Monahans Sandhills State Park, a secret gem 5.5 hours west of Dallas, is a sought out road trip pit stop for photos, sand sledding, picnics and everything in between for all ages! If you’re en route to Marfa or further west, we highly recommend the stop!
Updated February 2021
Nicknamed “the ocean of sand,” Monahans is just that, giving a mystical scenery very different than what we’re used to seeing around here. The state park holds 3,840 acres of rolling dunes that look more like the Arabian desert than West Texas! It’s a popular place to stop for the views and activities. We visited at sunset on the way to Marfa, and it was the perfect way to wind down the road trip! If that's where you're headed, check out Marfa's to do's and to eat's we rounded up!
Aside from the scenic dunes that draw photographers in for surreal portraits, photos, and engagement pics, there is a range of activities to do here, like sand disk sledding and exploring the 26 campsites! The park doesn’t have any marked trails, so you’re welcome to explore like a true adventurer. Bring your own grub for a scenic picnic or spend the afternoon walking the dunes. Some even ride horses in the 800 acre equestrian area! But be prepared for a workout. We can attest that we were sore after exploring!
The main difference of our little slice of Texas desert vs other deserts is that the temperatures follow closely to day and night like in the city! The sand does get hot from sun coverage, so wearing a good shoe and sunscreen is advised if you’re planning to venture into the sand for an extended time.
PLANNING YOUR TRIP
Busy season is considered from March to August, but there’s plenty of room for everyone to roam! The park often reaches capacity, so it's recommended to make a park reservation by purchasing a $4 day pass online or by calling them.
You can support Monahans, as well as other Texas state parks, by donating to the Texas Parks Wildlife foundation at tpwf.org!