There is an old saying,

"God created the Grand Canyon, but he lives in Sedona."

One trip to Sedona and you know it has to be true.

Sedona Blog Home

Take A Train Ride While In Sedona

While you are in Sedona you might want to consider taking a train ride on the Verde Canyon, Rail Road Train. 23 miles and 37 minutes away, South West of Sedona you can jump aboard the train and let it take you back into time.

The trip is an experience you will not want to miss. You will enjoy a 4 hour look into the unspoiled nature along the Verde Canyon.The railroad was originally built to haul copper ore from Jerome to the Clarkdale smelter. Jerome used to be a big mining town from the mid 1800's through the early 1900's.The smelters are all gone now, closed for good in 1953. However, the train remains. It was purchased and turned into a pleasure train beginning business on July 4th, 1997. You will be reminded of the mining days when you see the 40-acre man-made mountain and old power plant at the beginning of the trip. The slopes are stained green from the malachite ore.

You will also get to see a cliff dwellings built by the Sinagua Indians in the 12th century,an old ghost town, clear waters of the Verde River, You might even get to see a Bald Eagle nesting. We were able to see one along the cliffs as we rode past. That was a once in a life time thing to witness. You can also see Golden Eagles and red-tailed Hawks.

The Verde River which formed this canyon snakes alongside the tracks and provides water and soothing scenery to an otherwise dry land. All the train engines and cars are restored vintage machines and the ride takes about four hours. It is a leisurely pace with plenty of time to talk with fellow travelers or contemplate while watching the west slip by.

The train has panoramic windows, so you won't miss out on any of the things pointed out by the train's narrator. There are two classes of tickets, coach which is $39 adult; $24.95 child under 12; $35.95 senior over 65. There is a snack bar for you to munch on while you are riding and they do sell drinks. We chose Coach were seated on couches with a coffee table in front of us. We were quite comfortable.

First class is $59.95 for all riders. Coach has Pullman-style seating with two seats on either side of a center aisle. There is a snack bar. In first class, you will find living room-type seating and complimentary appetizers and beverage service.And for those passengers wishing to get closer with nature, try sitting in the open-air car. This is available all 4 seasons.

For more information you can call 1-800-293-7245 or visit their website in the links below.Also please note: the train does not run on Monday or Tuesday.

Click Here For The Verde Canyon Rail Road

Click Here For The Sedona Verde Valley Site

Click Here To Read More About The Train

Click Here For Another Article About The Train

Click Here For Yet Another Article

Jump Aboard the Verde Canyon Train, Let's Go!

Sedona Transportation

When you are visiting Sedona you might not want to rent a car and it's good to know there are other options to get around Sedona.

First of all, there are companies to get you from the airport to Sedona. It's about $50 one way for a basic shuttle and the trip is about 2 hrs. long.There are also limos you could consider. But it is a great time to unwind and take in all the beautiful scenery. I've never taken one but I have seen the shuttle vans & limos all over Sedona so I assume many people use the services frequently.

Click here for Airport Shuttle Information

Click here for Airport Limo Information

Now for some free transportation you can jump on the Sedona Road Runner. It is a free service but I am sure the drivers appreciate a tip. The service runs every 15 minutes and has pick up and drop off at all the shopping areas of Sedona. It's a quick and fun way to get around. We have used this service so we don't have to deal with parking and it has worked out great. So go ahead and jump on the Road Runner for quick trip to any shopping area. The Road Runner also is a "trolley" so make sure you get on the Road Runner which is free instead of the Sedona Trolley which is a tour trolley that you will have to pay for.

Click here for FREE Transportation Information


Also, as I mentioned, there is the Sedona Trolley. It is a tour Trolley that will take you all over Sedona to see the views. It's a great way to get familiar with Sedona when you first get into town. They offer 2 tours to get you familiar with the area. You can take 1 tour for $11 or both tours for $20. While I have never been on the tour, I think it would be a great way for someone to learn the area when they first arrive in Sedona. Especially if you didn't have a car.


Click Here to Watch Video For Sedona Trolley

Click Here For Sedona Trolley Information

As far as seeing any of the sites in nature. There is always the tour companies. They can take you to see the ancient ruins, or to the top of a mesa for a breath taking view. There are plenty to choose from and each have their own signature tour they offer.

Pink jeep even offers hiking tours for those of you that want to get out and do some exploring. Their tours start at $45 for an adult.

Look around and see what each one offers and you can decide from there. You can go ahead and wait until you get to Sedona and do some compairing. They rarely are fully booked so you can make your selection when you arrive in town.

So as you can see, getting around Sedona is easy. Just relax and enjoy!

Click Here For Pink Jeep Tour Information

Click Here For Sedona Off Road Adventures

Additional Tour Companies:

Click Here For Sedona Jeep Tours

Click Here For Red Rock Jeep Tours

Click Here For SafariJeep Tours

Mountain Bike Riding In Sedona

Mountain bike riding in Sedona is truly impressive to say the least! It has miles of spectacular single track with beautiful scenery and nature. You just can't go wrong when visiting the Sedona area.

The trails offer all of the qualities that a good biking area can possibly have. There are spectacular rides all over Sedona that will offer some of the most incredible scenery that anyone will ever experience while biking. Along the ride you will want to stop and pay attention to the views as you are presented with a full 360 degree view of Sedona.

Make sure you pack plenty of water and your camera. This way you will be able to remember how special this place really is.

Sedona offers easy trails and all the way to the extreme challenging as well as the down right insane trails. It has trails for all skill levels.

The sandstone makes for some excellent traction while maneuvering through some of the short and technical sections. You will find most of the trails are hard-packed and can be taken fast or slow if you prefer.

It will be hard for you to determine what is more exceptional, the scenery or the riding. The combination of both is what makes riding in this relatively untapped cycling area so special.

You can take a tour or rent a bike and set out on your own with a buddy but make sure you have the proper maps, water, equipment and a heart for adventure!

Click Here For Sedona Century Bike Tour

Click Here For Sedona Trails And Description

Click Here For Sedona MTB Adventures

Click Here For Mountain Bike Heaven

Click Here For Absolute Bikes

Click Here For 40% Off Rental Coupon

Here are a few videos I found to share. Enjoy!

Casino Gambling While In Sedona? It's True!

If you are looking for some action in the evenings you might just enjoy a trip to the Cliff Castle Casino while in Sedona. This casino is located 29 miles from Sedona and is about a 40 minute drive. It is in Camp Verde and it is owned and operated by the Yavapai-Apache Nation. So if the dark starry nights in Sedona are boring to you, then you might want to take a trip to Camp Verde and visit the Cliff Castle Casino.

It's not Vegas but it is nice for a change of pace. When we went I can tell you that the building looks newer and was nice and the staff was friendly. But it was pretty smoky there so if smoke bothers you, you might want to pass on this one.

It is located at:
555 Middle Verde Road Camp Verde, Arizona 86322-8561
General Information - (928) 567-7900
FAX - (928) 567-7901
Toll Free Hotel Reservations - (800) 524-6343
Hotel Fax - (928) 567-9455
Hotel Reservations - (928) 567-6611
Toll Free Acronym - (800) 381-SLOT

The casino is opened 24 hrs a day and boasts 140,000 square feet of gaming area. It features 565 gaming machines, 18 gaming tables for poker and blackjack, they offer keno and have 3 bars and 4 restaurants and 82 hotel rooms if you would decide to spend the night.Complimentary Drinks, convention and meeting space,Free Parking, Free Valet Parking, Gift Shop, Handicap Access, Swimming, Swimming Pool, Tournaments for competitive gamblers. They even have what they call "Roving Concierges" which sole job is to walk around and make sure that the guests are happy.


For kids, there is plenty to keep them busy. The Casino also offers an arcade, babysitting/daycare services, a 20 lane bowling center, a great kids program called New Horizon Kids Quest, Inc. So the kids might enjoy it as much as the parents.

Click For Cliff Castle Casino Web Site

Click Here to Request Information From Cliff Castle Casino

Cliff Castle Casino Commercial

Celebrities In Sedona?

I am sure as you are visiting Sedona you will hear of all the celebrities that lived or still live in Sedona. I know we have heard many over the years. Lucille Ball's old house, Nick Cage, Johnny Depp, Madonna, the list goes on.

Timeshare sales people like to glamorize the area as do the jeep tour drivers. Makes for some good conversation and makes Sedona even more appealing. Like it needs any help!

On one trip we had a women that was working in the Robert Shields Studio at the Y (which is now out of business) tell us that Nick Cage came in and was ordering his furniture for his home that was in escrow.

We later found out that he actually does love Sedona and often came to Sedona to vacation when he was married to Lisa Marie Presley. He wanted to have a home in Sedona and was even in escrow for a home in an exclusive area near the airport but we were told that at the last minute he dropped out of escrow. He wanted to own the airspace above his home and that can't be sold. I don't think he would have lived in Sedona full time anyway as Nick Cage is one of the Celebs that likes to collect homes as a hobby.

On the same trip we were told that the monster house by the chapel was Nick Cage's, Johhny Depp and then finally we were told it was the Dr. who invented the laser for Lasik eye surgery and he is from Romania.

We've been told "Madonna lives over there", or "the green house you see on the side of the hill by Snoopy rock was Lucille Ball's house".

With so many conflicting stories, who knows what the truth is. But chances are if it is coming out of timeshare person's mouth, then there is a good chance it is not true.

A few old time celebs lived in Sedona full-time in recent past. Actor Donald O’Connor and actress Sean Young lived in Sedona until O’Connor died in 2003. He was 78 when he passed and is buried in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Hollywood. Ms. Young, who appeared in “Blade Runner” and “No Way Out,” moved back to LA Canifornia a few years ago.

There was also a dancer named Ann Miller that has a second home in Sedona but lived in Beverly Hills until her death in 2004.

Now it is true that many celebs pass through the town. I have seen pictures on the wall of restaurants and hotels. Nick Cage, Johnny Depp,Bob Dylan, Mike Tyson,Oprah, Muhammad Ali, and Regis Philbin,Lisa Marie Presley, Nick Nolte and Martha Stewart and more.

Oprah and Gayle's "Big Adventure" took them to Sedona in the Summer of 2006. Oprah also said "The best part of this road trip for me was getting a chance to see the beauty of this country," Oprah says. "It really is incredible. I have to say that after we got to Sedona, it was like a breath of fresh air."With the windows rolled down, the smell of pine trees fills the car. They even stop for a "Kodak moment" to take pictures of the mountains. "Now this was worth the trip," Oprah says."

While they were in town they stopped to look for a grocery store because Oprah said " there is no place to eat in this town". They found the local health food store ( New Frontiers) and stocked up on organic bananas, Fuji apples, yogurt and green tea.


While many films were made in Sedona, the recent filming's are less frequent. When the Westerns were popular back in John Wayne's day, Sedona was a frequent back drop for the pictures.

If you are looking to run into a Celeb while in Sedona maybe plan a trip to Sedona during the Sedona Film Festival. Celebs might be spotted then. (Late Feb-March)Either that or stay at the Enchantment Resort. They might stay there and enjoy the spa and the healing treatments.

If any celebs are living in Sedona, their house was probably bought by their production company or a blind trust and none of us would know it anyway. Plus, when they probably come to town it's to relax and most likely would not want to run to town to hang out with the tourists, so they wouldn't be spotted anyway.

So forget the celebs and just enjoy this jewel in the desert yourself. It's one of the best places you can escape into nature and find peace.


Click For Sedona Film Festival

Click for movies Filmed In Sedona

Click For More Sedona Film Info

Click For More Celeb Info

Click For Celeb Info In Arizona

Click for Nick Nolte's Sedona Commerical

Sedona Golf Courses

If you are heading to Sedona and are a golfer then you will be pleasantly surprised that at what you find. Nestled in the canyons of the red rocks sit several world class golf courses. You will have a variety of choices from the exquisite private golf resorts to casual public courses, in Sedona there is a course for every golfer. You will have the luxury to enjoy a challenging game of golf surrounded by the beautiful red rocks. Most of the golf courses offer golfing lessons for those like me, and pro shops for the golfer who wants to pick up a souvenir or other equipment.


Sedona Golf Courses:

Canyon Mesa Country Club, 500 Jacks Canyon Rd, Sedona, AZ 86351, (928)284-0036, Public, 9 hole, 1,265 yds, Par 28, CR-30, S-80
Click for Canyon Mesa Country Club

Oakcreek Country Club, 690 Bell Rock Blvd, Sedona, AZ 86351, (928)284-1660, Public, 18 hole, 6,824 yds, Par 72, CR-72.2, S-132
Click for Oak Creek Country Club

Poco Diablo Resort, 1752 Highway 179, Sedona, AZ 86336, (928)282-7333, Public, 9 hole, 777 yds, Par 27, CR-N/A, S-N/A
Click For Poco Diablo

Sedona Golf Resort, 35 Ridge Trail Dr, Sedona, AZ 86351, (928)284-9355, Public, 18 hole, 6,646 yds, Par 71, CR-70.3, S-129
Click For Sedona Golf Resort

Seven Canyons, 3755 Long Canyon Rd, Sedona, AZ 86336, (928)203-2001, Private, 18 hole, 6,746 yds, Par 70, CR-N/A, S-N/A
Click for Seven Canyons

Camping In Sedona

When heading to Sedona many people want to experience nature more intimately and what better way then to sleep under the stars?

One of the most popular camping areas is Oak Creek Canyon Camping. Here is only permitted within the 4 developed campground areas. There is some additional camping allowed off the path but you would have to contact the Rangers directly to find out the areas.

Manzanita Campground
Coconino National Forest, Po Box 300
Sedona AZ 86336, 928-282-4119
yes, 19, no, toilets, water, cfg, table, fish, hike, 4800, May-Sep

Click Here for Manzanita Campgrounds Info

Bootlegger Campground
No Drinking water!
Coconino National Forest, Po Box 300
Sedona AZ 86336, 928-282-4119
April 13-Oct 31,Barrier Free Toilets

Click Here For Bootlegger Campgrounds Info

Cave Springs Campground
15, 78, 32ft rv limit, toilets, water, cfg, table, fish, hike, 5400, Apr-Sep

Coconino National Forest, Po Box 300
Sedona AZ 86336, 928-282-4119

Click Here For Cave Springs Campground Info

Pine Flat Campground
Coconino National Forest, Po Box 300
Sedona AZ 86336, 928-282-4119
15, 58, 32ft rv limit, toilets, water, cfg, table, trails, 5500, Mar-Nov

Click Here For Pine Flat Campground Info

These 4 campgrounds are located by Oak Creek . While they are all surrounded by the canyon walls, each one has it's own charm to it. Each campsite will have it's own table and firepit and all 4 campgrounds have restrooms.

They are all primitive camping sites and none have RV hookups. Cave Springs has showers and Bootlegger has no drinking water so make sure you bring your own.

You can call ahead to reserve a campsite at Cave Springs and at Pine Flats in advance. Reservations can be made 48 hours to 240 days in advance by calling 1-877-444-6777.

For more information about fees and rules. Please call (928)282-4119.
Or you can contact:

US Forest Service Red Rock Ranger Dist
250 Brewer Road

Here are a few campgrounds located in the vicinity and some that have RV facilities:

Banjo Bill Campground
Coconino National Forest, Po Box 300
Sedona AZ 86336, 928-282-4119
yes, 8, 16ft rv limit, toilets, water, cfg, table, fish, 5000, Mar-Oct

Chavez Crossing Group Camp
Coconino National Forest, Po Box 300
Sedona AZ 86336, 928-282-4119
35, 2, no, toilets, water, cfg, table, 4100, All year

Rancho Sedona Mobilodge
135 Bear Wallow Ln
Sedona AZ 86336, 928-282-7255

Sedona RV Resort
6701 W Us Highway 89a
Sedona AZ 86336, 928-282-6640

Click Here For Sedona Camping Info

While In Sedona Take A Day Trip To The Grand Canyon's Skywalk

If you are planning a day trip while you are in Sedona, the Grand Canyon is certainly the one you would want to consider. Just a short 3 hours away and you stand in awe of this beautiful canyon that was created for each and everyone of us.

In 2006 the Grand Canyon's SkyWalk was completed and opened to the public. I myself hasn't been there yet but I will make it a point to go the next time I make it up to the Grand Canyon.

To get into the park there is a $25.00 fee. It is owned and operated by the Indian Reservation that it is located in so at least it is going to a good cause. You have to drive 14 miles on a dirt road. If you chose not to, you can take a $10 coach service available. Arriving at the west rim then you choose your tour package which ranges from $54 to $213. You will have to wear booties over your shoes so that you don't scratch the glass. Picture purchases are $25.

Here are some links and videos that I gathered. I hope you find them as interesting as I did.

Click For SkyWalk Website

The Planning Of The Sky Walk

Click for National Geographic Website

When In Sedona Take A Day Trip To Havasu Falls

When in Sedona you can always take a day trip to Havasu falls. It's about a 3 hour drive from Sedona but it is well worth the drive. It is actually part of the Grand Canyon. There are three main falls in the Havasu Canyon: Havasu Falls, Mooney Falls and Navajo Falls. They all each have their own special features and each one is well worth the hike (or helicopter fee) to see. Havasu Falls are the second falls you come to and is just above the camping area in the canyon. Havasu Falls have an amazing blusih tint to the water. The pictures you see with the blue tint are not color enhanced, it is actually that color. Mooney falls are the tallest of the 3 at over 200 feet and the hike down is a little dangerous and a lot of fun. There is a $20 entrance free since the falls is located on an Indian Reservation.

Click here for a map of Havasu area

Click Here For Havasu Information

Click Here For More Information

Shopping In Sedona

When I am in Sedona I love to walk around the shopping villages and galleries. You will be surprised at the number of galleries in this town. Sedona is an artistic community and the galleries are bursting with local talent as well as talent from around the world.

Sedona has five shopping areas which are classified by its location and history. First is the original uptown, which is a favorite of tourists. This is also there the Visitor's center is where you can stop and pick up a variety of brochures, maps and advice from the great staff. Lots of little quaint shops, places to eat and still lots of great views. West Sedona, which boasts Talaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village which is built to resemble an old Mexican villiage. Next is the the Hwy 179 corridor, which includes Hillside and Hozho, which is the main art and gallery district; and lastly Village of Oakcreek. This community is south of Sedona. If you come into Sedona from Phoenix, you will pass through VOC (Village of Oakcreek) first.

My favorite shopping area is Talaquepaque. With it's old world charm and huge Sycamore trees and galleries and wonderful little shops and boutiques, it is an experience in itself. Even if you do not enjoy shopping, a trip to Talaquepaque is a must.
Click for Talaquepaque Info

Each shopping area has so much to offer so make a day of it. Grab your bottle of water and put on your comfortable shoes and spend a day or two just wandering the galleries and shops along the way. It will be the most fun exercise that you have gotten in a long time.

There are plenty of great little places to eat along the way so you can stop and grab a bite to eat and take a break from the shopping if you want.

No matter which shopping area you choose to visit. You won't be disapointed.

Click Sedona Video for Where To Shop

Click for Sedona Directory For Shopping

Click for Sedona Gallery Shopping Info

The Hwy 89A strip in West

Click here for more shopping information

Sedona Hiking Trails

While you are in Sedona You should take some time in your schedule to take in the beauty of nature. Take a hike. There are so many books that you can pick up while you are there or you can order one before and this way you can plan your trip and become familiar with the hikes before you arrive.

Plus there are many websites that will tell you the various trials and their level of skill needed. Also, you can stop by either of the 2 outdoor/sporting stores located in Sedona and talk with the staff. They will be able to help you select the hike that is best for you.

Canyon Outfitters Inc

928-282-5293 Fax: 928-282-5293 2701 W Highway 89A, Sedona, AZ 86336


Sedona Sports ADDRESS:Creekside Plaza 251 N. Hwy 179 Sedona, AZ 86336 Sedona 1-928-282-1317 Toll Free: 1-866-204-2377

Sedona Sports Web Site

Click Here For Sedona Sports

Here are a few great Sedona Hiking Information Sites for you
Click Here For Great Sedona Hikes

Click Here For More Hiking Info

Click for Coconino National Forest Website

Come for a hike with me to Bearwallow Wash, Enjoy!


Sedona's Vortexes

The first time I was planning my trip to Sedona, I remember talking to the woman at AAA and she told me that she was not a Spiritual woman but there was something about Sedona that was very powerful. She said she could feel the energy when she first pulled up in her car. That made me all the more interested.

So I started to check into the "Sedona Energy" and found out that Sedona has what is called Vortexes. They are spiraling Spiritual energy that is present all over Sedona. Once I arrived I eagerly went to each of the named vortexes that are around Sedona. Airport, Bell Rock, Boyton Canyon,etc. But then I started to notice other areas that seemed to have energy too. I could feel it.

We'd walk through woods and I would see Junipers that were growing in a spiral manner. The energy flow exists on multiple dimensions. I saw Pine trees with their branches growing and reaching down towards the ground. It made me realize that while yes there are the "named' vortexes, there are also many, many other power spots in Sedona. You just have to look and "feel" for them.


This could be why people have gravitated towards Sedona for healing and Spiritual awakening. The area is filled with new agers, Shaman's , alternative health practitioners,etc. One Theory that I heard was that Sedona actually sat on a big crystal and that is why it is so powerful. If you take the time to hike to a stream to go rock hunting you find many rocks have crystals in them. So the theory might not be that far fetched.

At any rate, why not take a tour or hike to one of the spots or find your own. Have a seat once you arrive and just meditate. You don't have to worry about looking strange, this is Sedona. No one is going to think it is odd to see a person meditating. You be the judge if they are real or not. I think you will be amazed.

Click Here for Printable Vortex Map

Click Here For Vortex Tour Information

Local Sedona Man Talks About Vortex Energy

Sedona's World Class Spas

Many people come to Sedona for the healing experience.Some come in search of a Spiritual healing and will spend their time hiking the vortexes, meditating on a mountain top or just wandering the trails in search of the healing they need. They know their healing will only come from "within" and nature is the only way for them to find it.

Others are seeking a physical or emotional healing. They want to relax and let their Spirit be nurtured and soothed. Sedona has a large concentration of alternative health specialists that can offer everything from a salt scrub, to a detoxifying mud wrap, massage, Reiki, Acupuncture, and for the even a sugar scrub.

Most of the spas also offer Pilates, Yoga, Qi Gong, etc. if you really want to get the most out of your full wellness experience. I have been to several spas in Sedona and each one has it's own charm. I love them all.

Sedona has many resort spas for you to choose from as well as day spas. Each spa offers it's own pricing package and signature treatments. You can customize your package to fit your needs. Most of the smaller spas will offer you more speicalized treatments so don't over look them as an option. It is best to check around and if you call in advance you can request them to send you their brochures.

There is a link to the right in my link section with many spa's and their numbers. Also here are a few I got the websites for you to check out as well as some have videos for your enjoyment.

Just remember to plan in advance and check into several so you can get the most for your money. Sedona has it all so why not pamper yourself.

Sedona Rouge Spa

Enchantment Resort& Mii Amo Spa

Amara Resort & Spa

Hilton Resort & Spa

Sedona's Javelina's

When you are in Sedona you may have the pleasure of seeing the famous pig-like desert cutie. They have wild hair, little beady eyes, stinky but they are just so adorable. Don't be surprised if you smell them before you see them wandering around the high desert areas like Sedona. They have a gland located under their tail and they use it to mark their territory.

In Sedona they are referred to as the "Javelina" which is a Spanish word "javelin" (pronounced: ha vel EEN) meaning "spear", which is because of their long, pointed canine teeth. Their other name is Collard Peccary. They are one of 3 species in the "New World". They actually aren't from Arizona. They are from South America and have wandered their way to Arizona via Mexico. They have found their home in Sedona for a couple hundred years.

They look like small, blackish, very coarse haired pigs, with chubby bodies ,short legs and tiny three-toed hooves. Their piglets look like domestic piglets except with a lot of hair.

They are social and forge for food in groups of 6-12 during the morning hours and then will nap under a tree during the day and then forge again in the early evening. They will scout out trash cans or flowers, gardens, seed pods or anything else they can eat. Their eye sight is poor so take it slow when driving through neighborhoods especially in the early evening since they are dark in color.

Now keep in mind, they might look fuzzy and cute but don't get too close. I have seen parents in parks let their kids chase ducks, squirrels, etc. If you tried this with a Javelina you would probably find yourself running for your life! If they feel threatened they will stamp their little feet, snort and clatter its jaws together and charge you if you get in their space. They have been known to kill small dogs and cats but they're vegetarian. So they only will react that way if they feel a threat. But from a safe distance, they can be observed without a problem.
Javelina are targeted for game hunters in Arizona. One look at them and you would wonder how could anyone possibly even think of killing one of these adorable animals. But then again I'm against hunting so for me unless you need food for survival then we should just let them be.

When we were in Sedona last we were driving around neighborhoods looking for homes for sale and we spotted a few groups. There was one baby that was so tiny that at first I didn't see it. (you can see it in the picture) They were forging around under a tree eating seeds from the seed pods that had fallen from the tree. They were so cute but we kept our distance and just zoomed up on them with the camera.

So next time you are in Sedona, take the time to go looking for these peaceful little piggies. Nature is our best gift, we just have to respect it.

Sedona's Infamous Pink Jeep Tours

If you have been to Sedona or are thinking of going, I am sure you are familiar with the Sedona Pink Jeep Tours. This tour company is a icon in Sedona. They have been hiking and scrambling up the Sedona Red Rocks for almost 50 years! They are "THE" original Jeep tour company in the USA.

This is the only tour company that has been given permits from the Forest Service to go to certain spots like the Ancient Ruins, Broken Arrow and Diamondback Gulch tours. They do have a tour for everyone. We were always thrilled with our tours we took.

Then couple years back we opted for a different tour company because we wanted to ride in a Hummer. Well, never again. It was more expensive and we chose the "Sunset Tour". Now wouldn't you think that you would be taken to some remote beautiful location that was unreachable by any other vehicle. Then witness the most beautiful sunset you had ever seen?

Not the case at all. First of all the driver seemed to think it was funny to fly over the rocks. We were flying off the seats. One of the people in our party actually pulled a back muscle and ended up having to get massages for the next 3 days because he could hardly walk. Also, we were told it was educational. Well, he stopped the Hummer a few times and pointed to a plant and told us the name and moved on. That was it for our "education" part of it.

Anyway, when we reached out destination I was floored. We stopped at some little hill area and there were power lines going across the view. We were unable to get pictures without having the power line in them. It was a very unimpressive view for Sedona standards. Oh and the sunset? We never saw it. We were back at our cars by the time the sun set so I have no idea why they called it that.

So save your money,skip that adventure and walk across the street and sign up for the Pink Jeep Tours. You will not be disappointed. We loved each tour and learned so much from the informative guides.

They can be contacted at:
Pink Jeep Tours
Toll Free: 800-873-3662
Phone: 928-282-5000

Here is a short clip of Kelly Ripa talking about the Pink Jeep Tours!

Here are a couple more videos to give you an idea of the tours they offer.

Sedona's Honanki Ancient Ruins

Another Ancient Ruins that is yours to explore while visiting is Sedona. Honanki is located about 3 miles beyond Palatki Ancient Ruins but on the same road.(F.R. 525)It is just as amazing as Palatki and both offer amazing collections of pictographs.

Honanki's pictographs are actually symbols and writings painted on rock surfaces, in contrast to petroglyphs which are pecked or inscribed into the rock surface. If you are truly interested in archaeology and anthropology, then visit both of Sedona's Ancient Ruins points, Honanki and Palatki.

Each of the 2 sites complements the other but offer their own unique style in architecture. Honanki has a site steward that can answer questions and help you get started on your exploration.There are no volunteer guides at Honanki so if you intend to visit this alone then make sure you do your reseach before you arrive.

Pink Jeep Tours is the only tour company that offers tours to the ruins. They are the only tour company permitted by the Coconino National Forest to give guided tours at Honanki. So if you want to learn more, then call for a tour.

Click Here For Honanki Picture Gallery

Click Here For Honanki Information

Click Here For A Red Rock Map To Print

Sedona's Palatki Archaeological Site & Ancient Ruins

While in Sedona there are several archaeological sites and ancient ruins for you to explore. The Palatki (Hopi for "red house") Ruins are one of my favorites.
They sit tucked away in the canyons in the Verde Valley. These cliff dwellings were constructed by the Southern Sinagua people, who inhabited the area from about 650 A.D. to around 1300 A.D..

This area is also known for it's pictograph sites in the area with the dwelling walls displaying art from Archaic cultures (extending back over 6000 years) to the work of the Sinagua, and finally paintings done by the Yavapai and Apache in historical times.

The rock art can be found 1/2 mile west of the cliff dwelling. The wall acted as a shield from the elements and preserved the pictographs that would have otherwise been erased by nature.

They used pigments made from kaolin clay (white), smashed hematite (red), powdered limonite (yellow) or charcoal (black), and then would mix it with organic substances such as blood or fruit juice. The area residents produced a wide variety of symbols, as well as pictographs of themselves and the animals of the area.

Also there are vertical scratches on some of the walls thatare even before Archaic drawings, but dating these scratches has been impossible. The symbols, as well as some of the other human figures done in red, are thought to mainly the work of the Archaic people dating from 3000-6000 years ago. Then there are animal and human drawings done in yellow are thought to be the work of the Sinagua. Then the charcoal drawings are most likely done recently by the Yavapai or Apache Indians since some of drawings show men riding horses and that would then he after horses were intoduced to the area by the Spanish.

No trip to Sedona is complete without a journey back into time. Make sure you visit some of these archaeological wonders.

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Sedona's Tlaquepaque Festival of Lights

If you have ever been to Sedona then Tlaquepaque is a place you you've probably are familiar with. If you have not visited yet, then you must put this on your " things to see & do " list. It's a great place to go for unusual and one-of-a-kind finds. Resembling an old Mexican town, it features 40 shops, galleries and restaurants. This creek-side shopping village each year presents the annual Festival of Lights.This year it was on Dec. 8th. Right in the heart of Sedona you will experience the Spanish-style courtyards and cobblestone streets will come alive with carolers, mariachis, Santa and his reindeer, a petting zoo, free pony rides, horse-drawn carriages, a variety of musical acts, free cider and cookies, and 6,000 luminarias arranged in holiday shapes. It is a magical night that you wouldn't want to miss.

As the Sedona sun sets, the tolling of the chapel bell will signal that it's time to light the luminarias. Small candles are passed out so that everyone can paricipate in the symbolic "lighting of the way" for the holy family. By the soft flush of the luminarias, the River of Life Tabernacle Choir will perform inspirational music. For more information about next year's schedule please feel free to call 928-282-4838.

This cherished tradition is one that you won't want to miss next time.

Sedona's Red Rock Fantasy

If you are heading to Sedona at this time of year you are in for a wonderful surprise.

Each year the Los Abrigados Resort plays host to the annual Red Rock Fantasy which is a fundraiser.They do charge a small admission charge for visitors.

Local organizations create holiday displays of white and colored lights which creates a winter wonderland for all to enjoy. Families can sip on hot apple cider as they wander through the paths of the grounds and enjoy the 50+ beautiful displays.

Each display is created from the same raw materials: 15,000 lights, five sheets of plywood, $300, oodles of creativity, and the energies of volunteer families and church groups competing for a grand prize of lifetime vacation ownership through ILX Premiere Vacation Club. As a visitor you will be able to cast your vote for your favorite displays, and the top vote-earner is named when the exhibit ends on New Years day in January.

If you need more information you can call 1-(928)-282-1777. Adults, $6; seniors, $5(over 55 yrs old) ; children ages 4 to 12, $4; free for children younger than 4.

Click here for Red Rock Fantasy's Site

This is a guaranteed great time for the entire family.

Sedona Scheduled to Lose A Trailer Park

If you have been to Sedona or live there then you are no stranger to this nasty little trailer park that is located at the Y. I always saw it and wondered why they hadn't torn it down. All the painted 50 yr old trailers had seen their better days and it was an eye sore to the area.The Oak Creek Mobile Lodge, located off Hwy. 179, has an occupancy rate of low-income tenants that varies, according to its owner Don Campbell.

Now it is being reported that they are going to remove all the structures as soon as the planning zone OK's the plans. Red Rock News reports that "the owners Don and Cathy Campbell want to replace the mobile home park with a 50-unit housing complex. It would include 42 units at the market rate and eight at what is termed an affordable rate — a range between $85,000 and $190,000."

Noise and aesthetics along with preservation of the area would be the biggest considerations. But at least they are planning to do something.


Buying Real Estate In Sedona

The last time I was in Sedona I met a woman who had just moved there. She said that she had watched her house for over 1 year and ended up getting it for 50% of the original asking price.

Now it probably was over priced when she first saw it, even for Sedona's standards and then owner got desperate. But at any rate, that is a remarkable deal.

The last I looked there were over 700 homes for sale in the Sedona/VOC/Cottonwood area. A realtor could give you a more accurate count but that's a lot of homes. They are saying the real estate market is still going to drop even more over the next 1 to 1.5 years. It will be 2010 before the market turns.

The VOC's prices have been hit harder because they have had to deal with the construction on HWY 179. Once that is completed and everything opens up again then the probably will get more lookers in the area.

I bet if a person can just wait it out til the market bottoms out (probably 2008-2009)then they will be able to grab up some great homes at super low prices. I intend to be in that group which is why I will rent for a year when I first get to Sedona.

Is This Sedona's Biggest Home and Who Owns It?

If you have visited Sedona anytime since December of 2003 then you would have seen the construction of this home located by the Holy Cross Chapel. I first went to Sedona December 2003 and they were just starting to blast the Mesa that this home was being built on. What a sad feeling I had when I saw how the land was disrespected from the blasting.

We have heard that Johnny Depp owned it, then it was Nick Cage but the most reliable source we found told us it was the Dr. who had invented laser eye surgery.

So they have been building now for 3 years and now it is for sale.( 29 Million) The house ruins the view at the Chapel and you can't take a picture without it being in the picture. The homes in the area now have this Monster sized Gorilla in their back yards and from what we have read, now since this home was built there are problems with flooding for the area home owners.

The home is beautiful but it should have been sitting hidden in the mountains on a nice 10 acre+ plot of land and not on a tiny lot in an established neighborhood. Not to mention in the direct view of one of the landmarks of Sedona.

Makes you wonder why would they have ever given permission for this home to be built in this area in the first place. This Dr. doesn't even live in the US. He is lives in Europe.
(click on image for full size view)

Sedona Timeshare Over Load

I was reading that Sedona has approved another big property to be developed. This I am sure will be another timeshare. What does that mean? More people hanging out of store fronts asking" So where are you from?" or " Would you like a map?" Who are just waiting to catch the next unsuspecting tourist and schedule them for their "great deal". I just wonder how many more properties the Sedona officials will OK.

I would hope that the people who make these decisions will think about preserving the beauty of Sedona and not develop it to the point it is just some over run tourist trap.

Everyone wants to make a buck, but there are very few places not ruined by man, so lets hope they stop the development in Sedona and preserve the beauty that is there.

Sedona's Red Rocks!

Have you fallen in love with Sedona? I sure have. I went to Sedona in 2004 for the first time and to be honest, I wasn't really all that excited about going. I was not a desert person.

Once I saw the beautiful red rocks that all changed. I since then have traveled there 7 times and will moving there soon.

You can join me on my journey as I prepare for a dream come true to live amongst the red rocks.

Sedona Time Share Deals? Where Are They?

Well, every timeshare sales person will probably be furious for me posting this but here goes.

We bought a time share in Sedona just like the thousands of others. We paid $10,000 for a 1 bedroom every other year and have $300 every year for maintenance fees.

Now if you have been to Sedona you will know time shares are everywhere and they want you.

Before you sign on that dotted line like I did, do yourself a favor and check eBay. There are reputable sellers on eBay's that are selling the same thing I bought for $1,000 or less. I have seen them go for $100 AND they are every year not every other year like I have. I had even mentioned it to a timeshare sales man (in Sedona) and he came back with "Oh but you won't get passport weeks". Well, I called a couple times to try to talk to someone who could tell me what was available in "passport weeks" and nothing is ever available. The few things that were available were not where I was going and were not a good deal and they were crusty places. So I haven't used any anyway.

Oh and when I called back about a week after I got home and made 3 attempts to get my saleman to return my call, he would not. He knew I was going to ask him about their so called "passport weeks" he lied to me about.

So if you do go to a timeshare presentation to view the property, get all the information you can. Take notes! Make sure you get your free dinners, discounts,etc. for your time and then when you get home look on eBay. If you don't feel secure about eBay, there are also brokers everywhere that sell time shares for a fraction of the cost.

Also, I have since found out another sneaky trick they timeshare companies came up with. It's called "vacation points" Never buy any property that deals with RCI and their "points" because what they do is keep raising the amount of points you need for a vacation. This way they keep selling you more and more points. It never ends. So they will try to lure you into this and if you seem like you are going to back away, they will tempt you with the lowest amount you can get in with. Then the constant trying to sell you more and more begins. What a vacation costs this year in points will only get you 5 days in a few years, then you will have to buy more to get the full week.

For those of you who don't know about timeshares, after you buy one or the points, you then get scammed into another yearly set of fees. It is through RCI or Interval International. Both charge you a fee to hold your weeks or your points for you. In order to use them you must be a member.

RCI has the whole point thing going on and Interval can never get anything. Sometimes I call and they say they have nothing because I called too late. Then the next time I call they tell me I am calling too soon for them to look.

Also, if you deposit your week with Interval because you don't want to go to Sedona again, then you will have to pay a fee if they find you something else where. Usually around $150 and that is IF they find something.

Another option is you can always rent someone else's timeshare. Rental places are all over the Internet and you can usually get some desperate owner willing to rent it cheap. We've rented a unit a couple different times in Sedona for $500 a week during busy times.

This is an important tip also. If you would buy make sure it is a floating week. It effects what you can sell it for if you ever decide you don't want it, it also makes it hard to rent if you have a fixed week. Floating makes it much more appealing and will be better for you if you decide to sell, trade, rent, etc.

But if you still have your heart set on buying then check eBay, check with a timeshare resale company and you will save yourself a bundle of money. The bottom line is DO YOUR HOME WORK and don't buy anything while on vacation. They get you while you are having fun, loving the place and being very vulnerable. Say NO and go some and do your research. You will be glad you did!

Here is a place you can rent a time share from to see what you think of it and you can get it way cheaper than if you call in to rent. Also you can just google "Time Share Rentals in Sedona" and I am sure you will get more to choose from.

Go to eBay and search for Sedona Timeshares. Then on the left side choose "completed auctions" so you will get to see what they went for. That will give you an idea of how cheap you can get them for. Both to rent and to buy.

Stop back and let us know how you did. I am sure you will get great deal compared to the Time Share sharks are going to offer you.Good luck!
Click Here For Time Share Rentals