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Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

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Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

Dear TripAdvisor,

My group of friends and I are planning to spend a weekend in Arizona. We will be departing from Orange County at 4AM on Friday. It is our first time traveling to Arizona.

Per your expertise, can you please offer some insight as to whether the following itinerary is possible? With regard to the time constraint, it does not seem possible. Should I remove Sedona? What are your thoughts?

Friday:

Drive from OC to Sedona

Spend the day exploring Sedona

Saturday:

Explore Horseshoe bend in the early AM

Antelope Canyon Tour in the afternoon

Sunday:

Explore Grand Canyon from 7:30AM to 12PM

Head back to Orange County

Thanks,

Stacy

11 replies to this topic
Sedona, AZ
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1. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

Impossible. You can't even make the drive, let alone have time for exploration.

Choose Sedona or Grand Canyon National Park. You don't even have time for those two. Forget about Page.

tucson az
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2. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

In your other post you talk about having two and a half days. That includes your driving. I agree with RR choose either Grand Canyon or Sedona. Page is not a better place to be than either of those two so save that for another trip.

Kalispell, Montana
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for Glacier National Park, Santa Fe, Sedona
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3. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

Agreeing, not possible or enjoyable...all driving, no doing anything.

First, it will take a huge chunk of the Sedona day just driving here. What you can see and do in one afternoon is very limited and days are getting short.

You should choose either GC or Sedona IMO. Drives are longer and slower than you may imagine once you get off of the freeways. You do want to have time to enjoy either place once you get here. See which destination attracts you the most.

Let us know which you choose and we can help you plan things to see and do. Are you hikers or simply auto tourists for the scenery? Dining? Shopping? Photography?

So Cal
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4. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

Not possible.

Friday: you won't spend the day exploring Sedona, you'd spend the day getting to Sedona. I live at the border of LA/OC, and it takes me at eight hours, drive time only, to get to around about Flagstaff. You won't arrive at noon, you'll arrive in early afternoon. And what time of year is this? If this is soon, sunset will be 6:30-ish?

Saturday: Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon are outside Page, about three hours from Sedona. You won't make it there for any early morning tours. Then where were you planning to spend the night? Because the Grand Canyon is another three hours back south, and you do *not* want to be driving in the dark, or at twilight or pre-dawn (too many large animals roaming around near unlit highways).

Sunday: as said, you won't be there for 7:30am. Again, you need at least 8 hours to get back home - actually, more than on Friday, because of all the other people heading back home on Sunday.

So it's not Sedona I would drop, but Page (Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend). And I would make it either just Sedona, or just the Grand Canyon, but not both, not with just two nights and that far to drive.

I was thinking of trying to persuade my sister et al to head out to the Canyon for a girls' family weekend, but it seemed a bit far for just two nights. I can't imagine trying to cram all three destinations in.

Edited: 9:54 pm, September 21, 2017
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5. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

Thank you everyone for your response! You are all absolutely correct. It is impossible to do all 3 with only 2.5 days to explore.

I would take our Page, but my friends really wanted to see Antelope Canyon and Horshoe Bend.

I am thinking of rearranging the itinerary as follow:

Friday:

Explore Grand Canyon for half a day

Saturday:

Explore Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon tour

Sunday:

We technically only have half a day before driving back. Any suggestion? Should we head back to Grand Canyon? I’m thinking of booking one hotel near Grand Canyon for the duration of the stay so we can head back after exploring Antelope Canyon on Saturday? It’ll be a shorter drive that morning back to Grand Canyon.

Because of the time constraint, we definitely will have to do a part 2 of this trip sometimes later in the future. We’re all busy working so it’s difficult to arrange a time where everyone is free, but it’s been years since our last road trip and we really hope to make this happen!

Any recommendations as to where to eat or stay near Grand Canyon and Antelope Canyon? We’re thinking of packing our own food, but read some suggestion that it’s better to just dine there.

Any recommendations as to where we can star gaze?

Appreciate all of your responses! Thank you!

Long Beach...
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6. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

I would head straight to Page. Maybe drive through Zion NP? Or Horseshoe Bend for Sunset?

Saturday do Antelope tour and Horseshoe bend, drive to Cameron Trading Post for the night? Or in GCNP?

Sunday tour GCNP, then drive home...

I'm tired just thinking about that :)

Edited: 11:58 pm, September 21, 2017
Long Beach...
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7. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

I guess you could book something in Flagstaff for both nights. Do a day trip to Page? (I like Flagstaff- nice little Downtown, woodsy feel.). Maybe 'drive through' and have lunch in Sedona on your way home, if you feel like you've 'seen' the GCNP.

Kalispell, Montana
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for Glacier National Park, Santa Fe, Sedona
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8. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

I like Lemoncurls first suggestion and might also consider a second option, staying at Cameron Trading Post for 2 nights instead of Flagstaff.

Driving through Zion takes more time than you have...use the freeways to Flagstaff and the 89 heading north.

So Cal
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9. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

Do your friends understand exactly how much time in the car they'll have, for a tour that takes less than an hour? If so...ok, you can make one of the above plans work. Otherwise, I would really save Antelope Canyon - which is lovely, but not IMO worth 11+ hours there and back in a weekend - for a longer trip, one you could combine with some of the other lovely spots out there.

Sedona, AZ
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for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
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10. Re: Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon from OC

11+ hours each way is optimistic. I'd estimate over 24 hours for the round trip drive from OC to Page. A very poor use of such limited time for a crowded one hour tour. Oh yeah, add a couple of hours for staging and wait times at the tribal park.

Will you be eating and using rest rooms along the way? Just wondering.

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