Nude Beach in Toronto, the “Big Smoke”

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In International Nude Beach Evaluation, Part I-B, Spanking FIT reviewed one of North America’s few legally sanctioned clothing-optionals called Wreck’s which is located in Vancouver, British Columbia. Wreck’s received high grades from Spanking FIT in all major categories of health, safety, and enjoy-ability. It just so happens that the nation of Canada can boast of another legally sanctioned bare-all beach, this one on its eastern side. Welcome to Part I-J of Spanking FIT’S International Nude Beach Evaluation  where we evaluate Hanlan’s Point Nude Beach (H.P.N.B.) which is located on the Toronto Islands in Lake Ontario. Like Wreck’s, H.P.N.B. has a long history of nude beach usage despite strident efforts by “conservatives” to put the kibash on it. What exactly these so-called conservatives are trying to conserve by opposing healthful naturist sunbathing is beyond speculation. It’s a fact that British immigrants to Toronto made a point of swimming naked in the Toronto docks as early as the late 1800’s. Moreover, they were able to do so without interference from local authorities. Prior to this, and during the regime of Mayor William H. Howland, it was impossible to do so. Mr. Howland was something of a prudish Victorian martinet whose campaign pledge was to transform “sinful” Toronto into “Toronto the Good”, hence its popular nickname. His ill-fated effort to do so led to Toronto’s alternate label of “the Big Smoke”, meaning that the city does not actually live up to its “goody-two-shoes” image. (Believe it or not, Toronto is that city in which one John Pleury was criminally charged, as recently as 1930, for removing his shirt only in front of a window in his own home!)  
hanlan toronto harbor                                             
Finally, at the beginning of the new millenium in 2,002, an approximately one kilometer stretch of Hanlan Point Beach became H.P.N.B., an officially recognized (by Toronto City) clothing-optional or nude beach. The latter event took place after considerable tug-of-war between factions that included an unsuccessful attempt by police officers to remove the dunes in order to “embarrass the nudists”. 
Today’s Hanlan is one of North America’s, and possibly the world’s, most popular clothing-optional beaches in the summer time. It has the rare distinction of being among the few created by municipal law (most others are legal by virtue of being on federal land). No autos are allowed on the Toronto Islands so that it is necessary to catch the ferry at Jack Layton Ferry Terminal (corner of Queen’s Quay and Bay in Toronto) or go by water taxi located at nearby Sobey’s, the grocery store. If you use the ferry, take a bike along. There are beautiful bike lanes on the Islands. Here’s how Spanking FIT rated H.P.N.B. in the three main categories of health, safety, and enjoy-ability:  

Health (A-)

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During swim season the water quality is monitored on a daily basis by the Toronto Public Health (T.P.H.) department and is required to meet standards set by Ministry of Environment and Climate Change for the Canadian province Ontario. Water quality at H.P.N.B. is considered good. This is due partly to fact that beach faces southwest away from Toronto city. H.P.N.B boasts of even having received a Blue Flag rating from the Foundation for Environmental Education which is headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark (see: for further info about it).
H.P.N.B. is fully equipped: changing rooms for undressing, restrooms, and even outdoor showers. The beach itself is exceptionally clean due to the efforts on part of the park department personnel. The latter diligently clean and rake the sands on a daily basis. Nevertheless, we did observe several beer bottles and food wrappers left behind by a few “inconsiderates”.

Safety (A-)

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As explained previously, the tug-of-war which went on for decades between superstitious anti-nudity forces and healthy naturism finally ended in 2,002 with the creation of H.P.N.B.. Consequently, beach-goers and police now have what is often referred to as “working partnership”. Hopefully, that does not mean the same thing as it does at New Jersey, U.S.A.’s Gunnison Beach where some attendees are suspected of being police “snitches”. Our stay here was not long enough to determine this. (See: “Nude Beach Tempest Hits Mid-Atlantic”, Spanking FIT, April, 2017.)    
Regarding possibility of becoming a crime victim: finding crime stats online which apply specifically to H.P.N.B. is difficult. The closest that we came in this endeavor was info from the Canadian Broadcasting Company’s website at which was in map form. Although crime is overall low here, it still ranks in the top quintile for all Toronto neighborhoods in assault and drug charges categories. (Don’t plan on assaulting anyone, and leave your drugs at home!)  
As previously covered in Safety, H.P.N.B. possess Blue Flag rating which, in addition to good water quality, also implies high safety standards. Included under the latter is “adequate” lifeguard numbers, beach access safety, and an ample supply of drinkable water.

Enjoy-ability (A)

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Like the nude beaches located on Long Island New York’s Fire Island, H.P.N.B. is not the place for homophobes or those offended by the sight of hand-holding homosexuals. The beach is an extremely popular destination for so-called “gay community” members both foreign and domestic. (“Gay” city councilman Kyle Rae was instrumental in the drive to make Hanlon officially clothing-optional.) As a consequence, Hanlon’s male-to-female ratio is rather high. The fact that the beach takes its name from the handsome champion rower Ned Hanlon who opened a hotel here in late 1860’s lends to the spot’s masculine aura. Also, the Toronto Maple Leafs played baseball nearby until their 1927 move to the mainland.
Nevertheless, “gays”, “straights”,” bis”, or “tris” (those who will try anything) of all genders may be observed sun bathing au natural on any warm sunny day. Also, H.P.N.B. offers naturists an opportunity to enjoy real natural beauty including the famous “birds of Toronto”, fishing, etc. without having to forfeit amenities such as clean restrooms, tennis courts, volley ball, picnic areas, etc. There are even paid umbrella set ups on the beach. I know that dyed-in-the wool environmentalists will disagree, but H.P.N.B. is living proof it is unnecessary to leave a habitat totally undeveloped in order to preserve its natural beauty.  
H.P.N.B. is comprised mainly of soft sand with few pebbles or rocks. Since it faces west, you may enjoy a beautiful sunset here, as we did. However, be advised it may be windy at times, so be sure to take a wind-breaker along.
H.P.N.B. certainly has its share of “gawkers”. This has sparked an effort by a few “regulars” to make nudity mandatory at the beach. Spanking FIT disapproves for a couple of reasons: first, although nude sunbathing possesses significant health benefits as explained in “Nude Sunbathing, It Does a Body Good!” Aug. 2015, it’s also important to limit sunshine exposure depending on skin type without the use of sunscreen products (see: “Can Sunscreen Cause Skin Cancer?” Spanking FIT, March 2016) Secondly, aren’t these activists trying their luck too soon after winning a naturist victory?
Finally, H.P.N.B. is in close proximity to Billy Bishop Airport, so expect occasional air traffic noise. That’s especially true during the Canadian International Air Show which occurs on Labor Day Weekend.


Well my second photo nude photo shoot.

Despite the preponderance of so-called “gay” males at attendance at H.P.N.B., the beach provides for all a safe and enjoyable opportunity to acquire the healthful benefits nude sunbathing offers. Heterosexual men may enjoy the comfort of knowing their girl friends are safe from harassment and same goes for lesbian couples. Single women enjoy the occasional sight of a well-developed “gay” man who does not neglect physical exercise the way his “straight” counterpart may.
I hope that our latest segment of Spanking FIT’s International Nude Beach Evaluation has been informative and fun. Remember that there’s another legally sanctioned Canadian clothing-optional in British Columbia which is illustrated and  evaluated in International Nude Beach Evaluation Part I-B. It’s called Wreck’s. Since both locations have limited summer only usage, you may wish during off-season to consider visiting the nude beaches of the southeastern U.S. as evaluated in Legally Bare-A Nude Beach in Haulover Park or in Nude Beach Secrets of South Eastern Florida. Possibly fly further south and experience beach nudity as in Dangerously Naked- Nude Beaches of Mexico or as in Fellow Travelers-Hit the Nude Beaches of Communist Cuba! Thanks again. Remember, I rely on your valuable feedback to enhance the work. Sincerely, Dr. Garrett