Where to stay near Great Sand Dunes National Park, CO

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  • Post last modified:February 12, 2024
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The sand dunes in Great Sand Dunes National Park are truly great. They are the tallest sand dunes in North America and a spectacular sight to behold. But where to stay near Great Sand Dunes National Park for the best experience?

Right at the park border, you find the rustic Great Sand Dunes Lodge. The nearest well-serviced town, Alamosa offers an array of other options for where to stay when visiting Great Sand Dunes National Park.

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Great Sand Dunes National Park

Great Sand Dunes is located in the remote southern Colorado. There are no places to stay within Great Sand Dunes National Park, but you find lodging just a few miles away.

If you want the best possible access to the park, Great Sand Dunes Lodge and Zapata Ranch provide Great Sand Dunes lodging just a stone’s throw from the park.

Great Sand Dunes Lodge is located right at the park border and 4 miles (6 km) from Great Sand Dunes Visitor Center. So the popular lodge is the best place to stay near Great Sand Dunes if you want the ultimate access.

Zapata Ranch is 8 miles (13 km) from Great Sand Dunes Visitor Center, which also means great access. The historic ranch offers ranch vacation packages with more focus points than just exploration of Great Sand Dunes.

As the places to stay near Great Sand Dunes are so convenient for exploring the park, they tend to book up in advance. So make sure to book as early as possible if you want accommodation by the park border.

  • Distance: 4-8 mi / 6-13 km
  • Driving time: ≈ 10-15 min
  • Pick the park for: Ultimate access.

Great Sand Dunes Lodge

Let’s be crystal clear: Great Sand Dunes Lodge is the best place to stay at Great Sand Dunes if you want to be as close to the park adventure as possible. This is just south of the park entrance, a 10-minute drive from Great Sand Dunes Visitor Center.

Zapata Ranch

At Zapata Ranch, you are welcome to try what living on a ranch is like. Owned by the Nature Conservancy, the ranch offers unique accommodation packages that include riding among bison and helping out with daily duties.

To Great Sand Dunes Visitor Center, it’s just 15 minutes’ drive.

Spectacular dunes in Great Dunes National Park
Great Sand Dunes National Park, CO.

Alamosa

Alamosa is the bigger town near Great Sand Dunes National Park. From this Great Sand Dunes gateway, it’s 34 miles (55 km) to the park’s visitor center, taking around 40 minutes by car.

Alamosa is not a large city, but it has all the hotels and restaurants you need for a comfortable time in the Colorado desert. Many of the big hotel chains provide hotels in Alamosa.

Additionally, the town is home to Adams State University, which brings some life to the area. But most of all it’s the great nature in Great Sand Dunes that visitors come for, of course.

  • Distance: 34 mi / 55 km
  • Driving time: ≈ 40 min
  • Pick Alamosa for: A bigger town.

Fairfield Inn

At Fairfield Inn & Suites, you get the whole package. Enter a contemporary property with appreciated facilities crowned by a swimming pool and hot tub.

You know what you get at Hampton Inn. Check in to appreciate a clean room and the amenities you need for after-park relaxation, including a refreshing pool area.

Endless dunes in Great Sand Dunes National Park
Glorious dunes in Great Sand Dunes National Park.

Where to stay near Great Sand Dunes National Park FAQ

Where should I stay when visiting Great Sand Dunes National Park?

Great Sand Dunes Lodge provides rustic lodging right at the park border. If you prefer to stay in a town with more accommodation options and restaurants, look towards Alamosa.

What town is closest to the Great Sand Dunes National Park?

Tiny Mosca is the town closest to Great Sand Dunes National Park. The tiny town is located 23 miles (37 km) west of Great Sand Dunes Visitor Center.

Does Great Sand Dunes National Park have a hotel?

There are no hotels in Great Sand Dunes National Park. But you find lodging right at the south border of the park and in the gateway town Alamosa.

How far is it from Denver to Great Sand Dunes National Park?

It’s 239 miles (385 km) from Denver to Great Sand Dunes National Park. Driving from Denver to Great Sand Dunes takes just under 4 hours.

Which is better Great Sand Dunes or White Sands?

Great Sand Dunes National Park is home to the tallest sand dunes in North America. The dunes in New Mexico’s White Sands National Park cover a larger area but are not nearly as tall. Which is better between the two spectacular American parks depends on your personal preferences.

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