Today we visited Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico, just a few miles from Guadalupe Mountaint National Park which we visited yesterday. Since a couple of years Carlsbad Caverns have also been declared world heritage site.
We have pre-booked for the King's Palace tour at 10 am. Since we arrived quite ahead of time we still had time to do a self-guided tour of the Big Hall before our tour started. On our self-guided tour we were very lucky to be the ONLY people in the Big Hall. Especially in the summer months Carlsbad Caverns are very well visited, therefore it's really something special to have the whole cavern for ourselves :-). I was really amazed and deeply impressed by the size of the cavern.
Pictures from the King's Palace tour
During the tour the ranger turned off the artificial light in the cavern for a few minutes and it really, really got totally dark - which was quite an interesting experience.
After the tour we drove back and passed by White Sands National Monument where we stopped again to take some pictures. Luckily enough this time it was not stormy any more :-). The white sand which gave the national monument its name is gypsum.