- Skinny-dipping in Cornwall’s historic miners’ pools
Cornwall is the southernmost county in England and a popular tourist destination for its scenic spots, historical associations, and beaches. More than a dozen of the beaches are clothing-optional (at least unofficially). There are lists here, here, and here. But the clothing-optional beaches aren’t the only places on the coast where skinny-dipping is possible. There are also a number of tidal pools, both natural and man-made. Some naturists may prefer them, as the water is clearer and they’re likely to allow for more privacy.
The writer of the story one day met Laura, who prefers the pools for nude swims. As she explains, “Tidal pools, for me, offer peace and privacy. I’m drawn to off the beaten track swim spots that feel a world away from the crowds and, more often than not, you have the pool totally to yourself. On a choppy day they often offer a tranquil swimming spot alongside the sea so you don’t have to forgo a swim.”
- Children and nudity
The issues of how much, if at all, it’s “healthy” for children to encounter adult nudity or even be naked themselves engender much controversy – especially in countries like the U. S.
The issues arise especially in connection with family nudity in the home. In the state of Utah, one of the most backward states in the U. S., a judge actually ruled in January 2020 that a woman violated a state “lewdness” law simply for being topfree in her own home when children were around. See here for the details.
On the other hand, in England some art teachers are making a good case why it’s beneficial for children to have art classes that include nude models. That’s reported on here.
Now there are additional articles dealing with this issue.
- When should kids stop seeing their parents naked?
This article from New Zealand presents the opinion of a woman who is raising her 3-year-son “in a naturist lifestyle, so if the weather is nice, and they are at home, chances are they are both naked. She hopes that the sight of her own body will give him an anchored understanding of what a real body looks like.” The article links to this: Want to raise body positive kids? Let them see you naked.
- It isn’t Rude to be Nude — the children’s book that aims to normalise nakedness
A British writer and illustrator, Rosie Haine, who “has an academic background in gender and ethnicity” and “has always loved drawing naked people” has published an illustrated book for children: It isn’t Rude to be Nude. The objective, of course, is to normalize nudity for children at an age when most parents more likely will try to stigmatize it. Haine remarks, “I’ve observed in children a healthy attitude to nudity, and lots of them will have spent most of lockdown naked. They already know it isn’t rude to be nude.”
- A Danish Children’s TV Show Has This Message: ‘Normal Bodies Look Like This’
In Denmark, one of the more enlightened countries, an on-demand children’s channel of a national broadcaster carries an award-winning and very popular show “meant as an educational tool to fight body shaming and encourage body positivity”. Pre-teen and young teen children on a panel are encouraged to ask questions about the bodies of a number of naked adult men and women standing in front of them. The show is said to be “highly popular in Denmark” – not too surprising, since “Danes have long been comfortable with nudity, at public beaches.” Predictably, however, right-wing and tabloid media writers deplore the program as “depraving our children”.
Other articles about this: Adults strip on Danish children’s TV show to challenge ‘perfect body’ myth, Naked adults appear on controversial Danish children’s TV show to debunk ‘perfect body’ myth
Recently, I offered some comments here on this article: Searching for the Threads of a Family Naturist Network about the fact that rather few U. S. families bring their children to naturist parks and resorts – especially compared to the situation in Europe. In order for this to change for the better, it will probably be necessary for nudity to become normal and routine in more homes. The article Eight Things to Know About Nudity and Your Family, (from Psychology Today) was recommended to support this view.
Here are some earlier articles discussing similar issues:
- Why French Families go Massively for Naturism
- Naked with Children
- When did my naked child become nude?
- Nudist Families: Let’s Just All Get Naked
- The Case of the Disappearing Nudist Children
As you’ll see further down, the opinions regarding children and nudity of deeply ignorant people who know nothing about naturism, even in England, can be a major problem.
- When should kids stop seeing their parents naked?
- Spencer Tunick – Alexandra Palace
London’s Alexandra Palace, in spite of the name, was never a residence of royalty or a member of the nobility. It was opened in 1873 as a place serving the public for recreation, education, and entertainment. Many naturists will need no introduction to Spencer Tunick. But for anyone who’s unaware of his work, he has been directing and photographing about 100 “installations” involving nude volunteers in public places around the world. Installation are announced beforehand – and there are almost always more volunteers who apply to participate than can be chosen. His latest work involved 220 selected volunteers. Check out some of the numerous articles published online for details, pictures, and videos.
- Spencer Tunick brings naked crowd to Alexandra Palace for new socially distanced artwork — one of the best articles, with pictures
- Hundreds pose nude wearing only masks for London art installation — has some background on Tunick
- Everyone Together: Spencer Tunick in London — must-read blog article from a participant
- 220 gather for socially distant nude art installation in London — includes a short video
- YouTube: Everyone Together — longer video
- Sky Arts: Everyone Together — links to YouTube video
- Nudes wear masks in Spencer Tunick installation — has short video on Tunick
- Spencer Tunick Stages Naked Social Distancing At London’s Alexandra Palace — site has other articles on Tunick’s installations
- Nude art installation in London marks Sky Arts becoming free — describes some background and concept of the work
- A naked art installation has taken over Alexandra Palace — brief article
- Sky Arts celebrates becoming a free channel today with a bold first – a socially distanced nude art installation by Spencer Tunick — pictures are censored
- Volunteers strip to their masks for art installation at Alexandra Palace — pictures are censored
- Naturist attacked by angry mob
For a number of years, British Naturism has hosted an event for members and their families at an elaborate waterpark, Waterworld, in Stoke-on-Trent, England. (See here.) In the last few years, anti-naturist extremists have protested the event, on the grounds that “their” children might be endangered by “pedophiles”. That’s nonsense to begin with, since only families of British Naturism members actually attend the event. But logic is a foreign concept to such extremists. BN, of course, does not allow any known pedophiles among its members, and would not tolerate any improper behavior by anyone at the event. Further details can be found in the news stories listed below.
Similar events for British Naturism members and their families have been held elsewhere in England without this degree of harassment and threats. (Although family naturist swims in other countries such as the U. S. and Canada have encountered such problems.) So what happened in this case shows that even in England there are people as ignorant about and hostile to naturism as are more typical in North America.
The following stories appeared before the event and provide general information about it.
- Controversial family nude swim returns to Waterworld this weekend
- Family nude swimming event returns to Waterworld this weekend despite outrage
- Controversial nude family swimming event returns to waterpark sparking concerns paedophiles could prey on children
- Waterworld defends decision to host a controversial nudist family swim event
- Waterworld issues statement ahead of controversial family nude swim tonight
On September 26 the event went on as scheduled. Unfortunately, threats of harm to their business were made to the owners of Waterworld by the protesters before the event and during an unruly mob protest outside the event itself. So the owners decided that in the future children under 18 will not be allowed to attend future naturist events, as described in the following articles.
- Police called to Waterworld as protesters surround naturists’ cars, hurl abuse and chant ‘save our children’ — ridiculous, since the children are in naturist families – not protesters’ families
- Waterworld bans nude family swim events after backlash from customers — although it’s unclear whether any protesters were actually customers of Waterworld
- Waterworld bans nude family swim events after fierce backlash sees thousands sign petition
- Water park bans children from naturist event after protests
- Waterworld bans under-18s from nude family swims after customer backlash sees staff abused
- Naturist insists ‘getting naked isn’t a sexual thrill’ as Waterworld bans under-18s from nude swims
- Lockdown Doesn’t Mean Locked In
With the arrival of vaccines for COVID-19 and the cautious, gradual relaxation of restrictions on social activities, there’s hope that more of a normal life will be possible in 2021. However, many people – especially naturists – have enjoyed the freedom of spending considerable time naked while confined to their own homes. So dispensing with clothes can become increasionly routine – even the norm – at least at home and elsewhere it’s possible.
As this article points out, nudity is quite possible outdoors – even after social distancing is necessary – if one has a sufficiently private yard or access to natural places nearby where nudity is acceptable. In fact, it would be worthwhile to invest time in searching for outdoor places that can be enjoyed naked. If only to be prepared for the next pandemic to come along.
- Top 5 Fears of a Clothing Optional Resort
This article has advice for anyone who’s new to naturism. It allays fears that anyone who’s had even a little experience with social nudity has easily overcome. What’s noteworthy is that this is on a site (gogirlfriend.com) that’s especially intended for women traveling alone or with a partner. Most naturists, even men, probably have had the same concerns before their first visit to a naturist place. (Note: The resort named “Desire Resorts” and recommended in the article is definitely not a naturist place. GoGirlfriend includes conventional naturist places, but also some places with a more sexual aspect.)
The fears, specifically, are: (1) Clothing-optional resorts are for swingers; (2) Being naked around strangers will make you feel self-conscious; (3) Full nudity is always expected; (4) You will be hit on; (5) Anything goes. To be honest, there are some clothing-optional or (supposedly) naturist places where such fears could be justified to some extent. For a first-timer, it would certainly be prudent to read reviews at sites like Yelp or TripAdvisor of any destination being considered – especially for a woman traveling alone. GoGirlfriend itself should be checked, though it covers only a few places.
Here are a few earlier GoGirlfriend articles about clothing-optional places:
- Belgium’s second nude beach will open in summer 2021
Belgium is located just south of the Netherlands and north of France. It has 2/3 of the population of its neighbor to the north, and beaches on the English Channel just like those two neighbors. But unlike the Netherlands – where most beaches have a clothing-optional section – Belgium has had only one “official” naturist beach (Bredene, which was not open in 2020 because of COVID-19). In addition, there are only about a half dozen naturist campgrounds and parks. (Lists here and here.)
However, things are looking up when warmer temperatures arrive in 2021. According to the article, “nudism enthusiasts will be able to plop down in Middelkerke, after the municipality decided to reserve parts of its coastal strip to the country’s nudist community.” Having just a single official nude beach wasn’t a tremendous hardship, as the new one is only about 8 km (5 miles) from the older one, a 15-minute trip by car. In the U. S., coastal beaches that allow nudity are hundreds of miles apart, in most cases. But 2 is twice as good as 1. So, why the change? As is often the case, tourists and the local economy are key considerations – as the Mayor of Middelkerke candidly stated.
Chambers of Commerce and tourist bureaus in U. S. beach locations really need to get a clue. The heavy lifting here in the States seems mostly left to ad hoc local grassroots groups of naturists, such as Tampa Bay Free Beaches. And that sometimes works, as the example of Blind Creek Beach demonstrates.