The best countries in the world for nude beaches

The best countries in the world for nude beaches

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Check out our lists of nude beaches in the best countries for topless and naked sunbathing, including Spain, Portugal, and Croatia

Summer comes. It’s warm. We hit the beach. For sure — a very normal thing to do for most of us around the world, but only a small minority of beachgoers indulge in sunbathing topless or naked. If you’re new to naturism, this is basically what the appeal is: being in a naked public space can be a great way to let your inhibitions go, enhance your self-confidence, and help yourself foster a healthy stance on body image generally. Having no tan lines is really just a bonus…! But where are these nude beaches? Will you find them in every country of the world?

Pour Moi’s "A Global Guide to Topless and Nude sunbathing" world map — pourmoi.co.ukColor-coded world map depicting the legality status of nude sunbathing — pourmoi.co.uk

In short, no. In 2021, Pour Moi, an online lingerie and swimwear retailer, published their “Global Guide to Nude & Topless Sunbathing”. It states that naked sunbathing is legal in 39 countries, as highlighted in green on the map above. We’ve selected some popular sunny destinations from these 39 and listed some of the best nude and clothing-optional beaches in these countries, so you know exactly where to let loose and catch the perfect, even tan. Etiquette is also important, so be sure to look at our bonus list of naked-sunbathing dos and don’ts at the bottom of this article.

Australia

Maslin Beach, Adelaide — Getty ImagesMaslin Beach — Getty Images

The land Down Under indeed, Australia is renowned for its nude beaches. Sunbathing topless or nude is officially acceptable in all but two states: Queensland and Tasmania, though even in these places, inconspicuous nude beaches do exist. 

Top nude beaches

  • Maslin Beach — Adelaide, South Australia
  • Samurai Beach — One Mile, New South Wales
  • Sunnyside North Beach — Melbourne, Victoria
  • Lady Bay Beach — Sydney, New South Wales
  • North Swanbourne Beach — Perth, Western Australia

Spain

Playa de Bolonia, Cádiz — Getty ImagesPlaya de Bolonia — Getty Images

Public nudity in Spain has been legal since 1988 — theoretically, you can walk around naked anywhere without being fined or arrested. However, in some cities such as Barcelona and Valladolid, rules have been implemented to make the potential for naturism less… well, stark. These rules don’t tend to extend to beachy areas, though.

Top nude beaches

  • Playa de Maspalomas — Gran Canaria, Las Palmas
  • Playa de Cantarriján — La Herradura, Granada
  • Playa de Bolonia — Bolonia, Cádiz
  • Playa de Es Trenc — Mallorca, Balearic Islands
  • Playa de Vera — Vera, Almería

Portugal

Costa da Caparica, Lisbon — Getty ImagesLisbon’s Costa da Caparica is home to one of Portugal’s best nude beaches — Getty Images

There are nine nude beaches in Portugal that are officially recognized as such, but naturism is practiced at over 50 more. That means, on average, there’s about one nude beach every 12 kilometers along the Portuguese coastline — a pretty impressive density of bronzed, basking bodies.

Top nude beaches

  • Praia da Bela Vista — Costa da Caparica, Lisbon
  • Praia do Salto — Porto Covo, Alentejo
  • Praia da Barreta — Ilha Deserta, Algarve
  • Praia do Homem Nu — Tavira, Algarve
  • Praia do Meco — Sesimbra, Lisbon

Croatia

View of Hvar Island from Jerolim Island — Getty ImagesJerolim is a tiny island in Croatia where nude sunbathing is the norm — Getty Images

Topless and nude sunbathing is incredibly common in Croatia — you can spot people indulging in it on most beaches, whether they’re designated naturist or not. Croatian beaches in general can get extremely crowded in the summer, so we’ve got some tips that are more off the beaten track.

Top nude beaches

  • Stiniva Beach — Vis, Split-Dalmatia
  • Kandalora Beach — Rab, Primorje-Gorski Kotar
  • Jerolim Island — Hvar, Split-Dalmatia
  • Sveta Marina Beach — Sveta Marina, Istria

US

Pour Moi’s "A Global Guide to Topless and Nude sunbathing" US map — pourmoi.co.ukColor-coded map of the US depicting the legality status of nude sunbathing — pourmoi.co.uk

In the US, naturism laws vary from state to state. According to Pour Moi’s US map, there are only four states where public nudity is completely unacceptable: Utah, Indiana, Tennessee and South Carolina. We’ve picked out some of the best nude beaches in more popular vacation spots.

Top nude beaches

  • Haulover Beach — Miami, Florida
  • Little Beach — Maui, Hawaii
  • North Baker’s Beach — San Francisco, California
  • Black’s Beach — San Diego, California
  • Blind Creek Beach — Hutchinson Island, Florida

Greece

 

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The Greek way of life is famously relaxed and laid-back, so you’re unlikely to encounter any problems here when it comes to letting it all hang out. However, it’s best to stick to designated nude beaches or areas of beaches.

Top nude beaches

  • North Red Beach — Akrotiri, Santorini
  • Little Banana Beach — Koukounaries, Skiathos
  • Filaki Beach — Vritomartis, Crete
  • Elia Beach — Elia, Mykonos
  • Vlychada Beach — Vlychada, Santorini

Italy

Topless woman practicing yoga on beach — Getty ImagesItaly only legalized topless sunbathing in 2006, and visitors and locals alike have been enjoying this freedom ever since — Getty Images

It took Italy a long time to revoke its harsh laws against sunbathing nude and in public. The rules came from the country’s period of fascist rule when nudity was deemed shameful in pretty much every circumstance, and they were abolished only in 2006 with the endeavor to recognize naturist beaches. Today, there are 17 of these official beaches in the country — a lot of which are in Tuscany and Sardinia.

Top nude beaches

  • Spiaggia Nido Dell’Aquila — San Vincenzo, Tuscany
  • Spiaggia di Acquarilli — Elba, Tuscany
  • Spiaggia di Is Benas — San Vero Milis, Sardinia
  • Spiaggia di Piscinas — Magazzini, Sardinia
  • Spiaggia del Troncone — Marina di Camerota, Campania

Nude beach etiquette

Wherever you’re going on vacation, just so you know what’s what before you strip off, here are some pointers for how (not) to behave on a nude beach.

Do…

  • sit or lie on your own towel if you use a sun lounger.
  • cover yourself up again when you leave the beach.
  • bare only as much of yourself as you feel comfortable with.
  • be liberal with sunscreen and insect repellent, especially on more delicate areas of skin.
  • keep a respectful distance from others. Allow as much space as reasonably possible between yourself and your neighbor sunbather.

Don’t…

  • stare. You don’t need to shield your eyes from absolutely everything, just don’t look at people’s bodies for too long.
  • take any photos. You probably wouldn’t like the idea of any naked pictures of you being in some stranger’s camera roll.
  • pack on the PDA. If you’re going to a nude beach with your significant other, keep it clean. Naturism isn’t a sexual or even sensual practice, and this should be respected.

Now, you’re all set to bare all on your next beach vacation. Don’t be shy — you might find the experience so freeing and satisfying that you never go back to the bikini again!

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