Tuesday, December 1, 2015

24 hours in Sedona

A few weeks ago we ventured outside of California (a first for us as a family of four!) and headed down to the Phoenix area for a long weekend with the in-laws.  We spent most of the time catching up with family (my brother in-law lives down there as well) and took an overnight trip to Sedona with my husband's parents. If you haven't been to Sedona, it is a beautiful place to relax and well worth the detour!

We arrived in Sedona mid-day and after some amazing tamales at Tamaliza Market and a quick stop at the neighboring Whole Foods, we were on our way to Briar Patch Inn. Upon check-in at the main lodge we grabbed some complimentary fresh cookies and apple cider and then eagerly went to check out our respective cabins. The Inn is nestled at the bottom of a canyon along Oak Creek and includes 19 cabins spread out across the 9 acre property. Each cottage has a unique layout and is tastefully decorated with southwestern touches.

We spent the afternoon exploring the property which sits at the base of the red rocks and alongside Oak Creek. The grounds of the Inn exceeded all of my expectations. There was so much to do and easily enough to keep the kids engaged for the afternoon. Our first stop along our walk was to visit the resident Sheep, Lilly and Wooly, which of course was a big hit with our girls. From there the kids alternated between running in the nearby meadow and relaxing on the wooden bench swings, followed by a hike along the creek.

Despite visiting in late Fall, the creek head a steady flow of water (a stark contrast to most of the dried-up water sources in California). We carefully maneuvered our way along the rocks that lined the creek, coming across a swimhole (complete with tire swing!) and the occasional glimpse of the red rocks through the fall foliage. 

This is the look my little one gets when I tell her to be careful :) Not exactly reassuring!

After throwing up on the car ride into town, my oldest ended up in all stripes and exclaimed "i'm a zebra!"
I suggested that she use her hands to help her balance, which she then applied to walking on level ground :)

After a home-cooked meal (the cabins come equipped with full kitchens), we all settled in by the fire, enjoying some good wine, playing cards and sharing laughs.

The following morning we enjoyed a complimentary breakfast buffet in the main lodge before checking out. We said goodbye to our cozy little cabin and took off for Crescent Moon Picnic area, which is set inside the Coconino National Forest. Known for it's amazing views of Cathedral Rock, this area is the most photographed spot in all of Arizona!

Making "soup"

After crossing the large picnic area, we hiked along the creek, frequently stopping to admire the views of Cathedral Rock. The trail was relatively level, with a few obstacles and the occasional river bed to cross. The kids loved tossing pebbles in the creek, admiring the stacked rock formations made by hikers before us and finding the perfect walking sticks. This was definitely a wonderful way to spend the morning and stretch our legs before the drive home.

Our last stop of the day was for lunch at Mariposa, a latin inspired grill with breathtaking views. Everything we ate was delicious (burger, quesadilla, carnitas tacos and margaritas!). Definitely somewhere I would eat again and the perfect end to our 24 hours in Sedona.

Have you been to Sedona? Any recommendations for future visits?

Details: Sedona is about a two hour drive from Phoenix. The Briar Patch Inn is located just a few miles from the main shopping area of Sedona. They require a two-night minimum stay, but will waive this when booking only 14 days prior to arrival. I highly recommend staying at least two nights if you can. After returning home from our trip, we were excited to see that Sunset Magazine just named Briar Patch one of the West's 37 Best Cabin Getaways! Rooms range from $200-$400 and not all cabins are available to those traveling with kids. The super Tamales at Tamaliza Market are filled with fresh and organic ingredients (no processed ingredients at all - everything is from scratch) and cost $8 fully loaded with meat, guacamole and sour cream. Seriously SO GOOD. Admission to Crescent Moon Picnic Site is $10/vehicle.


  1. Those views!! This looks like a perfect getaway with kids. I haven't been to Sedona, but I hear only nice things about it.

    1. Thanks, Jenna. Definitely a beautiful place to visit with the family. It's typically a solid 20 degrees cooler than the Phoenix area as well, so you get some bearable temperatures :) There were so many swimholes (and Slide Rock Park) that look like they would be amazing in the warmer months. Thanks again for the comment...love your blog :)