Women in New York may bare their breasts anywhere that it's appropriate for a man to go shirtless, including public beaches and clubs. Complete nudity is still prohibited in most public places within the state, but you'll find private clubs and outdoor areas where you can frolic freely while not wearing so much as a stitch of clothing.
Soak Up the Sun
While it is technically illegal to sunbathe along the beach completely nude in New York, there are some beaches where the law turns a blind eye. Several federal beaches along the 26-mile long Fire Island National Seashore on Long Island allow nude sunbathing as they are under federal jurisdiction, not state law. The beaches have a long history as naturalist beaches, but nudity laws are enforced when au natural sunbathing turns to lewd and lascivious behavior.
Look for the Lighthouse
Fire Island's distinctive black and white lighthouse presides over dunes and the clothing-optional Lighthouse Beach West. The nude area of the beach lies on the far western edge of the national seashore along its border with Robert Moses State Park. Take the first boardwalk west of the lighthouse to reach the beach. Warning signs separate the nude beach areas from beaches to the east and west where wearing swimwear concealing your genitals is mandatory.
Keeping Up With the Smiths
Smith Point is considered one of the best family-oriented naturalist beaches on Long Island. The immaculately clean beach is found on the eastern portion of the Fire Island National Seashore and has been used for more than 30 years as a nude beach. There are relatively few sightseers due to a 30-minute hike from the Smith Point Beach parking lot. The downside is that there are no restrooms at the beach, so be sure to use the facilities at Smith Point County Park when you park your car.
Join the Club
Before tiptoeing timidly onto a beach that accepts nudity, join a club where other naturalists will show you the ins and outs of baring it all in New York. Long Island Travasuns has been around since the 1970s, with family-friendly activities for all ages that include winter pool parties, clothing optional restaurant outings, beach parties and an annual sunset cruise. The group is affiliated with the American Association for Nude Recreation and the Naturist Society and sponsors trips to their naturist gatherings.
- Long Island Travasuns: Welcome
- Juniper Woods
- The American Association for Nude Recreation: Eastern Region
- Time Out: Nude York Stories
- The New York Times: This Summer, Fire Island Isn't the Place to Bare All
- Naturist Action Committee: New York Penal Law
- BootsnAll Travel Network: New York Nude Beaches
- National Park Service: Fire Island National Seashore, New York, Nature and Science
- Travasuns: Welcome to Lighthouse Beach Fire Island
- Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images
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