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Cheap Spa Day – Harbin Hot Springs Nudist Colony

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I spent last Saturday at Harbin Hot Springs up north of Napa, where I paid $30 to have access to their day spa resources. This included three different pools of varying degrees, a sauna, numerous sunbathing decks, and really great hiking trails. “But Becky,” you’re asking, “why would you drive two hours north and pay $30 to go swimming when you could just sneak into the Y in the Presidio?” Well, I went through all this trouble because Harbin Hot Springs is a nudist colony!

After much careful web research, I found that it has the best deals out of all the other nudist colonies in the greater northern California area '“ and it also seems like it’s the least creepy rape-y one too. And while I didn’t research this, I’m pretty sure you’d get arrested if you stripped down at the Y. So anyway, this is how I came to spend last Saturday running around the woods naked and getting a killer tan in all my hard-to-reach places (a.k.a. my vagina, duh!) I also shelled out extra to get my chakras aligned by a guy named Sunheart, which at $70 was cheap for a professional massage. Aside from the fact that this past week at work was mostly spent trying to surreptitiously itch my peeling, sunburnt nether regions under my desk, I regret nothing.

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Rebecca Pederson - Cheap Date

Rebecca Pederson - Cheap Date

Rebecca graduated from UC Santa Cruz with a degree in Literature, but she tells everyone she majored in Psychology so they don't ask her for book recommendations. She likes coffee, pickles, free yoga classes, and spends a lot of time with her dog.


  1. Brody
    April 2, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Harbin is not a “nudist colony” (that term stopped being in vogue around 1979, honestly)… Harbin Hot Springs is a clothing-optional resort and spa. And a very lovely, relaxed one too, where people don’t bat an eye about being naked to swim and sunbathe. (Also don’t bat an eye at you if you choose to wear a bathing suit, too, hence the clothing-OPTIONAL). Clothes are worn pretty much everywhere but around the pools (i.e. in the dining areas, theater room, library, etc).

  2. Rebecca Pederson - Cheap Date
    April 2, 2010 at 3:43 pm

    Oh, semantics shemantics. If we’re gonna get picky with our diction, I’m pretty sure “in vogue” hasn’t been in vogue in a couple decades either.

    But regardless, it seems like you think I’m being negative by branding it as a “nudist colony.” I’m not! I had a really great time, and I thought this post reflected that. I also didn’t see a need to state that Harbin is “clothing optional” because it seems pretty implicit when you’re talking about any naked-friendly resort. And if anyone reading this was confused, the link to the Harbin website is right there in the first sentence, ready to iron out any of those fuzzy details.

  3. Brody
    April 2, 2010 at 5:34 pm

    A nudist colony has the connotation that the people there are nude at all times (and that people go to live there for the express purpose of being nude all the time). Harbin is NOT such a place.

    For further reading, please check out that bastion of always-helpful information, Wikipedia.

    It’s too bad that you can’t be offered a gentle semantic correction without getting your hackles up. If you aren’t interested in educating yourself on the difference, that’s fine too and either way have a great day.

  4. Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap
    April 3, 2010 at 8:36 am

    Doesn’t matter to me as long as I get to let it all hang out 😉

  5. jack
    April 3, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    lol @this guy getting pissed off. yea, this chick sounds really uneducated. good call.

  6. Katie
    April 5, 2010 at 10:08 am

    “yea, this chick sounds really uneducated”

    Actually she does. I’ve been going to Harbin for 10+ years now, I’ve never heard anyone ever call it a “nudist colony”. But whatever, the tourists can call it whatever they want as long as they show up and spend $!

  7. Iain
    April 21, 2010 at 9:59 am

    Harbin is OK, but the no talking rule really irks me. Head up to Orr, much friendlier.