Eli Orzessek is Travel's Digital Content Producer.

The worst places to get naked on holiday

It's best to consider local cultures before taking that nude selfie. Photo / iStock
It's best to consider local cultures before taking that nude selfie. Photo / iStock

If you like to strip off on holiday, it pays to be selective about where you do it.

Two tourists were arrested in Peru this weekend, after they took nude photographs at the historic Machu Picchu ruins.

The men, both from France, were taken into custody by police on Wednesday after they were snapped taking off their clothes at the sacred site.

Several tourists have gotten in trouble for snapping nude photos at the 15th-century Inca city of Machu Picchu in Peru. Photo / Supplied
Several tourists have gotten in trouble for snapping nude photos at the 15th-century Inca city of Machu Picchu in Peru. Photo / Supplied

Peruvian news agency Andina reported that the men were both prosecuted for "offences against morality".

The incident came almost two years after an 18-year-old Australian and 30-year-old New Zealander were detained by guards at Machu Picchu for dropping their pants.

In 2014 a video was posted to YouTube showing a couple streaking across Machu Picchu, chased by a guard.

And it seems these nude travel photos are not isolated incidents - rather they are part of a growing trend, where tourists dare to bare it all in front of stunning landscapes or important landmarks.

There are even blogs and websites devoted to the practise, such as the Facebook page Naked at Monuments and the website MyNakedTrip.com - where Israeli traveller Amichay Rab documents his travels around South American with countless nude photos.

However, stripping off in certain countries can get you in a whole lot of trouble - here are some place you'll want to think twice before getting back to nature in.

Angkor temples, Cambodia

In January last year, three French tourists were arrested by Cambodian police after taking nude photos of each other inside the famous Angkor temple complex, the Daily Mail reported.

The three men, all in their early 20s, were discovered inside the Banteay Kdei temple and their naked antics were heavily criticised by authorities.

Several groups of tourists have gotten in trouble for going nude in the Angkor temple complex. Photo / Maggie Tait
Several groups of tourists have gotten in trouble for going nude in the Angkor temple complex. Photo / Maggie Tait

"The temple is a worship site and their behavior is inappropriate. They were nude," said Sun Kerya, spokeswoman for the government agency managing the Angkor complex.

Just days earlier, a series of photos of Asian women posing nude at the temples went viral online, outraging officials.

And it seems the message didn't get out to the next group of tourists. A mere fortnight later, two American sisters were fined $250 and banned from entering Cambodia for four years, after local police said they "lowered their pants to their knees and took pictures of their buttocks" at the heritage site.

According to Cambodia Expats Online the pair were charged with trafficking pornography and exposing their sexual organs.

In general, if it's a temple or comparable sacred site, it's probably best to keep your kit on.

Mount Kinabalu, Malaysia

A British backpacker and three other tourists were arrested and detained in Malaysia last year, after they posed for a nude photo on what is considered a sacred mountain. They were accused of deliberately disobeying their guide, calling him a "stupid man", before taking the group photo.

A group of tourists caused controversy after posing for a nude photo on top of Mount Kinabalu in Malaysia last year. Photo / Youtube
A group of tourists caused controversy after posing for a nude photo on top of Mount Kinabalu in Malaysia last year. Photo / Youtube

Six days after the incident, Malaysia experienced one of its biggest earthquakes in decades, which killed 16 people.

Many locals and politicians believed in was caused by the nude tourists "offending the mountain god".

Video

It pays to be careful with nudity in Malaysia whether you're on a mountain or not. Also last year, a Chinese man was arrested in connection to a set of viral nude photos taking on an island off the coast of Semporna, in the conservative Sabah state.

The suspect, a dive instructor, was seen in the photos of naked men and topless women posing in shallow waters at the beach.

At the time, the New Straits Times Online reported that Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment minister Datuk Masidi Manjun had advised tour guides and resort operators to make sure tourists followed local laws.

"Perhaps we will look into implementing a declaration form soon particularly in Semporna for visitors to sign so they will behave appropriately," he said.

The Imperial Palace, Tokyo, Japan

In 2008, a British tourist was arrested after he jumped naked into the moat of the Imperial Palace in Tokyo and started throwing rocks and splashing policemen, the Telegraph reported.

A British tourist was arrested for swimming in the moat of the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. Photo / iStock
A British tourist was arrested for swimming in the moat of the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. Photo / iStock

Police chased him in a row boat, until he eventually got out of the water, climbed the 26ft stone wall of the palace and was swiftly arrested.

To add to the controversy, Emperor Akihito, the current Emperor of Japan, was in the palace at the time.

Although police said his motives were unclear, media said he had droped a bag in the water.

Queenstown, New Zealand

You'd think we'd be fairly lighthearted when it comes to nudity - but we're definitely not when Australians are involved.

The Aussie tourist climbed on board the historic TSS Earnslaw and flashed passengers. Photo / Alan Gibson
The Aussie tourist climbed on board the historic TSS Earnslaw and flashed passengers. Photo / Alan Gibson

In 2012, a 32-year-old Aussie man ran naked along the town's wharf, then climbed on board the historic TSS Earnslaw ship where he flashed " a whole lot of people", Sergeant Keith Newell told the Otago Daily Times.

"He thought it was funny, but the patrons did not," Sergeant Newell said.

The man was arrested and charged with obscene exposure and unlawfully being on a ship.

Riga, Latvia

In 2010, four British tourists were arrested in Latvia after they were found naked astride a wooden horse - in temperatures of minus 15 degrees.

Police said the men were "clearly under the influence of alcohol", the Birmingham Mail reported.

They were arrested and each fined 75 lats for minor hooliganism.

British tourists have been accused of disrespecting Latvia's Freedom Monument. Photo / iStock
British tourists have been accused of disrespecting Latvia's Freedom Monument. Photo / iStock

Due to the rise of cheap airfares, the country had become a popular destination for young Britons on stag weekends, the Courier Mail reported.

Tourists had been regularly arrested and fined for urinating or taking nude photographs on Riga's Freedom Monument, which is a symbol of Latvia's struggle against foreign domination.

- nzherald.co.nz

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