23 Exciting Things to do in Sedona

13 mins read
Things to do in Sedona
By Ralph Ravi Kayden / unsplash Copyrights 2020

Things to do in Sedona – what are the sights and sounds there that will make you understand the culture, history, and people of this city in the Northern Verde Valley region of Arizona State.

The charm and beauty of a place are defined by the landscape, people, and history that set it apart from the other cities and states. Sedona is one such place that has a lot to offer visitors in terms of culture, spirituality, history, and nature.

Things to do in Sedona
By Harrison Hargrave / unsplash
Copyrights 2020


Sedona attracts a lot of travelers annually, and this city in the middle of Arizona has red rock formations, canyons, resorts and spas, spiritual healers, hikers, artists, and photographers. Visiting Sedona is enthralling for travelers looking for a combination of adventure, nature, spirituality, and art because this adds to the many things to do in Sedona.

The Red Rock Scenic Byway is the gateway to Sedona. Take a drive through the 7.5-mile road, which is 110 miles North of Phoenix, 40 miles South of Flagstaff, and a few hours from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

The scenery of this city in the middle of the desert will leave you awestruck with its abundance of natural beauty. Adding up to the charm of nature are the spiritual vibes, resorts, and spas that make Sedona the place it is.

Things to do in Sedona

There are many interesting things to do in Sedona for the discerning traveler. From appreciating the natural beauty of the place and the surroundings, the red rock scenic byway and rock formations, art galleries, shopping, restaurants, and finding your Zen, this city is a must-visit if you are in Arizona.

Get glimpses of the city by going on one of the pink jeep tours or the stunning hiking trails, and appreciate the art and culture of the place by visiting some of the art galleries in uptown Sedona making it your perfect vacation.

Be it the ancient cliff dwellings, petroglyphs, hot air balloon rides, or Camp Verde casinos, Sedona will steal your heart with its diversity. Do not forget to carry your camera to capture some of the most memorable pictures of your stay in Sedona. Take the Red Rock Scenic Byway and enjoy the trails and hikes on this route.

  1. Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park

Sedona is a good destination to vacation, and the things to do in Sedona pull travelers to the charm and allure of the city. If you are looking into spiritual tours in Sedona, the Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park are recommended places. If you are looking for your Zen, this is a wonderful gift for them. Sedona offers spiritual enlightenment to those seeking peace through the canyons, nature, and trails. The Peace Park is for those seeking spiritualism, inner peace, and natural beauty.

This sprawling Peace Park on 14 acres of land is a sacred place in the stunning red rocks at the foot of Thunder Mountain in the Oak Creek Canyon. Align your mind, body, and soul by visiting Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park.

  1. Bell Rock

The red rock formations at Bell Rock, Southern Sedona, are one of the options if you are looking for things to do in Sedona. The towering rock formations at this place resemble a massive bell that extends 500 feet in the air. Let this incredible trip to Bell Rock make you enjoy the incredible journey into nature. The Bell Rock Trail and Bell Rock Pathway is an exhilarating experience for all adventurers.

Bell Rock is also of the red rock, and it is something you would have never seen before. These are the most famous red rock formations you can see in Sedona. The trail is easy to navigate, and you can add the Courthouse Butte Loop to your trip because of the easy access from Bell Rock Trail.

Things to do in Sedona
By Carrick Webb / unsplash
Copyrights 2021

This trail is good if you enjoy mountain biking and if you are looking for bike trails in Sedona, Bell Rock is the perfect point for mountain biking, especially if you are a beginner. The scenic landscape of Bell Rock is the perfect backdrop for your biking trail.

  1. Bear Mountain Trail

This back trail near Sedona is for experienced hikers and has several options. It is one of the things to do in Sedona as the place is worth exploring, and you get to enjoy the buttes, canyons, mountains, and red rocks at close quarters.

This trail is located within the Coconino National Forest, and this is the best way to experience the tall Ponderosa Pines and get intimidated by their towering heights. The trail is open all year round and is always accessible throughout the year.

  1. Boynton Canyon Trail

The Boynton Canyon trail is one of the exhilarating trails to be included in the things to do in Sedona. Hit the Boynton Canyon trail early in the morning and marvel at the breathtaking canyon walls and the verdant landscape. The Boynton Canyon Trail is a popular hike, and the best way to avoid the crowds would be to make this trail early in the morning.

The Boynton Canyon is 10 minutes from Central Sedona. This alluring box canyon of the Boynton Canyon makes Arizona Red Rock Country famous and popular. The red rocks in the Boynton Canyon region add up to the allure of the place, and if you are lucky, you might also get to see some wildlife on the Boynton Canyon Trail.

  1. Cathedral Rock Trail

The Cathedral Rock is one of the rock formations in the Coconino National Forest and one of the places if you are on an explore Sedona trip. The two spires of the Cathedral Rock rise about the desert ground and give expansive views of West Sedona and East Sedona. Though the hike at Cathedral Rock trail is short, it can get strenuous. Cathedral Rock trail is for all those adventurers looking for thrills, adventure, and excitement.

Things to do in Sedona
By Alex Bailey / unsplash
Copyrights 2020

The sandstone butte of Cathedral Rock adds to the Sedona skyline’s charm; though the red rocks are beautiful, they are deceptively dangerous too. This Cathedral Rock trail is for hiking, rock climbing, and for those who enjoy walking trails. Cathedral Rock Trail is one of the things to do in Sedona if you visit the city. Hike, bike, picnic, camp, swim, and have a good break from your monotonous routine.

  1. Chapel of the Holy Cross

This is one of the finest attractions in Sedona and is located atop the red rocks of Sedona; and one of the things to do in Sedona. Located on top of Millions of visitors and Pilgrims, visit this Roman Catholic Chapel of the Holy Cross. There is beauty in the Holy Cross’s surroundings and peace, making the Chapel of the Holy Cross a place to visit.

Suppose you are a religious person; a visit to the Chapel of the Holy Cross can be included in your things to do in Sedona. Visit the gift shop at the Holy Cross and shop the many items created by the local artists.

  1. Chimney Rock

Head to West Sedona and admire the red rock formations at Chimney Rock. Take an Airport Mesa loop hiking trail, and admire the untouched beauty of Chimney Rock and West Sedona. This rock enhances the stunning image of the landscape along with Thunder Mountain and Coffeepot Rock.

The Chimney Rock Loop Trail is short and takes you around the Three Fingers Rock base area. Enjoy the exquisite sunrises and sunsets here and take wonderful pictures to complete your visit to this place.

  1. Crescent Moon Picnic Site

Locate below the towering red rock formations of Cathedral Rock, the Crescent Moon Picnic site is well known in the Southwest. Spring through fall is the best time to visit this site; visitors can see the reflection of the Red Rocks in Oak Creek at the Red Rock crossing.

If you love photography, fishing, wildlife, picnicking, and water, this is one of the things to do in Sedona and enjoy your time away from city life. The icon shot of Cathedral Rock and the vortex are the two things to be seen here.

  1. Devil’s Bridge Trail

The Devil’s Bridge Trail moderate trail beckons hikers and nature lovers to the stunningly massive sandstone arch, where they get sweeping views of the desert and its scenery. The Devil’s Bridge Trail is one of the popular trails if you are looking for things to do in Sedona. The highlight of the trails is seeing the Devil’s Bridge up close; this natural bridge is the perfect place to take wonderful pictures.

Things to do in Sedona
By Sreenivas / unsplash
Copyrights 2020

Experience the Devil’s Bridge if you love adventure, excitement, and the outdoors, and get to soak in the natural beauty of Sedona, Arizona. The arch is impressive from below and above and is one of the Sedona attractions you should not miss visiting Sedona.

  1. Grand Canyon

The Sedona Grand Canyon experience should not be missed; it is one of the things to do in Sedona. Drive through Oak Creek, Flagstaff extreme, and then to the Grand Canyon National Park. It is one of the picturesque drives of the place.

You can take a guided van tour of the Grand Canyon or take the Grand Canyon Railway, a vintage train, and marvel at the wonders the Grand Canyon offers Grand Canyon Railway, a vintage train, and marvel at the wonders the Grand Canyon has to offer. It is the perfect tour of the old and the young, and you can check out the gift shops, visitors center, and viewpoints before you board the train. Grand Canyon South Rim is the most prominent part of the Grand Canyon. You get to see some of the oldest natural formations on earth here.

Things to do in Sedona
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Copyrights 2020
  1. Monument Valley

Travel to Monument Valley from Sedona and this cluster of sandstone buttes, mesas, and sweeping views. The vibes, the colors, the people, and the region’s food make it one of the things to do in Sedona if you travel to that city. Camping is popular here, and the Monument Valley campground and Monument Valley Park sites are perfect tools to enjoy camping in the Valley.

Book a sunrise or sunset tour and watch the colors of the sun engulf the Valley. A self-guided loop trail is another good way to enjoy the Valley, its magnificence, and gorgeous structures. Explore the Rain God Mesa, the largest Mesa here.

  1. Montezuma Castle National Monument

The Montezuma Castle National Monument, Camp Verde, is a set of dwellings in Camp Verde that has been preserved and dedicated to the culture of the Native Americans. This is a 20-room hotel carved into the limestone cliff and speaks of the survival and ingenuity of the desert people of that region.

Things to do in Sedona
By Dimitar Donovski / unsplash
Copyrights 2018

This monument on the limestone cliff faces Beaver Creek. The Montezuma Castle and Montezuma Well are separated by 11 miles and two parts of this National Monument. There is a short trail to see the archaeological remains of the place, and these cliff dwellings are mysterious and well preserved.

  1. Out of Africa Wildlife Park

Visit the Out of Africa Wildlife Park, the zoo, and the wildlife park in Camp Verde and experience wildlife while visiting Sedona. Have a complete animal experience and if you are daring and adventure, opt for a zipline tour and fly above the animals.

Meet the different types of animals here and discover the safari animals. Get exposed to a different side of the region, different from the hiking trail and nature it is known for.

  1. Oak Creek Canyon

Visiting the Oak Creek Canyon is one of the things to do in Sedona and have glimpses of its natural beauty. This river gorge in Northern Arizona is located between Sedona and Flagstaff. The scenic drive climbs 45oo feet from Sedona to the top of the Mogollon Rim. The evergreen pines, oak trees, red rock scenic byway, and cliffs will leave travelers astounded at the natural beauty of the Oak Creek Canyon.

The Oak Creek Canyon is approximately 12 miles long, and the canyon’s depth ranges from 800 feet to 2000 feet. The Oak Creek that flows through the Oak Creek Canyon adds to the beauty of the place, and there are waterfalls, campgrounds, and picnic spots along the way to stop and bask in the glorious surroundings.

There are a lot of hiking trails for those who love adventure, and the trails on the west side of the canyon take you directly to the Red Rock Secret Mountain Wilderness. Hiking, fishing, camping, swimming, and picnicking can be done with the rising and colorful cliffs as the backdrop.

  1. Palatki Heritage Site

The Palatki Heritage Site gives glimpses of the largest cliff dwellings of the Red Rock Country, and it is located near the town of Sedona. The three trails in the region take you to the Sinagua cliff dwellings and give insights into the nooks that have pictographs and symbols of the Native culture that occupied the Verde Valley.

The Palatki Heritage Site has a visitor center and a bookstore and is managed by the US Forest Service under the Red Rock Pass Program. The last leg of the drive to Palatki Heritage Site takes you to the Palatki Ruins, which are a good way to understand the ancient Arizona people’s culture.

  1. Red Rock State Park

The Red Rock State Park is a nature preserve and environmentalist education center on 286 acres. The cool waters of Oak Creek, the canyons, and the lush greenery of the place will leave the travelers astounded. Experience hiking trails, bird walks, stargazing, and full moon hiking trails through the forests of Oak Creek Canyon. Some popular trails are Eagle’s Nest Loop, Apache Fire Loop, Javelina Trail, and Coyote Ridge Trail.

Go through the woodlands of Juniper and Pinyon trees, and some of the trails are only for those who love mountain biking and horseback riding. Take the Red Rock Loop Road and go on a fun drive. Enjoy views of Cathedral Rock, Bell Rock, and Courthouse Butte.

Things to do in Sedona
By Kayla Phaneuf / unsplash
Copyrights 2019
  1. Slide Rock State Park

Looking for things to do in Sedona? The Slide Rock State Park is a good option if you are an adventure and nature enthusiast who loves to revel in nature’s rawness and untouched beauty. This natural rock water slide is located in the Oak Creek Canyon and is known as ‘America’s Top Ten Swimming Holes.’

Things to do in Sedona
By Rob Sarmiento / unsplash
Copyright 2019

Explore the Slide Rock State Park by making one of these three popular trails, Pendley Homestead Trail, Slide Rock Route, or Clifftop Nature Trail, and also have fun in the water. Some of the trails in Slide Rock State Park are close to Coconino National Forest hiking trails. 1/2 mile of Oak Creek here is open for sliding, swimming, and wading. Plan a trip to Slide Rock State Park and take a break amid nature’s beauty and glory.

  1. Soldier Pass Trail

The Soldier Pass Trail, a moderate trail in the region, is a short trail that will take you to the Seven Sacred Pools, Soldier Pass Cave, and Devil’s Kitchen. Because of this, there is always a steady stream of hikers on the Soldier Pass Trail, and you can take detours from this trail to see other spots in the area.

This trail is picturesque and a visual delight for all nature lovers and photographers. It can get a bit strenuous, but the summit gives expansive views of the surrounding areas and is the best way to experience the natural beauty of Sedona.

  1. Seven Sacred Pools

Looking for unique things to do in Sedona, the Seven Sacred Pools will amaze you with the sandstone canyon and streams. This is a good hiking trail; you can reach there by taking Soldier Pass Trail No. 66. A series of shallow ponds cut out from sandstone includes the Devil’s Kitchen Sinkhole, one of the largest natural sinkholes.

The red rocks and the reflection of the skies in the water set the tone for the beauty of this place. The pools are quite small hence swimming is not recommended. Surrounded by Oak Creek and the desert, this place is worth visiting if you plan to travel to Sedona.

  1. Sedona Heritage Museum

Are you someone who likes to know the history of the place you visit? Then stroll into the Sedona Heritage Museum, once the Jordan family’s homestead, and learn about the history post the Civil War until the present. The Sedona Heritage Museum has three buildings, a restored movie set building and a tent house replica.

Located in uptown Sedona, encounter history at the Sedona Heritage Museum, and the red rocks of the place make it the perfect backdrop to hold weddings and ceremonies here.

  1. Tlaquepaque Arts and Crafts Village

Tlaquepaque Arts and Crafts Village is a dream come true for any shopper who enjoys picking up souvenirs. It is one of the best shopping experiences any traveler can experience while traveling to the Southwest. Vibe with the Sedona artisans and learn about Sedona’s art and culture; visit the exclusive art galleries and traditional ceramics, glass creations, art paintings, and unconventional gift items, and connect with the heart and soul of Sedona.

One of the things to do in Sedona is a trip to the city is incomplete without visiting the Tlaquepaque Arts and Crafts Village. Modeled after a traditional Mexican village, the Tlaquepaque arts and crafts village is an unconventional experience. Bask in the beauty of the arches, cobbled pathways, and fountains, and a visit to Tlaquepaque Arts and Crafts Village should be on your must-visit list while traveling to Sedona.

  1. West Fork Trail

This 2-3 hour round trip trail is one of the popular trails on the Coconino National Forest, and it captivates travelers in every season with its seasonal splendor. The brilliance of the sun and chirping birds in summer, the profusion of wildflowers during springtime, the blazing earthen shades of autumn, and the icicles hanging down the red rocks during winter are aesthetically appealing to anyone taking the West Fork Trail.

Things to do in Sedona
By Jeremy Bishop / unsplash
Copyrights 2018

The West Fork Trail is one of the hiking trails hikers will enjoy, and the high canyon walls and green trees block the sunlight from filtering, making it a comfortable trail during summer. This is one of the things to do in Sedona for travelers, and you can visit the Antelope Canyon too from here.

  1. Verde Valley Wine Trail

A wine trail is something different to experience while you are visiting Sedona. The Verde Valley Wine Trail exposes visitors to the tasting rooms and oak creek vineyards, adding it to one of the things to do in Sedona. Located in Northern Arizona, the Verde Valley Wine Trail is a good way to know the history and production of Arizona wines.

Each winery is distinct from the other, and the Verde Valley Wine Trail is the best way to enjoy the Arizona region’s vines, wines, and vineyards. Soak in the sights and sounds of the Verde Valley and indulge in the recreational activities there.

In The End

Things to do in Sedona
By Tim Mossholder / unsplash
Copyrights 2016

There are a lot of ways to enjoy Sedona and its natural splendors. Choose from the small trails like the Airport Mesa Loop Trail and get good views of the wonderful place. Be it the Sedona Arts Center, Rock Art, Verde River, or the Village of Oak Creek, Sedona will surprise with diversity. Carry your camera and take photographs to carry back memories of this beautiful city.

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mamta madhavan

Mamta Madhavan’s body of work includes web content writing, book reviews, interviews, articles, and poetry, mainly free verse. Her works have been published in various reputable journals and magazines worldwide. Living in creatively inspiring India, Mamta incorporates vivid imagery into her writings, influenced by nature, mysticism, and spirituality. Her poetry collection is titled connecting the dots.

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