White Sands National Park
White Sands National Park protects the world’s largest gypsum dune-field, and the unique plants and animals that survive in this other-worldly place. Between White Sands Missile Range and Holloman Air Force Base, the magnificent pure white dunes provide excellent recreation opportunities; visitors can picnic, “white sand surf” or just stroll through a portion of the 275 square-mile national monument. Additionally, the monument offers tours and activities such as the Sunset Stroll Nature Walk, full moon night programs, special events, and tours of Lake Lucero.
Watch a video from New Mexico True Television about White Sands
Directions to White Sands National Monument
From Las Cruces, NM: Drive time: About 1 hour
Take Highway US-70 east over the Organ Mountains towards Alamogordo. The monument and visitor center are located about 52 miles (84 km) east of Las Cruces on the north side (left-hand side) of the highway, approximately one mile past the Border Patrol checkpoint station. If you are not an American citizen, you will need to have your passport with you to get past the checkpoint.
From El Paso, TX: Through Las Cruces: Drive time: 2 hours
Take I-10 West towards Las Cruces. After 39 miles, take exit on to I-25 North. Follow I-25 North for about 7 miles and then exit onto US-70 East towards Alamogordo. Take Highway US-70 east over the Organ Mountains towards Alamogordo. The monument and visitor center are located about 52 miles (84 km) east of Las Cruces on the north side (left-hand side) of the highway, approximately one mile past the Border Patrol checkpoint station. If you are not an American citizen, you will need to have your passport with you to get past the checkpoint.
From the Blog: 5 Cool Facts About White Sands National Park
White Sands National Park Full Info
Hours of Operation and Season information
Monument operating hours vary by season and the park is occasionally closed for periods of up to three hours due to missile tests on the adjacent White Sands Missile Range. Visitors are encouraged to call the visitor center at (575) 479-6124 ext. 236 or 206 to verify that a closure is not in effect.
The monument is open daily year round except for December 25, Christmas Day.
From time to time the park is closed due to weather or road conditions. In that event, visit the Monument’s Facebook or Twitter page for the most current information. You can also visit the New Mexico Department of Transportation Road Conditions website to find out if roads in the area are closed.
Fee and Reservations
$3 per person (good for 7 days with receipt). Checks, cash, and credit cards, including MasterCard, Visa, Discover, American Express, Diner’s Club and JCB are accepted. Children 15 and under are free.
Entrance fees are collected at the entrance station on the Dunes Drive.
For additional information regarding weddings, photography, filing or group tours and reservations, visit the Monument’s website.
the Monument offers a wide range of tours and activities from Full Moon Hikes to guided tours. For information about all the Monument has to offer visit any of the links below.
Step Through Time
Come join a ranger for a fascinating look at our past. Topics vary. Program is presented every other month beginning in January, 2014. Learn more…
Full Moon Hike
This summer White Sands will be offering a new way to experience the monument, under the glow of the full moon. Sign up for one of these ranger-led 1-1.5 mile hikes and explore the beautiful dunes in a whole new light. Learn more…
Full Moon Bike Rides
Take a leisurely bike ride through the monument. No cars are allowed in the monument during the event.
Geared towards the amateur photographer, this program is offered only twice a year. Join a ranger to catch your own images of the sun rising over the dunes on this one-hour program. Learn more…
Come join a ranger and get your hands involved in learning! For more information on this one-hour program, Learn more
Skins and Skulls
Did you know 44 different species of mammals live at White Sands? Join rangers every Saturday and Sunday to learn more about them. Learn More….
Junior Ranger Program
Earn a Junior Ranger badge and learn about White Sands with a ranger. Learn More…
Located roughly 45 miles east of Las Cruces on U.S. Highway 70