Is A Bare Necessities Cruise Exactly What It Sounds Like? Here's What You Should Know

Cruises provide travelers with unforgettable memories and experiences. However, one company offers a cruise unlike any other: Bare Necessities. Founded in 1990, Bare Necessities is in some ways your typical cruise. Passengers can expect a jam-packed itinerary exploring exotic coastal destinations. The only difference? Clothing is optional while you sail the sea. Despite being a nude cruise, the company emphasizes on its website that these cruises are not sexual. Additionally, public sex is highly discouraged. In short, this is worlds apart from, say, a Temptation Cruise, which is ideal for couples looking to broaden their intimate experiences.

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Speaking to Thrillist in 2016, Bare Necessities co-founder Nancy Tiemann explained that nude cruises are about releasing inhibitions. "When you're without your clothing, you don't have that barrier that says you make this kind of money," she said. "It's a real equalizer. It really levels the playing field. We buy into a lot of the Madison Ave stuff, and it's nice to be free of that and feel comfortable in our own skin." That is all to say that a Bare Necessities cruise is centered on body positivity.

While cruises are catered primarily to nudists, anyone is welcome as long they are 21 and older. If you're interested in joining a nude cruise for the first time, you should be well aware of Bare Necessities protocols for passengers.

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Bare Necessities rules and cruise etiquette

If you want to survive your first nude vacation — especially one that isn't focused on more traditional nude beaches — know that you won't always be naked on a Bare Necessities cruise. And yes, the ship's crew will be clothed. First and foremost, you are, of course, expected to be clothed during the boarding process. Passengers are not encouraged to ditch their clothing until the ship has disembarked. Similarly, clothes must be on when the ship is docked. In addition, passengers must wear clothing in the dining room. Keep in mind that unless otherwise announced or if you're enjoying a meal in the dining room, you are free to keep your clothes on or off throughout the cruise.

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Simply put, do what feels right for you. That said, the golden rule of a Bare Necessities cruise is always to use a towel when sitting in common areas around the ship. The cruise provides towels, so don't forget to grab one if you don't want to commit this faux pas. Likewise, taking photos and videos is strictly prohibited, as is engaging in any hanky panky or wearing lingerie.

Ultimately, passengers who do not follow these rules could be kicked off the cruise. If you're wondering what clothing items to pack, bring beachwear and shoes for port days and whatever you prefer to wear in the dining room area.

Set sail with Bare Necessities in 2025

Are you ready to take the plunge and embark on a nude cruise? Bare Necessities is offering two cruises in 2025. The Big Nude Boat's Carribean voyage on Norwegian Pearl begins in Miami on February 3 and returns to the Magic City on February 13. Stops include Great Stirrup Cay in the Bahamas, San Juan, Puerto Rico, St. Maarten, and more. Excursions including snorkeling, ziplining, and hiking will also be offered. Prices per person range from $2,000 for an inside cabin to $33,155 for a 3-bedroom villa. 

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From October 26 to November 9, Bare Necessities is sailing from Australia to the South Pacific on the Scenic Eclipse II. The cruise embarks from Cairns, Queensland, and will travel, among other places, to New Caledonia and Vanuatu. This cruise is much more luxurious than the Big Nude Boat and only offers suites. Passengers can also expect butler service and high-quality dining. Prices range from around $14,000 to over $50,000 per person. 

Note that the cruises are all-inclusive; however, this does not include alcohol or soda on the Big Nude Boat, only the cruise on the Scenic Eclipse II. Moreover, the cost per person is for a cabin with double occupancy. If you do not have a partner or travel companion, you can contact Bare Necessities, who can help you find a roommate. Reservations for either cruise can be made online.

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