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Northern Arizona: Sample city life and country retreats on this trip through Northern Arizona

These northern landscapes vary from rugged wilderness to towering city skylines—who could ask for more? Recharge your batteries with an escape to Northern Arizona’s vacation sanctuaries.

Drive 200.9 miles, 2 hours, 53 minutes

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Getty Images/iStockphoto

1. Flagstaff

Starting Point

This bustling college town moves on its feet with over 50 miles of non-motorized pathways for walkers, runners, hikers and bikers. You’ll find these trails in urban areas, meadows, grasslands, canyons and nearby forests. Brookbank Trail is perfect for solitude and reflection; Arizona Trail in the Walnut Canyon National Monument passes by curved canyon walls and cliff dwellings for some of the most beautiful yet isolated wilderness in the state. The Arizona Snowbowl provides the ultimate in skiing and snowboarding.


Grand Canyon Railway RV Park
Williams, AZ
(800) 843-8724

2. Sedona

32.7 miles, 49 minutes

You’ll see red in Sedona—red rock buttes, spires and monoliths created by wind and water erosion over millions of years. Native Americans believed these formations held mystical properties. Enjoy a panoramic view of these magical rocks from a hot air balloon or take an explorative hike up the monolith of your choice. Cathedral Rock is awe-inspiring and seems to exude a soul-soothing energy that has drawn spiritual visitors for centuries.

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Getty Images/iStockphoto

3. Prescott

68.5 miles, 1 hour, 13 minutes

Prescott has so much to offer, it’s no wonder it was voted “Travelers’ Choice” by TripAdvisor as one of the “10 Destinations on the Rise” in the U.S. The downtown historical district retains the feel of a bygone era, with intriguing museums, Victorian homes and Old Western saloons. The Sharlot Hall Museum tells the story of Prescott and its founders by offering a glimpse into life in the Wild West during the late 1800s. Stroll down Whiskey Row, a one-block area that housed over 40 saloons at one time.

4. Phoenix

99.7 miles, 1 hour, 31 minutes

Explore one of America’s sunniest cities. Walk the trails at the Desert Botanical Garden to learn more about the plants, people and wildlife of the Sonoran Desert. The Heard Museum of American Indian Art and History emphasizes Southwestern cultures and offers a better understanding into the ways of indigenous peoples. Saddle up for a real western horseback ride, reserve a wagon ride, complete with a cookout, or catch some family entertainment—1880s style—at Rawhide Western Town and Steakhouse.