Oh this place could be as fun as you want to make it. From Sandboarding, hiking, picnics and even camping.
Believe it or not, the “sand” is actually gypsum crystals, not sand, and they never get hot! NEVER You could walk in it all day long if you wanted and never burn your feet.
Whether you choose to drive through the dunes of actually hike you’ll be able to contemplate 360 beautiful landscape views. Clear your mind as you enter this place andnenjoy the ride.
We arrived as early as we could. Due to COVID-19 restrictions (May 2019) we could not camp the night before our visit. The white sands are a hot spot and I wanted to avoid crowds as much as possible. Not to mention New Mexico’s heat can be extreme. I visited during spring and gosh it was sunny enough to need sunscreen and lip balm. Seriously. My lips got so dry after this roatrip (my favorite one is locally made in the US). However, If you visit during winter there might be snow!!
If you want to camp or get in the park for sunrise/sunset you will need to request for a permit called Early entry – Stay late. I highly suggest checking for availability on their website at the link above. I truly hope you get to experience it.
As I drove to the end I contemplated the road vanishing within the crystals, it game me a feeling of infinite, and once I turned the loop I found a cool picnic area with some shaped benches. There are plenty benches with shade for guests and you can park next to the one you choose. I didn’t know about this so I did not plan for a picnic day. All I got was snacks haha.
What to wear to the White Sands?
So, I have to saaaay this is hands down a place to take a cool aesthetic photo shoot for your Instagram or maybe even wedding pictures. I went with a black dress as the surroundings are white. It was so fun to take the shots and it’s looks so dreamy. So I brought different outfits.
As I’ve mention before heat in New Mexico can be extreme and the White Sands has no shade at all. It will get hot, trust me. On the bright side if you love feeling the sand in your skin you can go barefoot in your shootings. Bring sunglasses that go with your outfits or be prepare to
If you are more the hiking type, well, different outfits are required, not a dress definitely.. Remember hiking in sand is a slow hike.. you’ll be under the sun for as long as you want but at least 30 min for sure. I walked around barefoot through my whole hike.. it was not long and I had my shoulders covered, my legs were exposed but damn, I loved it. You’ll sweat quickly here, just apply lots of sunscreen to avoid any skin damage. Keep the sweating in mind, I don’t think leggings will feel great hear unless you come in the park after 6 PM.
If you stay the night… it will be cold. so make sure you have enough blankets and a good warm pj.
Unfortunately I was NOT allowed to fly my drone, not even with a permit; as the White Sands are surrounded by an active missile range, because of this you can come across “strange objects” do not touch them! and let the ranger know on your way out.
Idk about you but I love travel stamps and at the visitor’s center you can get a stamp in your passport!
Also you can buy sand boards behind the visitor’s center for $10 (they are not amazing quality, it’s plastic, so think about this before you buy it. Keep the park clean and don’t buy things you don’t need. Some people give them away after they use them to other visitors)
Can you believe this is the largest gypsum dune in the world! yep, that’s right. I am so happy I crossed out this one from the US bucket list. It is definitely a place to visit once in your lifetime.
One week road tripping through NM was not enough, there is tons of places I missed and I can’t wait for destiny to send me back to the land of enchantment.