Cap d'Agde, the Naked City

Visit The World's Capital Of Nudism

naked couple on a beach
••• Naked couple on a Beach. Getty Images/Caroline von Tuempling

France is known for its laid-back attitude about nudity. Visitors can freely go topless at just about any Mediterranean beach though you should be more careful in some places such as Nice, which is more a town with a beach than a resort where you can bare all.

Where To Bare All

Want to bank naked? Shop naked? Dine naked? Buy baguettes at a brasserie naked? Lay out on a vibrant Mediterranean beach naked?

 Visit Cap d'Agde, the world's capital of nudism.

The town of Cap d’Agde is a normal town with the separate and independent resort of Naturist Cap d’Agde to the northeast part of town.

The Naturist resort is itself a complete town, town with a three-mile beach, and offering all that you need such as its own doctors, banks, shopping and dining, just for the nudists.

But Cap d'Agde takes it all to a new level of hedonism and free living. In the summertime, the population of the nudist section swells to 40,000. Any self-respecting nudist must visit this spot, considered the naturist destination.

Rules to follow

There are certain rules that you must follow. Some are explicit; others are what you might expect but are not written down.

  • Clothing is optional in the resort. At dinner most people wear clothes, particularly as the temperature drops.
  • Don’t take photos and videos of other people. This is an unspoken rule though you can of course take pictures of your partner.
  • Take heed of the laws that ban any kind of lewd or crude behaviour.
  • Take a towel to sit on at a bar or restaurant if you’re dining naked.
  • You can start off wearing clothes, particularly if this is your first time in a naturist resort. But you won’t be able to continue as what the resort refers to as a ‘textiler’, i.e. somebody wearing clothes.
  • Access to the specific naturist quarter is reserved for naturists or those who work there.

Location

Cap d’Agde is on the Golfe du Lion n the Mediterraneabn about half way between Narbonne to the south and Montpellier to the North. It’s also a few miles from Sète along the spur of road that runs beside the Bassin de Thau.

Getting to Cap d’Agde

The nearest airport is Montpellier-Mediterranee Airport, just  8 km (5 miles) southeast of the city. From the airport, catch a shuttle bus into central Montpellier. From there, you can take the train to Agde, then a taxi to the resort.

If you’re coming from Paris you can either fly or take the train (3 hrs 21 minutes on the TGV) to Montpellier.

Accommodation

The only hotel in the naturist village, the Hotel Eve, has been refurbished. It's bright and well decorated with a spa and outdoor pool. The best accommodation are the suites, with the Garden Suite having a hot tub outdoors. There’s a wide variety of accommodation available with in the naturist resort. You can rent an apartment for any length of stay from an English company; you can camp on the site where the facilities are very well organised and comprehensive; you can stay at the 4-star Oz Inn Hotel, or the Natureva Spa.

You can also rent the Villa Naturiste Letexi.

There is also occasionally the opportunity to buy an apartment, villa, townhouse, motorhome or caravan.

Day trips from the resort

You can easily spend your whole holiday here (and some people spend the whole summer at the resort.) But if you want to see a bit more, there are plenty of side trips that you can take. The main nearby attractions are:

Sète, once an important fishing village, still has its old port and an old quarter. It’s one of the best places in France for seafood.

Béziers is the capital of the Languedoc wine country where the wines are both improving and becoming increasingly popular.

Montpellier is cultured and vibrant at the same time. It’s one of France’s most beautiful cities.

You’re also within striking distance of the Camargue, France’s cowboy country, famous for its bulls.

To the south of the Camargue you come across the strange city of Aigues-Mortes with its fortified walls, and echoes of knights and ladies from the middle ages.

Edited by Mary Anne Evans