So it springtime, hooray…and eventually the weather is taking a turn for the better. After months of jumpers and coats, central heating and fires, soup and stews, finally the body can start to thaw out. Away goes the thermal underwear, the scarves and the gloves and thought can be given to cutting the grass, barbecues and holidays……especially camping holidays. This winter was a long one from November until the middle of April, there was hardly a day where you didn’t think how cold, windy or damp the weather was. Since mid-April though the sun has shone, the cold has gone, the body has got a full airing and one day last week I even got a little sunburnt…look I’m even peeling. After a childhood that saw holidays taken mainly abroad, during the last 20 years, I’ve hardly set foot outside the UK either for family reasons, Children or either I just never got holidays, such was the plight of being self-employed. During the last 3 years I haven’t had the work getting in the way, so I’ve managed to get away with Ginny a lot more. I still haven’t gone abroad, but I have managed to feed a new passion….camping.
The first opportunity to go camping, other than with the scouts many years ago, came at a music festival in 2010. After that I was too much of a penny pincher to stay somewhere that cost £50 a night. We first went camping together at a clothed site in Wells next the Sea in Norfolk in 2011, after that, we so loved the clothed free variety of camping, we don’t look to camp anywhere else, other than at naturist campsites.You might ask “What’s so special about camping naked” and the answer is everything. If it’s warm enough you don’t get all hot and sticky putting up the tent. It’s relaxing and comfortable inside the tent, not having to find clothes to put on all the time (especially if you need the toilet at night),and with the trees, grass, wildlife and the stars, you truly feel at one with nature. To put it in a nutshell it’s like living in your own “Garden of Eden” or in your own quiet corner of paradise.
What do you need to go camping ? Not very much, a tent for starters and sleeping bag. These can be picked up at the supermarkets for under £50. If you eat out it tends to put the cost up but it’s really up to you how much you end up spending. If you don’t like tents, you can go for a caravan or motorhome,as most campsites including naturist ones have enough room to accommodate these. People can spend (and do) up to and over £100,000 on a top of the range motorhome, while camping equipment buying can (if you’re really into it) go on and on. Either way it’s just as enjoyable roughing it under the stars with Mother Nature.
Where to go ? The answer to that is easy as there are many clothed campsites up and down the United Kingdom most of which can be found on UKCampsite.co.uk,which can be found at this web address – ukcampsite . There are also different magazine you can buy which detail these, two of the most popular being Camping camping magazine and MMM – Motorcaravan Motorhome Monthly .
If its naturist camping you’re after, there are websites a plenty. If you type in naturist camping you’ll find many, with the most popular being Suntreckers (website- Suntreckers ) which is a naturist camping and caravanning club in the UK and Alan Rogers(alanrogers.com) who have naturist and clothed campsites available in the UK and all over Europe. You can also search for naturist sites on the UK Campsite link mentioned earlier. Also recommended is the BN (British Naturism) website BN holidays which has links to web pages and holiday destinations all over the world. Magazines are few and far between when it comes to naturist holidays,but some clubs do host campers and you can find the details in the world’s oldest naturist, good old H&E Naturist.
Another naturist holiday idea that is worth a mention a Cap d’Agde (pronounced Kap Daɡd) it is more cosmopolitan than most naturist resorts and maybe this is for you if you’re after a livelier holiday.
Cap d’Agde (above left) is a large family-style naturist resort on the French Rivera with about 40,000 visitors on a daily basis during high season (250-350,000 the whole season) The Village Naturiste is a large fenced-off part at the north-eastern edge of Cap d’Agde, although it is accessible along the public beach from the east. It is a self-contained town (although sometimes referred to as the “Naked City”), where nudity is legal and common in the whole resort, including its restaurants and shops, day or night. In the evening, when it gets colder, more people are dressed, sometimes in revealing clothes. A local tourist tax is charged per person, per day. The Naturist Village is a town by itself, with a 2 km (1 mi) beach, a large marina, 2,500 pitches campsite, apartment complexes, hotel, shops, restaurants, night clubs, bars, post office, bank and ATMs, launderettes, hairdressers and other facilities. In all there are about 180 businesses in the village. One can potentially spend an entire vacation without leaving the area or wearing clothes.
La Jenny (above right is also a naturist village but a lot less cosmopolitan and it is on the French West Atlantic coast, a “La Jenny visitor” from Kew (in London) wrote a summary on trip advisor of his family holiday which said:
“You won’t want to go to La jenny if you want to cover up. It’s an enormous naturist site with nearly 1000 chalets generously spread through tens of hectares of pine forest. The chalets range from vast two story edifices to not much larger than Wendy houses. The resort is ‘class’ divided between the ‘old’ smaller chalets to the south closely packed and the ones to the north the large chalets with considerable space around them. The chalets are nearly all privately owned but La Jenny reservations manages a centrally organised rental. Their service is excellent. We have always had a spotless chalet. They listen to preferences: near the golf, near the beach, away from noise etc etc.In high season it is at least as expensive as a ‘twee’ cottage in the west country: not cheap. But out of the July /August months bargains are to be had. The on-site supermarket has a good range and the prices are barely above the local hypermarket about 10kms south. The restaurants try hard and we have eaten well in the off season, less so in high season. The children’s clubs are largely French speaking focused but English speaking groups do get created.La Jenny is into tennis with about 20 courts and some are in very good condition. The pools are enormous, heated and very well policed.The main disadvantage is that without a car you are stuck. 5 kilometres north is the little village of Porge Ocean (not naturist) but it’s also largely a camp site and a few houses. South you have miles and miles of empty beaches. Arcachon Bay and Liege are about 10 km’s away and there are good places to eat there. Naturism at La Jenny is ‘obligatoire’ in the pools and on the beach and is normal in reasonably warm weather. The beach patrol is excellent and you must comply with their instructions. The undertows can be dangerous. On the Atlantic coast you will always get ‘off days’ and then the woollies come out .This is an International resort. Its 30% French, 10% Belgian, 20% Dutch, 20% German and the rest includes the Brits and everyone else. English is understood (usually) and the reception staff are usually tri-lingual. “ (Thank you…Mr Kewfriend)
In recent years, social nudity has become ever more acceptable with a growing number of facilities catering for nude recreation and camping. Nudist bathing is commonly acknowledged as part of the British seaside culture and the summer holiday is a popular time to really enjoy naturism. Naturism goes beyond social appearances, physical differences and customary stereotypes: background, age, shape and race are all irrelevant. It’s about being yourself, feeling good inside and having respect for others…..so go on give it a try !!
(*some information from Wikipedia and Trip Advisor reproduced in parts)