A nude beach is a beach where users are legally at liberty to be nude. Sometimes the terms clothing-optional beach or free beach are used. Nude bathing is one of the most common forms of nudity in public. As beaches are usually on public lands, any member of the public is entitled to use the facilities without membership in any movement or subscription to any philosophy. The use of the beach facilities is normally anonymous. Unlike a naturist resort or facility, there is normally no membership or vetting requirement for the use of a nude beach. The use of nude beach facilities is usually casual, not requiring pre-booking. Nude beaches may be official (legally sanctioned), unofficial (tolerated by residents and law enforcement), or illegal. However, nude beaches are relatively few and at some distance from cities, and access is at times more difficult than at a regular beach and the facilities at these beaches tend to be very basic.
A nude beach should not be confused with a topless beach (or top-free beach), where upper body clothing is not required for women or men, although a swimming costume covering the genital area is required for both men and women.
Nude beaches first became popular in the 1950s along the French coast and have since spread around the world, though they are still few and far between. Some nude beaches are part of a larger nude area, such as the Cap d'Agde area. Most beaches in Denmark and some beaches in Norway are clothing-optional. In Germany there are clothes optional sunbathing areas in public parks, e.g., in Munich and Berlin. Beaches in some holiday destinations, such as Crete, are also clothing-optional, except some central urban beaches. There are two centrally located clothes-optional beaches in Barcelona.
Nude beaches tend to be separate or isolated physically from the non-nude bathing areas. In other instances people maintain a comfortable space between beach users. Signage is often used to warn unfamiliar beach users about the specially designated areas on the beach. This accommodates people who are not comfortable with nudity (see gymnophobia). This also accommodates beach users who do not like to be watched too much, especially by clothed individuals (see voyeurism).
On an officially sanctioned nude beach, beach goers of both sexes have an option to remove their clothing without fearing legal prosecution or official harassment.
Though free beaches developed separately from national naturist bodies, these bodies are taking an interest and helping to protect them legally, and through the publication of guidelines of acceptable behaviour. In North America, the Free Beach Movement was the name of a group that was opposed to the direction of the official nudist organisation, the American Association for Nude Recreation, and set up the rival body The Naturist Society. Clothes free organizations and free beach associations, such as the Naturist Action Committee, lobby for the removal of laws which prohibit nude swimming and sunbathing or the increase in the number of nude beaches and sometimes to improve the amenities at nude beaches.
Other articles related to "beach, nude beach":
... Humboldt County Baker's Beach, in Humboldt County between Trinidad and Moonstone ... College Cove Beach is in the town of Trinidad, north of Eureka in Northern Humboldt County ... Marin County Red Rock Beach A half mile south of Stinson Beach, California Mono County Little Hot Creek east of Mammoth Lakes, California ...
... Black's Beach in San Diego is perhaps the largest nude beach in the United States and is popular with Southern Californian nudists and naturists ... Because Black's Beach was traditionally recognized as a clothing optional beach, nudity is tolerated for the portion of the beach that is managed by the state park ... prohibited on the city portion of Black's Beach since 1977 ...
... Bos, Zonneweide (from April 1 through September 30) Bussloo, longest nude beach in the Netherlands Bloemendaal aan Zee, nude beach at the north part of. 300 m of sandy beach Kijkduin, The Hague, 2 beaches IJmuiden, nude beach at the south part of the beach Zandvoort, sandy beach 2 km to the south In the Netherlands tanning top free is legal on ... Municipalities with a beach (usually including quiet parts) tend to have a nudist beach even if the municipality does not like it, it designates a quiet part as such in order to be able to forbid nudity on ...
... Public nudity List of obligatory nude recreation sites. ...
Famous quotes containing the word beach:
“On the beach at night,
Stands a child with her father,
Watching the east, the autumn sky.
Up through the darkness,
While ravening clouds, the burial clouds, in black masses spreading,
Lower sullen and fast athwart and down the sky,”
—Walt Whitman (18191892)