Skip to main content

Peru to tourists: 'Stop getting naked at Machu Picchu!'

By Evie Liu, for CNN
March 20, 2014 -- Updated 0504 GMT (1304 HKT)
A rash of
A rash of "naked tourism" at Macchu Pichu, Peru's top tourist destination, has raised the ire of officials.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Multiple tourists detained for stripping down at Machu Picchu in recent weeks
  • Peru officials call incidents "disrespectful" and "unfortunate"
  • Guards at Machu Picchu and other historic Peru sites to increase surveillance

(CNN) -- Watch out for bare butts when traveling in Machu Picchu -- incidents of "naked tourism" at the 15th-century Inca citadel are on the rise, and getting under the skin of Peru officials.

According to the Peruvian Times, four American tourists were detained on March 14 for getting naked and posing for photos at the site.

In a pair of separate incidents earlier in the week, two Canadians and two Australians were detained for stripping down for pictures at Machu Picchu.

The bare-it-all episodes followed a 2013 incident in which a naked couple was videotaped by other tourists while streaking across Machu Picchu's grass field and bounding down a stone staircase like a pair of adolescent antelopes.

The website My Naked Trip features images of an Israeli man named Amichay Rab posing in the buff at sites around South America, including Machu Picchu.

Rab's long, curly hair and bold poses have won him a cluster of followers.

The photos and video have made the rounds on social media.

Peruvian officials are not amused.

MORE: 10 things to know before visiting Peru

Crackdown

Peru's Ministry of Culture has denounced the spectacle of nude visitors at Machu Picchu as "disrespectful" and "unfortunate events that threaten cultural heritage."

"There are places in the world that people can get naked, but not all places are (appropriate) for getting undressed," Alfredo Mormontoy Atayupanqui, director of archaeological resources for Peru's Ministry of Culture, tells CNN.

According to Mormontoy, park rules printed on the back of admission tickets warn visitors against being nude in public.

"Tourists should comply with local rules and regulations when they are traveling, otherwise there will be thousands of problems," he says.

Meanwhile, Cusco's regional director of culture, Ricardo Ruiz Caro, has issued a statement saying that park guards at Machu Picchu and other historic sites in the region will increase surveillance and crackdown on naked tourism.

New rules announced but yet to be put in place are also meant to address the issue of overcrowding at the site.

According to the Peruvian Times, "All foreign visitors to Machu Picchu will soon have to hire an official guide to enter the Inca Citadel, follow one of three predetermined routes through the complex and face time limits at specific points to keep the traffic flowing, under new rules promulgated by the Ministry of Culture in Cusco."

"Machu Picchu is visited by tourists of different ages, religions and ideologies," says Mormontoy. "Nude behavior may bring pleasure to a small percentage of people, but it causes discomfort and anger to others. We need to make sure other tourists don't feel awkward."

Where do you stand on "naked tourism"? Share your thoughts in the comments.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
November 16, 2014 -- Updated 2326 GMT (0726 HKT)
Take a trip to the Chinese town that has more relics than people.
November 13, 2014 -- Updated 1742 GMT (0142 HKT)
You know about reggae and Usain Bolt -- but you probably aren't aware of these other Jamaican superlatives.
November 14, 2014 -- Updated 1152 GMT (1952 HKT)
Artist creates brilliant tribute to Dutch impressionist painter -- a cycle route that glows in the dark
November 14, 2014 -- Updated 0633 GMT (1433 HKT)
European airlines beware: These 320kph trains are upping the travel game with roomy seats and onboard wi-fi.
November 13, 2014 -- Updated 1053 GMT (1853 HKT)
For such a relatively small collection of islands, the UK packs in an phenomenal range of beautiful scenery.
November 12, 2014 -- Updated 2237 GMT (0637 HKT)
Animals run behind the Rovos Rail train's observation balcony in Africa.
Rovos Rail's epic trips out of South Africa pamper passengers with fine dining, vintage comfort and even a bathtub.
November 18, 2014 -- Updated 0137 GMT (0937 HKT)
Nasir al-mulk Mosque, Shiraz, Iran
Self-taught Iranian photographer gains rare access to shoot religious buildings as they've never been seen.
November 11, 2014 -- Updated 0345 GMT (1145 HKT)
The subject of erotica has a way of making people uncomfortable.
November 7, 2014 -- Updated 0037 GMT (0837 HKT)
A
UK's Heathrow Airport pairs destinations with fragrances to evoke long distance travel. We do too.
November 6, 2014 -- Updated 2100 GMT (0500 HKT)
Bumper cars, a freefall simulator and robot bartenders are just a few of the cool features on Royal Caribbean's new Quantum of the Seas.
November 2, 2014 -- Updated 2258 GMT (0658 HKT)
Up in the mountains and across deep chasms, these bridges are both spectacular and terrifying.
ADVERTISEMENT