Nestled between Prescott and Flagstaff, Sedona is a popular artist community smack dab in the stunning red rocks of northern Arizona, with enough activities and attractions for a perfect family vacation. Stacked boulders and red rock formations contrast against the blue sky and desert surroundings, making this place a picture-perfect backdrop for every family photo.
Cultural experiences, scientific opportunities, shopping, hiking, and great food will keep everyone in your family excited and entertained. Design the perfect trip for your whole family with these kid-friendly activities in Sedona.
Here are some of the best neighborhoods in Sedona, Arizona.
Take an off-road adventure on a Jeep tour
One of the most popular activities in Sedona is taking an adventurous tour of the red rocks and unique desert flora in a fat-tired Jeep. You can choose from multiple destinations and tour timelines, but all of them will make the kids squeal with excitement as the Jeep pushes the limits of gravity on the bumpy trail ride.
Children should be at least 18 months old and ready to ride in a forward-facing car seat for the tours. Most tour companies stop so riders can enjoy the expansive view, so bring your best camera and, if necessary, a baby carrier.
Bring out your inner daredevil on a natural slide
Take your kids on a water slide carved by nature, just a few miles north of Sedona, in Slide Rock State Park. The 80-foot natural waterslide carves through various places in Oak Creek that are deep enough to swim and splash, so plan to spend a few hours here and bring plenty of sunscreens.
The walk through the state park down to the slide area is easy enough for most families, but it won’t accommodate a stroller. Prepare for shockingly cold water year-round since the creek is fed by snowmelt, which runs fast in the springtime but slows down in the summer, enough for smaller swimmers to enjoy the outdoor fun. If you forget any essentials, visit the small convenience store next to the visitor parking area, where you’ll find snacks and gear, such as swim goggles and towels.
Watch the big, bright stars at night
Whether you book a trip or drive out to a quiet part of the desert at night, don’t miss out on seeing the dazzling nighttime display of stars. Future astronomers will love tagging along behind expert guides with high-powered telescopes as they describe the wonder of the night skies. Tour providers entertain and educate groups about observatories, light pollution, and astronomical science.
If you have smaller children, opt out of a formal tour, as it might not hold their attention adequately. Beware of the monsoon season in July and August, when the daytime heat causes late afternoon thunderstorms with massive lightning strikes.
Take a hike and grab a frozen treat
Locals name the red rock formations after recognizable shapes, and Snoopy Rock is one of the most famous in the area, visible all the way from town. The rock formation resembles Snoopy lying down on his dog house. Teens love to capture the iconic Instagram moment on camera after a short hike.
Afterward, grab a slice of pie and some coffee while the kids indulge their sweet tooth with a frozen treat to cool off. Families love the Black Cow, an old-fashioned ice cream parlor in central Sedona that serves treats and eats.
Get your kicks on Route 66
Don’t leave the state without driving along the historic Route 66 in Flagstaff, roughly 30 miles north of Sedona. The little town sits at 7000’ elevation, on a mountain surrounded by volcanoes in the middle of a national forest. Kids will undoubtedly recognize the familiar scenery featured in the Pixar movie, Cars, which gives you a chance to explain the significance of the historic driving route. Families will fall in love with the adventurous outdoor culture and the opportunity to explore the wild west in this authentic small town.
Whether your family is full of adventurers, explorers, or observers, you’ll find activities and experiences that are fit for everyone here in Sedona.