One day, I literally woke up and decided to go to the Grand Canyon. Everyone else had plans fourth of July, but I had five days off from work in a row and wasn’t going to stay home…so I gassed up my Nissan & headed South! Here are the legs I took:
Boise, ID to Kanab, UT– 494 miles
As soon as I could, I hit the road and covered the distance from Boise to Kanab, Utah. First of all, I will be revisiting Kanab and if I could do this trip all over again, I would have added at least two days to actually be able to explore this area! I drove in, slept, and left. A tragedy really.
I really recommended my stay at the Canyon’s Hotel which was super convenient and clean. It wasn’t necessarily inexpensive, but I wanted to feel safe and I did! Plus free breakfast.
Kanab, UT to Page, AZ– 74 miles
Leaving Kanab, I had a tour at 9am in Page for Antelope Canyon. Now, a little about Antelope:
Antelope Canyon has two different areas: the lower and upper canyons. The entirety of Antelope is technically on the Navajo reservation meaning you cannot view it without a paid tour on one of the companies owned by the Navajo.
Arguably/apparently, there are many similar slot canyons, less expensive/free and not on a reservation. Rookie mistake or still one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been in my life? I have no regrets.
Next, I drove to the very nearby Horseshoe Bend, which is an incised meander of the Colorado River. There is a parking lot that you must pay a small fee to enter and then approximately a 1.3 mile roundtrip hike, but I ended up walking way past it to take in the views. The hike isn’t difficult, but I’d definitely bring closed toed shoes and a water!
I found a small cave and sat in the shade for nearly a half hour just admiring. I can’t compare anywhere I’ve been to these views & the pics don’t do justice.
Page to Flagstaff– 134 miles
After Horseshoe, I drove to Flagstaff for lunch and a quick view of the downtown. I didn’t realize there were so many shops and it was very crowded at Fourth of July weekend. Next time, I’ll dedicate more time to the cute little town! I hear there is good skiing and snowboarding here in the winter as well.
Flagstaff to Sedona– 30 miles
This one hour drive is one of the most beautiful I have ever experienced in my entire life. I was in awe with my jaw to the ground the entire time. If you get an opportunity, there is Slide Rock park in between the two cities.
In Sedona, I checked into the incredible Arabella Hotel, which was gorgeous and in a good location, but going back, I might have gotten a tad closer to the action because I was justttt too far to walk to the “main” strip of town.
I stayed there for a few days so here’s what I did:
A vortex is the intersections of natural electromagnetic earth energy and Sedona, Arizona is believed to have four: This is the reason most people visit the area.
The four vortexes are Airport Mesa, Cathedral Rock, Bell Rock and Boynton Canyon. Other than these four, there are about 15 hikes in the area, and I’m sure locals know of more. These factors make a great spot for meditation and the outdoors, which is why I visited in the first place.
Pink Jeep Tours
Touristy. Overpriced. Worth it.
I did the Broken Arrow tour after about five people suggested it to me! It’s kind of the most Sedona you can get, so I don’t have regrets honestly. You get a unique tour experience of the park as you off road to some incredible views. Plus, my guide was super funny & filled with fun facts!
Tlaquepaque Arts & Shopping Village
I spent a calm hour or two here browsing the shops and sipping rose with my lunch on a patio. I really enjoyed this quaint little village and fantasizing about a future wedding here. Haha kidding. Sorta.
Crystal Shopped at Center for The New Age
Okay, so I’m the worst with this kind of thing because I’m not like a true crystal girl, but my little sister is. I wanted to go see if I could “feel the energy” like she told me she does when she crystal shops. I actually did get her a crystal and one for myself.
If nothing else, it’s kind of neat to walk around this place, but be careful. I’m a Christian and I believe in God, but I do believe He created energies of the earth and I definitely felt both positive and negative energy in this place. Be careful.
I went to Sedona after a very toxic relationship/break-up wasn’t letting me move on and I hadn’t quite recovered. I took this trip as an “Eat Pray Love”-esque expedition to clear my mind, listen to some audiobooks and do something for myself, by myself, with myself.
After being in the Idaho spring, I wanted some sun so while in Arizona I made sure to relax, lay out by the pool, grab a flight at the brewery, whatever felt right at the moment. I relaxed.
One thing I will note, although everything I ate was tasty, Sedona doesn’t really have thatttt many food options and the ones there definitely aren’t inexpensive. If you’re doing a long road trip and wouldn’t mind eating a PB&J or microwavable options, I would have gone back and prepared to bring more of that had I known. Also, everything closes in town around 8ish so it wouldn’t have been bad to have backups.
Sedona to Grand Canyon– 100 miles
After it was time to depart, there’s a rest stop/view point I stopped at because I saw a sign about an hour into the trip. What I thought might be just a few minutes ended up being 30+ minutes chatting with Navajo souvenir vendors and taking in the remarkable views.
Once I made the journey to the Grand Canyon, I was a little overwhelmed. I had NO IDEA there were so many options for viewpoints. I’m not sure what I thought it was, but I didn’t realize it’d take 15 minutes just to get inside the park and then another 15 minutes to drive to one of the welcome centers and then another 15 minute hike to a viewpoint.
I could have and would have dedicated 3 hours if I could have! I think I was there for two and walked a few miles and I definitely got the gist.
Grand Canyon to Las Vegas– 275 miles
I met my friend in Las Vegas that same evening for her birthday. Originally, I thought I was going alone, so I bought tickets to a Scott Bradlee’s Post-Modern Jukebox Show and then I met up with her at TAO for dinner followed by drinks at The Chandelier Bar.
Las Vegas to Boise, ID– 630 miles
In the morning, I woke to make the straight shot to Boise. And, I will probably never do this drive again. I am now convinced Nevada has something against internet service, and cellular data, and gas stations and restrooms. It was a very long nine and a half hours.
I had so much fun on this road trip! It’s empowering to travel alone and although you should always stay vigilant, there was not one moment that I felt as though I was in danger. My only regret of this trip is that I would it was longer.
Some general tips for solo travel:
- Always book your lodging for two people. When I’m checking in, I don’t want the person behind me in line to know what room I am in, but also knowing I only need one key…
- Don’t walk by yourself anywhere after dark unless it’s very busy and well lit.
- I don’t like to drink any alcohol if I’m not with other people I know and trust.
- Stay vigilant and be aware of your surroundings. I also carry pepper spray and my keys in my hand for self-defense when I’m walking alone.
- Always make sure someone knows where you are and how long you’ll be there for.
That’s it–thank you for reading and happy traveling!
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