Sedona was Day 8 of our US Road trip. We got up early and left Palm Springs. The plan was to have a quick drive through the south entrance of Joshua Tree National Park and have lunch here. We could not get over the difference in the landscape from the north entrance - so much flatter, not so much of the rocky landscape and so much less vegetation.
After a quick stop we headed off on the freeway to Sedona. We had a picnic lunch at an abandoned roadside truck stop. I am not sure what it was but this place - it was a little eerie, but so beautiful. The heat of the day was fierce. This abandoned truck stop made for a great place to stretch small legs and have a good break to walk around the area.
We arrived late evening to Sedona to the glowing cliffs. We had no idea what to expect when arriving to Sedona. The flat desert and different landscape made this area beautiful. We stopped over at Bell Rock to watch the sunset and have a quick stretch of the legs before arriving at our hotel.
We arrived at our hotel Sugar Loaf, which was basic in decor but had incredible friendly service. It had a pool and was walking distance to wholefoods and some great cafes. Our first night food was at an incredible Paleo restaurant that was walking distance from the hotel. The food was unbelievable and catered for the whole family. Our boys loved this place and I highly recommend a visit to Paleo Brio Healthy Kitchen when visiting Sedona.
The next day we woke up early as you do when travelling with three kids, one being a baby. We had a modest breakfast at the hotel – the boys loved the pastries that the hotel provided.
We walked to wholefoods to grab some snacks and much needed bulletproof coffee. We had been making these in Australia and to see these available on coffee menus in the United States had us so excited.
To be honest we don’t plan out our days, which we should when travelling to a tight timeframe. We have places we want to visit, but also have to work around how the kids are feeling, especially when travelling with a baby. Some days we could punch it further than others. So today was one of those days that we pushed it. We had so many places we wanted to visit but were super limited to our timeframes. To be honest a good week is needed to explore Sedona at a manageable and happy pace.
We hired an off road Jeep for the day through red rock rentals, which was also just up the road from us. We did this with all three kids including the baby. We had read on forums that some of the off roading was rough. I'm not going to lie, we took the easy family friendly routes and still some of them where very rough and dusty.
Would we do it again? Absolutely. We fitted our car seat in and had a muslin wrap that we popped over the baby when it got dusty. Did they love it? All three loved it and it was a successful day out with the kids.
Exploring off road was so much fun and the map was so easy to follow. We were nervous about navigating ourselves, especially off road with three kids. But to be honest, the company had made it super simple and provide you with a comprehensive map and photos. They also provide the kids with goggles and safety helmets. I cannot recommend this company enough.
A half day was perfect for us. By lunch time, the sun got hotter and it became the perfect time to return back to our hotel for a bite to eat.
We finished off the day at the Slide Rock. I would say this is a must with kids. Our kids still talk about this incredible place. Be warned it is 'touristy', but not to the stage that the sights cannot be enjoyed. The canyon is pretty breathtaking and a cold stream runs through the middle. The water is probably the coldest I have ever dipped my toe into.
The name slide rock indicates exactly that - a place where people slide down the rocks through the rapids. Both our boys attempted it over and over and loved it. They could not get enough of it. We got around exploring with a baby carrier. The walk down to the canyon is easy but steep with full steps most of the way down. This was definitely a highlight of our whole trip and we stayed in the national park until close. We loved it.
Dinner saw us return to the Paleo restaurant after a huge day of activities and exploring.
Although we had two nights we really only had one full day of exploring. Sedona had our heart and to be honest it is definitely a place we are looking forward to returning to as we felt we hardly scratched the surface. If you are also on a road trip or passing by, this is a must do spot.
We stayed at
Sugar Loaf. This place was a little dated in décor but made up for it in incredible customer service. In my opinion, a great location and walking distance to wholefoods and some great restaurants, but also out of the hustle and bustle of the main street.
Paleo Brio Healthy Kitchen I highly recommend this place. We loved it and returned twice.
Bell rock Beautiful place to visit on sunset and some great walks around the base of the rock.
Red rock rentals- Incredible company and so helpful with the kids. We found the customer service outstanding and strongly recommend this company for off roading and Jeep rentals.
Slide rock national park: Absolute highlight for our kids and a great national park. Don’t forget to pack your swimmers, a towel and a warm change of clothes. We could of spent a whole day here.