White Sands National Park Map

White Sands National Park

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Rare Dunes

White Sands is a new inductee into the National Park pantheon, but the recognition has been long overdue. These rare dunes in southeast New Mexico are a geologic wonder and a delightful adventure.

Visiting White Sands

White Sands is an hour's drive northeast of Las Cruces, New Mexico over the Organ Mountains. In National Park terms, it's relatively small, with only the Dune Road taking visitors 7.5 miles among the dunes. Any additional traveling is on foot. This includes camping. There is no developed campground and vehicle camping in the park is banned. There is, however, backcountry camping for those able to pack in and out their tents and other necessities. Generally, this makes White Sands a day trip destination. Peruse the visitors center, take a short hike, sled down a sand dune, and move on to the next adventure. As a generally hot, exposed destination, don't forget to bring along sun protection, good shoes, and plenty of water.

Things To Do In White Sands National Park

Sled down the sand dunes
Backcountry camp in the desert
Star gaze
Hike Alkalia Flat Trail
Take a selfie among the dunes
Drive through some sand*

* Off-roading is not allowed but sand tends to migrate onto Dune Road

White Sands National Park Map

Petrified Forest National Park