Hiking in Sedona, Arizona

We've spent a lot of time in Sedona and have plenty of recommendations!

Hiking in Sedona, Arizona
View from Submarine Rock ©Donetta Dalman

One of my passions is hiking and it’s something I discovered later in life.

I had never gone hiking until we started on our full time travel adventure and visited an area in Colorado that was known for hiking. My husband and I decided to give it a try and instantly fell in love. We’ve been hiking all over the country now and love every minute of it!

Well, maybe not every minute — there was that time we hiked a mountain near Estes Park called Twin Sisters that ended up being MUCH harder than anticipated and I thought I might die on the mountain.

That’s a story for another day. 😉

One of our favorite places to hike is Sedona, Arizona. We had many people tell us that we needed to visit there when we asked where we should go as we began our travel adventure and they weren’t wrong.

From the first moment we laid eyes on the area we knew we loved it. And there are SO many hiking trails! You could spend months in the area and never hike all the trails.

I’ve posted about our experiences on our Facebook page, and we’ve also written about some on our website, but I thought I’d share a few thoughts about our recent visit to Sedona this month.

One of the places we love to stay when we’re in Sedona is the Bell Rock Inn. It’s a great location a little south of “downtown” Sedona in the Oak Creek Village area and it’s close to a lot of different hiking trails — many of them are even within walking distance of the resort.

Some of the trails we enjoyed near this area are Big Park Loop trail, Bell Rock Pathway to Big Park Loop trail, Submarine Rock trail, Chapel Trail, Slim Shady and Made in the Shade trail, and Cathedral Rock Trail.

There are tons of other great trails but these are probably the favorites on the south side of Sedona.

We use the All Trails app and HIGHLY recommend it!

You can see what rating the trail has so you know if it will be tough or easy, as well as how long the hike will be. You can also download the map for easy navigation before you go in case you don’t have cell service in the mountains.

Remember to be prepared. You don’t want to get lost out there! 😳

It’s also fun to record your hikes and then be able to look back over your personal stats to see what you’ve accomplished.

I told my husband on one of our hikes that sometimes the fact that I’m recording the hike makes me push through even when I might feel like giving up. Sometimes I just start feeling tired or sore and feel like taking a shortcut back but because I want to show a completed hike I keep going and challenge myself.

It gives a great sense of accomplishment to see that completed banner across the hike on the app. 🥇

Some helpful hiking tips for Sedona.

We’re not hiking experts by any stretch of the imagination but we’re learning a lot on our trips into the great outdoors.

Here’s some advice we offer if you’re going to hike in Sedona.

Start early. People get to the trailheads early so if you don’t beat the rush, you probably won’t find a parking spot. Some of the parking areas are super small too so there’s not a ton of space.

Bring water. Make sure you have plenty of water to drink. You can quickly find yourself in a dangerous situation if you don’t have plenty of water. Better to have too much than not enough.

Purchase a pass. You must have a parking pass for most, if not all of the trailheads. You can purchase this at the Sedona Chamber of Commerce. If you have a national park pass, you can just display that in your windshield.

Pack accordingly for your hike. You may not feel like you need much gear for a simple hike, but I recommend being more prepared for three mile hikes or more. We like to take snacks, a rain jacket, water, and my husband always has a survival kit.

Be a friendly tourist. It goes without saying that we should be kind to others and respect the rules of the area (they are posted everywhere). Don’t assume it’s just you out there — be courteous to others trying to enjoy nature. :)

So if you’re looking for a great place to visit and especially if you love hiking, I would definitely make sure Sedona is at the top of your list of places to go.

I promise you won’t regret it!

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