional places (something we actually saw happened in Plat, Croatia). We think that the key here would be some sort of “management”, which could just be a group of nudists who visit the place regularly and make sure the other nudists feel comfortable and intervene where necessary.

      • It’s happened to a lot of the beaches that where once 100 % naturist, but eventually the fully clad take over, making it very uncomfortable to be nude! Especially when kids are involved! i myself am more comfortable being 100 % nude, and adults only.

  2. When nudies first experience social nudity with others, we call it ‘the ten seconds of terror’ or something similar. Those ten seconds where your heart’s beating fast and you’re suddenly past the edge of your comfort zone with a toe dipped into a new social order….but then it’s over and you’re suddenly fine again. Then the personal jubilation kicks in, and ‘Why didn’t I do this earlier?’ springs from your lips. But reading your blog has made me realise that actually, there are two separate instances of the ten seconds of terror. The ten seconds nude in front of nudies, and then *another* ten seconds in front of *clothed* people. It sounds like you experienced this in your blog! I’ve highlighted before in response to your previous excellent blog on this topic that one of the most helpful divisions to make in terms of different types of ‘naturist’ is not liberal/conservative, lifestyle/bucket-lister, club/non-club, but is in fact the distinction between nudies that have become comfortable around clothed people and those that haven’t. A poll I ran on Twitter suggested that only 50% of a group of ~250 largely committed largely male nudies were comfortable being the only one nude in a room of clothed people. Given the bias in the responder demographic I think therefore that’s an upper bound on the true proportion of all nudies. Not all nudies are equal once the first ten seconds are over. How does this impact the clothes-optional debate? Well environments can be created for both types of nudie, and we’ve already looked at how this impacts things like club environments and beach segregations, but maybe encouragement should be aimed at committed nudies to take the next step and build confidence further around clothed people, for once that happens, truely clothes-optional environments become happy places for everyone, clothed or not.

  3. Had to smile at the “will they go nude or not” game. I admit it’s a game I play in my head as I give people our welcome tour. You should have told me, we could have kept a score. Also loved your comment “”It’s a beautiful thing to see how someone, who had no intentions at all to go nude, suddenly does take the step.” As you know, we do our best not to preach to “textile” visitors about the advantages of shedding clothes at Camp Full Monte but I always shout a silent “Yes!!!” in my head when I see a guest realise that it’s no big deal, the world will not end, and that it just makes sense. Already had a few “Yes” moments today and they won’t be the last. Thanks again for a great post guys.

  4. I couldn’t agree more with your sentiments. As someone who has posed nude for artists on several occassions, I can certainly vouch for the joy I felt interacting with clothed individuals while I was nude.

  5. I don’t recognize ‘the common nudie chit chat’. To my experience it is easier to socialize on naturist sites than on textile ones, but the conversation is never limited to naturist items only. On naturist sites we got more interesting information about places to visit and things to do than in many tourist offices. And yes, we got advice about other naturist places as well. Some of which brouuught us to some now favorite sites where we made new friendships.

  6. My wife and I play the “will they or won’t they” game at the beach. we spend a lot of time at gunnison beach in new Jersey in the US. It’s popular and easy to get to and attracts a lot of nude people and many who are curious. I love seeing newbies arrive, get comfortable at their own pace and end up nude.

  7. I now know and understand more how “clothing optional” and “clothed when possible and nude when practical” are closely related after reading some of these responses. I have been a nudist, off and on, now since the ripe old age of 8 when my mother caught me sleeping nude. I stopped sleeping that way for the most part, doing it only when I knew I would not get caught. While I have been a member of nudist clubs in Florida and later here in Georgia, I am now retired from all my activities because of my failing heart declining health in general. Life is still good and enjoyable.

  8. I’ve seen at least three nude beaches in California become default textile beaches, because textiles created such a clothed atmosphere, the nudists gave up the beaches and left.

  9. As we confirmed nudists age, I wonder about being “forced” into living arrangements or assisted living facilities (homes) where clothing will NOT be optional! Maybe if other things begin failing also, I won’t want to be nude, but at this point I doubt it! ~ Heh!

  10. I think clothing optional is a bad idea. It will just attract perverts looking for “eye-candy” and just lure in the wrong kind of people. Currently there is an influx of middle aged men who have these notions. Why would you want to add a new class of undesireables.

  11. I pay a quick visit daily some web sites and information sites to read articles,
    except this website offers feature based content.

  12. I have always wanted to try nudism but in this state there is no where to go. And for some reason I’m afraid it would be very uncomfortable in public even knowing I would love to try it. I am very self concious.
    Any advice for a want to be?

  13. I believe in the 90/10 rule. 90% of people wouldn’t go nude unless they were in their own homes. 10% of us don’t care either way. When we’re camping we always look for the 10% areas. Not only is it clothing optional but it is away from the hundreds of people camping close together because they are the 90%. We always have lots of room around us and 10%’s are really friendly and look out for each other. My wife and I love this social interaction.

  14. I am opposed to c/o clubs and beaches. My club/resort is nudity mandatory we all like it that way. the feeling of joy with the sun and the breeze with my fellow naturists is incomparable. I must say I am also comfortable around people who are clothed while I am nude so thats not the issue. the point is we are a naturist organization not a textile campground and we should be nude when the weather allows us!

  15. My hope is that we will go more and more towards clothing optional places. For some reasons, as 100% nudist that I am, if I could choose for example between to go to a nudist beach and a clothing optional one, I would always choose the latter. Probably because I like the idea of the freedom of choice and the acceptance behind this concept. I love going to Spain where there are many C/O beaches and nobody cares whether you are naked or you are wearing a costume. Then also because for instance my partner only occasionally chooses to go fully naked as well as my friends. I really don’t mind being the only one naked as long as I am not imposing my nudity on anyone.


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