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Guide to the Naturist Zone

These are questions that newcomers often ask and the answers they are given vary depending on who is giving the answer - most people will give what they believe or assume to be the answer though few, if any, actually know the answer with certainty.
    A good, but approximate, answer is that the naturist zone comprises the naturist beach + the beach promenade + the naturist urbanizacions (residential developments) + the hotel + the streets and pathways between and linking them.
   A more accurate answer is that the naturist zone is just a concept - originally dreamed up by a former mayor of Vera to encourage development and tourism and the Council gave life to this concept by appointing an overall developer of a substantial block of land by the sea (which, at the time, was nearly all abandoned salt workings and near desert). The overall developer produced a master plan and then sold off the land in parcels, most of them quite large, to other developers who built developments (urbanizacions) comprising apartments + communal facilities such as swimming pools and gardens (there are 12 naturist urbanizacions ranging in size from just half a dozen apartments to one which has nearly 600). Vera Council granted planning permissions for the individual urbanizacions which included permission for a naturist lifestyle to be lived in them and the naturist urbanizacions include in their constitutions the expectation that the owners of individual apartments will live a naturist lifestyle.
    None of the urbanizacions at Vera Playa are "Clothes Optional" - they are either Naturist or Textile. Individual owners of apartments or houses within the naturist urbanizacions have signed up when they bought their property to live a naturist lifestyle and not to let their property to textiles, so it should not happen, but like most things which should not happen, it does!
    There were a few hiccups on the way - two urbanizacions which had permission to be naturist became textile - Playa de Baria, which changed designation halfway through construction and sale, and Vera Mar 6, where the developer decided to market it as textile even before construction commenced (See our Developments page for more info about the various urbanizacions).
Each naturist urbanizacion is a gated community and its naturist status internally is very clear. Visitors are often uncertain about the status of the roads, streets and pathways outside the perimeters of the individual urbanizacions - which are all public highways which anyone can and do use. The custom & practice is that the streets etc between the urbanizacions and the sea are naturist. There is not, as far as we know (though we would be happy to find that there is an official decree to the contrary), any official status for the naturist use of the streets - or perhaps even the beach promenade (which didn't even exist at the time of the designation of the naturist urbanizacions). The custom & practice is that "Hotel Street" is textile - but this seems only to be the case because the company which owns the hotel also owns most of, if not all, the nearby shops, bars, restaurants etc (and lets them out to individual operators) and the hotel does not wish to discourage textiles from using all these commercial enterprises. In fact, the status of "Hotel Street" is no different from that of any other road or street in the area.
   So, there are no neat certainties as far as the streets are concerned. But the naturist beach, which many visitors perceive as quite short (0.5 kms or so), is actually pretty long (around 2 kms) - and that IS official, having been created by decree and its status having been confirmed by the Andalucian Ombudsman just a few years ago after Vera Council, under a later mayor, tried (illegally) to redesignate it as textile (more - click here - also see our Beach Guide page).
   These days the Spanish Naturist Associations are not in favour of signposting beaches because, they argue, the present Spanish Constitution permits anyone to be naked anywhere - so any beach is naturist if a user of it wishes to do so naked (it is true to say that reports from around Spain suggest that some Local Police forces and even the Guardia Civil don't always seem to have quite the same interpretation - however, at Vera Playa, both Local Police and Guardia seem to understand that the whole 2 kms of beach, the promenade and the streets in the naturist zone are all naturist). Where the boundaries are and exactly which parts of which streets are naturist is a bit fuzzy (for instance, is the street to the south of Playa de Baria to the sea and the paths in the vicinity of the lagoon naturist or textile? Answer, not absolutely clear, but many naturists use them as naturist.
   So, our advice is just get on and enjoy your naturist holiday and don't worry. If you stray outside the generally accepted limits of the naturist zone the world will not end and you are most unlikely to get arrested. For instance, if, as some folk have, you go shopping naked in the Consum supermarket you will embarrass the staff and get some odd looks from other shoppers but that's all (except getting cold near the freezers) - and hopefully you'll have sussed out that you've well over-stepped the line and won't do so a second time!
www.VeraPlaya.info - 15 August 2011.


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