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“Brilliant White!”

White Sands National Monument
Ranked #1 of 18 things to do in Alamogordo
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: Visitors to this endless waterless sea can enjoy driving, hiking, visiting a museum and sledding down the huge dunes.
Reviewed January 11, 2014

This is a really strange place. One of only very few on earth, these gypsum "sand" dunes are huge and ever-changing. The National Park Service has done a great job of trying to explain how, and why, these dunes exist. They have also provided a number of great ways to "experience" them....hiking, horse back, wilderness camping, or wheel-chair accessible board walk. Oh, almost forgot: kids can "sled" down them in plastic saucers.

We visited early on a Friday morning in January and so "owned" the place. We'd recommend one stop at the visitor center first and at least see the video that does a wonderful job of explaining the what, why and how of these remarkable dunes. It only takes about 1/2 hour to do the video and see the visitor exhibits, then off to the dunes.

While there are hundreds of square miles of dunes, one can get the idea by driving the "Popsicle" loop road out from the visitor center and back (Popsicle roads go out and back with a big loop at the outer end). About half of the route is well-paved, the second half is compacted dune. Don't do this just after you washed the car! And DO plan to vacuum the car's interior after the visit...an easy job as the "sand" sucks up beautifully with a car vac.

While you can do the loop in an hour we'd recommend that you at least take a picnic...or buy some picnic stuff at the visitor's center...and spend a little time admiring the dunes. The trials are wonderful, though slightly difficult due to soft footing, but worth the effort. We didn't try camping, but would love to bring our horses (wonder what THEY would think!).

Anyway, a nice 1/2 day trip from Las Cruces...or more if with "sledding" kids!

3  Thank William W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,062 - 2,066 of 3,123 reviews

Reviewed January 11, 2014

Beautiful scenery, interesting wild life (if you can spot any), good exercise or easy access via boardwalk. White Sands is a lovely day trip from as far away as Albuquerque but far more easily from Las Cruces or Alamagordo.

Thank Hootyj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 10, 2014

It was a nice day when I went. Took the family and the pets. Had a really good time and nice pictures from this day. My boys slid down hills on sleds. I can understand some not enjoying it if it's a hot day.

Thank duane52
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 10, 2014

I didn't expect much from White Sands. After all, it's only piles of white sand. Seeing it, however, proved me wrong. The dunes are a magical place. Everywhere you look, especially on a partly cloudy day, like the day we were there, the dunes give you a different look.

There is an out and back drive through the heart of the dunes. You should, however, stop and take at least a short walk out from the road. The dunes are firm and easy to walk on. Given their location, the winds will quickly erase any sign that your were there.

Thank HeadofSpreesUS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 9, 2014

My friend and I stopped at the gift shop to buy sleds ($10/each new; $8/each used, I think) to play in the sands. Also sat and watched a 17min video on the park at the info center. There is a $3 fee/person to enter the Dunes. Dogs on leash are also welcomed. Lots of picnic areas toward the end of the loop, so bring water and food because there's none available for sale after you enter the Dunes. We had so much fun running up and sledding down the dunes. It's worth the climb to get some of the better views, but really not a bad seat in the house. I'd recommend a handkerchief to wrap around your nose/mouth if you don't want sand in those orifices. Beware: you will get sand EVERYWHERE. :) Fun for all.

3  Thank travellingzan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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