- From cruising to swimming to onsen bathing, here are 21 places to know for skinny dipping
- Remote resorts in Maldives and Thailand are gems for naturalists
- Italy and Wales offer lesser-known spots to go natural
Bathing naked isn't just for babies.
While the brave might whip off their underwear for an impromptu dip whenever the chance arises, some of us need more reassurance.
That's why we've collated these 22 spots where you can swim the way nature intended, confident that you won't attract too much attention.
Anantara Phuket Villas, Thailand
These luxurious villas -- 83 in total -- come equipped with a private courtyard featuring a sunken pool and complete seclusion, which means you can swim naked without fear of offending guests or staff.
While this kind of skinny dipping lacks the excitement and back-to-nature feel of taking a dip in the wild, there are benefits -- including a hot tub for two, an outdoor shower and a fully stocked mini-bar within arm's reach.
Anantara Phuket Villas, 888 Moo 3 ,Tumbon Mai Khao, Amphur Thalang, Phuket, Thailand; +66 (0) 7633 6100; pool villas start from 13,500 baht ($429) per night, but the website often offers discounts.
Banyan Tree Lijiang, China
High tiled walls mean you can undress with confidence in the pool villas at Banyan Tree Lijiang, 7,900 feet above sea level.
Outside of May to August, when seasonal fields of rhododendrons reach full bloom, expect to raise a few goosebumps while streaking into these heated pools in the shadow of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain and a Himalayan panorama.
Banyan Tree Lijiang, Yuerong Road, Shuhe Gucheng District, Lijiang City Yunnan Province, China; +86 888 533 1111; $618 per night
Black's Beach, La Jolla, California
Black's Beach is reckoned to be the best by the American Association for Nude Recreation. It's a spectacular location below Torrey Pines Golf Course, with a long stretch of sand protected by steep cliffs.
The beach attracts naturists and surfers and is a well-established haven where San Diego's anti-nudity law isn't enforced. The beach has a regular group of fans, known as Black's Beach Bares; their website has useful tips on how to enjoy a day on the beach.
Park for free at the glider port on Torrey Pines Scenic Drive and then walk down a steep trail to the beach.
Black's Beach, 2800 Torrey Pines Scenic Drive, La Jolla, California
Carpe Diem, Santorini, Greece
On the slopes of Pyrgos village overlooking Fira, capital of Santorini, this boutique hotel prides itself on the privacy of its 10 suites.
With a private terrace and pool in each apartment, guests can feel free to let their hair down and abandon their swimsuits for an uninhibited swim in the solitude of their own pool.
The hotel has a Turkish bath, which can be booked for private use.
Carpe Diem, Pyrgos 84701 Santorini, Greece; +30 22860 34090; junior suite with private pool from €240 ($333) per night
Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan
With every rattle of a palm frond, it's hard not to wonder what other creatures are taking pleasure in this dense bamboo jungle.
That and the occasional screams of rafters coasting along the Ayung River are the only sounds to intrude upon the privacy of each villa at Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan.
All 42 thatched maxi-huts come with an outdoor shower that overlooks the river valley and a plunge pool that releases itself into the jungle's steamy abyss.
Nudists notwithstanding, no one need fear overexposure. Farmers on the opposite bank are nearly naked themselves and too far away to make out the state of play.
Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan, Sayan, Ubud, Bali 80571, Indonesia; +62 (361) 97 7577; $680-850 per night
Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives
Had Robinson set sail with Mrs. Crusoe in tow, he might have gotten lucky and washed up at Gili Lankanfushi in the Maldives.
Balanced on stilts above a shallow lagoon, the Robinson Crusoe Residences are the most photogenic over-water villas ever to take the character's name.
With the closest neighbor at least a thousand feet away and no sign of the butler (unless requested), couples are left entirely alone.
You can splash around the Indian Ocean or even snorkel naked.
Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives, Lankanfushi Island, North Malé Atoll, Republic of Maldives, +960 664 0304; $1,635 per night
Golden Beach, Northern Cyprus
If you want to feel the sand between your toes and clear blue Med lapping around your face, Golden Beach on Cyprus has some of the best skinny dipping you'll ever encounter.
Clothed beach-goers gravitate to the area around the beach cafe, leaving a good stretch of sand free for anyone who wants to strip down and soak up the sunshine.
Note: This isn't an official nudist beach, so it's best to check who's around first.
Karpaz; take the Karpaz-Anayolu road going northeast to the tip of the peninsula. Golden Beach is on the right
Jerolim Beach, Croatia
Croatia is famed for its FKK (freikörperkultur, or "free body culture") beaches, and the island of Jerolim, the closest of the Pakleni islands to the town of Hvar, is renowned for its unspoiled, rocky shoreline and crystal waters.
It's popular with naturists (as well as non-naturists), who can be found sunning themselves on white rocky outcrops.
For more privacy, get away from the main tourist area, hike through the forest and find a secluded cove. You can also explore the island's coast by boat.
Jerolim Beach; ferries travel regularly from Hvar town on Hvar island
Lady Falls, Brecon Beacons, Powys, Wales
You have to be brave to go skinny dipping in Wales, no matter what time of year it is. Nonetheless, author of "Wild Swim" and skinny dipping connoisseur Kate Rew recommends a remote waterfall in the Brecon Beacons as one of the must-dip places in all of Britain.
Lady Falls (known locally as Sgwd Gwladys) has a mystical feel and is a popular walk for hikers, which means that if you want to feel that cool mountain water on your bare backside, you'll need to be quick and circumspect about it.
Sgwd Gwladys, Brecon Beacons National Park; set off from the Angel Pub in Pontneddfechan, on the road between Neath and Merthyr Tydfil. It's a 4-mile round-trip walk from the pub to the waterfalls.
Little Beach, Maui, Hawaii
Although nude sunbathing isn't permitted in Hawaii, there are some clothing-optional, nude and topless beaches where it's accepted and tolerated -- if not officially.
Little Beach on Maui is a popular, out-of-the-way cove in Makena State Park where visitors often swim, snorkel and lounge like lizards in nothing but their sun-protection cream.
The beach is recommended by the American Association for Nude Recreation.
Little Beach is west of Makena Point in Makena State Park. Travel on the Makena Alanui road and then park inside the state park and walk to Little Beach.
Marina di Camerota, Campania, Italy
When it comes to nudity, the Italians aren't as liberal as their French neighbors. Naturist beaches are thin on the ground compared with the Côte d'Azur, but that's not to say there isn't a thriving nudist culture.
Although Rome's Capocotta (just south of Ostia) has been a haven for naked bathers (and posers) for several decades, a 300-yard strip of shingle beach near Marina di Camerota, in the Campania region, has been designated naturist-friendly.
On the southern side of the Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park, the clear waters of this quiet coast feel like a stream of fresh air, just where it's needed.
Maslin Beach, Adelaide, South Australia
South of Adelaide, Maslin Beach was declared Australia's first legal nudist beach in February 1975. But that's not its only claim to fame.
The beach was also the subject and location of an eponymous film in 1997, telling the story of a group of friends on the beach.
Like other nudist beaches in Australia, Maslin Beach holds an annual Nude Olympics. Events include "best bum" and a three-legged race.
The beach also attracts visitors for its surf and sunsets.
Maslin Beach, City of Onkaparinga, 21 miles southwest of Adelaide
Naked cruising, Côte d'Azur
You can take naked swims in the Mediterranean any time of day or night on a naturist cruise along the Côte d'Azur.
Cruises set off from Marseille and can be planned to suit your interests: If you've always wanted to sail around the Calanques au naturel, this is the holiday for you. All you need to do is persuade a group of family or friends to share the experience.
Croisiere-med; +33 6 81 98 91 13; cruises cost €110 ($152) per person per day and usually last one week
Orient Bay, St. Martin, Caribbean
On the east coast of the island, on the French side, a broad sweep of yellow sand attracts a variety of visitors.
If you walk along the beach from north to southeast, you'll notice people wearing fewer and fewer clothes.
By the time you arrive at the Club Orient resort, even the Speedos and thongs will have disappeared. A naked swim in the Atlantic Ocean is the cure for anyone feeling awkward at disrobing.
Orient Bay is a little less than 4 miles directly east of Marigot, St. Martin, Caribbean
The Pavilions, Thailand
You can roll straight from bed into a deep, 40-foot-by-13-foot infinity pool outside each Andaman Sea-facing villa at Phuket Pavilions.
The motto, "no tan lines, no interruptions," means exactly that for couples yearning for none other than each other.
Stealthy staff deliver service without a sound. That includes poolside massages.
The mini-bar is stocked with Veuve Clicquot champagne and Haagen-Dazs ice cream.
The Pavillions, Phuket, 31/1 Moo 6, Cherngtalay Thalang, Phuket, Thailand; +66 (0) 7631 7600; $629 per night
Praia de Galheta, Santa Catarina, Brazil
About 12 miles south of Florianopolis in the Brazilian state of Santa Catarina, this white sand beach attracts die-hard naturists and the nude-curious alike.
It's fine to turn up for a skinny dip even if you don't want to spend all day getting your pale bits burned.
Praia de Galheta is a naturally preserved area, with no restaurants or other buildings nearby, so bring lunch.
There's also an archaeological site, and the surf is good. The Association of the Friends of Galheta lobbies and looks out for the interests of nature and naturism on the beach.
Praia de Galheta, Santa Catarina, 12 miles south of Florianopolis, north of Praia Mole
Racquet and Tennis Club, New York, United States
This private members club in the heart of New York is a strange mix of pro-establishment-conservatism with near-Nordic enlightenment.
While its male-only members (women are allowed entry only for special events if accompanied by a male member) include the city's great and ambitious (bankers, lawyers, senior execs), its after-work men-only naked swimming sessions have become legendary.
Much has been conjectured over what really happens during the bare swims. They certainly provide New York's businessmen with an opportunity to think outside the box.
Racquet and Tennis Club, 370 Park Ave., New York
River House, Sri Lanka
Wake up in a pillow-strewn four-poster bed in the River House's east-facing Menik Suite, and you'll be looking at a private plunge pool as the sun rises over coconut palms.
The inland retreat on the Madhu River is three hours' drive south of Colombo's international airport.
From November to March, you and yours can play Adam and Eve around this seven-acre slice of tropical paradise.
The River House, No. 70, Uthamanyana Mawatha, Welagedara, Balapitiya Sri Lanka, +94 11 576 9500-2; $373-485 per night
Taj Exotica Resort and Spa Maldives
Before exposing delicate skin to sun, guests at Taj Exotica can build up to swimming in the buff with four hot and cold experience showers, and seaside sun beds with Maldivian herbal mud-loving therapists plying their trade.
After being slathered in mud and loosened up on cocktails and exotic fruit snacks, its time to drop the pretense (and bikinis and trunks) and swim with the lion fish and wrasse.
The couple's treatment in the Alepa Suite at the end of a private jetty is as the name of this Taj property suggests: exotic.
Taj Exotica Resort and Spa Maldives, South Male Atoll, Maldives; +960 664 2200; $800 per night
Traditional onsen, Japan
Despite being a massive concrete city, Tokyo has plenty of natural thermal springs.
Among the best is Toshimaen Garden Spa. It has a tranquil setting inside a garden designed by Kenzo Kosugi.
If you want to get even more back to nature, there's Seta Onsen Sanga-no-Yu, where you can contemplate views of Mount Fuji while soaking in the buff.
Toshimaen Garden Spa, 3-25-1 Koyama, Nerima,Tokyo; +81 03 3990 4126
Seta Onsen Sanga-no-Yu, 4-15-30 Seta, Setagaya,Tokyo; +81 03 3707 8228
At Trisara on Phuket's northwest shore, all 39 villas are well endowed for maximum pleasure.
All-glass French doors open onto a 32-foot-long cerulean plunge pool that appears to drip into the Andaman Sea.
No swimsuits are required, thanks to a profusion of jungle foliage expertly tended by Thai gardeners who turn each of these outdoor playpens into secret sanctuaries.
Piles of plush towels are scattered about the area.
Between diving in and winding down, you can feed your companion from the villa's trays of aphrodisiac chocolate truffles and Thai mangoes.
Trisara, 60/1 Moo 6, Srisoonthorn Road, Cherngtalay, Thalang, Phuket; +66 76 310100; $600-1,230 per night