I’ve always thought it a pity that regions of the world with perfect beaches and ideal climates are pretty much out of the running in the category of world class naturist destinations. When we travel, we do all we can to maintain a low profile as American tourists. (e.g., Observing local customs about nudity on the beach.) And thus, when a sanctioned naturist place does appear on the scene, we are eager to support such entrepreneurial efforts while finding an excuse to explore a corner of the planet we might not have found otherwise.

IMG_1887Don’t know that I would have ever found my way to Chiang Mai, Thailand had it not been for the allure of a little resort in a neighboring village called Oriental Village. As you will find on TripAdvisor, it’s located out amidst the rice fields – the spring burning of which contributes quite a lot to the hazy conditions that make it difficult at times to tell if the sun is shining. As that has been our experience throughout much of Asia, we found that neither surprising nor off putting, though I did find myself longing for the deep blue skies that appear in some of the photos.

IMG_7297The place is run by a quirky French fellow who apparently took over the property from the previous management that ran a textile resort there. The chalets are simple and well appointed, and we very much enjoyed the little restaurant on the premises that served simple local cuisine. We even booked a massage one day from a woman they bring in for their guests who was a bit more thorough (though not inappropriate) than I am accustomed to. Maybe the most enjoyable massage, ever…

IMG_1874The pool area is the centerpiece of the property, and while quite small, it was completely adequate for the ritual of sunbathing and soaking. In addition to a few Europeans, we were pleased to meet a couple Malaysian travelers who try to frequent this resort two or three times a year. As this was our midyear break, we found lounging by the pool to be our favorite activity, but we did manage to make it to the elephant reserve (a good distance away) and do a bit of exploring in the old city of Chiang Mai, which I find much more interesting and accessible than Bangkok.

IMG_7319I have been following the Naturist Association of Thailand for some time now, which lists several resorts scattered about this vast country, each of which emphasizes in one way or another that nudity must be confined to the space within the barriers of the resort – once again, not surprising given the very strict laws about nudity on beaches and such. That said, I was delighted to discover a new resort that has recently popped up near Phuket that appears (by their website, and the first round of Trip Advisor reports) to be a lovely facility. Had we known The Lemon Tree had existed during our recent visit last April we would have stopped in for sure. Another reason to go back.

Lemon Tree - New resort in Phuket
Lemon Tree – New resort in Phuket

Would I return to Oriental Village near Chiang Mai? You bet. We find the perfect naturist vacation is one that provides an opportunity to explore and experience another corner of the planet, while affording a place to get naked at the end of the day. I can only hope that these trend setting proprietors of naturist resorts in Thailand will open the gates for other creative naturist solutions in Southeast Asia, where the sun is shining while much of the northern hemisphere lies under a blanket of snow.

IMG_7304One more thing… next time we go, we will rent a car, though that requires driving on what we consider to be the wrong side of the road. I was even more concerned about the prospect of road signs written with indecipherable diacritical markings that would leave me “unnaked and afraid.” But alas, nearly all the important road signs are in English as well, and my phone GPS worked like a charm.

So there it is. Go to Asia and get naked. These little places need our naked support, and we naked people need nice places to stay. This is a trend that I hope to see pick up momentum in the coming months and years.


4 thoughts

  1. I think many countries are becoming more naturist friendly as they chase the $$ €€ ££ and a better more prosperous lifestyle

  2. Naturist Dan

    To bad you will not be in Thailand for another world’s first.

    Naked Jungle Run in October – First in Asia

    Naturist Association Thailand invites members and wish-they-were members for a naked run in the jungle on 23 October 2016. The run will be a short jogging walk of 2.5 km or a regular run of 5 km. More keen runners can make 10 km by running back to the starting point.

    The run will take place in the morning at 6.30 on Sunday 23 October 2016. The event will start on Saturday and the run Sunday morning will be the culmination of a general outdoor activity member get-together starting on Saturday. The weekend is the long weekend of the Chulalongkorn Day where Monday is a compensation day..

    The location is in the Wang Nam Kiao District 3,5 to 4 hours north east of Bangkok – perfect for members in Nakorn Ratchasima. The exact location of the run and how to get there by public transportation or private car will be communicated only to the participants themselves in order to avoid paparazzi photographers.

    Saturday afternoon will offer some fun activities that the members can join as they arrive. In the evening, we will have dinner together. You must bring your own meal. For heating and grilling, we will light up the grill. When it is time for bed you can either camp out in your own tent or sleep in a shared dormitory room. The accommodation cost for either way is the same, 450 Thai baht.

    Sunday morning we will get up early to avoid the heat. At 6 o’clock sharp, we will drive you to the starting line. The route that we will enjoy jogging or running is a red gravel forest road in a beautiful, natural forest area. The upward elevation over the 5 km from the start to the finishing line is a combined 87 meter and the downward elevation a combined 113 meter. Especially on the downward hills, the runners are advised to be very careful, as the ground may be slippery and the road is a gravel road.

    After the run we will drive you back to the campground for morning coffee and breakfast followed by the award ceremony.

    Participants must not display any nudity to or from the race route, as travel will be in public view.

    Cost for participation and breakfast is 450 Thai Baht.
    Only Ordinary Members or Premium Members can join the event. Open the event and pay here.
    Free subscribers can buy a package that includes upgrade to Ordinary Membership. Open the event and pay here.
    Non-members can register as Free subscribers and then buy the upgrade package. Start registration http://www.ThailandNaturist.com