Conservatism has been blamed for a small turnout at Saturday's naked beach cycle, where just eight people stripped off for the New Zealand World Naked Bike Ride.
Organiser Andrew Pointon - who last year made headlines after he ran naked through McLaren Falls Park - said the same event in Takaka had attracted over 100 cyclists. This was fitting as the Golden Bay community was more "liberal" than Tauranga.
Mr Pointon said the sexes at Saturday's event were split "even Stevens". The women included an eight-year-old girl who wore bikini bottoms.
The naked riders travelled along 7km of beach from Omanu to Papamoa as a protest against oil dependency and a celebration of the human body.
Cyclists were encouraged to "ride bare for clean air" at the two New Zealand World Naked Bike Ride. The clothing optional bike ride had been held in 74 cities, in 17 countries, around the world.
Mr Pointon said being naked drew more attention to the cause of emissions, and Tauranga's bike ride delivered a "double whammy" message in that cyclists were also protesting against oil on the beach.
Despite few people taking part in the actual ride, Mr Pointon said they had many supporters.
The Bay of Plenty Times reported in February that many residents who lived along the cycle route were angered by it.
"We had a good crowd along the sand dunes. Everyone along the beach clapped and cheered and there wasn't one negative comment," he said.
Mr Pointon decided to take things a step further by also protesting freedom of self-expression. He decorated himself in white body paint in an effort to highlight the injustice shown towards Aborigines by Australian missionaries, who made them wear clothing.
"I can't stand people who tell others to put clothes on because it's immoral," he said. "There's nothing wrong with mere nakedness. Nude is not rude."