Photo by Edmundo Mendez, Jr. on Unsplash

Photo by Edmundo Mendez, Jr. on Unsplash

15 Amazing Things To Do in Sedona, Arizona


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Oh, Sedona. One of Arizona’s most magical spots is an absolute oasis of outdoor recreation, spiritual wellness, and unbelievable red rock scenery.

Whether you’ve come for the ultimate adventure or to treat yo ‘self, there is no shortage of things to do in Sedona.

1. Take a Scenic Drive

scenic drive sedonainkknife_2000, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

This one’s easy. Jump in the car, turn on the Shaka Guide app, and let us take you from one amazing spot to another.

We’ve prepared a thoughtful itinerary of popular spots and hidden gems throughout the Sedona area.

Most stops don’t require much walking, but if you’re up for a hike, our tour does stop at trailheads to some fantastic trails that should be doable for most abilities.

But even if you never step out of the car, you’re in for a treat.

2. Hike Your Pick Off Over 200 Trails

That’s right. Over 200 trails. Put together, Sedona’s hiking trails cover over 400 miles.

There is a trail for every ability here, and they all cross gorgeous desert terrain with canyons, buttes, mesas, and unbelievable rock formations. 

Check out our Best Hikes in Sedona for what trails we think are the highlights. 

3. Explore Uptown Sedona’s Shopping and Dining

shopping center in sedonaJack CameraMan, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Of course, you don’t even need to leave town to see the red rocks. You can shop and dine with an easy view of incredible scenery in Uptown Sedona.

Within just a few dense blocks, you’ll find fine galleries and souvenir shops to cover everyone’s tastes. And as far as tastebuds go, this is where you’ll find many of Sedona’s best dining experiences.

Mexican cuisine is easily available, and meativores looking for hamburgers and steak will have plenty to choose from.

The thing to drink here is the prickly pear margarita, which is available on many menus.

Don’t know which restaurant to choose? We’ve prepared a list of some of our favorites.

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4. Experience a Vortex

Is there something to these vortexes everyone’s talking about? You’ll have to decide for yourself.

Adherents to New Age beliefs say that these enhanced meditation sites can lower stress, enhance creative thinking, heal old wounds, and offer fresh perspectives for the future.

People pray, meditate, do yoga, or just sit in silence to feel the effects of a vortex. Want to give it a shot? Cathedral Rock, Bell Rock, and Airport Mesa are some of the more popular vortex sites.

You can learn more about the area’s vortexes at the Sedona Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center in Uptown Sedona.

5. Golf in the Desert

Are you a 9-hole, par 3 kind of person, or do you like to go full throttle into an 18-hole championship course?

Either way, Sedona’s golf courses are an incredible experience.

The real challenge is to focus on your game while surrounded by unsurpassed views in places like Canyon Mesa Country Club, Oakcreek Country Club, Sedona Golf Resort, and Seven Canyons.

6. Go Camping

campsite in sedona at night with two tentsPhoto by Tommy Lisbin on Unsplash

The Coconino National Forest surrounds much of the Sedona area, and within are some terrific places to pitch your tent and enjoy Sedona in a more rustic setting.

In particular, you’ll find some beautiful and convenient campgrounds within Oak Creek Canyon. Learn more on the Red Rock Ranger District website.

Don’t want to go too off the grid? Rancho Sedona RV Park is just minutes from Uptown Sedona’s shopping and dining.

7. Learn about the Ancient Sinagua People

The Sedona area was once home to the ancient Sinagua people, who abandoned marvels such as Tuzigoot National Monument and Montezuma Castle National Monument for us to rediscover and learn about.

These sites and others interpret how the Sinagua thrived in the Arizona desert long before white settlers arrived.

If you want to sprinkle in some history in an adventure-heavy vacation, these are great sites to visit.

8. Grab a Bite in Old Town Cottonwood

Sedona’s not the only game when it comes to good food.

The historic district of Old Town Cottonwood, only 30 minutes from Uptown Sedona, features its fair share of cafes, taverns, and restaurants to cater to any palate.

Even better: it’s generally less expensive to eat here than in Sedona.

9. Visit a Mining Town That’s Sliding Down a Mountain

city in sedonaJerome, Arizona, panorama.jpg:Finetooth *derivative work: StellarD, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Once a booming mining town, Jerome barely missed sinking into ghost town status by transforming into an artist's haven.

Today, you’ll find an eclectic mix of restaurants, galleries, and shops next to, and sometimes inside, crumbling buildings that have stood the test of time on this steep hillside for over 100 years.

And the views of the Verde Valley from up here are spectacular.

10. Support Local Indigenous Artists

Need a souvenir for your time in Sedona? Oak Creek Canyon is home to two Native American Crafts Markets open daily to the public.

Native Americans for Community Action, Inc. (NACA) and Coconino National Forest have partnered to provide these spaces for approved vendors to sell crafts and handiworks from local indigenous artists. 

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11. Sip Some Wine

The Sonoran Desert doesn’t seem like a place you’d expect to find wineries, but Oak Creek supports a small wine region tucked between Sedona and Cottonwood.

Visit the wineries themselves, which sometimes include a romantic bistro. Or, check out a tasting room in Old Town Cottonwood.

12. Catch a Magical Sunset or Sunrise

red sky Photo by Steven Feldman on Unsplash

There is nothing, and we mean nothing, like a sunrise or sunset in Sedona. Lucky for you, there are plenty of great spots to catch that magic hour.

In fact, there’s hardly a bad spot. Whether it’s Airport Mesa, Bell Rock, or anywhere in between, save some time for a relaxing, and stunning, hour of golden light.

13. Take an Off-Roading Tour

There are several companies in Sedona that offer off-road jeep tours to explore the hinterland surrounding Sedona.

Perhaps none are better known, or more visible, than Pink Jeep Tours.

Choose a tour based on length, scenery, and bumpiness, and let the tour guide handle the rest as you explore parts of Sedona that are off the beaten path.

14. Enjoy the Desert on Horseback

horseback riders in grasslandsCC BY 2.0

Explore Arizona the Old West way: from the back of a horse. Within the Verde Valley region are a few horseback riding tour companies that guide you through the high desert.

Whether you’re looking for some family fun or a romantic excursion, consider experiencing Arizona the old-fashioned way.

15. See Beyond Sedona

Attach your stay in Sedona to a greater Arizona trip, including:

  • Flagstaff 45 minutes away (29 miles)
  • the Grand Canyon which is two hours away (114 miles)
  • and Petrified Forest National Park which is 2.5 hours away (140 miles).

And check out our other Shaka Guide tours in the region!

Whatever you choose to do in Sedona, let Shaka Guide help you make the most of your time. Because in Sedona, there’s never enough time!

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We hope that we’ve given you all the information you need to make the most of your day. Your vacation is extremely important to us so if you have any questions feel free to reach out at aloha@shakaguide.com.

For more detailed information to help you plan, check out our Sedona Itinerary and Know Before You Go article.

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things to do in sedona


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