Vassaliki Naturist Club, Kefalonia, September 2013
“But where else do you want to go?” she said.
We were working on our “Bucket list” of places we’d like to visit before we die. Not that we have any plans to shuffle off any time soon but I have Parkinson’s so my clock is probably ticking louder than most.
“You know where I want to go.” I said stubbornly.
The issue was nudity. I’ve been a fan of Les Plages Naturiste since accidently stumbling onto one 33 years ago. She was happy to join me on the beach for our first few holidays together. This continued as we had children but as they grew up Mrs P become increasingly reluctant to be undressed in public. And she has always been adamant she was not going to a “Nudist Camp”. But over the past few years, specifically since joining British Naturism, I have broadened my naturist experiences and ramped up my expectations. I was really looking for somewhere where I could stay naked 24×7.
“It’s a really nice place.” I said.
Vassiliki Naturist Club was set up in 2007 by Mark and Samantha Taylor, who I had met at the British Naturism Alton Towers event. I had heard good things about their club from within BN, they have an enviable set of glowing reviews on Trip Advisor and it really seemed like somewhere we could both enjoy.
“Hmmm” she said.
Our arrival day
Somehow I was able to convince her to try it and one Thursday that September we found ourselves flying towards Kefalonia. Vassiliki was only a short ride away and soon we pulled up outside some high gates to be met by Sam and her Dad, Simon.
I mentioned that Mrs P was an extremely reluctant naturist and was told that was fine. A lot of ladies were nervous at first but they soon relaxed and joined in. Of course Mrs P has been there, done that, bought the t-shirt and now refuses to take the t-shirt off. But that was cool.
Our room was one of the loft apartments, with a tiny private balcony, a larger balcony that was also used to access the other loft apartment and some perilously low ceilings – especially for a man with Parkinson’s and back trouble. But the view was worth it. And I’m sure they were able to fill in the dents after I’d gone.
Our first night
So we had a quick coffee, I unpacked the clothes that I knew I wouldn’t be wearing and then we walked down to the pool. There seemed to be enough sun-loungers for everyone, the pool was a nice size and the view was fantastic.
We met, Sheryle, Samatha’s step-mother, who showed us the “Honesty Bar” with a fridge full of wine, bottled beer and soft drinks plus Mythos Beer on tap. Very nice once you got the hang of it. She also brought slices of fresh fruit round at 5 o’clock, which was a nice touch.
Come the evening we decided to walk out to the nearby village of Spartia for our supper. We had a map but failed to spot the short cuts and ended up taking the long way round. Eventually we got to Smiley George’s taverna. George made us welcome and then we saw Simon and Sheryle dining with friends so we chatted to them. Simon made sure George knew we were from Vassalki which earnt us a free drink each. He then pointed out to us the correct route to get back there, which gave us another chance to get lost. It was a shorter route and we were soon home. We decided to pop into Vassilki’s bar for a night cap or two. I had noticed that nobody was naked now but decided I’d paid good money for this holiday so went up and stripped before going to the bar. I did carry shorts and a t-shirt just in case but nobody seemed too bothered.
Chatting to Sam and Mark it seems that earlier in the season there tends to be a younger crowd of people who would stay nude 24×7. Later in the year they tended to get an older crowd who felt the cold more and cooler evenings which meant they were more inclined to dress. And there might even be an element of “I’ve brought all these clothes so I’m going to wear them”
Our day by the pool
The next day was a very lazy one but I did achieve 24 hours naked which is always satisfying. We tried the breakfast by the pool, a fresh fruit salad with greek yoghurt which Mrs P thoroughly enjoyed. We also had our lunch there, a meze, and our evening meal, Beef Stroganoff, cooked by Sheryle. We were offered the chance to go out sailing naturally so naturally we said Yes.
Our day afloat
We got a lift from another couple of guests and followed Mark down to the port to where the yacht is moored. 8 guests and our skipper, Paul, a friend of Mark and Sam’s. The conditions were fair and Paul gave the nod when we could safely strip off. Only one person did, you can guess who though can’t you.
Eventually we reached a white pebble beach that could only be reached from the sea. Three off us swam to shore with the remainder waiting to be ferried by dingy. Whilst we explored and sun bathed Paul prepared up a delicious lunch and then collected us from the beach so we could eat it.
More sailing throughout the afternoon where everyone who wanted to had a chance to steer and a chance to tack or “come about”. We moored up off a not quite deserted beach for any who wanted to have a swim. So in I went, solo this time. After that we set sail for home and one of us had to get dressed again.
Our day at the beach
Another day Mark offered to take a crowd of us in his mini bus to the nearest naturist beach, Avithos. This was more familiar holiday territory for us. There’s nothing quite like slogging it over rocks and stones to find a small bit of sand to strip off on. In fairness it was pleasant enough and by the car park there was very nice restaurant for lunch.
The night the rain came
After the beach we got back to Vassiliki and the chance to get bare again. It was also the first time we used the hot tub!
We’d booked to eat in at the bar as Mark was cooking steaks. As we ate the weather got slowly worse and I was forced to get a fleece cardigan to help stay warm, I didn’t do it up though. This evening was most spontaneously fun one we had as we drank unlikely cocktails and watched the rain come down. We were lucky as the robust wooden roof that was keeping us dry had only been added to the bar at the start of the 2013 season.
The barbecue night
Another night was taken up by the Vassiliki Barbecue followed by the apparently traditional game of Jenga. More great food and good fun. I had the chance to chat to Mark and suggested some improvements he could make. He politely but firmly declined my suggestion of karaoke evenings but I hope my other suggestion of acquiring a giant chess set is one that he’ll consider further.
Two nights on the town
Towards the end of our stay we booked a taxi into Argostoli. We shopped and ate and did all the touristy things until our taxi driver found us, he’d seen us on the other side of the square where we were due to meet and assumed we were lost so chased after us.
Now we had been told to try the “The Paper Plates” taverna but I had been side-tracked by a large plate of seafood. So we were delighted when a couple we had become quite friendly with took us back to Argostoli and we had the chance to experience it. In order to keep costs down the owners had taken the decision to serve the food on rectangular sheets of greaseproof paper rather than plates. A beef gyros, pork gyros and chicken gyros , made an excellent meal for 4 adults and quite a few cats.
My reflections on our week
It was interesting when chatting to the other couples and single men around the pool so see how few considered themselves to be naturist. Even more interesting was finding out how few had told their friends, their families and even their children, exactly how and where they were spending their holidays. Another example of how naturism in the UK is held back by the lack of spontaneous “word of mouth” promotion.
At the end of our week we agreed we had both enjoyed it. Superb resort, superb weather and lovely company. We’ll be going again, maybe for 10 days, although we think we might find 14 days a bit long. Not next year, but sometime. Am I allowed to add repeat visits to my bucket list?