Referred to as “one of Earth’s most beautiful places,” Sedona, Ariz. will knock your socks off. And when it does, your socks – and your shoes – will be coated with the dust of sandstone rocks and erosional wilderness from the sun-drenched trails.
It’s a breathtaking arrival into this geological wonder, with endless vistas of copper rocks and ruddy buttes encircling you. You simply don’t know where to look. It’s as if each pillar and peak screams “Look at me!” It’s a touristic, visual whiplash of awe everywhere you lay your eyes. It could be the aura of a destination uniquely named after the wife of Theodore Schnebly, the city’s first postmaster. Reportedly, when he needed to name the post office, he was told his surname “Schnebly” was too long, so it was suggested he name it after his wife, Sedona. Viewing the rock formations and imagining how the Sinaguan tribe once existed there is astounding. “Sin agua,” meaning “without water” in Spanish, is an accurate description of desert survival.
Hikers gather along the numerous trails of ferrous, red earth as they venture into the wilderness toward various summits of natural bridges, caves and mesas. Reportedly, geomagnetic points create a surging energy radiating from the Earth and iron rocks. A burnish of crimsons, corals and mauves stratified among the boulders and outcroppings dance off the glint of a radiant sun. Sunrise hikes motivate you to start your day early to avoid the heat. Although it’s 20 degrees cooler in Sedona than other Arizona cities, and it’s a dry heat, your activity level causes you to warm quickly.
The emotional oasis in this desert harbors a leisure-adventure vibe. It’s the balance between ambitious sunrise hikes with sunset-viewing zen. Unlike the instant gratification of museums and sightseeing, Sedona’s hiking trails offer a different tourism pace – it’s quite the opposite. Patient treks through miles of nature lead one to the summit of undulating valley views. The free trails provide your daily excursions. Wildflowers and palettes of maroon and straw florals soften the rugged scenery and cactus blooms.
Fitness satisfaction in solitude or among the community of hikers rewards you until sunset when you find yourself eager to stroll through Uptown Sedona. As the sunset curtseys over the quaint “uptown,” people linger with their refreshments or al fresco dining. Art galleries, spirituality classes, crystal shops and boutiques stimulate you and represent art imitating desert life. This all culminates into the soul-nourishing relaxation of Sedona.