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Nantucket Just Legalized Topless Beaches, Regardless of Gender The new rule specifically applies to beaches-only — not surrounding areas like parking lots and concession stands.

By Emily Rella

Getty Images
Steps Beach in Nantucket, MA

Those wishing to free the nipple on vacation may not have to travel far to make their fantasy a reality — they can now head to the historical, conservative New England island of Nantucket.

As of this week, it became legal for both men and women to go topless to beaches on the island, a win for the "Gender Equality on Beaches" movement that began earlier this year in hopes of changing the law.

"At the 2022 Annual Town Meeting, residents voted to adopt the Gender Equality on Beaches bylaw amendment, which was approved on December 6, 2022, by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey," the Town of Nantucket wrote in a release. "The Town of Nantucket requests residents and visitors, when exercising their rights under the new bylaw, to abide by stipulations in the amendment. We ask everyone to be patient and respectful as the island adapts to this first-of-its-kind bylaw in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts."

The vote was won by a 372 to 242 majority and was approved by Healey who had the option to approve, revise or overrule the bylaw, a process that can usually take 2-4 weeks.

Madaket Beach in Nantucket, MA (Getty Images)

Healy's legal documentation notes that the state of Massachusetts has, as expected, "received numerous communications from citizens raising various challenges" to the amendment, but they do not directly violate "the Constitution or laws of the Commonwealth," so it was cleared for approval.

The Town of Nantucket clarified that the new rule only applies to beaches and not surrounding areas that may be considered the beach to some, such as beach parking and concession areas (there must be no separation between the beach and the area).

It's a first for the small island but not for the state of Massachusetts.

Nudity on beaches is also allowed at Lucy Vincent and Moshup Beach in Martha's Vineyard, Herring Cove in Provincetown, and Longnook Beach in Truro.

However, Nantucket's new bylaw allows for nudity on all beaches on the island.

Emily Rella

Entrepreneur Staff

Senior News Writer

Emily Rella is a Senior News Writer at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she was an editor at Verizon Media. Her coverage spans features, business, lifestyle, tech, entertainment, and lifestyle. She is a 2015 graduate of Boston College and a Ridgefield, CT native. Find her on Twitter at @EmilyKRella.

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