naturism as a life philosophy.
Downtown residents Miguel and Claudia explain that they were shy at first but decided to visit a nudist park eight years ago out of curiosity.
“The people were regular folks leading normal lives and with various types of bodies,” explains Miguel. “We found that being in the nude placed us all on the same level and that being naked in front of others made us feel very comfortable and proud of our bodies. We worried less about the labels and clothes that everyone had on and paid more attention to the people themselves and the environment we were in.”
If you prefer to stay closer to home, consider connecting with naturist groups like the GTA Skinnydippers, who arrange nude swims at both indoor and outdoor facilities, or the Toronto Area Naturist Sports and Swims (TANS) group, which coordinates nude volleyball matches and more. The World Naked Bike Ride takes place in Toronto on June 9, starting at Coronation Park with socializing and body painting.
Multiple private enterprises like saunas, bathhouses and spas also allow nudity, and though nudity is not inherently sexual, several clubs combine clothing-optional environments with erotic events and entertainment. The pool at Oasis Aqualounge, for example, is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 3 a.m., and some people report that visiting after dark can help to ease them into the experience.
You can also explore clothingoptional spaces on your own by visiting Hanlan’s Point or the unofficial areas of Beechgrove beach (East Point Park) and the west end of the beach in the Scarborough Bluffs. If you’re not comfortable stripping down at first, that’s OK. Just be sure to be respectful of those in the buff. Don’t stare, gawk, make comments or take photos.
Even spending a few minutes naked in the privacy of your home is a good start to achieving some of the goals of the naturist philosophy: acceptance of self, respect for others and living a more natural life.