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Top 10 Must-Do Sedona Hikes

Looking for fantastic hikes in Sedona? For nature lovers and adventurers who enjoy getting their hearts pumping during vacation, a trip to Sedona, in the gorgeous state of Arizona, is an absolute must. If you yearn for unforgettable, spellbinding hikes, then you simply have to hike Sedona’s many wonderful trails. On your visit, you absolutely have to hike Sedona. These are the most epic hikes in Sedona.

This mountainous and bountiful land is famous for a reason, and hiking in Sedona is one of the best things to do in Arizona. Be captivated by the red rock landscapes, luscious pine forests, wild creatures, birdlife, and steep canyons that make Sedona a hiker’s dream come true. All ages and fitness levels can find a Sedona hike to suit them, making this destination an unmissable and diverse Sedona hiking spot. You can even experience a Sedona Vortex Hike. Check out the top places to stay in Sedona.

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Hikes in Sedona are renowned as some of the best in the world, and this list of the 10 best Sedona AZ hiking trails explains why. Journey through the heart of Arizona’s wildlife, and explore the insurmountable beauty on these top Sedona hikes.

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Sedona Hikes

What to Bring for A Sedona Hike

To enjoy the best hiking in Sedona, you need to be prepared for the terrain and distance of your trails. There are certain must-haves that every hiker needs to bring with them, whether you’re doing the easy hikes in Sedona or the difficult ones.

Hiking Shoes

For the best experience while hiking in Sedona, it’s advised that you wear the best hiking shoes you can get your feet in. Make sure they’re suited perfectly for you, and that they are sturdy enough to hike the rocky canyons. I love these Columbia hiking boots.

Water Bottle and Sun Hat

Of course, Arizona has some very hot temperatures, so you will want to bring a water bottle that is big enough to carry a decent amount of water. You will also need to invest in a stylish hat to help shield you from the sun.

Backpack

Along with these essentials, bring a backpack that is light, easy to wear, and durable for what will be one of the most incredible escapes of your life. This is a must to carry your water on your Sedona hike. I always carry a great backpack or a sling bag when out on a hike to carry my water, snacks, car keys, etc.

Sedona Hiking Map

You will need a Sedona hiking trail map as well so that you can navigate your way through the many astounding canyons and trails. You can find and print maps of Sedona Arizona online that will help guide you through the Arizona hiking trails like a pro. 

One of the best alternatives to an actual Sedona hiking map is to download the Sedona hiking app, which covers all of the best hiking paths and it does not need a cellular network to navigate once you are on the trail.

 

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The 10 Best Sedona Hikes

These are some of the crème de la crème of Sedona hiking trails. Each route has its own character, reflected in the endlessly scenic surroundings. Hiking trails in Sedona, AZ will take you on a whirlwind adventure through the majestic and ancient lands of southwestern America.

If you’re ever wondering what to do in Sedona, Arizona, hiking is one of the most fun and popular things to do. This list will cover everything you need to know when hiking Sedona, all the best hikes in the area, and Sedona, AZ elevation. 

One of the other wonderful things about the Sedona hikes I have listed below is you won’t need hiking permits for any of them, so you can easily add these onto your own Arizona bucket list

Here are my favorite hiking trails in Sedona that will steal your heart. 

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1. Thunder Mountain 

With an already-enticing name, Thunder Mountain Trail is found on most hiker bucket lists and is one of the best hiking trails in Sedona. This hike is predominantly uphill, so be prepared for a workout as you scale this beautiful mountain. 

  • Elevation: 9409.45 ft
  • Duration: Approx. 5 hours
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Distance: Approx. 1.4 Miles
  • Level: Hard
  • Cost: Free

You can find a helpful Sedona hiking trails map at the beginning of the trail to help you navigate. The first part of this trail is sure to get your heart rate up, and the rest of the trail is made up of steep rock stairs that you will ascend. The last 0.2 miles are easy, so you can bask in your achievement and enjoy the stunning views that surround you. 

This is one of the best hikes in Sedona, AZ. Especially for those seeking a challenge with a huge reward. The summit point is called the Teacup, and it’s from here that you can marvel at the mesmerizing red rock formations that create Thunder Mountain.

One of the things you can expect to see during your hike is multiple rock cairns, built by people wanting to use these spots and maximize on Sedona’s energy vortexes. This spot also has one of the highest Sedona elevation levels.

Top Hiking Tip: You may see brightly colored flags on your way up the mountain, that’s because this magnificent trail is connected to Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park. Take a breather and venture here to see one of the most serene sites whilst hiking Sedona, AZ.

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Sedona Hikes

2. Airport Mesa

One of the best hiking trails Sedona, Airport Mesa is known as the sunset spot in Sedona’. This remarkable hike offers insurmountable views of the Sedona vortex and awe-inspiring landscapes of the famous red rock formations. 

  • Elevation: 314 ft
  • Duration: Approx. 3 hours
  • Type: Loop
  • Distance: Approx. 3.5 Miles
  • Level: Moderate
  • Cost: Free

Prepare to have your breath taken away, there is no other Sedona hiking trail that provides such scenic views. The trail circles the upper slope of Airport Mesa, and right from the get-go, you’ll be given the opportunity to enjoy views over the renowned Oak Creek Valley.

Expect plenty of sunshine along this trail, with the only shade being available in the last mile. This hike will take you to a pinnacle spot to watch the sunset over Sedona, so be sure to bring your camera. From here, you’ll see the most iconic mountain ranges, including Thunder Mountain. 

It’s because of the one-of-a-kind views and landscape of Airport Mesa Trail that it’s by far one of the best hikes in Sedona.

Pro Hiking Tip: Of all the hiking trails Sedona offers, this one is sure to leave you wanting more! Savor the moments and do this hike with a group of close friends or family to make it even more memorable.

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Sedona Hikes

3. The Devil’s Bridge 

This is one of the best hikes in Sedona. One simply cannot say they have explored the best Sedona hiking trails until they have done The Devil’s Bridge, AZ. This is one of the top Sedona trails for those seeking to bask in the most remarkable views and experiences offered in Arizona.

  • Elevation: 564 ft
  • Duration: Approx. 2 hours
  • Type: Out and back
  • Distance: Approx. 4.2 Miles
  • Level: Easy
  • Cost: Free

When it comes to taking the whole family along to Sedona, easy hikes like this one are the best option! Despite the intimidating name of Devil’s Bridge Trailhead, it’s one of the least challenging places to hike in Sedona. This makes it one of the best hikes Sedona has for families with kids. You’re also welcome to bring along your favorite canine companion, but be sure to keep them leashed.

Enjoy majestic red rock surrounds, wildflowers, and of course, the famous viewpoint of the Devil’s Bridge itself – be sure to take your picture here to be considered a hiking legend! This is one of those hiking trails that everyone dreams of going on, and it will surprise you with its outstanding beauty and charm.

Pro Hiking Tip: If you were wanting to make a list of the top 10 hikes in Sedona, the Devil’s Bridge would have to be on there. Not only is this one of the top hikes in Sedona, but it is also the biggest natural sandstone arch in the whole of Arizona! 

It is also apart of the Coconino National Forest, so be sure to enjoy the many flower varieties and wild animals you will encounter. 

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Sedona Hikes

4. Munds Wagon 

One of the best, and most famous, spots to enjoy hiking in Sedona, Arizona is on the Munds Wagon Trail. Not only is it jaw-dropping beautiful, but it also holds a lot of history, as it used to be a cattle route. 

  • Elevation:1600 ft.
  • Duration: Approx. 4 hours
  • Type: Out and back
  • Distance: Approx. 6.5 Miles
  • Level: Easy
  • Cost: Free

Mung Wagon trail is a journey not to be missed whilst in Sedona. Find yourself in awe with every step, as the majesty of the vegetation that is also a part of the Coconino National Forest.

To enjoy one of the more relaxing and casual Sedona day hikes, be sure to check out this unique Munds Wagon Trail. It is, hands down, one of the easiest Sedona hiking trails, and it’s picturesque-to-boot, which is why it could possibly be the best hike in Sedona.

Pro Hiking Tip: If you’re wanting a longer hike, you can use this opportunity to combine two or more hiking Sedona trails, as Munds Wagon Trail links to Schnebly Hill Trail, Margs Draw Trail, and Huckaby Trail. Since it’s one of the short hikes in Sedona, more experienced hikers may feel the urge to further explore.

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5. Red Rock State Park

For some of the best hikes near Sedona, don’t miss out on a trip to Red Rock State Park. If you’re looking for a way to bask in the most exhilarating hiking around Sedona, there’s no better place than on the Red Rock Trail!

  • Elevation: 3,900 ft
  • Duration: Approx. 2 hours
  • Type: Hiking
  • Distance: 5 Miles
  • Level: Easy
  • Cost: USD $7 for adults and USD $4 for kids.

This park provides an unforgettable red sandstone canyon contrast with green meadows on the outskirts of Sedona. The park aims to preserve the wild and ancient lands of Arizona, and protect the riparian habitat. This is a fantastic spot to enjoy Sedona hikes with water sources along the way, as there are natural wetlands and rivers.

With ‎286 acres of pristine wildlife in Sedona national park and 5 miles of interconnected trails to hike, you can really appreciate this outstanding wonder.

Pro Hiking Tip: This is one of the best places to enjoy the beauty of Oak Creek as well! The leisurely walk incorporates stunning views of this area. Red Rock State Park definitely provides some of the best hiking near Sedona!

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6. Doe Mountain 

Hiking in Sedona, AZ is inspired by the regal atmosphere of the huge red rock formations. Doe Mountain Trail is one of the best trails in Sedona because it captures this essence. It is one of the shorter Sedona AZ trails, but it is still completely captivating.

  • Elevation: 538 ft.
  • Duration: Approx. 1 hour
  • Type: Hiking
  • Distance: Approx. 1.6 Miles
  • Level: Moderate
  • Cost: Free

You can expect a flat-topped trail, adorned with a variety of breathtaking wildflowers, further adding to the scenic attraction of the red rock formations. It’s one of those places that makes all Sedona hiking easy to fall in love with.

Doe Mountain Trail is considered by many to be one of the best hiking trails in Sedona, AZ, and this is due to the outstanding views and gorgeous natural surrounds that grace it. It’s a short walk, but that in no way means that it is not one of ‘the great’ Sedona hikes. 

Pro Hiking Tip: When it comes to Sedona hikes, there is also more than meets the eye, and being a little adventurous can really pay off! You never know what else you’ll find along many of Sedona’s best hiking trails. 

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7. Fay Canyon

Fay Canyon is one of the top 10 Sedona hikes, offering something to enchant everyone. This is easily one of the best hikes in Arizona, spoiling hikers with one of the most mesmerizing Sedona waterfalls. As well as views that capture the ancient, stunning ambiance of the canyon. 

  • Elevation: 383 ft.
  • Duration: Approx. 1 hour
  • Type: Out and back
  • Distance: Approx. 2.6 Miles
  • Level: Suited for all skill levels
  • Cost: USD $5

Whether you are looking for easy Sedona hikes or more challenging trails, this one can be made to suit all skill levels as there are multiple ways to enjoy this trail, with rocky parts being an option for daredevils.

The hike has lots of shade provided by lush canopies and provides an exciting view of the canyons. This trail can be slippery due to loose red powder, so wear shoes with grip.

Pro Hiking Tip: Keep a Sedona trail map with you during this one, as you don’t want to get lost! Bears have been spotted along the trail, so keep this in mind whilst enjoying this hike.

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8. Bell Rock

Another one of the best Sedona trails is the Bell Rock Trail. This also happens to be a very popular tourist attraction in Arizona, so it’s usually very busy, but the crowds do not deter from the beauty. If you’re not sure what to do in Sedona, AZ, give this trail a try and prepare to enjoy every moment.

  • Elevation: 700 ft
  • Duration: Approx. 3 hours
  • Type: Loop
  • Distance: Approx. 1 – 1.5 Miles
  • Level: Moderate, escalating to difficult at the final ascent.
  • Cost: USD $5

Bell Rock was one of the very first red rock formations to be identified, and its name came from its uncanny resemblance to a big bell. You can find a very useful Bell Rock Sedona AZ  hike map that will show you where to ascend this trail at the beginning, just before you start on your hike.

Pro Hiking Tip: Beginners looking for easy trails in Sedona, can opt for the Bell Rock Pathway instead. It travels along the base of the formation along the southern side and connects with other fantastic trails, Courthouse Butte, Rabbit Ears, and Spaceship Rock.

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9. Cathedral Rock 

Cathedral Rock is one of the most photographed sites in Sedona. It’s famous for being a spectacular, natural sandstone buttle that complements Arizona’s striking blue skyline. It’s undoubtedly one of the 10 best Sedona hikes. The best place to photograph the Cathedral Rock is from the Red Rock Crossing in Sedona.

  • Elevation: 551 ft.
  • Duration: Approx. 2 hours
  • Type: Out and back
  • Distance: Approx. 1 Mile
  • Level: Moderate, with some parts that are difficult
  • Cost: USD $5

Cathedral Rock is one of those Sedona must-see attractions for hikers and non-hikers alike. This gorgeous hike showcases the most intricate desert habitats, amazing cacti, serene landscapes, and sweeping views. It’s also the best trail in Sedona for families with kids over 12 years old. 

The hiking trail takes you through the untamed wilderness of Sedona and leads past some of the most astounding views. Towards the end, you’ll climb up smooth red rock stairs that lead to the Cathedral Rock pinnacle. 

Rewarding, fun, and challenging – this is a must for those looking for the best Sedona day hikes. 

Pro Hiking Tip: Just before you reach the Cathedral Rock trail, there is a welcoming plateau. Stop here for a few moments and just take in some of the most wonderful views of Sedona.

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10. Boynton Canyon

When you decide to do a Sedona hike AZ, it’s most likely because you want to enjoy the iconic formations and atmosphere that have made Arizona famous. One of the best places to hike in Sedona for thrill-seekers is Boynton Canyon! Sedona, Arizona hiking is not complete without the addition of this marvelous adventure. 

  • Elevation: 810 ft.
  • Duration: Approx. half a day
  • Type: Out and back
  • Distance: Approx. 6.1 Miles
  • Level: Easy
  • Cost: USD $5

This hike offers some of the most eye-catching red rock formations, thriving desert habitats, mystical canyon walls, and magnificent native bird species. This is why it’s one of the 10 best hikes in Sedona. 

This hike is a magnificent chance to rejuvenate and enjoy some of the most gorgeous scenery in Sedona.

Be entranced by one-of-a-kind views of Sedona as you stroll this trail, and prepare for an entire morning or afternoon full of relaxing, yet heart-pumping fun. This is one of the most renowned Sedona hikes, inviting you to really get into the groove of the ancient land.

Towards the end of your hike on Boynton Canyon Trail, you’ll come to a steady incline that makes reaching the summit all that much more of a triumph. Along the way, the scenery couldn’t be more mind-blowing, featuring luscious green vegetation – it is one of the absolute best hikes in Sedona, AZ!

Pro Hiking Tip: Half a mile through this hike, you will encounter the steepest part of the entire trail. Be careful when you reach this, as there are a lot of loose rocks. 

MAP OF POPULAR HIKING TRAILS IN SEDONA

Here is a helpful map of the best Sedona hiking trails and their exact location. Hiking in Sedona is so popular and it helps that they are centrally located.  

Click the map below of the best Sedona hiking trails below.

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Last Thoughts on the Best Sedona Hikes

Sedona provides the best hikes in Arizona’s canyons! Now you know, when someone hikes Sedona, they’re in for unforgettable trails, ancient atmospheres, world-class sightseeing opportunities, and magnificent memories. When you decide to go on this once in a lifetime exploration, be sure to tick off some of these trails.

This Sedona hiking guide covers all of the best Sedona hikes to satisfy your wanderlust and feed your spirit of adventure. These hikes take you on whimsical journeys that will fill your heart with the magic of the desert. Enjoy everything from waterfalls to the best Oak Creek Canyon hiking views. You might also enjoy these hiking quotes and mountain quotes.

Hiking in Sedona is more than just getting some exercise. It’s the chance to be with nature, to gather your thoughts, to push yourself, and to form an intimate bond with your surroundings. If you ever find yourself wondering what to do in Sedona, the answer is simple – hike Sedona! What are some of your favorite hikes in Sedona?

OUR FAVORITE TRAVEL GUIDES: CLICK BOOK TO LOOK INSIDE↓

                        

If you are planning a trip to Arizona you may enjoy these related Arizona posts:

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