Because I’ve had *so* many of you ask for this, I’m sharing ALL of my favorite things to do in Sedona, Arizona.
Sedona is one of my favorite places on earth and I visit just about every single year. It has everything I look for in a perfect vacation: hiking, wine country, pretty scenery, spicy margs, and good eats.
If you are considering making a trip out there, I hope these tips help! And if you are ever in the area around end of November and early December, hit me up if you’d like to do an epic red rock photo shoot! We usually head there after Thanksgiving each year. 🙂
My 6 Favorite Sedona Hikes:
Munds Wagon to Cow Pies to Hangover Loop Trail
I did this one for the first time in 2019 and it’s my favorite hike in Sedona so far and I can’t wait to do it again. It’s 8+ miles, so definitely get an early start. From what I remember, it starts off more forested and then eventually leads you to some of Sedona’s most beautiful red rock. Some sections are very easy and others are moderate to difficult. When we did this in December, there was actually ice/snow on the ground so I’m guessing that made it harder than normal. There’s a way you can also extend the hike and check out Merry Go Round Rock which is a MUST. We did this and it made our total hike over 10 miles and it was well worth it.
This is one of Sedona’s more challenging hikes but it’s very enjoyable. We hardly saw anyone else on this trail when we visited which was nice and made us feel like we had the whole place to ourselves.
This is an easy trail and one of my favorites. When you get to the top, you have 360 degree unobstructed views of Sedona. The whole mountain comes to a large plateau so make sure to plan extra time once you arrive because there’s lots to explore. It’s right near Bear Mountain, so depending on how much time you have, you could easily do both trails in one day. Bonus points if you bring a bottle of wine with you to enjoy at the top!
Templeton Trail to Cathedral Rock
I highly recommend hiking Cathedral Rock at some point during your visit. The views from the top can’t be beat. You can park directly at the base of Cathedral Rock and it’s about 3/4 of a mile to the top. Lots of scrambling which can feel hard but because it’s so short, it goes by fast. If you want to extend your journey, I recommend starting at the Templeton Trail. This will lead you to Cathedral Rock on a very pretty, easy trail. We were the only ones on this trail until we got to Cathedral Rock so it was nice and relaxing. Templeton Trail is an out and back trail. If you do that + Cathedral Rock, I think it will be about 8-9 miles of hiking start to finish.
Sedona is filled with these energy “vortexes” (vortices?) which is really interesting history to learn about. If you haven’t heard of them yet, I’d start researching them. It’s more of a spiritual thing and it’s cool history to learn. Boynton Canyon has a vortex along the hike and you’ll see many people climb up and try to experience it. I’ve heard that sometimes there will be a man up there passing out heart shaped rocks made from the Sedona rock which is supposed to be really cool. This hike was recommended to us last time and we loved it.
It’s been years since I’ve done this one and I’ve been meaning to do it again. There are 2 ways to do this hike. To get to the main trailhead, you do need a high clearance vehicle. I’ve never had the right car, so the only time I did this, I parked at the alternative starting spot (check it out on the AllTrails app for more info). Parking at the alternative spot makes it a longer 6-ish mile hike. There’s a creek at some point and I remember we had to take our shoes off and cross the creek barefoot to get across. It was a fun hike and the end at Devil’s Bridge is one of a kind. You’re at the top of a natural arch and you can walk right across it. It looks scary, but once you are there it’s quite wide and will feel safe. Along with Cathedral Rock, this is one of the most iconic Sedona hikes and will be more crowded.
Activities, Eats & Vino:
Wine Tasting at DA Ranch
DA Ranch is one of my favorite wineries of all time. Their wine is some of the best I’ve had anywhere and we always buy several bottles to take home. Be sure to check their website for tasting hours and information. It sounds like they have more regular hours these days, but when we visited for the first time, the only way you knew when they were open was if a red vintage truck was parked on the side of the road. Adorable, right!? There’s no signage so this place can be easy to miss. The property is BEAUTIFUL and it’s a must-do in Sedona if you like wine. Last time we did a tasting and then ordered glasses of wine and we were free to roam around the property. They have lots of animals (some of their wines are named after them) and it was just such a fun experience.
There are several other wineries along the same road as DA Ranch. DA Ranch is obviously my favorite so it earns it’s section. If you want to check out more, I’d say Page Spring Cellars is my other favorite and then Javelina Leap Winery. If you want to make a whole day out of it, there are a few others all on the same road.
Cottonwood is a great place for a meal plus it has a bunch more wineries! We ate at Colt Grill for BBQ last time and it was DELICIOUS. Cottonwood is pretty chill and a fun atmosphere.
Near DA Ranch, there’s “Horsin’ Around Adventures” where you can do Horseback Riding tours of Verde Valley. We did a group tour, but if I did it again, I’d splurge on a private tour. They do vineyard horseback riding tours at sunset that sounds spectacular.
Salt Rock Kitchen
This is one of my favorite places for a margarita in Sedona. Salt Rock Kitchen is at Amara Resort (where we usually stay for a night or two after roughing it in a bare bones airbnb) and they have a nice outside area where you can sit and enjoy pretty views. We stayed here last time for one night and ended up doing margaritas plus a tequila tasting. The food is great! I love the Sun Devil spicy marg.
Creekside Bistro is my favorite lunch spot in Sedona that we hit up every single trip (although they also serve breakfast and dinner!). They have a big deck for outdoor dining and I always love the view. Great drinks, food and service. Can’t beat it.
The Hudson is a more “trendy” place in Sedona. The food is very good here but you usually need a reservation. They also have a big patio for outdoor dining.
Center for New Age
If you are into the “woo woo” stuff, this is for you. You can get a psychic reading here or just buy some crystals, sage, etc. I did a 15 minute psychic reading for fun once and I’d totally do it again. Sedona is *that* kind of place. There’s a gift shop with lots of fun books and souvenirs too.
You can do this for free pretty much anywhere or try a guided experience. You’ll have to get away from the city areas but there’s very little light pollution out here so make sure you don’t forget to look up at night. The view of the stars in Sedona always takes my breath away.