White Sands National Monument Center
Try to make the White Sands National Monument Center your 1st stop to the area. Here, you'll find a museum, bookstore, gift shop, information desk & restrooms. Also, note that NO water is available anywhere along the 8-mile scenic drive from here to the heart of the dunes. NO alcohol is permitted either (Feb. 1 - May 31). Picnic areas are available.
Be prepared for ID check!
When we first arrived at White Sands, we were not allowed to actually go in the area. They were doing missile testing at the nearby military site. We decided to go have breakfast and come back. They request ID from those who are passing through the area. It is a matter of national security, or so I was told when I was finally allowed in.