August 8, 2018
The Perfect 48 Hours in Sedona
Posted by: Lori Reinhold
You could spend weeks in Sedona and still be discovering its countless wonders. However, if you are only here for two days, don’t fear. It is possible to get a taste of the best that Sedona has to offer in only 48 hours. To help you plan the perfect weekend trip to Sedona, we’ve picked the best hikes, restaurants, art galleries, and historic sites you can see in just two days. You’ll love it so much you might just have to plan a trip back for some more.
Kick off your first day in Sedona with a delicious breakfast and a beautiful hike. Stop for breakfast at the Wildflower Bread Company, where you can fuel up on hearty and healthy menu items like frittatas, protein bowls, parfaits, and their delicious lemon ricotta pancakes. While you’re there, grab a sandwich to-go so you have a lunch on your hike.
There are many hikes in the region to choose from, based on your tastes and skill level. The West Fork Trail is the most iconic trail in Sedona. Over the course of this stunning 5.2 mile hike, you will cross over lovely Oak Creek, traverse beautiful red rock canyons, and cool down in a series of beautiful reflective pools. For something a little easier, try the Fay Canyon Trail, a flat route that skips the steep inclines and rocky descents but doesn’t skimp on the incredible views. Within this beautiful box canyon, you’ll encounter stunning red rock cliffs and cool forests of large oak and juniper trees.
No trip to Sedona is complete without a visit to Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village, an arts and crafts shopping district dedicated specifically to Mexican and Native American art. You could easily spend all day wandering around this beautiful space. With its cobbled stone walkways, groves of sycamore trees, stucco arches, and water fountains, Tlaquepaque is a beautiful local treasure. It is also one of the best shopping and gallery spots in Sedona. Go there to buy handcrafted jewellery, folk art, fine rugs, kitchenware, music boxes, and more.
There are many great places to grab dinner at Tlaquepaque as well. El Rincon Mexican Restaurant serves the finest “Arizona-style” Mexican cuisine in a warm & authentic setting. You’ll find classic Mexican dishes like fajitas and enchiladas with a unique Navajo/Hopi flair. If Mexican food isn’t your thing, try Rene Restaurant. In business for nearly 40 years, Rene is an elegant and romantic restaurant well-known for its fine European cuisine with Southwestern touches.
On day two, you’ll look back in time and up at the stars. After enjoying another delicious breakfast at Alma de Sedona Inn, head to the Palatki Heritage Site and its sister site, Honanki. These are the two best places to go to learn more about the history, art, and culture of Sedona’s original inhabitants, the Hopi. Located in the Coconino National Forest, Palatki and Honanki are home to some of the largest cliff dwellings of the Red Rock country.
After seeing ancient art, it's time to explore some more modern art. The natural beauty of Sedona’s red rock landscape makes it a mecca for visual artists from all around the globe. Sedona is home to 80 art galleries and shops showcasing local and international artists. Download the Sedona Art Walk map to plan out a self-guided walking tour of the city’s galleries and shops. Make sure you grab some lunch at the Hudson before heading to Gallery row. Here you’ll find everything from watercolor landscapes to handmade silver jewellery, handmade rugs to bronze sculptures.
Treat yourself to a delicious dinner at the Elote Cafe. The chef at Elote Cafe, Jeff Smedstat, spent over 20 years traveling through Mexico to learn about the country’s diverse culinary & cultural traditions. Each plate at Elote combines his expansive knowledge of Mexican cuisine with the unique tastes of the American Southwest.
Wait until dark and then it is time to do a little star gazing. Thanks to its high altitude, dry & clear weather, and lack of light pollution, Sedona is one of the best stargazing locations in the world. In fact, the views are so fantastic that Sedona has been awarded the prestigious Dark Sky Community designation by the International Dark Sky Association, a non-profit that works to halt the spread of light-pollution and protect the majesty of the night sky. You can take a tour with the experts at Sedona Star Gazing or head out on your own to some of Sedona’s unbeatable viewing locations and stargazing trails, such as the Baldwin Trailhead or Doe Mountain. Read our guide to stargazing in Sedona.
48 hours might not seem like a lot of time to explore Sedona, but as you can see, you can get a lot done in just two days. And if you didn’t see everything you wanted? Well, that’s just another excuse to come back.
Planning a trip to Sedona? Book a stay at the Alma de Sedona Inn for warm service and incredible red rock views.