Destinations

Best Things To Do In Sedona, Arizona as a Van Lifer

Van life gives you the freedom to explore anywhere you want to go. Here are the best things to do in Sedona, Arizona as a van lifer!

Van life gives you the freedom to explore anywhere you want to go. If you’re looking for ideas, here are the best things to do in Sedona, Arizona as a van lifer!

Interior view from a van out to Sedona, Arizona
Photo by Jamie Leo

Sedona, Arizona is one of the most stunning natural wonders in the country. Known as Red Rock Country, it is encompassed by deep red rocks that stretch high above the city, making it incredibly scenic wherever you are. The evergreen vegetation is a stark contrast from the bold rocks, making it particularly beautiful and memorable! It is no wonder that this is a very common city for van lifers to visit, and I highly suggest that you make your way out there at some point if you have never been.

Best Things To Do In Sedona, Arizona

I spent about a week exploring Sedona and it wasn’t nearly enough time! There are numerous hikes and parks where you can spend your entire day basking in all of the natural wonders. One of the most notable parks in Sedona is Slide Rock State Park. This park is full of red rocks and a rushing river, which has carved out part of the rocks to form a natural waterslide. You can take a dive into the water and try out the waterslide if you dare. Or simply hang out on the rocks and enjoy the beautiful scenery. This is a great way to see the unbelievable views up close without having to do any strenuous hikes. It is also certainly a great way to relax.

Slide Rock State park featuring a natural waterslide
Slide Rock State Park. Photo by Jamie Leo

Amazing Hikes Near Sedona, Arizona

If you’re into hiking, Sedona is definitely the place to be. With over 100 hikes, you have the option to try something strenuous or take it easy with something light. The options are seemingly endless!

Devil’s Bridge Hike

One very famous hike in Sedona is the Devil’s Bridge Hike, which is rated to be fairly moderate. If you start from the Dry Creek Vista parking lot, you have the option to either walk along a scenic trail or simply walk the OHV road to get to the trailhead. This walk is about a mile, but the Devil’s Bridge Trail itself is not too long – it’s only 3.9 miles.

At the end of the trail, there’s a bit of tough rock scrambling to take you to the famous rock formation that has formed a “bridge” with a pretty steep drop-off. This is a great photo op spot for anyone traveling into Sedona, as you have a beautiful backdrop of red rocks and are sitting right on a natural wonder! It’s important to arrive as early as possible in order to avoid crowds. This is an extremely popular trail so the line for a picture on the bridge can take a long time to get through. I started this hike around sunrise and did not have any wait for a picture, but I can’t say the same for the people 10 minutes behind me!

Soldier’s Pass Trail

Another must-do hike is the Soldier’s Pass Trail, also rated to be fairly moderate. The hike itself is about 4.5 miles (and is dog friendly!) On this trail, you can find many incredible natural sights including a sinkhole and the Seven Sacred Pools. These are pools of water that were naturally carved into the rocks by a stream. The best part of this trail, however, is the caves that you can hike to! If you’re feeling risky, you can climb up into the cave for an even better view of everything around. This hike brings you as close as you can get to the rock formations that you can see all the way from town!

Keep in mind that the trailhead parking lot doesn’t open until 8 A.M. Locals who live near the trailhead will report anybody loitering in the neighborhood waiting for the parking lot to open.

Pro-tip: the Jordan Trailhead parking lot doesn’t have any particular hours and it leads to the Soldier’s Pass Trail, so it’s a great alternative!

Sleeping in Your Van in Sedona, Arizona

When it comes to crashing for the night, it’s important to note that sleeping in your car is illegal in Sedona. Please do not try to overnight in any public parking lots to avoid any trouble.

Luckily, Sedona is surrounded by free public campsites with plenty of room for everyone to camp out for the night. You are allowed to stay at the sites for up to two weeks. Some places might require you to display your interagency pass if you have one, so be sure to check out any signs as you enter the road! There are also quite a few Sedona campgrounds as well.

Due to its beauty, Sedona is pretty heavily trafficked. This makes it a great place to meet fellow van lifers! Whether it’s bumping into somebody in town or saying hello to your campsite neighbor, this town is certainly a beloved spot for van lifers everywhere. This can be a great way for you to meet more people in the van life community!

Sedona’s beauty is indescribable, and can only truly be experienced by going and seeing it all yourself. There is so much to do in Sedona and so many incredible people that you can bump into, making it a definite must-see for all van lifers everywhere! What are your favorite things to do in Sedona, Arizona?

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