Founded in 1902 Sedona Arizona has been held secret from the meandering herds of Wall-Mart enthusiasts. Its free from the typical things you see in tourist destinations. No deep fried twinkies or cotton candy slingers here.
Although it is a very popular destination, it’s popular for the right reasons. Additionally it seems like its self aware and set on remaining popular for the right reasons. This isn’t a drinking loud party town like Lake Havasu. You don’t see tits and ass everywhere you look. There aren’t packs of college students stumbling up and down the sidewalks or drunken thots crying on the sidewalk.
Sedona is full of galleries and new age shops. Vegan restaurants and craft food makers.
The people are extremely nice, calm, friendly and chatty. There are no billboards in Sedona blocking the views of the amazing red rock goliaths presiding over the region like wise giants. A humility is put into looking up at them.
There is public artwork and sculptures everywhere, and they are of unusually high quality. Not bland, not garish. They aren’t shoved down your throat but exist where they ought to. Walking through Sedona you think, “hey its been a bit since I’ve seen a sculpture”. Then, there one is. Some are tucked into corners that you would walk right by if you weren’t paying attention.
They are tasteful, and gorgeous.
I don’t know how many times I’ve walked by public artwork on display in other cites and though, WTF were they thinking on that one? Tax dollars paid for this? This place would be better off with a public parking lot.
The statutes around town are unique yet connected in theme and thought. They deserve to observed. The fast food chains are required to abide by the architecture of the rest of town. They don’t have big ugly signs out front. Those corporate designed logo’s being pushed into your vision, are absent. Although you can find your chipotles and your starbucks and your burger kings.
Even the mighty mcdonalds corporation, displays turquoise arches opposed to the ubiquitous gold. There are no giant spinning chicken buckets. Or Jack in the box cubes. There is no advertising in the entire city that is elevated over the structure’s themselves. You are free to take in the magnificent views that surround the city, completely unencumbered by ugly corporate designs.
Although there is plenty of catering to tourists, and the tourism industry is very strong. Most of the businesses catering to tourists are concentrated on sending the tourists back out of town. All manner of tour is available, Jeeps, trollies, trains, hot air balloons, and even helicopters, are constantly shuffling people away from Sedona to go explore the true treasure of the area. Oddly enough they are all remarkably affordable, I saw a place offering helicopter tours for as cheap as $50 for two people. Thats $25 for a damn helicopter ride. Its off-puttingly cheap. $25 for an aeronautical adventure seems too cheap. It sounds like dollar sushi. I asked if dogs were allowed on the helicopter tours, unfortunately they aren’t but they offered to watch him for me while I went on the tour, for no additional cost.
On top of that, there are hiking trails, off-roading, mountain biking, fishing, native american cliff dwellings and I’m sure a whole list of things I’m forgetting or not interested in.
Before coming to Sedona I heard from dozens of people speaking on the energy of Sedona, and of course the new age types would comment on that. Admittedly I like having crystals and stones around. I also like having a stomach full of rare steak, with some whiskey. No matter what you are into, there is definitely general cheerfulness in everybody I’ve encountered here.
The beauty of the surrounding geography beyond all measure. It contradicts itself, there are pine trees and cacti. It’s got to be the lushest desert anyone has ever seen. The ambiance is filled with bird songs and butterflies, Each mountain appears to be a gigantic individual stone instead of piles of dirt and rocks. The word ugly doesn’t apply to anything in Sedona. The bad view of Sedona is in the rear view mirror of anyone driving away.