On the flip side, some topless beaches provide a jaw-dropping spectacle of international hotness in all its thong-rocking glory. Follow our list to the must-see beaches below... and steer clear of the ones we warn against, unless hairy potbellies are something you require from a vacation.
Beach towel and Gucci shades at the ready, go forth and conquer. And please, for your own sake: Wear sunblock.
Hit These First
Topless sunbathing is permitted on all Miami beaches but in South Beach you can really appreciate the best South Florida has to offer. Not only is this a favorite home-away-from home for European jetsetters and well-heeled South Americans, it's also a go-to spot for up-and-coming models looking to build their portfolios on the cheap, as well as buxom Botoxed blondes who couldn't make it on the high-fashion scene and have turned to more, well, adult ventures.
Even with only a small percentage of the total crowd flaunting their goods every day, you're still guaranteed an R-rated eye candy extravaganza. The only question is: are you hot enough to hold your own?
If the answer is yes, then you'll probably also feel right at home on a sun lounger at one of Vegas' various topless pools -- right now Tao Beach Club at the Venetian and Bare at the Mirage are two of the newest and hottest. Spendy see-and-be-scenesters splash down and party it up by day and night, sipping top-shelf drinks and ogling each other in all their blonde, body-built, plastic-enhanced glory.
On the absolute opposite side of the spectrum, the exclusive beaches of St. Barths and Bermuda offer well-heeled patrons the opportunity to snooze surf-side in peace and quiet. Hotels here are either so expensive or so secluded, casual gawkers simply can't afford to breach their gates, while private villas take privacy to its utmost.
We can't talk topless beaches without mentioning Ibiza, the legendary summertime clubbing epicenter in the Balearic Isles. European and Aussie beauties snooze all day in the sun wearing little more than a sliver of shiny fabric, then rouse themselves around 6 pm to rinse off and head to the clubs for an evening of theme parties, pill popping and dancing to world-class DJs. Theoretically, this scene is ageless but in reality, you shouldn't even spring for the (ghastly expensive) trip unless you can name-check Faithless in casual conversation and look nibble-worthy when stripped down to your skivvies and covered in foam.
Further afield but infinitely less high-pressure are the many topless beaches of Croatia. The islands off the coast of this nation have something for families, nature lovers and bargain hunters -- and also offers a ton of clothing-optional zones, most of them close to a main village. Saharun on Dugi Otok is a hot spot with the clubbing crowd -- parties literally go for 24 hours or more at a stretch -- while the Cres Island beaches offer peace and quiet for naturists of all ages.