Kids, it's a nature walk -- sounds like fun!

BERLIN Tue Sep 22, 2009 11:16pm IST

A couple hikes during sunset on the car free island of Hiddensee in the Baltic Sea near village Kloster December 31, 2007. REUTERS/Hannibal Hanschke

A couple hikes during sunset on the car free island of Hiddensee in the Baltic Sea near village Kloster December 31, 2007.

Credit: Reuters/Hannibal Hanschke

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BERLIN (Reuters) - German naturists will soon have their own 18-km (11-mile) long trail for hiking in the nude and some enthusiasts have been trying it out before the official opening next May.

Heinz Ludwig, who runs a nearby campsite, has led the project to create the nudist trail that meanders up and down the Harz mountain range in central Germany, overcoming some local protests by pointing out its potential boost for tourism.

"I think it's a great way to promote tourism here," Ludwig told Reuters on Tuesday after Bild newspaper published a picture of two women wearing nothing but rucksacks on the trail. "There's already been a lot of interest in it."

The trail runs between the village of Dankerode and the Wippertal dam. Naturism fans have been monitoring progress of the trail in Internet chatrooms for months and a band of naked hikers took a test walk on the not-quite-finished trail in May.

The trail is being marked with special signs warning the uninitiated that they could encounter nude hikers.

"If you don't want to see people with nothing on then you should refrain from moving on!," reads one warning sign.

(Reporting by Caroline Copley; Editing by Louise Ireland and Paul Casciato)

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