Landlocked Colorado is famous for its mountains, but did you know it also boasts some 1.2 cubic miles of naturally-swooped sand in one sensational spot? The Great Sand Dunes National Park has (Shai Hulud-free) dunes for days! And wetlands. And forests. And water. What isn't in this ecological diversity salad?
Come for the dunes, stay for Colorado's greatest hits!
The Great Sand Dunes National Park's 750+ wavy stacks of sand aren't just a cool place to snag a selfie, they offer a warmer-weather alternative to many snow sports. You can hike, sled, and even sandboard down their slopes. The tallest of the dunes, dubbed "The Star Dune," stands 750' tall, and can take on a pyramidal pose.
If you get your fill of sand, there's plenty to enjoy on the periphery. You can splash in the waters of Medano Creek, roam the surrounding grasslands, or hike up Mt. Herard or any number of the hills leading into the North Zapata Ridge. With ample camping areas nearby, the park is your dune-y oyster.
South-centrally located, The Great Sand Dunes National Park can be reached by road any number of ways. Denver area residents can start down via either I-25 S, US Hwy 285 S, or even I-70 W before making the proper turns to wind into the sprawling, crescent-shaped sandbox of adventure.
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