Spring break is, tragically, over. The good news is, now we can start planning for summer vacations.
Tucked away amid a fortress of rolling mountains and mesas some 4,000 feet up emerges the staggering red rock country. It’s no all-inclusive resort on the beach in the Bahamas with some “shut the f**k up and party” package. No, it’s something much greater than what most people will never get to experience. It’s Sedona, Arizona, and these are the reasons why you should visit as soon as you can.
1. The Views
After driving along a meandering road carving through blunt, bland mountains and obscure tiny towns, peaks, buttes, mesas and mountains of crimson rock dressed in juniper jut up from the ground right before your very eyes. Slices of sandstone cut through the red rock and blend with the peachy pink sunset. The Camelback, Thunder and Bear mountains are like ancient beasts creating a barrier around the small civilization within their walls. Everything there is quiet, a real quiet undisturbed by the industrialization of more urban civilizations. It’s like traveling back in time. There’s not a star you can’t see in the night sky and not a breath of polluted air.
2. Endless Activities
Submerged in a sea of magnificent mountains, the exploration possibilities are endless. Sedona specifically is home to the most popular of the Pink Jeep tours in the U.S. and offers a variety of different tours for all tastes such as the adrenaline-fueled Diamondback Gulch tour, the Ancient Artifacts tour, the scenic rim tour, the broken arrow tour and the Grand Canyon premier tour. If you’re more of a do-it-yourself kind of person, there are a number of jeep, mountain bike and ATV rental stores so you can explore out into the wildlife and create a personal adventure of your own. Sedona is really a paradise for the outdoorsy, as a number of hiking trails (some safe, some dangerous) are readily available to the general public as well as free range camping.
Uptown Sedona is where you can find all of the boutiques, souvenir shops, restaurants and even some high-end fashion stores. The shops are walking distance from most hotels and are accompanied by an amazing view of the landscape at any angle. There’s a variety of unique gifts like handmade Navajo blankets and dream catchers, t-shirts dyed from the red stone dirt, handmade candles and chakra activating crystals. There are also the more tourist-oriented items such as the destination t-shirts, mugs, key chains and for those looking for a more permanent way to capture the beauty of Sedona, there are many local artists’ shops with hand-painted portraits and professional photographs of the breath-taking landscape.
4. The Vortexes
Sedona is an extremely sacred and spiritual area and it all orients from nature. You can feel this energizing power at certain spots called vortexes. They are thought to be conducive to meditation, healing and energizing because they harness the natural powers of the earth. There are quite a few different vortexes located in Sedona but many visitors often consider the town itself to be one giant vortex because everyone who visits leaves feeling elated and recharged.
5. Unique, Fun, Affordable
Not many people can say they’ve been to Sedona. It’s a unique vacation destination with a lot to offer with its old western “cowboys and Indians” vibe. Also, while some of the resorts uptown can be pretty pricey, you can book a chain hotel just a mile or two down the main road for a pretty decent price, especially if you split it with a group of friends for a few nights. Not to mention the views make every hotel, no matter how far out, seem like a luxury resort.