Guide to Sedona, Arizona

Nestled in the heart of Arizona’s enchanting desert landscape, Sedona is a destination that promises a unique blend of natural beauty, spiritual mystique, and outdoor adventure. With its breathtaking red rock formations, serene energy vortexes, and a vibrant arts and culinary scene, Sedona offers something for every traveler. This weekend guide to Sedona will help you uncover the must-do activities in this red rock wonderland!


Times of Year to Visit Sedona

Spring

Spring is a popular time to visit Sedona. The weather is mild, and wildflowers bloom, creating a picturesque landscape. Hiking and outdoor activities are enjoyable during this season. However, keep in mind that spring can be busy, so plan your accommodations accordingly.

Summer

Summer in Sedona is hot, with daytime temperatures often exceeding 90°F . It’s a good time for water activities like swimming in Oak Creek or sliding down slide rock. Even though it might seem like this would be a less crowded time to visit, those who live in Phoenix flock to Sedona for the “cooler” temps.

Fall

Fall is another fantastic time to visit Sedona. The weather is pleasant, and the fall foliage is stunning, particularly while hiking West Fork Trail. Hiking is enjoyable, and the crowds begin to thin out after the summer rush.

Winter

Sedona in the winter offers a different kind of beauty. While snowfall in the town itself is rare, it can be quiet chilly. However, it’s an excellent time for a quieter and more peaceful experience.

Overall, the spring and fall seasons are often considered the best times to visit Sedona for a balance of pleasant weather and the opportunity to enjoy all the outdoor activities.

sedona guide
Sedona in January

Where to Stay in Sedona

Sedona offers a variety of accommodation options, ranging from luxurious resorts to cozy bed and breakfasts and budget-friendly hotels. There is also lots of camping nearby! Regardless where you decide to stay, be sure to book your accommodations well in advance, especially during the peak tourist seasons in spring and fall.

Uptown Sedona

Uptown Sedona is the heart of the city, and it’s where you’ll find a range of shops, restaurants, and art galleries. Staying in this area provides easy access to the bustling town center. Some notable accommodations include:

West Sedona

West Sedona offers a quieter and more relaxed atmosphere. You’ll still find a variety of restaurants and shops, making it a convenient place to stay. Options in this area include:

Oak Creek

Located to the south of Sedona, this area offers a tranquil setting. If you prefer a quieter atmosphere and easy access to hiking, this area is a good choice. Consider staying at the Creekside Inn Sedona or the Arabella Hotel Sedona.

Resorts and Spas

For a luxurious and pampering experience, Sedona boasts numerous resorts and spas, such as Enchantment Resort, L’Auberge De Sedona, or Ambiente. These properties offer world-class amenities and stunning views.

Bed and Breakfasts

Sedona has several charming bed and breakfasts that offer a more intimate and personalized experience. My favorite B&Bs in Sedona are Sedona Views Bed and Breakfast and Whispering Creek B&B.

Vacation Rentals

If you prefer the flexibility and privacy of a vacation rental, you can find a variety of options through platforms like VRBO. This is a great choice for families or larger groups.


Things to do in Sedona

Hiking

Sedona is known for its stunning red rock formations and offers a plethora of hiking trails for all type’s of visitors to explore. I always use AllTrails to find the perfect hike. Here are some of the best hikes in Sedona, catering to a range of skill levels and interests:

  • Cathedral Rock Trail: A short but challenging hike that leads to one of Sedona’s most iconic landmarks. The trail is steep and includes some scrambles but offers breathtaking views.
  • Devil’s Bridge Trail: This popular hike takes you to one of the largest natural sandstone arches in the Sedona area. The trail provides fantastic photo opportunities.
  • West Fork Trail: A serene and scenic hike along Oak Creek, with numerous creek crossings and towering canyon walls. It’s perfect for a peaceful day in nature.
  • Birthing Cave: The Birthing Cave is a secluded hidden gem of a hike in Sedona, offering unbelievable panoramic views of the red rock canyons.
  • Bell Rock Pathway: This easy-to-moderate trail offers stunning views of Bell Rock and Courthouse Butte. It’s a great option for a leisurely hike with beautiful red rock scenery.
  • Hangover Trail: This challenging, technical trail rewards experienced hikers with stunning views from the “Hangover,” a red rock saddle offering a unique perspective on the surrounding landscape.
  • Boynton Canyon Trail: One of the vortex locations in Sedona, this moderate trail offers panoramic views of the surrounding red rocks and is known for its spiritual energy.
  • Soldiers Pass Trail: This hike takes you to the Soldier Pass Cave and Seven Sacred Pools, offering a chance to explore interesting geological formations.
  • Oak Creek Canyon Overlook Trail: A short, easy hike that provides stunning views of the Oak Creek Canyon, especially during fall when the leaves change color.
  • Sugarloaf Trail Sedona: One of the most underrated hikes in the area. With its minimal crowds, a moderately flat loop offers stunning views of all the red rocks.
Devil’s Bridge

Adventure Tours & Sights

Sedona is a paradise for adventure enthusiasts, with a wide range of outdoor activities to get your heart racing and adrenaline pumping. Here are some adventurous things to do in Sedona:

Sedona Jeep Tour
  • Sedona Helicopter Tour: If you are looking to splurge, Sedona Helicopter tours are an exhilarating way to see the landscape from a different point of view. These tours offer breathtaking aerial views and the chance to see the area’s iconic formations from above.
  • ATV and UTV Tours: Rent an all-terrain vehicle or join a guided ATV or UTV tour to explore the backcountry and off-road trails.
 
 

Spa and Wellness

Sedona is known for its luxurious spas and wellness centers, where visitors can unwind and rejuvenate amid the stunning red rock landscapes. There are various spas you can visit, explore the many options, and book your ideal spa experience.

Wine Tasting

Most people don’t think of wine tasting when visiting Arizona, but Sedona is actually home to several excellent wineries that offer tastings and beautiful views of the surrounding landscape. You can either visit on your own or join a wine tour. Wine Tours of Sedona has various options for wine tours, or check out Viator for even more options.

  • Page Spring Cellars: Family-owned winery that offers a variety of wines. The tastings overlook scenic vineyards and views of Oak Creek.
  • Oak Creek Vineyards and Winery: One of the oldest wineries in Sedona, offering wine tastings and delicious snacks.
  • DA Ranch: A boutique style ranch winery. This is a great place to do wine tastings with a large group of friends or family.
  • Javelina Leap Vineyard: An eclectic winery. Enjoy sipping on wine in the Arizona room or private garden patio.

Where to Eat in Sedona

There are so many restaurants in Sedona, but these are my personal favorites. I highly recommend making reservations for dinner if the restaurant offers them.

Breakfast:

  • PumpHouse: Rustic-chic eatery and market offering breakfast, lunch and dinner. Try their quiche for breakfast! So tasty.

Lunch:

  • Indian Garden Market: Offering sandwiches, salads, and artisan coffe. Enjoy your meal in a lush patio garden.

Sunset Dinner Views:

  • SaltRock Kitchen: Casual dinning with craft cocktails and stunning outdoor seating with views of the red rocks. Great place to watch sunset!
  • The Hudson: Rooftop seating with 360 degree views serving New American fare.

Pretty Creekside Views:

  • Hideaway House: Relaxed Italian eatery with scenic views of the creek and canyon.
  • Creekside Bistro: Cozy yet classy restaurant serving award winning happy hour and American fare.

Upscale Dinner:

  • Elote: Dine in with reservations only, serving Mexican fare with craft tequila cocktails.
  • Mariposa: Upscale restaurant & bar with South American-inspired cuisine, a patio & panoramic views.

I hope this weekend guide to Sedona helps you plan your perfect trip, and inspires you to add this magical place to your travel bucket list!

Want more Arizona travel inspiration? Check out all the areas to visit in Arizona here!

If you need any help planning or have any questions, please comment below or message me on my contact page! I would love to hear about how your trip went as well. Which hikes did you end up doing? Tell me in the comments below!

Meet Mel

I started Mel’s Scene to showcase my trips and offer my personalized itineraries to other global wanderers. I have never cared for material things, I care more so for the experiences and memories that each travel destination has given me.

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2 Comments

  1. 1.27.24
    Chris said:

    How many days would you spend in Sedona?

    • 1.27.24
      Mel said:

      two to three days is a great start to explore the majority of Sedona.