Naked Topside/Topless attractions: Dive in to the world's top topless beaches

Topside/Topless attractions: Dive in to the world's top topless beaches  

The French are credited with many great inventions, such as the bicycle, pasteurization, the barometer and, more recently, the 36-hour work week, but one cultural contribution that rarely makes it into the history books is sunbathing au naturel.

Of course, the French were not the first people to frolic on the beach in a state of semi-undress--the Polynesians after all have been doing it for millennia. But what the French did was popularize it, to make it, as they make so many things, chic.

This laissez-faire attitude towards topless tanning is largely due to French actress Brigitte Bardot, who came to embody (pun intended) the sexy, laid-back spirit of Saint-Tropez on France's Cote d'Azur. In 1952, a two-piece bathing suit that would be considered modest by today's standards was then seen as being controversial, but Bardot and other young starlets such as Ursula Andress would pose for photographers at Cannes wearing the tiniest bikinis imaginable.

Copacabana Beach :: Rio de Janeiro :: Brazil

Rio de Janeiro is home to Carnival, Copacabana and some of the tiniest bikinis on the planet. On a warm day, it seems that half the population of Rio is enjoying a dip in the ocean or a game of volleyball. Although Ipanema beach is infamous thanks to the song, spread your towel on Copacabana Beach.

Black's Beach :: San Diego :: California

Black's Beach is one of the best areas for parasailing in San Diego--thanks to the high cliffs as well as its status as a semi-nude beach. Black's Beach is also one of the most popular surfing beaches in San Diego, and it's perfect for taking long walks and sunbathing on the rocks. If you're planning on leaving part of your bathing suit on the rocks--be careful. Since Black's is a state beach, in some areas nudity is prohibited.

Kuta Beach :: Bali :: Indonesia

Bali's Kuta beach is one of the most popular places on the island to gather and watch the sunset. It's also the heart of Bali's nightlife. But during the day, it's ideal for people watching. Beyond the huge swath of white sand, there's a huge selection of restaurants and nightclubs.

South Beach :: Miami :: Florida

South Beach is arguably the best topless beach in the U.S., thanks to the party atmosphere that attracts the young, beautiful and buff. Just about anywhere you go on South Beach is ideal for beach spotting, but one of the best areas is upper Collins Avenue, near the Delano and Raleigh hotels.

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