When most people head to Las Vegas, The Strip is their primary destination. Of course, who can blame them, right? There’s a never-ending stream of things to do, see, eat, and drink. 

But, sometimes all that activity can get overwhelming, and people want a little bit of a break.

Thankfully, the Las Vegas area offers plenty of that too. While many people get in the car and drive to the Grand Canyon, others head to a lesser known, but still fascinating spot: the Amargosa Sand Dunes. 

In this post, we’re going to tell you a little bit about this hidden gem in the Nevada Desert that is a favorite of the locals.

What are the Amargosa Sand Dunes?

Sand Dunes along the Amargosa Desert at sunset

Imagine seeing a sand dune that raises up over 500 feet into the sky. Pretty incredible, right? Well, welcome to the Amargosa Sand Dunes. 

Tucked into a small five square mile section of the Amargosa Valley, the dunes are a natural area of hills reaching around 100 feet high, with the ‘big dune’ hitting about 500 feet. 

The sand has been blown to this area from a small bend in the Amargosa River as it winds through the Nevada Desert into California’s Death Valley. Undisturbed for generations, it’s allowed for a wonderful sandy playground.

Things to Do

There is one big activity that most people head to the Amargosa Sand Dunes to enjoy: riding dune buggies. If you are a dune buggy fan, then you have to add this place to your bucket list. It rivals many of the big spots in California, like Glamis, but with far fewer people (sometimes none)!

You’ll be able to find a few companies in and around Las Vegas that also offer dune buggy tours of the dunes if you don’t have your own. 

If you aren’t into riding dune buggies, there are still things to do. A lot of people love riding fat tire bicycles around the dunes. You can even bring a boogie board and try sand boarding! And of course, you can climb, walk, and run on and around these dunes on foot as well. 

Bring Supplies

Woman tourist with her smart phone, photographing the romantic desert sunset

This area of Nevada could be considered ‘the middle of nowhere,’ literally! So there aren’t a ton of places for supplies, that means you will want to bring your own or pick up some along the way. 

A few items that are good to pack before you head out:

  • Water
  • Sunscreen
  • Snacks and food
  • First aid kit
  • A bag for any trash
  • Towels or chairs to sit on
  • Your camera!

Although the Amargosa Sand Dunes are managed by the Bureau of Land Management, there aren’t any offices or facilities there, so be prepared!

Getting There

You’ll need a car to get to the Amargosa Sand Dunes. From the Las Vegas Strip, it’s almost a 2-hour drive. Head north on 95 for about 100 miles and keep your eyes peeled for an unmarked road where you’ll turn left to hit the dunes. Be sure to bring your GPS!

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