Naturism and Nudism – what are they?

Naturism Nudism

Even though naturism in Ireland is not as popular as in France or Germany, but even here, there are many places where you can meet naked people. Naturist organizations frequently invite their members to meetings, organized in many formulas. Naturist-only beaches and saunas are found in many regions. The terms naturism and nudism can be confusing. So, what exactly is naturism, and is it different from nudism? 


Many people associate naturism with naked people who stay together in secluded, separated, but still public places, such as beaches or saunas. But there is so much more to the concept and their way of thinking and feeling. Naturist practitioners talk of many benefits for mental health and for the planet as a whole. Above all, it is a way to get as close to nature as possible and get a healthy distance to everyday life. The philosophy of naturism, however, is much broader. Check what exactly it is all about and where this term comes from. 

Naturism and nudism – similarities and differences 

However, if you own a big property, that allows for more discretion including outside, for example in the garden, in your garage area, or by Quite often, the terms naturism and nudism are considered to be the same. While in the United States both terms are used to describe the same community, in European countries these terms are usually separated from each other. Nudists are people who give up wearing clothes because of the pleasure they get from spending time naked with other people. Usually, there are nudist beaches where you can find people of all ages relaxing without clothes. Although in the case of naturists it is a much broader perspective, they’re after. Talk about breaking taboos and showing the human body as something natural, which should not cause embarrassment. 

Naturism and Nudism – what are they?

Where can naturists hang out?  

Both naturists and nudists can be found in secluded places, usually, they are public places, but specially separated (sometimes also properly marked). Representatives of both groups are most often found on beaches and in saunas. There is also family naturism where all family members tend to be naked in their home. According to parents who encourage their children to do so, it is the best possible way to introduce children to their own bodies and the differences between men and women. 

Philosophy of naturism

Naturism and nudism should not be treated as a form of exhibitionism, they are supposed to be asexual. The main difference between them is the approach to nudity itself. While nudism is all about spending time and enjoying nakedness, when talking about naturism, you need to be aware of the broader philosophy behind it.

According to naturists, the possibility of walking naked allows them not only to relax but also is a form of expressing their pro-ecological views, accepting their own body and differences in other people’s bodies, respecting others, and nature.

Naturism focuses on reforming people’s relationships with the body. Naturists should care about why they are naked, how and when they are naked, what they do when they are not naked, and most importantly, they should care about reforming society’s destructive attitudes towards all bodies, not only those who are naked with them. Naturism is very much an in-depth philosophy of the body and its relationship with the world. 

On the other hand, for some, the terms are fairly interchangeable, but generally, nudism is a practice of non-sexual customary and social nudity. It’s not as deeply rooted in the philosophical aspects of the whole idea and is less spiritual. Many nudists focus more heavily on the sensual aspect of being able to spend time naked and connecting any broader ideology with it. 

Interested? Find out more on the International Naturist Federation’s website.

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