Is Nudity The Hottest Trend In The Travel Industry?
The era of the Staycation is over (and soo 2009-2012). All hail the era of the Nudecation.
As if shedding your clothes wasn’t fun enough in the privacy of your home, tour operators and intrepid travel writers have noticed that travelers are increasingly looking for the opportunity to do so out in the open as well (whether others want them to or not). A simple progression from traditional social mores? An outgrowth in the desire for even tans? An uptick in interest for self expression? I’m going to go with my instincts here and guess people just like seeing other naked people. (I was going to use the term “Nakation,” but the ANNR — that would be the American Association for Nude Recreation for all you prudes unaware of the organization’s existence — has dubiously claimed the trademark to the inane term.)
As reported by NBC News, TripAdvisor found that the number of those interested in taking it all off at a nude beach increased dramatically in the short period from 2009 to 2010 from 31% to 48% (and has undoubtedly grown since then), while the AANR estimates that clothing optional tourism was a $440 million industry as recently as 2010. (However, to put that into perspective, the Disney parks made $553 million in the first quarter of 2012 alone.)
While here in the New York City region, the options for nude activities are limited (well, at least those that are open to the public and/or not related to TheExpeditioner.com Friday summer happy hour outings), New Yorkers do have the option of hopping on a ferry and visiting New Jersey’s Gunnison Beach, the only legal nude beach in the area (and ironically enough, former home to Fort Hancock and NY-56, one of a series of Nike Missile sites that ringed New York City).
Will this trend continue in 2013 going into 2014 despite the increase in smartphone ownership (and their respective cameras)? Your guess is as good as mine, but I’m thinking the YouTube filters are going to have to start working overtime.
[Nude Beach by Lyndi&Jason/Flickr]
By Matt Stabile
About the Author
Matt Stabile is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheExpeditioner.com. You can read his writings, watch his travel videos, purchase the book he co-edited or contact him via email at any time at TheExpeditioner.com. (@TheExpeditioner)