Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Gay Head/Aquinnah/Moshup Beach...

Have you heard about the nudist beach on Martha's Vineyard?

No, seriously... there is a public beach where nudity is allowed in Massachusetts, the original home of the Puritan exiles from England, in a town called (oh yes, for real) Gay Head.

Once I stopped laughing about the ridiculousness, I noticed that the town was originally known as Aquinnah and is home to the Native Americans who inhabited this island before European settlement. (They have a lot of political battles with "locals" who are ironically very exclusive about who they consider "native" to the island...). This is the lighthouse:

The clay cliffs of Gay Head are known for their unique geological properties. The tribally owned cliffs are quite tall and the colors are intensely beautiful:

The public beach under the cliffs (called Moshup Beach) offers some of the most beautiful views of water and dramatic scenery because of the rockiness of the shoreline. Nancy, Andrea, and I took a walk down the shore through naked people territory to find the best views of the cliffs and the rocks:

One of the other cool features of the beach are the balanced rock formations left by people who are really good at that sort of zen art thing:

Sometimes these rock "sculptures" look like little guys with backpacks (this is my favorite picture from yesterday!)...

At the end of the beach, some of the natural clay from the cliffs had been pulled out toward the beach where (although it is illegal to touch the clay), people made interesting sculptures from it for us to find on our walk:

Now you must keep in mind that the whole time I was walking around trying to take these pictures, we were surrounded by naked people walking into and out of the frames. It was challenging because while I appreciate their openness with their bodies, I don't really want pictures of them to publish here (we're not trying to run THAT kind of blog...) and it's considered gauche to snap the shots. As Andrea said of the frolicking free spirits: "It's harder when they're mobile."

I got a lot of beautiful pictures (besides the favorites above), without taking one picture of a nudie! WOOHOO!

Check out the rest in the album:
Gay Head/Aquinnah--Martha's Vineyard


  1. I have been reading your blog, and it sounds like a lovely adventure. My friend sent me a link to it, and you have some very impressive picture taking abilities, especially if you were able to avoid all of those nude and naked bodies. Good luck with the remainder of your travels and have a good time in Korea. It should be a good time for you.


  2. Christopher,

    Thank you for reading my blog and for your kind words! Avoiding what you don't want in the frame can be as much of a challenge as putting what you do want there...

    (And thank whoever sent you the link for me, too). Take care!


  3. Hi Diana. Nice pictures you posted from Gay Head. We were there 7 years ago and enjoyed the beach under the clay cliffs. We haven't been back since and I noticed that the locals were trying to crack down on nudity on this beach. That article was posted in 2006 and I see you posted your blog entry in 2007. It seemed there were many nude people around while you were taking pictures. Did you notice anybody getting a summons?



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