With a week off from work I decided to head out to Phoenix, Arizona with a good friend. Our goals for this trip were to relax but still explore. We started off in Scottsdale for two nights and then we did two nights in Sedona. We were in Arizona for five days and four nights and we definitely made the most of our time.
I flew in early Monday morning and was able to check in to our hotel early. First, I had to go to the mall before starting to explore as I had forgotten a pair of shoes that I planned to wear most of the trip. I had the whole day to kill before my friend flew in so I decided to walk around the mall and then head to a coffee shop, Cartel. My plans for the rest of the day consisted of murals and more coffee shops. The rest of the afternoon I spent by the pool.
This day was all about relaxing. I knew that the rest of the trip would be a whirlwind so I wanted to make sure that we had time to just chill. For brunch we went to Farm & Craft which was delicious and then we went back to the hotel to sit by the pool. In the late afternoon we got ready to go to Wine Girl before heading to the Desert Botanical Gardens. These are two stops you have to make on a trip to Scottsdale.
We started the day EARLY. We had reservations to go on a hot air balloon this morning and this experience was unbelievable. This was my first time up in a hot air balloon and now I can’t wait to do it again. We did this adventure with Rainbow Ryders. After this we grabbed breakfast and headed back to the hotel to check out. We picked up the rental car and started making our way to Sedona. Next, we grabbed In-N-Out for lunch and shortly after we were on our first hike. We had changed our plans as all the hikes were closed due to forest fires but we found out last minute that everything was opening up again. So we hiked Wet Beaver Creek before checking in to our hotel in Sedona. This hike is a long one and not as flat as I originally thought. The struggle we went through on this hike during the middle of the day in July was worth it once we got to the end. Jumping into the water was so refreshing and we did not want to leave. It is beautiful out there and the water was surprisingly cold.
We started the morning off hiking Devils Bridge which was an easy to moderate hike. In total it is about 4 miles roundtrip. It is best to do this hike in the morning as there will be less crowds and it won’t be too hot yet. After this hike we decided to go to a trail called the Birthing Cave. This trail was supposed to be easy but it was not clearly marked. So we ended up getting lost and not making it to the Cave. We were both disappointed but at least we were still surrounded by Red Rocks and all the beauty.
We needed to eat desperately and get some more water. Then, we headed to Layla’s Bakery for breakfast and we feasted. The meal was sooo good and a much needed recharge after two hikes. We hung at the pool during the middle of the day as it gets extremely hot here in the summer. Late afternoon we decided to walk around the Tlaquepaque shopping center. It was my friend’s birthday this day so we decided to celebrate by going to Mariposa for dinner! The dinner was delicious and the whole setting around it is just perfect. We had the views of the red rocks behind us as we ate and the whole vibe of the restaurant was great.
This was our last day in Arizona before heading home so we wanted to make the most of it. We squeezed in a short hike to the seven sacred pools. Then head off to see the chapel of the holy cross before driving back to Phoenix. Once back in Phoenix we walked around the old town Scottsdale and walked through the different stores. For dinner we stopped by Diego Pops. They have a really good happy hour menu that is not to miss. We grabbed their brussel sprout nachos which are delicious and then headed to off to Papago Park for sunset. The one area of the park we wanted to reach was closed but we made the most of it and found a different area to walk around. By this time we were exhausted and it was time for us to head to the airport for our late night flights.