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Explore / nature / high country

Oak Creek Canyon

Flagstaff & Sedona Area Nature

2 Cool Lizards travel guide

State route 89A between Flagstaff on the north and Sedona on the south provides a beautiful 27 mile drive through the Oak Creek Canyon area. Beautiful views of the canyon, hikes, cabins, dining along the river and a cool retreat to the woods await.

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Oak Creek Canyon
Oak Creek Vista provides panoramic views of the canyon. Slide Rock State Park sits on the Sedona end, and is a favorite among those seeking water adventure. The smooth rocks and turbulent current create a natural water slide - a great way to cool off in summer!

Between these points lies a twisting highway (State Hwy 89A) that takes you through pines, along a creek bed and over terrain that provides breathtaking views of the canyon. Numerous hiking trails provide a closer view of nature. The photo on the right was taken at a view point along the road.

Hiking areas are abundant, but due to the increase in the number of visitors in recent years, it has become necessary to plan ahead and get to the trails early. Parking lots for trails fill up quickly, especially on weekends.

Although the cooler temperature provides much needed relief in summer, fall and early spring temperatures can be quite cold. Snow can still exist in shaded areas.

Slide Rock is a popular spot in Oak Creek Canyon. Plan to get there early - wear sturdy shorts and slide over the rocks as you drift down the river.

The entire drive is not long. Plan to spend time in either Sedona or Flagstaff, or both. Picnic or dine along the river and enjoy this very beautiful, peaceful area.

Visit USDA Forest Service: Coconino: Oak Creek Canyon for more information.

Camping is available at Red Rock State Park

Sedona Dog Park Leash free dog park.

US Forest Service: Red Rock Ranger District campgrounds, trails, picnic areas, scenic drives, cabin rentals in the Red Rock District (Sedona area) of the Coconino National Forest

Oak Creek Canyon
Fields of emerald green ferns against a backdrop of brick red cliffs rising toward a dark blue sky create scenery that is breathtaking.

Trees and cliffs provide shade in the warmer months.

The photos on the left and above were taken on a hike that travels through an old farming homestead. Fruit trees still stand, along with a storage building and part of the main house.

Fabulous reviews of nearby places:
City of Sedona
Verde Canyon Railroad
Montezuma Castle
Camp Verde

Oak Creek Canyon
View Into Oak Creek Canyon
Oak Creek Canyon
Oak Creek Canyon
Oak Creek Canyon
Oak Creek Canyon Viewpoint


From Flagstaff, go south on 89A. From Phoenix, go north of I-17; take 179 to Sedona, then go north on 89A.

accessible travel

Many trails are wheelchair accessible. Click the link below to obtain maps and information about the trails. As stated above, parking lots fill quickly so arrive at the trail head early. Scenic pull-overs provide beautiful views from the car.

Visit USDA Forest Service: Coconino National Forest: Oak Creek Canyon for more information.

Read our article on Accessible Travel for more information.

travel with children

Oak Creek Canyon Hikes
Slide rock provides a fun place for older children. HINT: Wear jeans because it takes just a few passes over the rocks to wear through a swim suit, even though the rocks are quite smooth.

The trails provide fun places to explore and "run off steam". Many trails are quite easy. The nearby towns of Sedona and Flagstaff offer many child friendly activities as well. Visit the link below for detailed maps of the area.

Read our article on Travel With Children for more information.

travel with pets Pets
Leashed pets are allowed on trails throughout the area. Consider the weather and your pet's physical condition when choosing your destination. Trails can be hot in summer and icy in winter. When visiting cities and towns in the area, remember that pets are not allowed in stores and restaurants. NEVER leave a pet unattended in a vehicle.

Sedona Dog Park A leash free dog park is being developed. Click link for information.

Read our article on Travel With Pets for more information.

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