10 Things to do in Sedona

By local contributor
Scott McGinty

The towering red-rock formations of Sedona have captivated visitors from around the world. Part artists’ community, part New Age spiritual center and part outdoor adventurer’s dream, Sedona is definitely worth a day trip on your next Scottsdale vacation. An easy two-hour drive north will get you there, leaving you plenty of time to explore all of Sedona’s offerings, including these:

Red Rock State Park: Start your exploration of Sedona’s red rocks at the Red Rock State Park’s Miller Visitor Center. You’ll need to purchase a day pass to park at most area trailheads in Sedona – the visitor center can set you up with that, as well as trail maps and other information about the red rock formations you’ll see around town.

Red Rock Crossing & Buddha Beach: This flat, easy trail will take you along the banks of Oak Creek to an expansive red rock sand bar. The view of Cathedral Rock rising over the creek from this spot is one of the most-often photographed vistas in Sedona. Continue on the trail a bit further and you’ll come to Buddha Beach, known for the thousands of rock cairns built by hikers who have passed through the area.

Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village: Nestled in the shade of giant sycamore trees along the banks of Oak Creek, Tlaquepaque is home to more than 45 specialty shops, art galleries and restaurants. Goods run the gamut from casual fashions and leather goods to Native American jewelry, crystals and contemporary art.

Pink Jeep Tours: Pink Jeep Tours has been delighting guests with off-road adventures in Sedona since 1960. Choose from five different tours, including the thrilling Broken Arrow Tour, Ancient Ruins Tour and the horseback riding/off-road combo Wrangler Roundup. If you love your Pink Jeep Sedona adventure, check out their sister Pink Adventure Tours in Scottsdale for epic tours of the Sonoran Desert.

Slide Rock State Park: When the weather’s warm, locals and visitors alike flock to the slippery, natural water chute at Slide Rock. Grab your swimsuit and give it a try! You can sun along the banks, splash in Oak Creek or explore the nearby hiking trails.

West Fork Trail: Touted as one of the 10 best trails in the United States, West Fork is particularly popular in the fall when its trees come alive with seasonal colors. The trail is 6 miles round-trip, rated easy and includes several stream crossings on stepping stones or logs. But you don’t have to follow the whole trail to enjoy its tree-shaded beauty and the gentle ripple of Oak Creek. Parking is limited and fills up fast, so be prepared to wait in a staging line or be waived on by park rangers.

The Shops on 89A: Just past the famous Sedona “Y” roundabout, you’ll come to a shopper’s paradise. Dozens of boutiques, galleries and restaurants line Highway 89A and are the perfect places to find the ideal memento of your Sedona day!

Spiritual Enrichment: Sedona is known for its powerful energy vortex sites and has become a haven for New Age practitioners and people seeking a more spiritual path. You’ll find numerous metaphysical shops and bookstores sprinkled around town. For more information or to find a local practitioner, contact the Sedona Metaphysical Spiritual Association.

Enchantment Resort & Mii Amo Spa: If you’d like to turn your Sedona adventure into an overnighter, Enchantment Resort offers luxury accommodations in the peaceful and secluded setting of Boynton Canyon. Treat yourself to a luscious Prickly Pear Butter Wrap or Dosha Balancing Wrap at the on-property Mii Amo Spa.