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The Most Scenic Spots to Capture on Instagram During Your Sedona Vacation

Smile, snap and post your way through Red Rock Country

The Vacationeer
Gorgeous desert vista with red rocks against the sunset painted skies, Sedona, Airzona.

Surrounded by red rock monoliths soaring against a vibrant blue sky, Sedona offers a stunning backdrop for even the most spontaneous vacation pictures. Sedona's three distinct communities vary in cultural flavor and sights to see — and each one is worth a dedicated visit.

Make sure your batteries are charged, and head out to explore Sedona through the photographer's lens — this scenic destination offers no shortage of unique spots to snap Instagram-worthy selfies and landscape panoramas.

Stunning aerial shot of downtown Sedona, Airzona, with painted skies overhead bold red rocks.   

1. Voyage Through the Village

Ditch the crowds and stroll the sidewalks along Highway 179. During your jaunt, dip into shops, boutiques, restaurants and art galleries. In front of the Village Gallery, snap a selfie by a laughing horse sculpture with artsy balloons and Wild Horse Mesa in the background.

Nosh on authentic Southwestern cuisine at Tortas de Fuego along the way, and grab a 'Gram of the colorful fiesta-style decor.

Or head to Butterfly Burger, where every plate is a work of art. Here, flavor combinations span the globe, and the patties include beef, walnut and lentil, portobello mushroom and chicken options.

2. Take a Walk on the Wildflower Side

Stunning panorama of man golfing on sprawling course with a Red Rock Country backdrop, Hilton Sedona Resort at Bell Rock, Airzona.    

Sedona Summit, a Hilton Vacation Club, provides the ideal setting for family photos in the heart of Arizona's high desert. Once you've had the opportunity to capture Sedona's iconic Red Rocks, soak in the heated outdoor pools and melt away your stress. 

Embark on easy to moderate intersecting loops delving through some of Sedona's most scenic wildflower fields. Springtime runs from late February through mid-June, with fields of flowers like desert poppies and owl's clover each taking their turn to put on a show. 

Colorful cactus blooms complete the spectacle as summer scenery takes over. After a day spent fawning over flora with the whole family, return to the resort just in time for a family barbecue.

3. Get Into the Spirit

Sedona is well-known as a spiritual center, and many of the city's historical sites provide stunning photo opps. Take a hike to Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park, where a giant Buddha presides over the serene landscape, accompanied by colorful flying flags. 

Combine your Sedona day trip with a two-mile hike around the Chimney Rock Loop for max relaxation and charming views that include the city and the surrounding wilderness. Return to your room at the Hilton Sedona Resort at Bell Rock and indulge in one of the spa's new wellness treatments like sound bowl therapy, tarot card reading, smudging and more.

Desert sky set aglow at sunrise, Sedona, Airzona.    

4. Enjoy Forever Vistas Out West

Hampton Inn Sedona is another wonderful home base for your desert getaway. Sites like Broken Arrow Trail and Cathedral Rock are within six miles of the property. Or, take a drive down nearby Red Rock Loop Road, about 15 minutes from the hotel, to access a lookout point with the famous Cathedral Rock in the distance. 

Here, explore the scenery, peek through the branches of ancient junipers or simply enjoy the serene soundtrack of the enigmatic desert.

5. Step Back in Time

Some of Sedona's most incredible structures were built more than 100 years ago. Visit the Sedona Heritage Museum and capture the old-fashioned charm of life on a farm or apple orchard.

Or, travel even farther back in time. Rent a four-wheel-drive vehicle and head out to the canyonlands west of the city, where ancient civilizations await. Palatki and Honanki heritage sites tuck into sandstone walls, with dwellings and pictographs dating back to before 1,350 A.D.

6. Admire the Architecture

Pool view with violet sunset desert skies overhead, Hilton Sedona Resort at Bell Rock, Airzona.    

Red Rock Country might be best known for its natural beauty, but it's also home to some of the most stunning architecture in the world. Chapel of the Holy Cross is a can't-miss sight — it's tucked into the canyon walls as you enter the city limits. Parking is limited, but it's worth the wait to search out a spot to snap dramatic angles of the unique building made of stone and glass.

Take a drive up Highway 89A through Scenic Oak Creek Canyon, and stop for a picnic at Midgley Bridge Observation Site. Or, wander through Tlaquepaque Arts and Shopping Village. This modern replica of an old Spanish village was built to “echo laughter, dancing and singing," according to architect Bob McIntyre. Its “candles, barrels, flickering fires, fountains and flowers are what architecture is all about" — and these very features make it one of the city's most Instagrammable venues.

7. Get Artsy

Check out the Sedona Art Center, housed in what was once an old apple-packing barn. Snap photos of artists as they interpret the city's beauty at the annual Plein Air Festival in October.

To mix things up with your family or friends during a Sedona vacation, host a scavenger hunt to see who can snap the most pics of the city's plentiful public art. Discover life-sized, bronze sculptures of local wildlife in Uptown, or pose beneath a statue of Sedona Schnebly, for whom the city was named, at the Sedona Public Library.

Sedona desert at dusk with the Milky Way sparkling overhead, Airzona.    

Plan Ahead With These Insider Tips

  1. Plan your photo shoots for dusk or dawn, when the canyon walls take on deep hues of orange and mauve. Stick around to watch the stars come out, and take a time-lapsed exposure of the Milky Way above the canyonlands.
  2. Don't let the rare rainy day weather keep you indoors — hunt for magical, low-lying rainbows, dramatic sun rays highlighting some of the formations or monoliths peeking out from the clouds.
  3. On your way into town, stop at the Ranger Station to get a Red Rock Pass, which will allow you to park at scenic vistas within Sedona/Oak Creek Canyon. Get the best deal in an annual pass, so you can return to Sedona to continue honing your photography skills in the future.

Read "10 Travel-Magazine-Worthy Instagram Photos" for more Instagrammable ideas for your vacation.



The Vacationeer

The Vacationeer is a collective of Hilton Grand Vacations storytellers whose goal is to inspire travelers to go further. We're always on the lookout for new destinations to explore, useful travel tips, and unique ideas to help you plan the most memorable vacations possible.

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