A great way to see the scenic beauty surrounding Sedona is by Jeep. There are several companies within the area that offer tours throughout the backcountry landscape via Jeeps, including Pink Jeep Tours (yes, the Jeeps are pink), offering adventures for the entire family. Even the littlest members of the family don’t have to miss out on these fun excursions, as Pink Jeep Tours allows kids as young as 18 months. They offer six different tours ranging from one-and-a-half hours to three hours. Their guides are highly experienced, and they work with the Bureau of Land Management to make sure the environment is proetcted. Other great companies offering family-friendly tours include Red Rock Western Jeep Tours and Arizona Safari Jeep Tours.
Grab your hiking shoes and swimsuits because a beautiful state park located north of Sedona awaits your family. Slide Rock State Park, a 43-acre historic apple farm, is guaranteed to provide a day of fun for the family, both young and young at heart. There is an entrance fee ($10 per vehicle and up to four adults – 14 and older – at the time of publishing), but it is worth it to experience the natural water slide. Made of red sandstone, kids and adults can slide down the nature-made toy and cool off in the water below. It’s a perfect reprieve on a hot summer’s day.
928 282 3034
Grab the entire family, load up the car and head south to explore the Montezuma Castle National Monument. Montezuma Castle is an ancient cliff dwelling, one the best preserved on the continent, built sometime between 1100 and 1425 CE and was home to the Southern Sinagua people. Today, the site is brimming with fun and educational activities for everyone in the family. Stroll along the trails, the four-legged family members are also welcome on the trail, while taking in the view of the magnificent architectural feat. Children can participate in activities, all the while learning about the history of the area, eventually earning their Junior Ranger Badge. There is even a day camp they can attend in the summer.
Make sure the young ones take a nap in the afternoon because they are going to want to stay up for this adventure. Sedona has vast clear skies that light up at night with brilliant, twinkling stars. As a result, it is a prime location to participate in some incredible stargazing. One venue to note is Sedona Star Gazing, which was voted ‘The Best Thing to Do in Sedona.’ The star gazing experience lasts about one-and-a-half hours, and children are welcome (there are some times when children have to be older than 12, but other times, younger ones are also invited to experience this nighttime adventure). They will absolutely love looking through the giant telescope.
Opened in 1973, Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village is a popular, fun arts and craft village that resembles Old Mexico. Located along the banks of Oak Creek, this village boasts stores, restaurants and a lot of art and crafts created by a slew of talented artists.There truly is something for everyone in the family. Parents will enjoy checking out the art and boutiques, while the little ones can explore the Tlaquepaque Toy Town, a store brimming with fun. There are also numerous events that take place throughout the year, including the Festival of Lights, Christmas celebrations, complete with Santa Claus, and much more.
With the incredible surrounding outdoors, it should come as no surprise that Sedona is an excellent area to explore on foot. There is a variety of places to go hiking, and with so many destinations to chose from, there is a trail for every skill level, meaning there is sure to be a perfect one that the entire family can enjoy. Families often rave about the Fay Canyon Trail. This hiking trail is little over two miles round trip, with many beautiful sites along the way such as breathtaking views of the canyons. Another fun excursion is Bell Rock, which is a red rock monolith that children are allowed to climb.
For those families with older children, why not take a Segway tour around Sedona to explore the sites. One company worth seeking out is Sedona Segway Tours, as they offer a variety of tours based on time and experience. Ranging from one to two-and-a-half hours, the tours include the Jordon Tour, which will take sightseers on a tour of the tourist area, the Tlaquepaque-Gallery Tour, and for the experienced riders, there is the Chapel of the Holy Cross Tour, an adventure that will take you to the historical chapel built into the red rock. Each tour also comes with training, so you’re better equipped to enjoy this experience to the fullest.
Why not experience Sedona from up in the air rather than the ground? With a hot air balloon ride, you and your family can do just that, so make sure the kids get a good night’s sleep because this experience only takes place at sunrise and lasts about three to four hours with about one to one-and-a-half hours in flight. Red Rock Balloon Adventures describes their hot air balloon rides as an ‘Aerial Nature Walk’, which is exactly what it will feel like as you float through the air while taking in the incredible scenery below.
Kids of all ages, including adults, will love this next family-friendly destination. A short drive from Sedona to Camp Verde, Out of Africa is an animal lover’s paradise, and if Africa is out of the question due to time and money, this is next best thing. It’s a wildlife park where visitors can experience a safari-like adventure. You will see animals such as Southern White Rhinoceros, black leopards, zebras, giraffes, grey wolves, grizzly bears, lions, and many others. Many of their animals are rescues, and the crew at Out of Africa are very much about conservation and education. You can watch shows like the predator feed, giant snake show or the ’Tiger Splash.’
Out of Africa, 3505 W SR-260, Camp Verde, AZ, USA, +1 928 567 2840
For a taste of the Old Wild West, be sure to add the Blazin’ M Ranch to your family fun list. Located about 20 minutes away from Sedona, this destination is set up like an old Western town, complete with shops, museums, and adventures galore. Vintage tractor rides, roping lessons, a shooting gallery and there is even a photo shop where the entire family can have a period photograph taken as a souvenir. After a full day of fun, families can then head to the on-site restaurant to have a ‘chuckwagon dinner’ and show, with tasty options like chicken and baby back ribs, baked potatoes, cowboy pinto beans, prickly pear cole slaw, biscuits, plus apple-caramel crisp.
Blazin’ M Ranch, 1875 Mabery Ranch Road, Cottonwood, AZ, USA, +1 928 634 0344