October 13, 2018
Our Favorite Sedona Day Trips
Posted by: Lori Reinhold
There is more than enough in Sedona to keep you occupied for the duration of your stay with us. From its world-class restaurants to its unbeatable hiking trails, Sedona is a true trip in itself. However, Sedona also makes the perfect home base for a variety of unique and exciting day trips throughout the region. If you want to explore more of Central Arizona without straying too far from Sedona, consider taking a day trip to some of the beautiful surrounding towns, historical sights, and natural marvels right at Sedona’s doorstep. You can leave for your trip early in the morning and return to Sedona for the warm comfort and incredible red rock views of the Alma de Sedona Inn. Here are our favorite day trips from Sedona, Arizona.
1.The Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is the most popular and high-profile of Sedona’s day trips. Located just two hours from the Alma de Sedona Inn, the Grand Canyon is practically in Sedona’s backyard. By making Sedona your base camp during your Grand Canyon adventure, you don’t have to worry about booking a campsite years in advance or paying too much for over-priced lodging near the park. Plus, the drive is breathtaking. We like to send our guests on the indirect route through Flagstaff along route 89N, which takes you on a semi-circle road that goes through Sunset Crater and on to Wupatki Ruins. You can stop at the Historic Cameron Trading Post at Rt64 and then head into the canyon via the East Gate. Once you arrive, you'll have plenty of time to take photos at the various viewpoints, walk along the Rim Trail, visit the geology museum, and more. For more information, check out our blog post on Our Tips for Visiting the Grand Canyon.
2. Lowell Observatory and the Museum of Northern Arizona
At an elevation of 7,000 feet, the thriving mountain town of Flagstaff is nestled inside the world’s largest ponderosa pine forest, making it a world-renowned destination for hiking, skiing, and cycling. However, we also love to visit Flagstaff for their incredible cultural and educational offerings. The Museum of Northern Arizona houses an impressive collection of Native American artifacts and natural history specimens. Whether you are interested in anthropology, archeology, geology, paleontology, botany, or fine art, it is easy to nerd out in the halls of this amazing institution. Throughout the year, they also offer wonderful exhibitions, events, and children’s programs. After a couple of hours spent exploring the history of mankind and planet earth, it's time to learn a little bit about the history of the universe as we know it. The Lowell Observatory was built in 1894, making it one of the oldest observatories in the United States. It is also famous for being the place that Clyde Tombaugh discovered Pluto! During the day, you can take guided tours of the historical site, watch live presentations and videos, and browse their mind-bending exhibitions about space and time. After dark, you can view the stars and planets through their state-of-the-art telescope. For more information, read our blog post about planning the perfect day trip to Flagstaff.
3. Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend
Antelope Canyon is one of the most beautiful and awe-inspiring spots in the entire American Southwest. This monumental, wave-like sandstone structure is located in a slot canyon just east of Page, Arizona. Antelope Canyon is the result of millions of years of water erosion. That's why the Navajo people call it “Tse' bighanilini,” which means "the place where water runs through rocks." When the sun flows through the canyon just right, it creates a gorgeous, ethereal effect you aren't likely to forget. Your best chances of catching these gorgeous sun beams are between late March and early October. If you still have energy after Antelope Canyon, pay a visit to Horseshoe Bend, another iconic Arizona site where the Colorado River forms a horseshoe-shaped meander around a giant outcropping of red rock. You can come here to hike, take photographs, or simply admire the incredible views.
4. Mortimer Farms in Dewey
http://www.mortimerfarmsaz.com/index.html in the nearby town of Dewey offers a variety of year round activities the whole family can enjoy. Mortimer Farms is a working pumpkin, corn, berry, and vegetable farm where you can pick your own produce, depending on the time of year you come. Admission to the Farm also gives you access to tractor rides, play areas, obstacle courses, picnic spots, and adorable farm animals like sheep, goats, and pigs. In addition, they host a variety of seasonal events and festivals such as the Pumpkin Festival, Sweet Corn Festival, Friday Night Barn Dance, and Breakfast with Santa. No matter what time of year you visit, we promise there will be something delightful happening at Mortimer Farms.
5. Montezuma Castle and Montezuma Well
Anyone interested in Native American history should plan a visit to Montezuma Castle National Monument, widely considered one of the best preserved cliff dwellings in all of North America. People often compare the castle to a 20-room high rise, only this one was built into a towering limestone cliff by the Sinagua people over 800 years ago. Montezuma Castle is a true architectural and historical marvel. The site’s easy self-guided tour takes you past the 5-story cliff dwelling, through a lovely sycamore grove, and along Beaver Creek. Montezuma Well is located about 11 miles from Montezuma Castle but it is well worth the extra drive. Over 1,500,000 gallons of water a day emerge from this lovely limestone sinkhole.
Planning a trip to the Sedona area? Book a stay at the Alma de Sedona Inn for warm service and unbeatable red rock views.