Desert Redux: Sedona
Located about 116 miles north of Phoenix, Sedona has long been revered as a quiet retreat for reflection, meditation, mountain biking and hiking. Lined with red rock formations (some well-known examples include Cathedral Rock and Devil’s Bridge), the town is home to landmarks such as the Chapel of The Holy Cross, a small Roman Catholic church perched atop a steep redrock cliff. The chapel was commissioned by local sculptor Marguerite Brunswig Staude, and completed in 1956.
For outdoor adventure and hiking, make a pit stop at The Hike House, a bona fide base camp for gear, detailed trail maps based on just about any hiking level, and guided hikes from advanced, 5-6-hour Mitten Ridge option, or the moderate, 2.5-3-hour Red Rock Epic hike. Before hitting the trails, be sure to fuel up at the Energy Café with a smoothie bar, and hearty homemade treats such as Mama’s Red Rock Trail cookies, ranging from oatmeal to chocolate chip. At Red Rock State Park, a 286-acre nature preserve, choose from birdwatching tours to geology discussions.