Today, I will share a rather funny story instead of providing you with a true must-not-miss Switzerland travel tip. Or maybe you think differently? I don’t know. I leave that up to you.
Recently, we visited the town of Appenzell during one of our weekend road trips. The Kanton (province) of Appenzell and the town Appenzell represent Switzerland at its best. Soft rolling green hills with high mountains as backdrop, picturesque villages, cheese dairies and every now and then a beautiful farm house with lots of cows around.
While we were walking along the main street in the lovely town of Appenzell I came across a poster announcing the opening of a new optician. It said: With our new glasses we will see the naked hikers even from far away. That really made me laugh and triggered memories of a heated national debate that took place a couple of years ago when groups of naked hikers were frequently spotted around Appenzell. There was even a discussion going on, whether the local authorities needed to provide a separate bus line to transport groups of textile-free people from point A to point B. These people wore just socks and shoes and – in absence of any pockets – they often carried a backpack. Isn’t that absurd? Yes, it is! That’s what the people of Appenzell thought, too. They took the case to court and the judges agreed that this is not acceptable. Until today, every person caught hiking naked in Appenzell will be fined.
After I saw this poster again I got curious and googled what had happened to this nudist movement in the meantime. If it still exists? I confirm, yes, it does. Not so much in Appenzell, but for example in the area of the village Wald in Kanton Zurich. Here, they have their own hiking trails so that the full-gear-hikers do not meet the no-gear-hikers. Actually, there are websites with tips for naked hikers from around the world with trail suggestions in the UK and the USA.
Well, I truly don’t know what people like about it. I cannot imagine that it is very comfortable and I rather don’t want to see or experience the sunburn after a long summer day. But to be fair, the story of naked hikers still makes me laugh, even after years. Especially, picturing a true Appenzell farmer spotting a group of naked hikers crossing his meadows.
Since I don’t want to be accused of posting inappropriate pictures or website links, I refrain from doing so and will only show you the lovely Appenzell country side. If you are interested in the story of naked hiking you may want to google it yourself.