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Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

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Manchester, United...
posts: 33
reviews: 1
Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

We are going to be driving from North Phoenix to Sedona on 5th June and would like to get to Sedona early but still enjoy the drive.

Should we go I-17, 179 OR I-17, 260, 89A?

And what time would be best to do this journey?

We then have the rest of the day In Sedona and the next morning and lunch time.

We're then driving up to the Grand Canyon, would mid-afternoon be a good time?We want to have time to have dinner and watch the sunset but we are staying in the park and have the next day too so won't be in too much of a rush to get there early.

Again we want to have time to make plenty of stops along the way. What would be the best route to take? should we enter throught the east entrance and out through the other entrance bearing in mind when we leave we are driving to Las Vegas.

Any help with our route would be great thanks!

Sedona, AZ
Destination Expert
for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
posts: 42,473
reviews: 144
1. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

Take I-17 to 179 into Sedona and make the most of your short time there. The approach on 179 is unforgettable.

It will take you about two hours to drive to the GCNP. Normally, I'd advise you to enter via Desert View, but that would require leaving Sedona earlier. Given that you'll have the entire next day for GCNP, I advise going through Tusayan. Tour the east road to Desert View the next day.

Wickenburg, Arizona
Destination Expert
for Wickenburg
posts: 2,556
reviews: 591
2. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

I suggest driving on 89 and 89A between PHX and Sedona. Indeed a bit longer, but so much more scenic, and you get to see the authentic old western towns of Wickenburg and Prescott (AZ's first capital) and the old mining town of Jerome. So this way is the longer, but really scenic way, what RR suggests is the most direct way on the Interstate. along 1-17 you should stop north of Camp Verde and see Montezuma Castle and Montezuma Well (two consecutive exits, but both right off the Interstate).

I recommend driving from Sddona to GC through Oak Creek Canyon, up 89A, then up 89 to the east gate, as you'll be leaving through the south gate on the way to Vegas. North of Flgatsaff there's Sunset Crater / Wupatki, but you probably won't have time for that.

When you leave the GC on the way to Vegas, stop at Seligman off I-40 west of Ash Fork. It's right off the interstate.

Edited: 12:43 am, April 09, 2013
Manchester, United...
posts: 33
reviews: 1
3. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

Thanks for your advice!

I'm really torn between seeing Jerome/Prescott and having the extra time in Sedona!

And also now which entrance to take into the park!

Manchester, United...
posts: 33
reviews: 1
4. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

What would be the difference in travel time from Sedona to each of the two entrances?

Sedona, AZ
Destination Expert
for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
posts: 42,473
reviews: 144
5. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

Double or triple the time if you take the back route. Your time in Sedona is what I would call two days short of the minimum.

Tucson, Arizona
posts: 3,147
reviews: 11
6. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

I would also recommend driving straight to Sedona, since you have so little time there.

I always enter the GCNP through the east gate. But it doesn't look like you would have any time to stop at any viewpoints and still be at the Village before sunset. So entering through the south gate makes more sense. But do drive the east rim road all the way to Desert View the following day.

Manchester, United...
posts: 33
reviews: 1
7. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

I know it's not ideal but its all we can fit in unfortunately.

Right I'm definitely driving straight to Sedona, I don't want to feel rushed. We have booked Sky Ranch Lodge, is this an okay place? I chose it for the views really but it's free cancellation so I'll swap if this isn't a great place.

Could anyone recommend somewhere for dinner?

We are booking the Broken Arrow Jeep tour, hopefully for ten am the next day. Any recommendations for our next few hours before setting off to the Grand Canyon. I'm thinking Cathedral rock?

Should we skip the town centre altogether?

Tucson, Arizona
posts: 3,147
reviews: 11
8. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

Sky Ranch is a nice place to stay.Great views, nice, clean, but not luxury.

For dinner, if you want western style, I would recommend the Cowboy Club Silver Saddle Room, in uptown Sedona. You will need advance reservations.

A great Italian restaurant is Dahl & DiLuca, about a mile west of airport road. Reservations there, also.

After the PJ tour, definitely experience the Chapel of the Holy Cross.

Sedona, AZ
Destination Expert
for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
posts: 42,473
reviews: 144
9. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

Sky Ranch Lodge is probably the best value and one of the most popular among scores of motels in Sedona. You're fortunate to have a room there.

My top choices for dinner would be Elote Cafe or Harry's Hideaway in Cornville. Plenty of great choices though elsewhere.

Tucson, Arizona
posts: 3,147
reviews: 11
10. Re: Driving Phoenix to Sedona and from Sedona to Grand Canyon

Given the short amount of time you have in Sedona, you probably won't want to drive to Cornville for dinner. I can't speak for Harry's because I haven't eaten there (we will be having dinner there with RedRox and Mrs. Red Pony in October). But no one in our party (4 people) was particularly impressed with Elote (particularly after a wait of almost 1 1/2 hours). Then again, I am a person who absolutely detests waiting for a long time to pay for a meal. May have been a result of my days in the service in the line at the chow hall.

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