City naturist resorts can be a hit or miss. Some are among the best in the country, benefiting from fresh ideas and modern thinking that typically comes from a city rather than from the countryside. But there are also those that get lazy. When millions of people are within easy driving distance, a flow of new visitors can be rather a mathematical thing than that it says something about the resort.
We were wondering what it would be like in Australia’s most famous city (not the capital though, as many think). So we drove our rental van to Sydney and got naked at Kiata Resort.
How to get to Kiata
If you’re arriving by air from anywhere within or outside Australia, Sydney International Airport is where you want to end up. You’re looking at about a 1.5-hour drive to the resort, depending on the traffic, you might want to take either the M2 or M4. Both are toll roads, we’re certain that there will be toll-free options as well, but those will probably make the journey significantly longer.
If you prefer not to drive, an Uber from the airport will cost you between $150 and $200 AUD. A more economical option would be to take the T8 train from the airport to Sydney Central, switch to the T1 train to Windsor, and take an Uber to Kiata from there. If you want to do day trips to Sydney and its surroundings, we highly recommend hiring a car though.
Where to stay at Kiata
We travelled around Australia in a campervan, so a campsite was enough for us. Something we love about camping in Australia is the availability of campground kitchens. These are fully equipped kitchens that are free to use for all guests. They often have a barbecue, a gas stove, a fridge, pots and pans and plates. Even cutlery. This reduces the need for camping gear a lot.
This is not limited to naturist campgrounds, by the way, and camping kitchens are also a thing in New Zealand. We wondered how disappointed Aussies and Kiwis must be when they end up at campgrounds in Europe or North America and realise that they need to bring all their own gear. But we digress, what’s important about the camping kitchens at Kiata is that they are much more than just places to cook or do the dishes. They serve as true communal spaces. But more about that in a minute.
If you don’t bring your own accommodation, there is the chance to stay in one of the rental caravans. These were all fully booked when we were at Kiata and we didn’t have the chance to look inside one, but we imagine that they will look pretty much like a caravan.
What to do at Kiata
When it comes to amenities, Kiata provides everything the typical naturist club in Australia provides, except some things a little bit better. They have both a swimming lake and a pool, for example. The lake was first, the pool only came in recent years. As it’s quite a new pool, it has a modern design and the hot tub and sun deck are nicely integrated into the pool area.
The clubhouse has a large indoor area as well as an outdoor terrace with barbecues and even a pizza oven. When we first walked up there, we thought that it was an actual restaurant or at least a bar. But no such thing exists in naturist resorts in Australia. Soft drinks are for sale via an honesty system.
The main highlight of Kiata is probably that it provides a huge natural environment so close to the city. Everywhere you look around, all you see is trees and greenery. The end of the domain provides access to a forest where you can go naked hiking.
Kiata isn’t much more than an hour’s drive from downtown Sydney, the CBD as it’s locally called. So all the main highlights of the city can easily be visited via day trips. The Opera House, the Harbour Bridge, the botanical gardens, you name it. The best views of the city can be had from the water, something you can do for as cheap as the price of a ferry ticket or as expensive as a dinner cruise with lobster and champagne. That’s up to you.
We visited Sydney during one of its summer heat waves, so we preferred to spend as much time as possible with the least amount of clothes necessary. Luckily this didn’t mean that we were restricted to the resort. Sydney has 3 official nude beaches within the city limits and several more at an easy drive. For a city nude beach, our recommendation is to go to Cobblers. More beautiful but a bit further away are Birdie Beach in the north and Weerong Beach in the south.
Staff & Guests of Kiata
Kiata is a 100% members-owned naturist club and it works completely volunteer-based. So we can’t really talk about staff here, but rather about people who put their hearts and souls and a lot of their free time into making Kiata a paradise for themselves and for others. Other than the natural element of the resort, the community is also very important and regular events are organised to bring people together.
Even without the events though, this is the kind of place where you meet people. It took us less than an hour to figure out where most of the social hangouts were. The one closest to our campsite was the communal kitchen. A place where we’d go to do the dishes, get into a conversation, meet new people, crack open a couple of beers, talk some more and after a couple of hours realise that the dishes are still only half done and it’s almost time to start cooking again.
The people we met at Kiata were mostly Sydney residents who call the resort their second (or first) home. Others are Aussies travelling around or following the sun, and it’s not uncommon to run into foreigners now and then. While we were at Kiata, there was a Dutch couple who spent a lot of time in Australia and always included Kiata in their visits. If you like to combine a city trip to Sydney with a relaxed stay at a naturist resort, this is the perfect place.
Book at Kiata
The best ways to book at Kiata Naturist Resort are:
✅ Website: https://kiata.com.au
Kiata was not the modern naturist club we kind of hoped it would be, but then again, this would prove to be something very rare in this part of the world. What we did find though was a fun and dedicated community that is open to new ideas. So we’re certain that they’re growing towards the – in our opinion – right direction.
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