What to do in Guadalupe Mountains National Park with Kids

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Heading to Guadalupe Mountains National Park with kids and wondering what to do in Guadalupe Mountains National Park with kids? While not one of the more popular National Parks, it’s definitely worth a visit! Many people visit Carlsbad Caverns National Park, which is just 30 minutes from this one, and skip this one so be sure to visit both!

guadalupe mountains national park with kids

How to get to Guadalupe Mountains National Park

The closest airport to Guadalupe Mountain National Park is El Paso, 1 hour and 45 minutes away. Since we were on a road trip, we stayed in Carlsbad NM the night before and visited both Carlsbad Caverns and Guadalupe Mountains in the same day.

Best time to visit Guadalupe Mountains National Park

The best time to visit Guadalupe Mountains National Park is spring and fall, when the temperatures are mild and nice for hiking. Summers are hot and winters can bring unpredictable weather, with high winds and cold temperatures.

Where to stay when visiting Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Looking for a family friendly hotel or campground near Guadalupe National Park? There are several options.

Camping near Guadalupe Mountains National Park

There are 3 developed campgrounds within the park for tent camping and RVs. There are also multiple campgrounds outside of the park.

Best family-friendly hotels near Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Looking for a family-friendly hotel near Guadalupe Mountains National Park? There are no hotels within Guadalupe Mountains National Park. Your best bet would be to stay in Carlsbad, NM which is what we did. There are lots of family friendly hotels in Carlsbad to choose from and it’s a short drive to the park.

Things to bring when visiting Guadalupe Mountains National Park with kids

  • National Parks Journal: This one is our favorite, Milana fills it out on each trip and gets a stamp at the visitor center.
  • Sun hat: There isn’t much shade, so bring a sun hat for your kids.

Books and games about Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Things to do in Guadalupe Mountains National Park with kids

Exploring a cultural museum and hiking are just some of the things to do in Guadalupe Mountains National Park with kids.

Visit the Frijole Ranch Cultural Museum

Just before the visitor center, you will find signs for the Frijole Ranch. Drive down and explore the museum which displays items from Native Americans and the early ranching community. You can also see a one room schoolhouse here.

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what to do in guadalupe mountains national park with kids
guadalupe mountains national park with kids

Best kid-friendly hiking trail in Guadalupe Mountains National Park

  • Manzanita Spring Trail: This is a short 0.4 mile trail right outside of the Frijole Ranch that will take you to a spring.
  • McKittrick Canyon Nature Trail: This moderate 0.9 mile trail is a great way to learn about the plant life in the park.
  • The Pinery Trail: Right by the visitor center, this 0.75 mile trail is accessible and dog-friendly.
 guadalupe mountains national park with kids
guadalupe mountains national park with kids

Junior Ranger program in Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Just like all of the other National Parks, Guadalupe Mountains has a Junior Ranger program. Be sure to pick up a junior ranger activity book at the visitors center.

guadalupe mountains national park with kids

Where to eat with kids near Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Be sure to pack snacks and food as there are no restaurants inside of the park. The closest city for actual food is Carlsbad.

Have you been to Guadalupe Mountains National Park with kids? It’s definitely a more remote park however if you are visiting Carlsbad Caverns, be sure to stop here as well!

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