Visiting a Nude Beach
Tips on nude beach etiquette that Emily Post never taught you.

Headed to a nude beach? You'll find that you can leave not only your clothes but also your cares at most nude and clothing-optional beaches where the atmosphere is relaxed and friendly.

But for first timers at a nude beach, the experience can also be a little scary. What's expected of you? The atmosphere at nude beaches varies greatly, from crowded at St. Martin's Orient Beach to quiet and secluded at Anguilla's Hawksbill to downright wild at Jamaica's Hedonism II [see Hedonism special section]. Here are some basic etiquette guidelines for your nude beach getaway:

When visiting a nude or clothing-optional beach:

  • don't take photos. Cameras are actually prohibited at many clothing-optional and nude beaches and security will come have a little talk with you if you think otherwise.
  • don't assume this is some sort of love-in. Sexual activity is one adventure that's a definite no-no. In fact, families, both nude and clothed, are commonly seen on some clothing optional beaches such as St. Martin's Orient Beach.
  • know the difference between a nude beach and a clothing-optional beach. Some beaches are designated "nude" meaning that it's time to strip off that suit. Others are "clothing optional" meaning it's up to you just how much you want to remove, if anything at all.
  • take along a towel. It's proper etiquette to sit on a folded towel when you're off the beach at nude public areas, such as beach bars.
  • bring plenty of sunscreen!

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