Sedona is an Arizona desert town near Flagstaff that’s surrounded by red-rock buttes, steep canyon walls and pine forests. It’s noted for its mild climate and vibrant arts community. Uptown Sedona is dense with New Age shops, spas and art galleries.
Sedona's main attraction is its array of red sandstone formations. The formations appear to glow in brilliant orange and red when illuminated by the rising or setting sun. The red rocks form a popular backdrop for many activities, ranging from spiritual pursuits to the hundreds of hiking and mountain biking trails.
The first Anglo settler, John J. Thompson, moved to Oak Creek Canyon in 1876, an area well known for its peach and apple orchards. The early settlers were farmers and ranchers. In 1902, when the Sedona post office was established, there were 55 residents. In the mid-1950s, the first telephone directory listed 155 names. Some parts of the Sedona area were not electrified until the 1960s.
Sedona began to develop as a tourist destination, vacation-home and retirement center in the 1950s. Most of the development seen today was constructed in the 1980s and 1990s. As of 2007, there are no large tracts of undeveloped land remaining.
Sedona played host to more than sixty Hollywood productions from the first years of movies into the 1970s. Stretching as far back as 1923, Sedona’s red rocks were a fixture in major Hollywood productions—including films such as Johnny Guitar, Angel and the Badman, Desert Fury, Blood on the Moon, The Last Wagon, and 3:10 to Yuma. However, the surroundings typically were identified to audiences as the terrain of Texas, California, Nevada, and even Canada–US border territory.
I first visited the area after leaving the Grand Canyon on the Bradford's 1960 family vacation. Dad ask a guy at a gas station in Flagstaff were we could camp that night. Oak Ceek Canyon, which runs right smack through Sedona, became our destination. NO VACANCY signs were everywhere! We drove straight through, but I remember Oak Creek Canyon; what a site for a 9 year old. Sedona didn't even have a red light back then. Today, it has to rank high as the ROUNDABOUT capital of the world, so to speak!
Bad timing to be in Sedona, SPRING BREAK is EVERYWHERE!!! Traffic is backed-up at every Roundabout and lots of parents with kids are on the trails. Lady at local grocery said Spring Break last most of the month of March. Days between Memorial Day & Labor Day are also crowded, especially weekends. I knew about weekends, BUT just didn't realize SB was also a ZOO!
Best times for me to visit, middle of Sept-Oct, during the week. NOTED!!!