Auckland nudists told to 'cover up' by DoC park ranger during pre-Christmas beach event

rainbow swimsuit and orange flip-flops in the sand of a beach
Photo credit: File

A pre-Christmas "family-friendly" nudist event at an Auckland beach was "safe, social and accepting", according to a participant - the only party pooper being a Department of Conservation park ranger, who was less impressed with the naturist party.

The 'Barely Three Days Before Christmas' event on Sunday urged Aucklanders to embrace what their mother gave them for a "day of naturist beach fun".

The event was held at Pohutukawa Bay, just north of Long Bay on Auckland's North Shore. 

Although there are no official nude beaches in New Zealand, the bay is typically described as a popular spot for naked beachgoers. 

"The event was very enjoyable... no [one] was judging anyone based on what they were wearing or whether they were in shape or not... it's a safe, social and accepting atmosphere," naturist and event participant Josh Klaver told Newshub.

However, one Department of Conservation (DoC) park ranger was not so accepting.

"The only disruption was a DoC park ranger who asked some of us to cover up because we were within sight of the nearby walking track," Klaver said.

"We continued as we were and didn't hear from her again. She was polite, although lacking a little common sense. The walking track only goes to Pohutukawa Bay or the full Okura bushwalk, and it's quite common to see naturists from the track."

Klaver claimed the nudist gathering, which was marketed as a family-friendly outing, was "safe and enjoyable" for children and a number of families attended earlier in the day.

Co-organiser Auckland Young Naturist told Newshub roughly 40 to 50 "like-minded people" made use of the opportunity "to be free and not judged by society".

"Clothing-optional beach use" needs greater exposure "in the public eye", according to Klaver.

"We have absolutely nothing to hide," he said.

Public nudity is legal in New Zealand - kind of. Whether or not exposure is a crime comes down to the intent behind it. Generally speaking, enjoying a day at the beach does not have offensive intent.

Newshub has contacted DoC for comment.

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