The 10 Best Things to Do in Sedona

Considered one of the premier destinations in the United States, Sedona is a desert town nestled amidst Arizona’s striking red-rock buttes, rugged canyon walls, and lush pine forests. From daytime excursions exploring the nearby Red Rock State Park to nighttime skies presenting breathtaking views of the Milky Way—thanks to its designation as an International Dark Sky destination—the outdoor adventure game is unmatched here. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned traveler to this Southwestern spectacle, here are some of the best things to do in Sedona.

Credit: Jeff Zaruba

Stay at Ambiente, a Landscape Hotel

True to our signature HAP brand, we’re kicking things off with Sedona’s latest boutique gem, Ambiente. Distinguished as North America’s inaugural “landscape hotel,” designed to reduce its environmental footprint, the hotel offers 40 elevated rooms with atriums that offer modern luxury-style retreats.

Hike Cathedral Rock Trail

Known as a moderately challenging trail, the Cathedral Rock Trail is highly popular among visitors to Sedona, so don’t worry if this is your first time venturing on the 1.2-mile out-and-back journey. The dog-friendly trail is open year-round and boasts incredible views of Cathedral Rock (hence the name).

Visit the Chapel of the Holy Cross

The Chapel of the Holy Cross is a one-of-a-kind architectural marvel that captures the attention of pilgrims and tourists alike. It rises unexpectedly from the vibrant red rock formations within the Coconino National Forest.

Wander Tlaquepaque Arts & Shopping Village

Referred to as the “art and soul of Sedona,” Tlaquepaque Arts & Shopping Village echoes the ambiance of a traditional Mexican settlement. Initially envisioned as an artist community, visitors can observe local artisans practicing their craft. Notable exhibits, including the Mountain Trails Galleries and Carré D’Artistes, are worth popping into.

Visit One of Sedona’s Vortexes

Whether you believe in energy vortexes or not, we can all benefit from gaining extra positive vibrations. Sedona’s mystical rock formations, known as vortexes, are believed to harness the earth’s natural beauty and spiritual energy. The Airport Mesa Vortex is famed for its balancing aura and is considered one of the most potent sites.

Hike Devil’s Bridge Trail

The moderately challenging trek to the region’s most significant natural sandstone bridge, spanning four miles total, is well worth the effort. Once you reach the summit of the crossing, that’s your cue to capture that Instagram-worthy photo you’ve eagerly anticipated.

Go Stargazing in Sedona’s Dark Sky

This segment of the Arizona desert earned the distinction of being the sixth International Dark Sky Community in the U.S. in 2014, solidifying its position as one of the premier locations nationwide for experiencing breathtaking views of the Milky Way galaxy.

Swim in Oak Creek at Slide Rock State Park

The Slide Rock swimming hole is a treasured hidden locale at the bottom of Oak Creek Canyon. Enveloped by a historic apple orchard and Sedona’s iconic red rock formations, the 80-foot-long sandstone slide offers a memorable summertime adventure.

Wake up Early for a Hot Air Balloon Ride

Take in Sedona’s remarkable natural wonders from above ground with a magical hot-air balloon tour. Particularly for first-time visitors, this is an unforgettable experience you won’t soon forget.

Visit Red Rock State Park

Visiting Red Rock State Park is necessary for those seeking Sedona’s iconic red-rock formations. Those intrigued by a deeper exploration of nature and geology can opt to join a guided nature hike. If you’re more of a solo hiker, here are a few of the most frequented trailheads: Eagles Nest Trail, Javelina Trail, and Bunkhouse Trail.

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