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Sedona Views and activities

Things To Do In Sedona: Visit The Vortexes

The iconic vortexes in Sedona are powerful, transformational energy centers that are found in specific locations throughout Red Rock Country. These “vortexes” are geomagnetic points in nature where electromagnetic earth energy is said to swirl and effect the surrounding area, promoting balance, spiritual intuitiveness and healing to those who come in contact with them. The three most common types of vortexes are magnetic (feminine energy), electrical (masculine energy) and balanced vortexes.

Magnetic vortexes have a feminine or “yin” energy. The energy is nurturing, soft and welcoming and promotes kindness, compassion and patience. It facilitates inward activities, such as contemplation, meditation and reflection. (Cathedral Rock is a magnetic vortex)

Electrical vortexes have a masculine or “yang” energy. The energy promotes strength and is very invigorating, facilitating clarity of mind, focus and physical energy. Electrical vortexes are perfect for setting intentions and increasing resolve and stamina. Some say they are like a healthy dose of caffeine! (Bell Rock is an electrical vortex)

Balanced vortexes are a mix of both electrical and magnetic energy, yin and yang. Balanced vortexes help you to see things from a larger perspective, gain clarity and develop a higher vision for your life. (Boynton Canyon is a balanced vortex)

In Sedona, there are four notable vortexes: The Airport Vortex, the Red Rock Crossing/Cathedral Rock Vortex, the Boynton Canyon Vortex, and the Bell Rock Vortex. Below is an overview of each of these vortexes:

Airport Mesa Vortex

The Airport Mesa Vortex boasts masculine energy, offers panoramic views of all of Sedona and is close to the center of town. Opt to venture onto the trail, and you’ll experience a vertical hike (not for everyone) to a saddle with spectacular views. Be sure to look out for the twisted tree trunks which are a sign of the swirling vortex energy. Airport Mesa is a popular spot, so expect to see other hikers, vortex hunters and sightseers along the way. It is recommended to venture out later in the day so that you can enjoy the gorgeous sunset and city lights.

Getting there: From the roundabout junction of Hwys 179 & 89A, go 1.1 mile west on 89A and turn left on Airport Rd. Go 1/2 mile up Airport Rd. to the parking area on the left. From here, you will see the trailhead.

Cathedral Rock/Red Rock Crossing Vortex

The Cathedral Rock/Red Rock Crossing Vortex is not only one of the most energetic places in Sedona, but offers some of the most incredible views as well. You can enjoy the vortex’s energy and a leisurely hike around the base near the water via the Templeton trail to Oak Creek. This trail leads you by Buddha Beach, where visitors can dip their toes in the water and look for the rock cairns that previous passers-by left. For the experienced hikers in proper gear, you can climb up the Red Rock spires to the saddle where the energy is the strongest (exercise caution if you decide to climb – this route is steep and dangerous). The energy at the Cathedral Rock vortex is said to strengthen the feminine side and is calming, intuitive and comforting.

Getting there: The most direct route to Cathedral Rock is from the Village of Oak Creek. You can take Back-o-Beyond Rd from Hwy 179 just over 1/2 mile to the parking area at the base of Cathedral Rock, and then hike up the creek bed toward the center of Cathedral Rock. You can also access via Verde Valley School Road by driving to the end, then walking along the other side of Oak Creek.

Alternatively, you can drive 4.3 miles west on 89A from the roundabout junction of Hwys 89A & 179, and turn left on Upper Red Rock Loop Rd. From here, go 1.8 miles and turn left on Chavez Ranch Rd. Follow the pavement .8 mile and turn left into Crescent Moon Park (fee to enter). Drive as far into the park as possible, then walk to the creek. This route provides a great view of Cathedral Rock.

Boynton Canyon Vortex

The Boynton Canyon Vortex is one of the few Sedona Vortexes that you can actually reach out and “touch”. This vortex can be accessed from Boynton Canyon Trail – only about 1/2 mile from the parking area and a leisurely hike. It is said that there are actually two vortexes here, one at the tall Red Rock named “Kachina Woman” off to the east, and the other at an unnamed formation off to the west. Boynton Canyon is believed to be the birthplace of humans in the Apache culture and the Kachina Woman is an important piece of this history. This area is a beautiful destination to hike around at your own pace and explore the beauty. Look out for energy circles and rock cairns which past visitors have left behind. This vortex is said to facilitate a balance between the masculine and feminine side, or a yin/yang balance.

Getting there: From the roundabout junction of Hwys 89A & 179 at the center of town, head west on State Route 89A for 3 miles to Dry Creek Rd and turn right (north). Stay on this road until it ends (roughly 3 miles), where you’ll turn left onto Boynton Canyon Rd for another 2 miles until you pull into the parking lot on the right (it is well-marked).

Bell Rock Vortex

Bell Rock is an iconic Red Rock formation located just north of the Village of Oak Creek, and distinct shape makes it an easy one to spot. There are several ways to access the Bell Rock Vortex, which allow people of all hiking levels to come in contact with the energy present here. There is a loop trail that winds around the base of Bell Rock and offers a beautiful perspective of the formation itself. For the more adventurous (and experienced), the climb up Bell Rock is more than worth it. As you ascend up the rock, the views are breathtaking, but the higher you go the more dangerous so be safe! The energy is strong no matter where you are on the rock.

The energy at this vortex is very strong – no climbing required. The Bell Rock Vortex is said to strengthen all three parts – the masculine side, feminine side, and balance.

Getting there: Park in the North Bell Rock parking area and head to Bell Rock Trail. Follow it to Courthouse Butte Loop Trail and either continue on Bell Rock Trail to explore the Northeast area of Bell Rock or turn right onto Courthouse Butte Loop for 500ft to a sign post on your left. Turn left here and begin climbing up towards Bell Rock. Pay close attention to the rock cairns and between the 10th & 11th cairn turn right and head towards the large flat rock shelf where you begin your to climb to Meditation Perch. The climb is worth the effort but be extra cautious and wear proper attire.


If you’re looking for a guide to the Sedona vortexes, there are a number of companies that lead tours of the vortexes via Jeep, hike, or even guided meditation or yoga near a vortex.

Orchards Inn provides upscale, comfortable sedona accommodations in the heart of Uptown, near all of the Sedona vortexes. Browse our special offers and make your reservation today.

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