Sedona, AZ is home to beautiful red rock canyons, green valleys, plenty of sun, and local charm. From sampling wine and hiking to treating yourselves at a spa and shopping, you’ll feel rejuvenated in no time. Discover some of the top attractions in Sedona with our guide below.
Red Rock Scenic Byway
No trip to Sedona is complete without some time spent admiring the beauty of the Red Rocks, for which the area is famous. Take exit 298 off Interstate 17 to travel the 7.5-mile byway. Along the way, there are numerous trailheads and scenic overlooks. However, the joy of this excursion is simply in the admiration of the views that surround you at every given moment. We recommend driving it in both directions. That way, you can experience both perspectives. Plus, if you’re not traveling solo, it will allow you to switch drivers so one person can admire the sights while the other drives.
Sedona has an undeniable new age vibe. In fact, you won’t be in Sedona long before you start hearing about cyclones of energy that come from nearby vortexes. Many believe all of Sedona is a vortex. But, there are four primary vortexes throughout the city, each radiating a special energy that can be felt while in its presence. These energies are labeled “masculine” or “feminine,” and are marked by rock formations that emit said energy. One of the most popular vortexes is Airport Mesa. In addition to emitting serene energy, it also has one of the best 36-degree views of Sedona. Stop by a local New Age shop or the Sedona Visitors Bureau to get a map of the vortexes. Then, explore them yourself to see if you can feel the power of the vortexes.
Chapel of the Holy Cross
When it comes to free things to do in Sedona, you can’t overlook the Chapel of the Holy Cross. With a location along the Red Rock Scenic Byway, this marvel is easy to access. Built in 1956, this chapel is literally built into the rock walls of the canyon. As such, it definitely makes one wonder “How’d the do that?” However, the natural design blends seamlessly with the surrounding canyons and is an impressive sight to witness firsthand. Even if you’re not religious, a visit to the chapel is still a mist as it offers one of the best views of Bell Rock.To access the chapel, there is a steep access road. As a result, there is typically an escorted golf cart that transports visitors from the small parking areas to the chapel itself.
Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village
The Spanish-style courtyards of the Tlaquepaque (pronounced T-la-keh-pah-keh) Arts & Crafts Village are a wonderful place to window shop. Keep in mind, though, you will be tempted to spend money! However, that temptation is worth it as this collection of buildings creates a charming little Mexican hamlet worth exploring. Cobblestone walkways, vine-covered walls, and stone archways comings to create a one-of-a-kind shopping destination. As a result, it’s one of the best places to spend a pleasant afternoon in Sedona.
Of course, one of the best free things to do in Sedona is simply going for a hike. There are trails literally everywhere. As a result, it doesn’t take much of an effort to find a trailhead. Some of the most spectacular hikes include Bell Rock Loop, Cathedral Rock, Devil’s Bridge Trail, and Bear Mountain Trail.
Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park
Any visit to Sedona should include some time of peaceful reflection. And, where better to do just that than at the Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park. This 14-acre oasis features a 36-foot tall Buddhist structure (the Stupa) and a trail lined with trees and prayer flags. It is suggested you walk around the Stupa three rimes clockwise, keeping a focused intention in mind as you do. However, you can also simply sit and enjoy the quiet and beauty of the park too.
Main Street District
Main Street offers relaxing patios, spas, sidewalk cafes, shopping, restaurants, galleries, and so much more. In addition, the district offers many community events that are free to the public including the St. Patrick’s Parade & Festival, the National Day of the Cowboy Celebration, Main Street Paint Out, Uptown Safe & Fun Trick or Treat, and more.
Hot Air Balloon Excursions
Soar over gorgeous landscapes, entranced by the colorful canyons and green spaces beneath you. Departing near sunrise, guests can begin their day with awe-inspiring views and even finish the ride with a light breakfast and champagne. A truly unique experience, you don’t want to miss out on one of the top Sedona attractions. Three of the top-rated hot air balloon rides in the area include Northern Light Balloon Expeditions, Red Rock Balloon Adventures, and Sedona Hot Air Balloon Rides.
The local Sedona area is full of history, adventure, wine-tasting, and much more. Visitors can treat themselves to the local eats, take helicopter tours, sample regional wines, and explore the days of the Wild West. Take the Tombstone Day Tour and explore the city’s infamous Wild West past. Delight in sweeping views of the Grand Canyon South Rim, scenic Route 66, and historic Williams with the Color & Canyons Tour. Explore historic Old Town Cottonwood in the center of the Verde Valley with the Wine, Food, Spirits & Shopping in “Old Town” Wine Tour. And so many more!
Breweries & Wineries
Spend the day sampling delicious rich wines made in the Verde Valley or brews with a gorgeous mountain backdrop. Wine tours include A Sedona Wine Lover’s Experience, Wine Tours of Sedona, and the Terrior of the Verde Valley Wine Trail Tour, among others. Wine tours enable you to sit back in a comfortable passenger van as you drink your way through wine country. Furthermore, Sedona offers top-notch brews as well at breweries such as Sedona Beer Company and Oak Creek Brewery & Grill.