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4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21

Findlay, Ohio
7 posts
4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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Hello! If anyone would like to help give ideas on our upcoming trip itinerary, I’d greatly appreciate any input! My husband and I will be traveling from Ohio to Phoenix this Sat May 15-Sun May 23. It will be our first time to the southwest. We are hoping to do lots of hiking and exploring while enjoying an adults only getaway since we are leaving our 3 children (5,3, and 1) at home. I will be 22 weeks pregnant during the trip, but feel great and do not think that will give me many limitations besides not being able to do the Pink Jeep Tours or Hot Air Balloon rides. We will be flying in and out of Phoenix. Last 2 nights I booked in Scottsdale at a resort to relax and enjoy “doing nothing” before heading back home to our young kids!

8 nights: PHX---Page---Grand Canyon---Sedona---Scottsdale

Arrive 7:30 AM Sat May 15

Leave 11 AM Sun May 23

Lodging:

Sat May 15-Page

Sun May 16-Grand Canyon

Mon May 17-Village of Oak Creek

Tues May 18-Village of Oak Creek

Wed May 19-Uptown Sedona

Thu May 20-Uptown Sedona

Fri May 21-Scottsdale

Sat May 22-Scottsdale

From what I’ve been reading, we should plan to start our mornings in Sedona by being at the trail no later than 6:30AM if possible. Maybe pick one “popular” trail to do each of the 4 weekday mornings we will be there?

Devil’s Bridge, Bell Rock, Cathedral Rock, Broken Arrow. I’m sure every trail will be impressive to us as first timers, but would love to see some of the iconic Sedona landmarks.

And then plan for shorter or shady trails if possible for the afternoon, such as Fay Canyon Trail one afternoon?

Thanks in advance for any tips and recommendations!

11 replies to this topic
Atlanta, Georgia
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1. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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When in VOC try Bell Rock and Little Horse off AZ-179. Cathedral Rock would be a challenge, even trying to park is a challenge. From VOC you could go to iconic Chapel of Holy Cross... also off AZ -179.

From Uptown... Airport road overlook for view of Sedona from up high.

Any trail, or even just a drive for sightseeing .... go to red rock areas off Dry Creek Road in West Sedona. including Fay Canyon, Long Canyon , Birthing Cave trails. Yu could go up Oak Creek canyon to West Fork trail also, but be mindful that parking lot fills and you may need to wait , and traffic inbound to Uptown Sedona may be backed up as you get closer to town. Check Tlaquepaque shops and food. iconic.

Drive red rock loop, stopping for picnic lunch at Crescent Moon for view of Cathedral Rock (iconic)

Edited: May 11, 2021, 9:17 pm
New York City, New...
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2. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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What are you planning to do in Page? If something on the lake, you will likely need 2 nights due to the times boat tours are offered and the limited schedule for them. Otherwise, you might want to reconsider given the NN closures and the time it takes to drive there. You might find it more fulfilling to stay in Flagstaff and visit the national monuments (Wuptaki/Sunset Crater/Walnut Canyon) instead. Page is a good 5 hour drive from the airport on top of the getting up early for your flight.

If you aren't prepared for scrambling since you are pregnant, you may want to reconsider Cathedral Rock :) Devils Bridge also has some multipoint contact areas. You may be fine but I would hate for you to hike up to those portions and then realize what is involved and be disappointed. You know you and I have no idea of your hiking abilities so you may be fine.

The above post gave you some good alternate suggestions.

Sedona, Arizona
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for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
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3. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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Again, why are you going to Page? It’s a long way to go for a 5 minute photo op at HSBO, and as noted, you need 2 nights for anything on the water. Skip it. And extra night at Grand Canyon National Park would make more sense. Or go to Flagstaff or add time to Sedona. Try to find some time to relax there.

Why are you moving from VOC to Uptown? That’s a wasted day. You’ll be using your car each day, o matter where you sleep.

Findlay, Ohio
7 posts
4. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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For page, we were planning on getting there Saturday afternoon and visiting horseshoe bend. We thought one night would allow us enough time to do kayaks(start around 7) on lake Powell/hiking the open part of antelope canyon accessible by kayaks, and then head to the Grand Canyon.

Hopefully the two hotels in Sedona isn’t a big deal. We booked about two weeks ago and there weren’t many last minute options at the time that worked for our stay, so I just split it to two nights at different locations. We plan on being out most of the day and just using the hotel as a place for sleeping.

Findlay, Ohio
7 posts
5. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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Since my nights at Page were refundable(I had originally booked Sat and Sun night), I decided to take everyone's advice and skip Page for this trip. I'm sure it will be more enjoyable at another time without COVID closures.

I was able to snag a cabin at Bright Angel for the first night. Second night will be at Kachina Lodge. Ideally we would have the same place, but I don't mind being flexible and moving our belongings to our car while we explore for the day. Everything I read suggested it will be worth it vs staying outside of the park.

As far as hikes in Sedona, I'm pretty active and don't mind doing moderate hikes with some climbing needed. Just trying to avoid some that I see where it looks like one slip and you fall to your death, and also the ones rated as difficult where the majority of the trail is difficult hiking.

Findlay, Ohio
7 posts
6. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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So with our new itinerary of PHX--Grand Canyon--Sedona--Scottsdale/PHX, would you recommend Flagstaff as worth stopping at? If so, how much time and should we do it on our first day? It looks like we will be driving through it to and from the GC.

Also, from PHX, should we take the south or east entrance into GC? I know Google maps isn't the best, but it is suggesting the South entrance(3hr 41 min) vs the East entrance (3 hr 29 min). The route is the same until we arrive at Flagstafff.

Thanks!

New York City, New...
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7. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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We do this trip a lot with family/friends that visit our AZ home. We typically use the east gate which allows us to make a few stops on the way to the Grand Canyon. Those are Walnut Canyon (*) and the Wuptaki/Sunset Crater Loop. It breaks up the drive and the stops are very worthwhile. After entering the east gate, you can visit all (or as many as you wish) overlooks to the east of the Village Area as you head to your lodging. This also saves time by not backtracking to see the overlooks to the east. It will work out very well since you have 2 nights in the GCNP. BTW, the lines to enter the south gate make both gates about the same time total to the gate.

Use the full day for a short hike below the Rim. That hike does NOT need to be to the river - just turn around and return when you feel like it. General rule of thumb is that it takes twice as long to return as it did to go down. Honestly, we haven't found that to be true. Typically, there are way more stops for photos and just looking out than on the way back where you are facing into the canyon walls. But in any case, definitely turn around well before you are tired or when you've drunk about a 1/4 of your water. If you can, do S. Kaibab where the views are more expansive. This requires using a park shuttle to the trailhead (no parking there) so if it seems like too much hassle, then the Bright Angel Trail will be just fine. Be sure to visit the geology museum for a quick overview of the rock layers. It makes a nice walk from either of the lodges and you won't need to move your car. Note - the Visitors Center is closed so you can skip this area entirely. Use the rest of your cay to use the shuttle to Hermit's Rest. We then exit the south gate and head to Sedona.

Sedona - I would probably do Devils Bride with the understanding that it is going to be crowded and you will wait. The bridge is not as scary as it looks but is still intense if you have a fear of heights but that is such a short section for the photo op. The hike to the bridge has some multipoint contact but not big drop offs. If you aren't interested in the photo, skip this hike completely. It just isn't worth the hassle when there are other great hikes to be found. Others to consider, Boyton Pass (even to just the overlook is fine), something around Chicken Point (especially if you aren't doing a Jeep tour) and West Fork if you can go in the morning and be in line 15 mins or so before the parking lot opens. I would not do Cathedral Rock or Hangover :)

** Only stop at Walnut Canyon if you are doing the Island Trail. Otherwise you are just looking at the cliff dwellings from a distance. It isn't a hike but a set of paved stairs. If you can't handle this, the definitely don't bother with going below the Rim at the Grand Canyon. We like to use it as a test to gauge when we take friends to the GC. If you are still unsure after Walnut Canyon, then stick to the BA trail so you won't waste time going to the SK trailhead. The BA is right where the BA cabins are so it isn't a big time commitment if you change your mind a few feet in.

Edited: May 13, 2021, 2:27 am
Sedona, Arizona
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8. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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Good plan from dbmove. While following their route to the Grand Canyon National Park, I always include a stop at Cameron Trading Post. It’s your last opportunity for food and fuel until you reach the Grand Canyon Village and hotel zone. That will probably be 3-4 hours. It’s historic and run by the Navajo. Good food and an excellent museum next door.

Walnut Canyon and Wupatki are just east of Flagstaff. Unless you have some other feature attracting you there, no need to stop. Flagstaff is a college town with plenty of AZ, railroad and RT66 history, and other attractions, but it’s not a practical ‘stop by’ on the way to or from the Grand Canyon National Park.

Winter Haven...
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9. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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Dbmove says no parking at SK trailhead. What is closest parking for someone wishing to avoid the shuttle?

Sedona, Arizona
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10. Re: 4 nights in Sedona, itinerary help for next week May 17-21
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Closest parking is at the Visitor Center or Mather Point. Why wouldn’t you use the shuttle?

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