Permits & Reservations

A group of people stand in white dunes surrounded by vegetation under an evening sky
The Full Moon Hike is a popular seasonal program at White Sands requiring advance reservation.

NPS Photo

Certain activities at White Sands may involve either a permit or a reservation. These activities can range from: weddings, ranger programs, backcountry camping, and commercial filming and photography.
 
Permits
 
Photographer standing with tripod on a dune under cloudy skies

NPS Photo

Special Use Permits
Certain types of activities require a special use permit. These include many types of organized gatherings, distribution of printed material, other public expressions of opinion, and other activities that are controlled or prohibited. A few examples include weddings, early entry or stay late, first amendment rights, research and collection of resources, and scattering of ashes.
 
Orange and white tent set up near grasses

R. Burghart Photo

Backcountry Camping
Spend a night under the twinkling stars of the vast New Mexico skies, surrounded by the world's largest gypsum dunefield. White Sands National Monument offers backpackers the opportunity to enjoy a night camping on the white sands and listening to the nocturnal activities of the animals that make their home here in this unique ecosystem.
 
Visitors with a camel

NPS Photo

Horses and other Pack Animals
Riding horses in the white sands is a very unique experience and a wonderful way to experience the expansive scenery of the dunefield. Private individual use of horses and other pack animals are welcome at White Sands National Monument.
 
Reservations
 
A group of visitors socializing under a picnic shelter

NPS Photo

Group Use Area
From family reunions to weddings to boy scout jamborees, White Sands National Monument has long been a popular location for large gatherings. Our group use area is the perfect location for private functions, and it is available for reservation.
 
Hikers spread out over flat ground under cloudy skies

NPS Photo

Lake Lucero
Have you ever wondered how the white sand dunes formed and why Lake Lucero is often referred to as the birthplace of the dunes? Take a tour to Lake Lucero with a ranger and learn about the formation of the sands.
 
A group of visitors walking under a full moon sky

NPS Photo

Full Moon Hike
Have you ever wanted to hike the dunes under the magical glow of the full moon? This is your chance to enjoy the peace and serenity of this elusive environment and experience what the animals that live in the area see at night. Join a ranger for a full moon hike and see firsthand how these animals survive in the dunes.
 
Bicyclers with bright lights passing quickly by in the dark

NPS Photo

Full Moon Bike Ride
The full moon bike ride is a family-friendly event that allows visitors to enjoy a leisurely unguided bike ride along Dunes Drive under the light of a full moon. Twice a year, the monument opens at night for three hours to allow bike riders the opportunity to enjoy the beauty, peace, and serenity of the dunefield at night.
 
Photographer focuses camera silhouetted against a bright sky

NPS Photo

Sunrise Photography
The dunefield is a photographer’s paradise, offering shifting shadows and textures in the early light. Join a ranger to see the first rays of the morning sun push over the Sacramento Mountains. This early morning program is focused on amateur or novice photographers.
 
Woman dressed in historic apparel carrying a basket stands on dirt path with mountains in the background

NPS Photo

Step Through Time
Did you know that salt was once mined in this area? Have you ever wondered about the architecture that you see in the visitor center? Or perhaps your interest lies in the amazing skills of American Indian artistry. Whatever your interest, come Step into the Past with us and learn about the Tularosa Basin's fascinating human history!
 
A ranger smiles as they step onto the stairs of a bus.

NPS Photo

Step on Guide for Commercial Bus Tours
Are you a commercial tour bus operator looking for a ranger to join your tour of White Sands National monument? If so, you’ve found the information that will be needed to reserve a ranger for your tour.

Last updated: January 11, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 1086
Holloman AFB, NM 88330

Phone:

(575) 479-6124

Contact Us

Tools