Cap d'Agde - Southeastern France
During spring, summer and fall seasons: A nudist city of 40,000 right on the Mediterranean in southeastern France!
And yes, we've been there: By train, plane, rental car and by ship!
Cap d'Agde, France is like a "united nudists of the world." The naturism complex of hundreds of acres attracts families, gays, lesbians, nudists, couples, singles and more. Some adult clubs on-site are lifestyle friendly. If revealing costumes, adult themes at night or nudity may offend you, please contact your travel advisor for options to visit other adult venues. Nudity is not required and participation is completely voluntary - not compulsory. The naturist complex of hundreds of acres, hotels, apartment buildings, campsites, a marina, and numerous shops operates from about mid-April to mid-October. The complex and services are essentially closed for winter months.
Passports are required for international air travel to destinations outside the USA.
Cap d'Agde (pronounced Cap DAG) is actually a nudist city, during summer months, of 30,000-40,000 on the Mediterranean in southeastern France. The naturist/tourist section of the town was developed, believe this, by the French government in the 1960s to exploit the beauty of the region and the Mediterranean. The even larger area surrounding the naturism complex is composed of thousands of acres dedicated to real estate development and vacation facilities, golf courses, restaurants, and bistros.
Accommodations range from beachfront apartments, condominiums, homes, and hotels to nearby villas or castles in the hills for accommodations during the summer. Otherwise, the naturist section of the town is closed down; actually no one chooses to visit when it's cold!
Most of the permanent residents of the town live in other parts of the city besides the naturist section.
Cap d'Agde is actually a huge recreational and vacation complex covering thousands of acres in southeast France on the Mediterranean coast about 4 hours north of Barcelona, Spain.
Only a part of Cap d'Agde is devoted to the nude or "Naturisme" section. The remainder of the real estate complex includes the "textile" development for permanent homes, condos, apartments, beaches, hotels, entertainment, retail strip centers, a marina and a golf course.
The Nude ("Naturisme") section includes several apartment buildings, condominiums, a nude hotel, stores, clubs, bars, shops, adult spas, restaurants, a marina and arguably the largest campground for nudists in the world with over 2,500 sites for RVs and trailers. Most of the permanent structures and accommodations are privately owned but many are placed in a rental pool so you have a variety to choose from.
The "Naturisme" sections of Cap d'Agde are as follows and subject to change:
Heliopolis-Studios and apartments
Port Nature-Villas and apartments
Port Ambonne-Apartments (original)
Centre Hélio-Marin-Camping sites (2,500)
All the various complexes actually run together and are accessible on foot. The larger (textile) section of Cap d'Agde is huge so you will need a car to reach most of the other parts of the textile complex. The separate town of Agde, France is about 5-10 minutes west of the resort complex known as Cap d'Agde.
- Driven to Cap d'Agde from Barcelona via the A-7 & A-9 tollways, about 3-4 hours
- Flown there
- Flown to Paris and then taken the TGV bullet train from Paris De Gaulle airport station to Agde, France train station, minutes from Cap d'Agde
- Taken one of our groups on a tour bus from Avignon to Cap d'Agde after one of Castaways' nude riverboat cruises
- Taken a ship there...Windstar WindSpirit.
So Cap d'Agde is easy to reach from anywhere. The train station in Adge is maybe 15 minutes from the "Naturisme" zone of Cap d'Agde where you'll be staying. You can take a taxi from the Agde train station, too. No need for a car since you can walk everywhere in the nude zone at Cap d'Agde. If you want to see the countryside, rent a car for the day. There are car rental agencies on site. If we did it again, we would choose a TGV Bullet train from Paris' De Gaulle Airport; and plan to stay over in Paris before or after a trip to Cap d'Agde. Read an overview of Cap d'Agde history in WikiPedia..
U.S. Citizens: Passports are required for international air travel to all destinations outside the USA.
The city of Cap d'Agde, in southeastern France, is twenty minutes from Bezier and an hour from Montpellier, both with airports with service from Paris. Barcelona, Spain is
less than 200 miles to the west and south, about 4 hours away by car.
Both airports at Montpellier and Bezier can be reached daily by several scheduled flights from the Paris airports of Charles de Gaulle or Orly. Trains service both cities as well. And, rental cars are available just about everywhere. Taxis and buses operate locally. Airline seats are limited, planes are commuter aircraft, so plan well AHEAD.
So Cap d'Agde is easy to reach from anywhere. The train station in Adge is maybe 15 minutes from the "Naturisme" zone of Cap d'Agde where you'll be staying. You can take a taxi from the Agde train station, too. No need for a car since you can walk everywhere in the nude zone at Cap d'Agde. If you want to see the countryside, rent a car for the day. There are car rental agencies on site. If we did it again, we would choose a TGV Bullet train from Paris' De Gaulle Airport; and plan to stay over in Paris before or after a trip to Cap d'Agde.
Autoroute A-9 tollway serves the area with exit # 34 only 20 minutes from Cap d'Agde itself so driving is easy from anywhere in France or Spain.
Some travel package companies may include transfers from Montpellier; otherwise, plan on renting a car or taking a taxi. Castaways' affiliate agent in Cap d'Agde can also arrange to pick you up at the Agde train station if you rent accommodations.
Day time visitors are also welcome if you are not a rental guest at Cap d'Agde. You may be expected to pay a small entrance fee if you are on foot.
If you will be at Cap d'Agde at least once in your lifetime, we recommend you rent a car to see the countryside, although you will not need a vehicle within the "Naturisme" section.
TIPS: Make sure you arrange for a rental car before you arrive as demand is high during the season.
All types of services, dining, shops, markets, bars, and discos are available in Cap d'Agde and all have one thing in common--all the customers are nude. If you like beach life, the best-located accommodations are the apartment units in the complex called Heliopolis.
Accommodations are usually booked up and sold out far in advance with rates running between $100-$200/person/night the norm.
Languages spoken are French, German, Dutch, Spanish, Italian and English and more. Most local shops and restaurant service personnel speak a bit of English. Always learn a few phrases and words in French to at least try to make an effort to communicate, even crudely, with your French service personnel who will appreciate your attempts. We've found that the younger service personnel you typically encounter speak several languages and will happily converse with you.
Electricity is 220 v so take a converter/adaptor with you.
Several beach clubs spotted along the shore offer rental lounges, umbrellas and include food, drink, and restroom facilities, too.
Always carry a towel with you to sit on. Some apartment or condo accommodations and services INCLUDE beach towels in addition to linens, a nice touch so you won't need to pack your own bulky beach towels while traveling. Check your accommodations package to be sure.
Two shopping areas are in the Naturisme section: One each in Heliopolis and Port Ambonne and a small group of shops, restaurants and tourist offices are just outside the entrance of the Naturisme section. An ATM machine is in the Port Ambonne center and a cybercafe is in Port Nature 6 with another in the Place de la Marine in the town of Agde nearby. Other commercial facilities are also located in the textile section of Cap d'Agde although they will probably need to stock up for most of your holiday supplies, try the Hyper-U supermarket on the right-hand side of the road heading into Agde.
With an electric, lively atmosphere, you're sure to find something of interest or someone to talk to. During the day, the water sports area can get downright crowded, so it's advisable to stay at a resort which includes membership in a private beach club right to the water's edge.
Nightlife can be fun and entertaining from dining au natural to bar and disco hopping late into the evening.
The beach life during the day is what most people visit for with the nightlife and socializing running a close second. People watching seem to be just about everyone's favorite hobby.
NOTE: With 30,000 to 40,000 visitors annually, Cap d'Agde is a truly international cast of characters, so you will find everything there---singles, couples, families, gays, lesbians, groups and just about all nationalities. Have fun and be friendly--you never know who you'll meet there.
You will find more families in the camping area of the Naturisme section although families are welcome throughout the area. Nighttime in and around Heliopolis, Part Nature and Port Ambonne are mostly frequented by adult couples and singles.....in night club clothes, mostly, with most ladies outfits revealing and fun.
Night clubs cater mostly to adult activities with at least six clubs and spas on-site in the nude section and include 2 et 2, Nat' Hamman, Le Glamour, Le Tantra, Le Pharaon and Le Jules whose pool above the club has recently been reconstructed. Admission ranges from USD $25-$100/person and may include food and drink. Opening and closing times vary so check first before committing to an all-nighter at any one of these. NOTE: Clubs open, close and change owners so the list is always subject to change.
TIP: Drinks can be expensive. Some clubs include a couple of drinks with admission so check with each of them before you enter. Otherwise, bring your own bottle which you can use on-site in the club. If you wish to return later or on another night, ask the barkeep to mark your bottle with your name and leave it in his care for your next visit. Mixers and ice are usually available for your drinks at most clubs if you BYOB.
Locations of adult clubs* in Naturisme section:
Heliopolis: Le Glamour
Port Nature: Le Tantra
Port Nature: Le Jules (pool recently re-constructed)
Port Ambonne: 2 et 2 (sauna-no dance floor)
Port Ambonne: Nat' Hamman (sauna-no dance floor)
Port Ambonne: Le Pharaon
*NOTE: The names are not guaranteed as the clubs may change from time to time with new owners, but the locations tend to be the same.
Nearby: Adge, France: There is one club in Agde, Les Quai des Anges
Countryside nearby: L'Extasia, less than 10 miles from Cap d'Agde.
A couple of established bars in Heliopolis offer diversions, nightlife, good drink, and karaoke include 1664 and L'Hemingway. Port Nature # 5 and the bars, boutiques, and restaurants located there probably offer the greatest concentration of nightlife in one place in the entire Naturisme section at Cap d'Agde.
The beaches have their own "united nations" sections including families, gays, lesbians, adults, and hedonistic couples & singles. Family spots on the 3.5-mile beach are located in front of or near the condos, apartments, and campsites while adult beaches are north of the campground area where you will find most of the mischief.
Beaches are wide and long. Several beach clubs spotted along the shore offer rental lounges, umbrellas and include food, drink and restroom facilities, too. Rentals for a couple of lounge chairs and umbrella can be expensive (USD $10-$20/day) so bring extra cash for that if you plan to hang out there. The benefit of a beach club is that food, drink and restrooms are nearby. Some rental facilities for apartments or villas may include membership in the beach clubs to check it out when you arrange your rental.
AMBIANCE Continued for Cap d'Agde ("Cap"), Le Jardin d'Eden (Garden of Eden) and Club Amour (for the foam parties!)
For a general orientation of the Garden of Eden and the infamous Club Amour next door, see the links although the Garden of Eden views is somewhat dated.
Cap d’Agde has been a full European destination since the 1960s.
Le Jardin d’Eden (Garden of Eden) has 65 deluxe apartments. Cap d’Agde season starts from mid-June to mid-September and July 14 is the French revolution remembrance day is when the season starts peaking. Plenty of Italians, French, Dutch, English and Spanish guests of all ages use their official holidays during the summer months and so Cap is usually quite full especially late July and early August.
Experience the multi-cultural side of life where, ironically, the language barrier becomes the best thing to try to break.
People visiting Cap during the summer are there to meet other people, and to talk, see and be seen, from the beach where you can enjoy watching or being watched with guests coming from Paris, Berlin, Amsterdam, Venice, North American, South America, the UK, Ireland, London and other cities from around the world.
Cap d’Agde is not Desire, Hedonism or any other location around the world. Cap has over 20 adult clubs, restaurants can appeal to families but mostly, they're oriented for nudists and those adults who enjoy alternate adult activities with plenty of parties all over the village. If you don’t prefer one theme or club for the day, you can spend your afternoon at the foam party at Club Amour adjacent to Garden of Eden, stay at the beach or go to the mixed premium sauna during the day. You can even organize your own party with a few couples you met last night on your terrace or wherever!
The mix of guests and entertainment:
Cap has a variety of adult clubs from group fun to cinema-style, to the sauna, to foam and mousse parties, to fun in the sand dunes on the north end of the beach…there is something for every adult.
Ages of adult guests at Cap:
Ages vary from the early 20s to late 70s, typical group trip ages average 45 – 55 but the whole village is the experience. Families also choose to visit Cap and their section is usually located first on the sand near the foot of the beach near Heliopolis, although there's no line of demarcation on the beach.
For holidays in southern Europe, on the French Riviera, Paris, Spain, Portugal or Barcelona (3-4 hours by rental car) start nice and easy and plan to finish at the top in Cap d'Agde.
If you are unsure of a destination, or not sure if you will easily meet people when you get there, our group trips are the perfect answer. We’ve been there, we know what to do, where to go, and generally how to get the most for your dollar. PLUS… most of the time we have special contract rates for our Group Trips (but you have to contact us directly as contract prices do not show up in the online booking engines). Check with Castaways for updates.
Alert: Group trips can be seasonal and some years, don't operate at all. Best advice: Go with friends and be your own group from 2 to 4 couples. Any more than that, you'll likely need to appoint someone to organize the whole thing since everyone has an opinion on what to do, where to go and how to get there. It's best to map it out and plan it months in advance so it's organized before you travel. Summer is obviously the most popular time. Weeks the end of July and first weeks in August typically attract lifestyle-friendly visitors. Cap d'Agde is open usually from about mid April to mid October, closed for fall and winter season.
There are lots to do in the regional area from shopping to castle hopping. Obviously, dining and wining are two favorites that most folks partake of. Carcassonne and its medieval fortress located a little over an hour by car from Cap d and the surrounding countryside are spectacular ways to enjoy a day tripper's adventure with a rental car. Carcassonne is also the center of a major French AOC wine-growing region. Tourism also makes use of the many canals that interconnect with one another, a good excuse to enjoy boating along with the beautiful scenery, providing stops at quaint villages to enjoy the local crops and adult beverages. Fishing, yachting and water sports can be arranged throughout the area. Remember, the Mediterranean can be cold---it's not the Caribbean!!
One of our all-time favorite European cities is less than 4 hours by tollway south of Cap d'Agde and if you have time and a car, spend a few days before or after Cap d'Agde in Barcelona.
Paris is about a 4-5 hour ride on the high-speed TGV rail from Agde, France and while Nice is a bit closer; both cities are worthy of an extra 2-3 nights to add on to your holiday. Other towns close by are: Arles, Nimes, Montpellier, and Sete for great food, dining and seafood. Carcassonne is worth a visit to travel back in time if you enjoy the medieval ambiance.
Usual accommodations include some type of kitchen so you can buy fresh food from the nearby markets to prepare yourself. All types of snacks, beach shops, and fine dining restaurants abound in the nudist section of the city so you never have to wear clothes unless you want to. Life goes on until late at night or early in the morning so you're not going to wonder what to do next.
Prices for food and drink are similar to any other vacation locations but they're not exorbitant. Most rental accommodations include a bedroom, living room, bath, and a kitchen so most visitors prepare a meal or two during the day and enjoy dining out at night. The best part is arguably the French pastries, the hot bread and fresh fruit you will find most guests buy daily each morning to start their day. Best bargains no doubt are French wines that you can purchase in the stores for USD $5-$15/bottle. An average meal at night can run USD $10-$20/person + drinks (subject to change).
Don't go to Cap d'Agde expecting gourmet meals since you will encounter mostly simple dining and the bill of fare is rarely extensive. One of our favorite little haunts for breakfast, lunch and enjoying the view (both people and beach) is L'Horizon located adjacent to the far east end of Port Nature # 1 building.
Sete and Carcassonne are towns nearby that offer much better French food. Plan to visit Barcelona, Montpellier, Nice or Paris for gastronomic delights if you're looking for great cuisine.
Visitors are for the most part nude during the day while at night, most wear some clothing in the village itself with garments likely to be shed in the clubs as the night progresses.
Accommodations are usually booked up and sold out far in advance with rates running between $100-$300/person/night the norm. This range is not guaranteed and is subject to change without notice. Rooms can be rented by the night in hotels in most cases. Most apartments and villas usually require a week minimum stay.
The majority of the apartment accommodations may not have air conditioning while most of the condos do. Make sure you let us know what room type or category you prefer as there is usually a price difference. The weather is usually quite nice during the day but occasionally, the temps can be very hot so hope for a breeze. Most days, the wind blows west off the sea or east straight from the plains behind the complex. We've found the cool, gentle sea "breeze" can turn into gusty, windy conditions so be prepared. Some of the better accommodations are apartment villas located in the two "villages" around the marina in the low rise, single-level buildings. A few include 2-3 bedroom units with a private pool....great for couples to share and entertain. Apartments are scattered around three areas in the "Naturisme" section including Heliopolis, the largest single complex, plus Port Ambonne and Port Nature, most with balconies in multi-story buildings.
Hotel EVE was one of the first hotels established in the "Naturisme" section with 48 air-conditioned units. Hotel EVE is very basic, similar to a Motel 6 in the USA. Many guests who stay there expect to find other "like-minded" visitors and "hedonistic" couples and singles. Simple accommodations include a private bathroom with a bath or shower, toilet, TV, alarm clock radio, telephone, mini-bar, safe and hair-dryer. The hotel's best assets are its pool and rooftop terrace for breakfast.
Other more upscale, newer and nicer hotels/resorts have been added including Hotel OZ, Garden of Eden, Garden of Babylone and Nature Spa. Let us hear from you personally if you're interested in one of these properties as we've been to all of them.
Nude accommodations are suitable for families, singles, couples, gays, lesbians, hedonistic couples and everyone in between. You will find no true "five stars" nude accommodations on-site but Hotel OZ, Eden and Babylone, and Natureva Spa are newer. Most others are fairly plain but functional so don't go there expecting the Ritz! Better accommodations are outside the nude section in the textile zone where other conventional hotels are located.
NOTE: If you use the campsite, you must possess an FFN card (French Naturism card). Otherwise, to use the rest of the "Naturisme" area or to rent accommodations there, there are no other membership requirements although there is a small entrance fee to bring a rental car into the "Naturisme" section.
◄► Cap d'Agde can get crowded.
▲ Fantastic food and drink and fabulous people watching.
▼ Weather can be unexpectedly cool during the summer with unannounced, windy days.
▼ Beach water can be cold.
▲ This is the nudist experience of a lifetime. It's unlikely that you will ever see more people in their "altogether" at one time anywhere else.
Adult ages vary from early 20s to 80s, average 30 – 55 but the whole village is the experience. Families also choose to visit Cap and their section is usually located first on the sand near foot of the beach near Heliopolis, although there's no line of demarcation on the beach.
Best Time To Go
Late July and all of August.
The actual season extends from late March to early October but the best months are May-September. Top months are typically July and August when the place can get crowded in the village and on the beaches. Lifestyle weeks usually are last wee or 2 in July and first couple of weeks in August.
Weather in southeast France during the season can be somewhat unpredictable: You may encounter a string of perfectly sunny days followed by a few cool and cloudy days with the wind trading directions at any time. Daytime temps during the season range from 20-30 (C) or 70 to 90 (F) degrees. Nights are typically pleasant but gals bring a sweater or cover-up just in case the wind is blowing, which it can without warning.
● Establish something like this in other parts of the world. (Like the warm Gulf Coast <grin>)
Click on this link to view our PHOTO ALBUM of Cap d'Agde. The photos were either shot by us, our clients or provided by the resort. If you have recently visited Cap d'Agde we invite you to send in your photos for us to display. To contribute you own photos (or trip reports), go to our Contribute Trip Report / Photographs page.
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