Theme Cruise: Bare Boat Couples Retreat

When it comes to strengthening a relationship, it takes two (and a cruise).

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First things first — yes, the cruise my husband and I went on was a nude cruise.

This was the Bare Boat, organized by Bare Necessities Tour & Travel for the continued quest of liberation and self-acceptance. Where the shedding of physical clothes helps to also shed “mental clothes,” overcome ingrained insecurities, and accept new methods of attaining higher levels of intimacy and bonding. Over the years, my husband and I had grown apart. We were resolving to work on us and discover who we were as a couple; knowing how much we enjoyed cruising, a friend recommended a nude-themed cruise.

That friend stressed how there’d be no children taking over the hot tubs and that nude cruises are not sexually oriented. Chartered on a Carnival Cruise Line ship, the Bare Boat cruise made the same stops as other Carnival itineraries — Amber Cove, Grand Turk, Key West, and Carnival’s private island, Half Moon Cay — but the difference on this couples-themed cruise were the couples-focused workshops taught by experts as well as rekindling opportunities without the burden of, for instance, kids splashing around the hot tub. We could stay up late and sleep in even later … or we could lounge on deck getting all-over tans. The choice was ours.

RELATED: Clothes-Optional Cruising — Uncovered

Still, I was apprehensive about this cruise. I had many questions. Was this really a couples-themed cruise focused on strengthening our relationship … or just another adults-only cruise? Would not having pint-sized cabinmates be that big of a deal … or would I ultimately miss their young vibrancy?

Bare Boat Amenities

Throughout the cruise, there were workshops and lectures focusing on specific ways that we, as a couple, could reconnect and strengthen our bond. They were offered with promising names like Loving Touch Massage for Couples, Non-religious Meditation for Couples, Couples Intimacy, and Couples Dance Lessons.

The Loving Touch Massage workshop focused on how massage can encourage intimacy and closeness. There was instruction on how to create a soothing romantic space, what types of lotions and oils to use, and which motions to use for a specific desired effect. For example, a relaxing and soothing massage uses long gliding motions with the full, flat surface of the hand. Rapid movements with moderate pressure generate heat in the muscle tissues.

Meditation for Couples taught us how meditating together could strengthen the relationship by deepening awareness of each other. A key aspect of having a successful….

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By Donna Long

Photo: Albert Shakirov/Alamy Stock Photo


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