Last week I spent 7 days in the magical Sedona, Arizona with my parents. It was an epic trip on many levels - if you were following along on Instagram you know we were in a studio room for the first few nights so that was interesting (or an “opportunity for awakening” as my therapist would say) to say the least.
I’m excited to share some of the highlights from the trip here with you!
getting to SEDONA
There’s a small airport in Sedona, but most people fly into Phoenix and then rent a car to drive the 2 hours to Sedona. We stayed the night in Phoenix which I highly recommend to split up the trip - there are plenty of hotels and cute AirBnBs not far from the airport.
Tip: I also recommend making a pit stop at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West (about 40 minutes from Phoenix and just under 2 hours from Sedona). Whether you specifically love architecture or not, Frank Lloyd Wright was quite a genius - you can see this in his work but also in how he created a school of architecture that required more than just drafting building plans.
where to stay
We stayed at The Ridge on Sedona Golf Resort - my mom was gifted a week stay from someone who has a timeshare with Diamond Resorts. This resort was perfectly comfortable (after we moved out of our studio room that is) and very quite.
Where we were was about a 20 minute drive south from true Sedona center, which wasn’t bad but it did make for more time in the car. If I visited in the future, I’d probably choose to stay a little closer to town, likely in West Sedona as most of the food spots and hikes I enjoyed were on that side of town.
I will note that while we were visiting, the resort’s spa was closed. The pool and Jacuzzi were operating, but it was a little disappointing not to have a sauna / steam room on site as MOST hotels and resorts in Sedona include these and it’s one of the biggest perks of choosing a resort over an AirBnB.
what to do
HIKE! - In my opinion, the nature is WHY you visit Sedona. Yes, it’s cool to have a crystal shop and psychic in every shopping mall, but the real magic of this town is the nature. There are SO many trails within a few minutes of the center of town, and something for every level of hiker. I recommend downloading the Hiking Guide: Sedona app - it gives good descriptions of the trails and how to navigate to the trailheads.
These are the hikes we did in addition to the vortex trails listed below: Doe Mountain** (quick climb, spectacular views at top with plenty of space to explore), Templeton Trail (flat but great views of Bell Rock, the Courthouse, etc) and Devil’s Bridge (largest natural bridge in the area, some steep parts).
VISIT THE VORTEXES - Sedona is known for it’s vortexes. Vortexes are the powerful and transformational energy centers located at the intersections of natural electromagnetic earth energy. You can book a tour to visit the vortexes, which can be fun to get more history and be guided to feel the energy at each spot, but we decided to see them on our own. The four major vortexes in Sedona are Bell Rock, Cathedral Rock, Boynton Canyon** and Airport Mesa** - there are great hikes around all of these, but most you can also park near so you don’t have to do a full hike if you don’t want.
** = my personal favorites
SHOP FOR CRYSTALS - As previously mentioned, there is literally a store selling crystals and other metaphysical items in every shopping center in Sedona. Part of the fun of working with crystals is letting them choose you, which is why I always buy them in person rather than online. Especially if you’re a crystal newbie, this can be a great opportunity to visit a few stores and see if any particular stones call to you. These were the specific shops I felt had better energy and better quality goods: Mystical Bazaar, Peace Place Gifts + Crystal Gratitude.
HAVE A HEALING SESSION - It wouldn’t be a true trip to Sedona without at least one session with a healer or psychic! There are many different types of healing and energy work sessions to be experienced in Sedona: aura photography, energy healing, massage, reiki, tarot, psychic work, and more.
A full post on my experience working with psychics is definitely overdue, but for now my advice is this: be open, but also skeptical. Trust your instincts. If you don’t get a good vibe from someone or something they’re telling you doesn’t resonate, you don’t have to do a session or believe what they say. I’ve had only positive experiences, but I’ve learned to only work with people who I trust and get a good gut YES from.
STARGAZE - Sedona is an International Dark Sky Community which means there are regulations on street and city lights, so the star gazing here is EPIC! With most things, you can surely book a tour or guided experience, but you can also just go outside on a clear night and LOOK UP. It’s wonderful, especially for us city folk who don’t see stars too often.
Here are some pictures from our activities:
where to eat
COFFEE, TEA + BREAKFAST
LOCAL JUICERY - Definitely my favorite (and most visited) food spot of the trip! Come here for epic smoothies, juices and other healthy eats. Make a point to get the gluten free waffles - they are literally the BEST I’ve ever had.
CREEKSIDE COFFEE - A popular bakery and coffeeshop. Open early for your pre-hike caffienation needs.
CHOCOLATREE - Organic, gluten free and vegetarian eatery with tons of raw options, as well as a full raw chocolate factory and marketplace. Come for a hearty, healthy meal or just for chocolate and tea. I did both. Purchase a loaf of their gluten free and vegan bread to take home.
THE SECRET GARDEN CAFE - Quaint little cafe in the Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts village. Great for ALL dietary preferences - there are gluten free and vegan options, but also burgers, pastrami sandwiches and lots of desserts.
THAI PALACE - A local recommended this Thai spot and it did not disappoint.
PICAZZO’S HEALTHY ITALIAN KITCHEN - The name says it all: healthy Italian (including gluten free and vegan pizza and house made gluten free foccacia). Come during happy hour for a meal that’s delicious and incredibly affordable.
CREEKSIDE AMERICAN BISTRO - One of the nicer dinner spots we ate at with gorgeous views of the red rocks and a fabulous outdoor patio overlooking the creek, when the weather’s right. Something to please everyone here from blackened salmon salads to decadent steaks.
DAHL & DiLUCA - Picazzo’s fancier sister restaurant. Similarly they have TONS of gluten free options, but also all the traditional Italian dishes.
Here are a few pics of yummy food I ate:
I hope to visit Sedona again some day - it truly is a magical place with healing energy… and THE best gluten free waffles ;)
Have you ever been to SEDONA? what was your favorite activity, restaurant or experience?
Share with us all in the comments below!