White Sands National Monument, White Sands

Glistening white dunes at White Sands National Monument have mesmerized visitors for centuries. Marvel at 712 km (275 mi) of sparkling sand, the world’s largest dune field of rare gypsum. Begin your trip at the visitor center--an excellent example of Spanish pueblo-adobe architecture. From here you can set off on a 13 km (8 mi) scenic drive to the heart of the dunes. Stop along the way for short walks, wayside exhibits, and photos of the otherworldly views. You can also hike a variety of trails. Only the top few inches of the dunes are loose, making them easy to walk. Sledding is also a popular here. Bring a snow saucer or buy one from the gift shop to race down the sand slopes. No water is available in the dune field, so fill bottles at the visitor center. To visit White Sands National Monument and other attractions in White Sands, use our White Sands trip planning app .
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White Sands National Monument Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5.0
3,826 reviews
  • Fun place for young and old. Beautiful scenery and amazingly white sand with unusual texture. Fun to climb and slide down the dunes. Wish we would have time to stay for the sunset stroll. Could easily...  more »
  • I’ve been a lot of places but this has been the best thus far. Theta white sand all around but make sure you go to the heart of it all where you can totally enjoy a ocean of white sand miles and miles...  more »

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Side trips from White Sands

Duration: 8​h
Duration: 1​h 30​min