Naturism in europe 2
The island of Rab in the Adriatic had a tradition of naked bathing by foreigners going back to 1934. By the early fifties it was business as usual again.
There were occasionaI police raids but these rapidly diminished as the deutschmarks and schillings (and, later, the pounds, the lire, the francs and the kroner) flowed in.
The Istrian peninsula had been part of Mussolini's Italy until the carve-up of Europe which followed the war. The Germans found the new Yugoslav citizens there less hostile tban in Croatia and Dalmatia, and the Adriatic quite as beautiful as further down the coast. It was here, fifty miles soutb of Trieste, that the German nudists discovered Koversada.
Koversada is a mere speck of an island, less than a quarter of a mile long with a rocky coast and treacherous sea urchins. Like so much of the Yugoslav coast, the island is shaded by dense pine woodland, a curtain of discretion which hums with the constant chattering of cicadas. This part of the Adriatic is a paradise. It makes the most glossy holiday brochure look cheap. In summer the pine-scented air is crystal clear, the heat neither humid nor stifling. God must be proud of tbis little bit of his creation.
The German nudists certainly gave Him full marks and they began to come in ever-increasing hordcs. Koversada's nudity was soon condoned by the authorities who sensed tbat encouragement would be more financially rewarding tban the blind eye. In 1982 Koversada celebrated its official21st birthday. Now the island is connected by a bridge to the mainland where there is a vast campsite with clusters of holiday bungalows and flats, restaurants and shops. Koversada can now accommodate 12,000 nudists at a time. More than 50,000 use it each summer season.
A high proportion of the holidaymakers is German but every nationality is to be found, particularly northern Europeans, but also Italians whose nakedness is frowned upon on the beaches back home. The Yugoslavs themselves were slow to join in and if, in the seventies, a nudist at Koversada felt himself to be on German soiI, the balance has now changed a little.
The language on the noticeboards and the loudspeaker announcements remind one of the German predominance, but the clientele is truly cosmopolitan.