Germany: Saxon Switzerland
Regional newspaper 'Sächsische Zeitung' refers to an attentive photographer on the banks of the Elbe River, who was able to have his camera at the ready in the town of 'Stadt Wehlen' to capture an image of passing nude cyclists.
Word is getting around in the region, that naturist activities on foot, by bike, and by boat are currently shaping leisure activities. But, this is not a new development in this region of Germany, just the continuation of a good, old, and proven tradition.
Translation of the article:
Oops, who is cycling there through the town 'Stadt Wehlen'? Last weekend, a group of nude cyclists attracted the curiosity of many. The view was quite surprising for some of them, although the topic of nude activities is not new at all in Saxon Switzerland. Not only nude cyclists are naturally active outdoors, but also hikers in the buff have been seen already.'
D · Nude hiking days in Saxon Switzerland – Mon 14 Aug: Nude bicycle ride into Czech Republic [14 August 2017]
Also in 2017, Wolfgang and Andreas, tireless initiators of nude hikes, invited to participate in their tours in Saxon Switzerland. On Mon 14 August, a bicycle tour along the 'Elbe' River upstream into the Czech Rebublic and back was on schedule.
The traditional cycling trip to the Czech Republic started in quite cool temperatures of less than 17 °C. The cold was particularly noticeable in the shade and the strong wind. But the sun eventually appeared in the blue sky and quickly warmed the cyclists.
Of course, we could not bike through 'Kurort Rathen' without a stop at the railway crossing gate. At the exit of the village, we already announced to the mobile ice-maker our return in the afternoon. However, he did not have enough patience to wait for us: on the way back we had to do it without ice cream.
We crossed the bike path construction site (blocked for pedestrians and cyclists: 'Lebensgefahr!' [en: Danger to life!] between 'Königstein' and 'Bad Schandau' during our forward run with some difficulty, but decided for our way back to cross the Elbe over the 'Bad Schandauer Brücke' [en: Bad Schandau Bridge] to continue the journey on the north bank of the Elbe. In 'Königstein' the ferry brought us back to the south side.
The rest of the trip to the Czech Republic and back went as planned. We had lunch of goulash and Bohemian dumplings and other food. At the end of the day we assembled at a restaurant in the Pirna market square and enjoyed the warm summer evening and cheerful socializing.
– Translation: John.
During the 'Sächsische Naturisten-Tage (SNT)' in 2016, a bike tour along the 'Elbe' River into the Czech Republic was on schedule on 4 August:
Cycle Route along the river 'Elbe' in 'Königstein'
35 km of nude cycling to the Czech Republic was a pleasure for the 21 participants at temperature of up to 30°C and lots of sunshine, especially as a lot of people waved us on this Elbe Cycle Route and from excursion boats. On the spot, we had lunch in a restaurant, i.e. roasted pork with sauerkraut and Bohemian dumplings for 5.30 Euro. Then we went back without any breakdown back to Pirna.
D · Thüringer Naturisten-Tage (TNT) 2020 – Wed 19 Aug: Choices on rainless Wednesday: Hike or bike and push the bicycle [24 August 2020]
During the TNT 2020, on Wed 19 August, there was an option to enjoy the day either on foot around a dam without carrying anything with you or to cycle and partly push the bike:
On rainless Wednesday, you could chose between hiking and biking: A group of 12 hiked their paths, optional not only without clothes, but also without rucksack, without shoes: We had our food an beverages in a previously parked car. The circular hiking trail around the Zeulenrodaer Meer Dam led partly over wooded mountain paths above the dam, partly directly along the shore, through small villages, and to the popular Strandbad of Zeulenroda [en: lido]. There, most people could not resist taking a refreshing swim in the nude – or to mingle with the textile-wearing foodies at the ice cream booth and queue for an ice cream. On the further way, some more bathing opportunities were used before the group crossed the bungalow village Zadelsdorf shortly before the finish, passed a beer garden and a playground and met here as everywhere else relaxed people who kindly returned the greeting of the naturists.
Parallel At the same time, 20 nude cycling fans had made their way to Schleiz to take a 40 km round trip from there to the Bleiloch Dam. The tour started and ended on freshly asphalted sections of the "Oberland-Radweg" with mild ascents and descents. At the dam, the naturist bikers overtook for the first time a few families with children, who – when one or the other group had taken a break – met the naturist group from time to time during the further course of the tour and soon got into conversation. Above all, tips were exchanged, when the central part of the route along the dam arms as well as the bypass routes proved to be quite challenging for cyclists: The rain of the past days had partly softened the ground of the field paths, and on the other hand, non-E-bike riders had to push on numerous gradients.
During the TNT 2018, on Fri 20 July, there was an option to enjoy the day either paddling on a dam or on foot:
On Wednesday, 20180718 Ten naturists hiking in the buff through the forestsome participants of the Thüringer Naturisten-Tage biked nude near 'Bad Klosterlausnitz'. Afterwards, a visit to the 'Kristall-Thermen' was on schedule.
Some naturists opted for a hike in the buff: A photo album "10 nude hikers in the Thuringia Forest" reports their tour.
– Report and photos: Rainer
In 2017, Andreas once again initiated Thuringian Naturist Days, this time with 10 events from 14 to 23 July. On Thu 20 July, you could opt for a bike tour near 'Neuhaus' in the 'Thüringer Wald' Mountains or a hike tour.
Sixteen cycling fans decided to travel their own way today and set off separately from the 8-person hiking group. Their start was 'Neuhaus' at the 'Rennweg' where some of the cyclists could hire a bike for the day. Others had bike carriers on their cars and had brought along their own bikes.
The trail led upward in a predominantly cloudy sky and 23° air temperature over the 'Rennsteig' and 'Panoramaweg' towards the west and to the upper basin of the 'Goldisthal' and the 'Vattenfall' pumped-storage power station. From the observation point we could see not only the basin, but also the great panoramic view of the mountains in the northwest.
On the way back the bike group was caught in a heavy thunderstorm. Those who had raincoats tried (in vain) to protect themselves from the torrential downpour. Those who had no coats took off their remaining protective clothing, and allowed the rain to run down their legs into their shoes (if any). However, the temperature had now fallen to 18°.
In parallel with the cycling tour the hiking group hiked numerous hiking trails which had high-quality moss covering and were comfortable to those hiking barefoot. At the Schwarza source the water has a constant temperature of 6.1 ° C and rises through a fracture (column source) between slate and sandstone. In our further route we explored a part of the 'Rennsteig' and marvelled especially at its annual use as a marathon course.
In the restaurant 'Schmelztiegel' [en: Melting Pot] in Neuhaus we were able to restore our energies and consumed calories in a very welcome and pleasant manner!
– Report: Rainer; photos: Horst. Translation: John.
During the 'Thüringer Naturisten-Tage (TNT)' in 2016, there was the option to either hike or bike on 27 July:
The tour started with sparkling wine and a choir singing "Happy Birthday" for one of the nude cyclists. Twenty-two cyclists set off in parallel with a group of seven hikers. Their paths were planned in such a manner, that the two groups met once. Finally, after 26°C and a bright sky, there were a few raindrops, before we could have dinner on the terrace of a local hotel restaurant.
D · 'Westfälische Naturisten-Tage' (WNT) 2020 – Sun 5 Jul: 10-person groups compliant to current regulation concerning Corona for hiking or biking [6 July 2020]
In 2020, the "Westälische Naturisten-Tage" (WNT) [en: Westphalian Naturist Days] offered on Sunday 5 July again the option to chose between biking and hiking:
On Sunday, two groups of 10 naturists each – due to corona regulations – met on a parking lot northeast of Münster (Westf.) near Gimbte. One group had planned a hike at the Dortmund-Ems Canal, the second group took a 41 km long circular route by bicycle.
Two policewomen came to us in the parking lot. "You don't look like it was you who called us. But we had to come here because of a phone call and check up on you. Of course, you're allowed to hike or cycle nude, and you all seem to know how to conduct yourself naked in public." We explained that we had split into two groups of 10 people each and that we would comply with the corona regulation. At the end of the short conversation, the policewomen wished us a nice day – we gladly returned this wish.
For the cyclists, the strong wind, which at times was accompanied by drizzle and some rain, and the air temperature of around 20 °C was so inviting, that only some participants completed the tour without any clothing at all. The highlights were the visit of wooden sculptures at Coerde and the observation of storks, which didn't let themselves be disturbed by the numerous Canadian geese scurrying around, looking for food in a meadow.
The hikers were amazed at the food offerings of the Oeding Restaurant, which were provided with current keywords (species-appropriate, sustainable, …). They then shortened the hiking break "Track swimming in the Ems" to 150 m, because they too had to wait until late afternoon for warm sunshine.
Nude cyclists are like fresh green: After the long, barren winter, they jump out of their clothes on the very first warm day of the year - directly onto the saddle. As a cyclist, you always generate your own wind, the headwind. That's why it's good to cycle in the nude, if it' s a few degrees warmer. Last Monday, the time had come: The thermometer at the handlebar showed more than 25°C air temperature, so that the first nude cycling tour of the year could start under a cloudless sky.
There were only a few other cyclists on the paths in the southern Münsterland region, with whom I could exchange a friendly greeting. Cars were even rarer. I did not meet any pedestrians at all. A few times, I stopped by the side of the road to let a tractor pass by – the farmers are at work, while I was only out on the road for recreational fun. No working man should have to wait for me there. Remarkably many of the tractor drivers became noticeably slower as they drove past, turned their heads towards me, and waved back intensively.
In front of a farm, a group of children with all kinds of playground equipment played on the property. The boy on the climbing tower had the best view and shouted: "Look, a nude cyclist!". And a moment later, there was a many-voiced, happy children's laughter, which echoed behind me for a while. That must have been a successful child amusement in times of Corona-related restrictions!
After a good 25 km, I reached the town again, after chaffinch, skylark, titmice, and other spring singers had accompanied my tour through woods and fields. However, numerous wagtails came much closer to me in the country, which was criss-crossed by ditches and brooks. A successful start to the season!
On the final Sunday of the 'WNT 2018', we could enjoy sunshine and temperatures up 24 °C. 24 participants splitted into groups of 13 bikers und 11 hikers. As part of the 15 km hiking trail, the hikers had the option to wade a creek. Those, who did not want to take advantage of this refreshment or were afraid of wet feet, could alternatively continue their hike on dry paths with a short detour.
The bikers did a circuit of 49 km through the 'Dülmener Münsterland'. For lunch, both groups met again at the rest break, for which a car was parked near the enclosure of the 'Dülmen Ponies'. Afterwards, we went again on different paths until the return to the start-parking lot. Then, the restaurant 'Haus Waldfrieden'' fulfilled all wishes regarding coffee and cake, ice cream, cold drinks and hot meals. Finally, participants thanked the intiators, Mic and Rainer, and then bid farewell – until the next 'WNT' at the latest.
Open the WNT photo album 2018
Hint: Videos about cycling in the nude during WNT 2018
D · WNT 2018 – Tue 11: Meadows at the 'Ems' River near 'Telgte' – 20 km of hiking or 50 km of biking [11September 2018]
We gathered directly at the Ems River. 7 hikers, two women and five man, and an American Collie stayed near the river: They hiked along renatured meadows at the Ems River in the Warendorf district. In the course of the day, the weather turned into a real summer day with 25 °C and lots of sunshine. Their hike of 20 km took place completely in the meadows at the river. Several times, you could take a refreshing bath. The bikers, due to a distance of 50 km, also drove through surrounding fields, meadows, and small forests. We enjoyed to be warmed by the sun, because although the thermometer already showed 20 °C at the start time, the wind blew unpleasantly violently. Soon, however, the sun had accomplished its work: Air temperature rose to 25 °C, so that we did no longer perceive the strong breeze as cold.
For the first rest, the biking and hiking groups met on a piece of meadow in the sunshine. Afterwards, we followed different paths anew. Finally together again, we enjoyed the end of the day at the restaurant 'Alter Gasthof Seiling' in Telgte having hearty, local dishes.
Open the WNT photo album 2018
Helmut 'natury' made use of hot days (up to 33 °C) at end of May, to bike in the nude several times through southern 'Münsterland'. Before turning into a paved path, however, he hesitated and briefly considered, whether he might have to remove his luggage bag and hide it in the ditch for weight reasons. But then he realised: The restriction of the total weight is not valid for cyclists: Helmut could continue with his bike's luggage bag.
Note: The road sign is not a fake.
In 2018, the Westphalian beginning of May offered on one day again the option to chose between biking and hiking:
Sunday offered the warmest temperatures of the naturist days with temperatures of up to 22 °C, which, however, felt together with the airstream cool when biking. 5 nude bikers also needed a certain start-up time until they got bright sunshine onto their bodies. The circuit through the Münster parkland had a length of 50 km.
Without headwind, 8 hikers could enjoy the friendly spring weather faster, so that the group managed its 15 km circuit under best conditions. After approx. 9 km, the hiking group arrived at the depot car for a break.
They had a nice experience crossing country road L592 near restaurant Lintels Kotten: Half of the hikers in the buff had just crossed the country road, when the others had to wait because of a vehicle approaching. It was a police patrol car. The officers drove on without taking any interest in us. Hiking in the buff is meanwhile so normal, commonplace, and well known.
The warning 'Friederike obstructs nude hikes [15 April 2018]' by natury became unexpectedly topical: The naturists had to overcome some fallen trees, that storm Friederike had thrown onto the track – the hikers at the beginning and at the end, the bikers fortunately only at the end of their tour. Climbing over fallen trees and, at the same time, even hoisting an e-bike over the bulky and pricking obstacle was only possible with a joint effort. Thanks for the help!
For the final dinner, hikers and bikers met again in 'Lintels Kotten'.
– Photo (hiking): Thomas
April brought us an almost one-week period of high summer temperatures and bright sunshine. Of course, this situation also encouraged non-botanists to cycle between cherry, apple, and plum blossoms along the biking tracks lined with such trees in southern 'Münsterland' and accompanied by the diverse singing of various bird species. The result was a short documentation video in 3D "Biking in the nude amongst cherry blossom". There are some tips how to view videos and photos in 3D (PDF in German).
Farmers were on the road with their tractors and fertilised the fields. No, not really? This is a sign of a new era: In the past, the scent of "country air" used to be all over, when you moved between the fields. Today, the slightly sweet, carcinogenic scent of glyphosate enters your nose. Our thanks go to our former Minister of Agriculture, Christian Schmidt (CSU), who made sure, that this environmental toxin will be applied for several more years to come. But his successor, our recently elected minister Julia Klöckner (CDU), also rejects a ban. The severe deformities of newborns, which have been documented for years in areas, where 'Roundup'*) is applied, especially in Argentina, do not interest Ms Klöckner – health is not a responsibility of the Ministry of Agriculture. [*) 'Roundup' is the trade name of the most widely used environmental destroyer, of which the main ingredient is Glyphosate]. Recommendation to a German collection of public TV emission MediathekView: "Natur Nah - Glyphosat unter Verdacht" (NDR); "Global 3000 - Argentinien Soja-Plantagen machen krank" (Deutsche Welle).
wissenschaft.de presents, that pure glyphosate is "probably not carcinogenic" according to the EFSA (European Food Safety Authority), but it can be "pesticide formulations" (i.e. formulations such as 'Roundup'). But exactly these recipes are sprayed onto the fields and not pure 'Glyphosate'. However, EFSA has not examined Roundup, to see, whether it is carcinogenic – that is not its task: EFSA has only thr task, to examine 'pure' chemicals and not the formulations, that make us sick. Who comes up with something like this???
D · Catch-up days from 24 to 27 August of the Westphalian Naturist Days – Fri 25 Aug: Nude hike or bike tour near 'Altenberge' [25 August 2017]
Today, from the same starting point, there was a nude hike over 26 km for 9 pedestrians and a 52 km nude bike tour for 12 cyclists. The weather offered for both activities sunny and warm conditions up to 25 °C, which again invited some to a bath in a lake.
The cycling group had numerous encounters of different kinds: with people, with horses, and with police officers – the latter had received several calls and spent more than 2 hours of their service to search for the nude cyclists. That prompted them, to ask the cyclists to be informed in advance about similar events in the future – then they could calm down callers right on the phone: 'We know that they are not doing anything bad'. In addition, we noticed, that the bike path is in some places as narrow as an one-way road – but possible contraflow needs to be taken into account.
The last weekend of September should again spend a nice and warm weather, so the initiators of the WNT offered a continuation: 17 naturists splitted into a hiking and a biking group and started their tour with sunshine at 19 °C.
For the bikers, the airstream was still a bit cool, but the temperature arose quickly and reached over 25 °C. 58 km made the biking group on their tour, the hikers needed an hour and a half longer for their 24 km.
Bikers and hikers in the north-western Münsterland were greeted with funny comments or questions. The hiking group frequently passed farms along their trail, where they were often waved and greeted by joyous groups of children and their adult companions, while the men and elder youngsters of the farm worked on the corn harvest in 12-hour shifts.
Towards the end of the hike, a group of nude bikers met the group halfway. A sportive biker, who passed them at the same time, said: 'And I always thought, I was clothed slightly, but you do it right!'
At the end of the day, we stopped again for a bite to eat at the inn 'Das kleine Kartoffelhaus' [en: The Small Potato-House] in 'Altenberge', where the naturists were served again exquisitely. Because a dinner in the nude in August in Altenberge has been well around, we also left here some informative brochures about nude life for information for interested restaurant guests.
53 km and some local highlights along the route
The 'Davert' is the largest contiguous forest area in 'Münsterland', which until approx. 1800 was nearly always wet and foggy and was considered scary and dangerous. Only then did they start digging ditches for drainage.
The start of the bike ride along the 'Dortmund-Ems-Kanal' [en: Dortmund-Ems Canal] was a little bit cool at 19°C, and occasionally even some drizzle. After lunch, however, as promised, we had sunshine and the temperature rose to more than 25°C.
Among the highlights along the route were objects as diverse as a beautifully designed private chapel at a manor, the 200-year-old 'Teufelseiche' [en: Devil's oak], the ammunition dump, that caused the British Air Force to bombard the area in World War II, and a tower house with loopholes (an old knight's seat) or a fortified house with brick walls 1.5 m thick.
At the end of the tour, we strolled in the nude through the 'Venner Moor' and then had dinner with delicious Westphalian broad bean (bot.: 'Vicia faba') in the restaurant 'Zur Davert' in 'Davensberg'.
D · Westphalian Naturist Catch-up Days in 'Münsterland': Fr 26 Aug: Option to hike or to bike [26 August 2016]
During the catch-up days of the 'Westfälische Naturisten-Tage (WNT)' in 2016, the naturists had to choose either to hike or to bike on 26 August:
Same starting point, same destination – only the length of the route is different for the cyclists and hikers in the nude. Where the 5 hikers could shorten from 25 to 17 km – which all of them did. In fact, up to 34°C and plenty of sun caused, that moving outdoors was exhausting, even if a lake offered an opportunity for refreshment in between. The 16 cyclists completed their planned route of 54 km with many breaks.
At the end of the day, we met in the 'Kleines Kartoffelhaus' in 'Altenberge'. Of course, it was also quite warm in the reserved room, so one of the female hikers came up with the idea to ask: "We are a nude hiking group, it is so warm – may we take our clothes off and have dinner in the nude?" We were allowed! And tasted the exquisite dishes without clothes: quite like at home!
Start in 'Frankendael' Park
The WNBR in Amsterdam 2018 took place on 7 July. Mostly sunny weather with temperatures around 25 °C were excellent conditions for the city sightseeing in the nude. Nearly 200 participants had gathered for the start in Frankendael Park, where there was still the opportunity to at least partially cover the nude skin with colourful paint. In the best mood, the bike trolley set off punctually at 2 pm, guided and accompanied by stewards in yellow safety vests, which stopped car and tram traffic at intersections and squares so that the pro-bike demonstrators had a safe passage.
The highlight of the tour were again the rests on the 'Magere Brug' and on the 'Museumsplein' with a view of the 'Reichsmuseum'. The audience in Amsterdam's streets, restaurant terraces, city tour boats on the canals and in the museum park often applauded – and recorded thousands of spontaneous videos.
Video Full HD approx. 1 min. When watching the video, click onto or to switch to full screen mode.
Sat, 9 June, London:
Approx. 1,600 naturist participants in middle of dense traffic and crush, but – with a lot of thumbs up around them – in a good mood.
Sun, 10 June, Brighton:
The weather again helped to make the WNBR in Brighton successful. Thanks to sunshine, pleasant temperatures around 24 °C and a caressing sea breeze on nude skin, the inclines on the steep coast were also effortless. In the end, engaged naturists could choose between bathing in the ocean and listening to the live music of the "Phantom Limbs" or combining both.
– Report and photos: Rainer