Looking for the best hikes in Sedona? Here are three great Sedona hikes that give you amazing views and drool worthy photo opps.
Sedona, Arizona is truly incredible. While the Grand Canyon is awe inspiring, I prefer hiking the majestic red rocks of Sedona. Everywhere you look, you’re surrounded by beautiful red cliffs, that make the most incredible backdrop.
The best part about Sedona Arizona is that there are literally hundreds of hikes to choose from! While awesome, it can be overwhelming. Here are three of the best hikes in Sedona we’ve found: best Sedona hikes meaning best views. Since we’re photographers, we’re all about them views! If you’re looking for hard core intense mountain hiking, this isn’t the list for you. But if you’re looking for drop dead gorgeous views and photo opps, keep reading!
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Sedona Hike 1: All About That View (Secret Slickrock)
Our first best Sedona hike is nestled behind Cathedral rock, giving you all of the amazing views of this monument without so many crowds. The “hike” is called Secret Slickrock and it is a VERY easy, very short 1/2 mile from the trailhead to the wide open views of Cathedral Rock. If you’re lucky, there will be pools of water filled with rain reflecting the rocks and the sky! This is an incredible secret viewing spot and not to be missed! As you can see, these views are otherworldly.
Secret Slickrock is a great to do with kiddos: just keep in mind you’ll have to corral them once you get to the viewpoint because there are no fences! Larson (age 2) loved throwing rocks into the pools of water. But he does tend to run quickly so we kept a VERY close eye on him. Mostly, we kept him in our hiking backpack while we snapped photos.
The Secret Slickrock trailhead has a very small parking lot, so aim to get there early or on less busy days! Follow the signs for Secret Slickrock.
Sedona Hike 2: Simply Beautiful (Teacup Trail)
Our second best Sedona hike is classic Sedona! Starting at the edge of a neighborhood, you slowly climb towards the magnificent red rocks until you are practically hugging them. The trail is nice and wide at most parts and the biggest obstacles are avoiding the cactus! You get truly beautiful views and lots of varied landscape, but the hiking difficulty level is beginner.
For our toddler Larson, we mixed hiking with him in our toddler carrier and letting him run free. Again, throwing rocks was a huge highlight in his book.
The Teacup Trail parking is at the Sugar Loaf Trailhead. There’s a mid-sized parking lot available. We did about 1.5 miles of hiking out-and-back. Many different trails connect from this point, so you could spend a whole day exploring if you wanted to! Just make sure to pay attention to the signs on the trail.
Sedona Hike 3: The Instagram Star (Devil’s Bridge)
And our final Sedona hike: the perfect photo opp! Sedona has become very popular over the past couple of years and you’ll find slow traffic and completely filled parking lots on busy weekends. There’s a good reason for all of this: Sedona is amazing! And Devil’s Bridge is one of the most famous of Sedona hikes.
Maybe you’ve seen in on Instagram? Devil’s Bridge is a beautiful natural arch at the top of a Sedona canyon. The hike itself requires a bit of scrambling and has some elevation gain, so it’s definitely a more moderate hike. When we went there was a crowd at the top taking turns for portraits along the bridge: and lots of nervous people with queasy stomachs. It’s not as scary as it looks! But we also didn’t allow our toddler out on the bridge: he’ll have to wait a few more years for that!
For the Devil’s Bridge hike, many people park at the Devil’s Bridge parking lot. However, we recommend parking at the Mescal Trailhead and following the Chuck Wagon trail to connect to the Devil’s Bridge trail.
Where to stay in Sedona?
When we stayed in Sedona, Arizona most recently, we stayed in this Hilltop Lounge Airbnb. It’s a bit pricey, but the views were absolutely incredible! A favorite memory is drinking wine and eating a picnic dinner on our patio watching the sun set.
And that’s it: three Sedona hikes we love to recommend!
How about you: have you been to Sedona? What hikes have you enjoyed?
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About the Authors
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.