20 Short and Easy Sedona Hikes with Stunning Views

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive commissions when you click links and make purchases at no extra cost to you. View details here. By purchasing items through the included links, you help me (Sam) keep this site running. Thank you for your support!

There are countless trails nestled amidst the stunning landscapes of Sedona, from leisurely strolls and captivating viewpoints to the challenging inclines of Bear Mountain and the iconic 7 Sacred Pools along Solider’s Pass TrailWhether enjoying a sunrise hike or a sunset trail among the beautiful red rocks, Sedona promises an immersive experience for both novice and seasoned hikers.

What is great about Sedona are the amount of easy hiking trails with little elevation gain that still have stunning views. I’ve combined 20 of the best easy hikes in Sedona that are truly easy. With the majestic backdrop of the Coconino National Forest, these trails promise an adventure suitable for a beginner hiker or someone just looking to get outside and enjoy nature.

This list of easy hikes will allow you to enjoy fantastic views of Sedona County without the worry of long steep inclines, rock scrambling, or high elevation gains.

A Red Rock Pass (or America the Beautiful Interagency Pass, Golden Age or Golden Access), is required when recreating on National Forest land in Red Rock Country. America the Beautiful Passes (National Parks Pass) are valid in Red Rock Country in lieu of the Red Rock Pass.

I always recommend getting an early start and bringing plenty of water and snacks especially if you are hiking in the warmer months. If you are hiking in cold weather, make sure to wear proper footwear and warm base layers. Always download an off-line map to make sure you stay on trail (I use AllTrails), and always follow the 7 leave no trace principles whenever you are enjoying nature. 

A girl walking down a red dirt pathway towards a field of towering red-rock cliffs.
x

Yavapai Vista and Slim Shady Loop

  • Elevation Gain: 85 feet
  • Distance: 0.6 miles
  • Route Type: Loop
  • Red Rock Pass: Yes

The Yavapai Vista Trail connects to the Slim Shady Loop, creating a quick and easy loop with plenty of scenery.

On the Yavapai Vista Trail, you’ll get breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding red rock formations, and it’s incredibly gorgeous during sunrise or sunset hikes. To access Yavapai Vista, the best area to park is at the designated lot near the trailhead, and yes, the Vista parking area does require a Red Rock Pass for entry. 

The Slim Shady Loop, on the other hand, meanders through picturesque canyons, showcasing Sedona’s iconic red sandstone formations. If you start at this loop, you can park at the nearby Bell Rock Vista Trailhead, easily accessible from the path. Luckily, you don’t need a Red Rock pass for this loop, either!

Marg’s Draw

  • Distance: 4.0 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 393 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Red Rock Pass: No

Leading hikers through a scenic desert landscape, Marg’s Draw is one of the best easy Sedona hikes. This trail takes hikers along red rock formations and showcases stunning views of the Sedona wilderness. Many visitors use this trail for horseback riding and running, so you’ll likely see others on this path. On foot, this hike takes about an hour and a half.

You’ll find a small parking lot just outside of the trailhead, and there’s no need for a Red Rock Pass!

Slick Rock Trail

  • Distance: 0.7 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 78 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Red Rock Pass: No

If you’re looking for a challenging hike, you can’t go wrong with Secret Slick Rock Trail. This trailhead is conveniently located at the Dry Creek Road parking area, and like Marg’s Draw, it does not require a Red Rock Pass for entry. 

While rated easy, Slickrock Trail winds through diverse terrain, including slick rock surfaces and sandy stretches, so you’ll definitely want your hiking boots for this one! However, with a length of less than a mile, it won’t take more than 20 minutes to complete – but the best part is that you’ll get great views of Cathedral Rock.

Big Park Loop

  • Distance: 2.4 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 170 feet
  • Route Type: Loop
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

Big Park Loop is one of the best easy Sedona hikes for the entire family! Along this 1 hour hike, you’ll enjoy the beauty of the Oak Creek Village area. This trailhead is accessible from the Bell Rock Vista parking area, but you’ll need a Red Rock Pass for this hike. 

This loop offers a relatively easy hike with breathtaking views of Bell Rock. You might even see a coyote or two along the path!

Fay Canyon Trail 

  • Distance: 2.4 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 298 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

Fay Canyon Trail meanders through a lush canyon with towering red rock walls. This trailhead is located across from the Fay Canyon parking area, and yes, the trailhead lot does require a Red Rock Pass for parking. 

I personally love this hike because you’ll get shade from the canyon while also enjoying the stunning views and occasional wildlife sightings along the way.

Don’t confuse this trail with the Fay Canyon Arch Trail – these are two separate hikes. However, the Arch Trail is another fun option, featuring a red rock arch!

West Fork Trail

  • Distance: 6.5 miles 
  • Elevation Gain: 564 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

Over 6 miles long, the West Fork Trail is slightly more strenuous than some of the other hikes on this list. This beautiful hike will lead you along Oak Creek through a lush and shaded canyon, so it’s a great hike to beat the heat during those hot Arizona summers. This path follows the creek upstream, with several stream crossings along the way. Crossing these waters is quite easy as long as the weather is dry.

This trailhead is located at the Call of the Canyon parking area, and while a Red Rock Pass is required for this trail, the enchanting scenery, cascading water, and towering cliffs make it well worth the visit. 

Seven Sacred Pools via Cibola Pass Trail

  • Distance: 2.8 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 387 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

The Seven Sacred Pools via Cibola Pass Trail isn’t just a hike – it’s an experience. Located in the Coconino National Forest near Soldier Pass Trail, this route unfolds through diverse terrain, offering panoramic views of the surrounding red rock formations. Eventually, this path leads to the Seven Sacred Pools, a series of natural water features over ochre rock. 

These enchanting pools, surrounded by the vibrant hues of Sedona’s landscape, are considered sacred by some Native American cultures, adding a touch of spirituality to this trail. These pools are also a primary water source for the local wildlife, so you might see a few critters while you’re here. You’ll also notice deep green Juniper Trees surrounding these pools, starkly contrasting with the desert surroundings.

You can access this trail by parking at the Cibola Pass Trailhead. Don’t forget to bring your Red Rock Pass!

Bell Rock Pathway

  • Distance: 2.8 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 475 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

The Bell Rock Pathway is one of the most popular easy Sedona hikes, renowned for its stunning views of the local red rock formations. Conveniently starting at the Bell Rock Vista parking area, this pathway meanders around the base of Bell Rock, where you’ll notice juniper-dotted landscapes and panoramic vistas of the surrounding red rock terrain. 

The Bell Rock Pathway is perfect for hikers of all skill levels, making it a family-friendly option – it takes almost an hour and a half to complete. Plus, if you’re craving a more intense climb, you can choose to ascend Bell Rock itself while you’re here. If the Bell Rock Pathway lot is full, try the nearby Courthouse Vista Parking Area or the Yavapai Vista Point Parking Lot, you’ll need a Red Rock Pass for all three parking areas.

Teacup Trail to Coffee Pot Rock

  • Distance: 2.7 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 291 feet
  • Route Type: Loop
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

Start at the Teacup Trailhead, situated at a parking area off Buena Vista, this trail requires a Red Rock Pass for access. This nearly 3-mile hike provides diverse terrain, including red sandstone formations and desert vegetation – the panoramic views of Sedona’s striking red rock formations are just the cherry on top!

As the trail unfolds, it leads to the renowned Coffeepot Rock, a distinctive rock formation resembling a percolator or coffee pot. This trail is one of the best places in Sedona to take pictures, especially with the unique backdrop of Coffeepot Rock. If you want to keep hiking, you can extend your adventure by connecting to other trails in the area, like Soldiers Pass or Brins Mesa.

Sugarloaf Loop Summit

  • Distance: 2.0 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 377 feet
  • Route Type: Loop
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

This loop starts at the Teacup Trail, which then connects to Sugarloaf Loop, and edventually to Sugarloaf Summit. While the trail is short, it has some incline, so it probably isn’t the easiest option on this list- but is so worth it! Sugarloaf Summit is one of my top three sunrise hikes in Sedona.

This rocky trail has excellent views of the red rock formations, and is stunning any time of the year. It should only take about 45 mins to complete this hike, and don’t forget your Red Rock Pass! Parking here is very limited, so getting here early is your best bet.

Deadman’s Pass Trail

  • Distance: 2.6 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 265 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

Deadman’s Pass Trail is a moderate hike with stunning views of the surrounding red rock formations. Along the route, you’ll encounter desert landscapes and areas with distinctive red rock features. It will take you about 30 minutes one way, or about an hour total, to complete this hike.

One of the perks of this trail is that it connects to Long Canyon Trail, Boynton Canyon Trail, and the Mescal Mountain Trail, so if you’re up for it, you can extend your adventure and experience even more of Sedona’s scenic beauty. This trailhead is accessible from the Boynton Canyon area and requires a Red Rock Pass for parking.

Airport Mesa Trail

  • Distance: 3.3 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 429 feet
  • Route Type: Loop
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

The Airport Mesa Loop Trail is about 3.2 miles long and has incredible panoramic views of Sedona and the surrounding rock formations. This route encircles the upper slope of Airport Mesa, which is also referred to as Table Top Mountain. This trailhead is easily accessible from the small Airport Mesa parking lot, and you’ll need a Red Rock Pass to park here.

Hiking this trail is a relatively easy experience, and you’ll be rewarded with the stunning vista from the mesa’s summit. The hardest part of this route is just a few rocky areas along the path. 

Boynton Canyon Trail 

  • Distance: 7.2 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 964 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

This aptly-named trail is situated in the beautiful Boynton Canyon, with stunning red rock views and unique geological formations. 

One of the best parts of the Boynton Canyon Trail is that you can explore the ancient indigenous cliff dwellings, providing a glimpse into the region’s rich archaeological history. In addition to the archeology, you can also enjoy magnificent views of the surrounding red rock formations. This hike takes you through diverse landscapes, including desert terrain and shaded areas near the canyon walls.

The Boynton Vista Trail is approximately 7 miles round trip, providing a moderate hiking experience. The trailhead is accessible from a parking area at Enchantment Resort, and a Red Rock Pass is required for parking at this location. 

Sedona View Trail

  • Distance: 1.2 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 380 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: No

Sedona View Trail runs parallel to the Airport Loop Trail, starting north of Airport Road. There is a paid public parking lot just before the trail – it’s $3 to park. 

Aptly named, this trail has incredible views of several famous sites, like Doe Mountain, Sugar Loaf, Coffee Pot Rock, and Oak Creek Canyon. This trail has very little shade, so pack plenty of sunscreen!

Birthing Cave

  • Distance: 1.9 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 242 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: No

This moderately challenging hike is super popular, leading to an incredible cave with beautiful views. The last portion of this trail is quite steep, so be sure to pace yourself and wear shoes with good traction! 

You can park at the Long Canyon Trailhead, but the small lot might be full since this hike is so popular. If you can’t find a space, try to park at the nearby Mescal Trailhead on Long Canyon Road. A half-mile trail on the west side of the road connects Mescal Trailhead to Long Canyon Trail.

Mescal Trail and Yucca Loop 

  • Distance: 3.8 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 383 feet
  • Route Type: Loop
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: No

Mescal Trail is located in the Dry Creek area of Sedona – this moderate trail is another great spot to marvel at Sedona’s red rock formations. This path also passes through unique geological features, including Mescal Mountain. Most hikers can complete this trail in about an hour and a half.

Yucca Loop and Mescal Trail are part of the same trail system in the Dry Creek area. Yucca Loop offers additional mileage to the Mescal Trail and takes hikers through different landscapes, including open desert spaces and bright red rock formations.

While you can park at Dry Creek Vista and the Mescal Trailhead, parking is limited. You can take advantage of Sedona’s free shuttle service from a designated park-and-ride within central Sedona, operating Thursday through Sunday. 

Oak Creek Trail

  • Distance: 1.3 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 42 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: No, but park entry fees apply

This super quick and easy trail will take about 25 minutes to complete. Located at Crescent Moon Ranch, you’ll first need to go to the park’s northeast corner, where you’ll find a parking lot. 

The surface of this trail is completely paved and follows Oak Creek. With hardly any elevation gain, it’s perfect for hikers of all ages. Along the way, you’ll get excellent views of Cathedral Rock and the Red Rock Crossing Vortex.

Wilson Canyon Trail

  • Distance: 2.7 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 393 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

Although rated as moderate in AllTrails, you can skip the moderate part at the end to keep it easy. This easy-moderate hike will take a little over an hour to finish. There’s a small parking lot with room for about 12 cars, but since this trail is a bit of a hidden gem, there are usually spots available.

If you go just past the “end of the trail” sign at the end, you can climb up a rocky staircase to get access to some of the best views in Sedona. Also, you’ll need a Red Rock Pass for this one!

Baldwin Trail #191

  • Distance: 2.7 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 285 feet
  • Route Type: Loop
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

Baldwin Trail is about a one-hour hike through the picturesque Oak Creek Canyon. As you walk this path, you can enjoy the lush vegetation, red rock formations, and the peaceful surroundings of the canyon.

You’ll find the trailhead in the Oak Creek Canyon area of Sedona. Parking is located on Verde Valley Road, and the trailhead is just across the street. Be sure to bring your Red Rock Pass!

This trail is considered easy in difficulty, so it’s great for most hiking levels. On this path, you can experience the natural beauty of Sedona without an overly strenuous hike!

Baldwin Trail is often used in combination with other nearby trails, providing options for longer hikes or loop trails in the area.

Little Horse

  • Distance: 4.3 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 616 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes, but not if using the Sedona shuttle

Not to be confused with the 15-mile Little Horse Trail, this Little Horse trek takes about 2 hours to complete. Little Horse is a bit longer than most of the other easy Sedona hikes on this list, and it offers views of notable landmarks like Bell Rock and Cathedral Rock. You can expect diverse scenery along the way, with the trail winding through desert landscapes and showcasing panoramic vistas of the iconic Sedona terrain.

Little Horse gives you great views from Chicken Point and connects with other trails in the area, so you can extend your hike to the Chapel of the Holy Cross Trail or several other routes. To keep this trail easy, return after reaching Chicken Point. You can extend your hike past this marker with some scrambling and elevation changes for a moderate difficulty level.

Parking is very limited at this trail, so I recommend taking advantage of Sedona’s park-and-ride shuttle service – the stop is located at 1294 SR 179.

Chapel Trail

  • Distance: 1.3 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 170 feet
  • Route Type: Out & back
  • Requires Red Rock Pass: Yes

Chapel Trail provides access to the iconic Chapel of the Holy Cross, where visitors can explore the chapel and enjoy gorgeous views of the red rock formations and the valley below. The chapel itself rises 200 feet between two rock formations. It was designed by Marguerite Brunswig Staude, a student of Frank Lloyd Wright, and completed in 1956. 

While you’re here, you can’t miss the 90-foot cross, which you can actually see from the road below – this is one of the most unique, easy Sedona hikes! You’ll need a Red Rock Pass to visit this trail, and parking is available at the Little Horse Parking area. 

***

With plenty of easy Sedona hikes, it will be hard to choose just one. I recommend at least 3 days in Sedona to really take in the stunning scenery, connect with nature, and try some delicious restaurants. You may even have time for a spa day or two!

Shop Travel Gear

Shop all my current obsessions and travel essentials I can’t live without. I only recommend products I’ve actually tried and loved!

Sam wearing backpack and hat walking through town.

The Best Travel Apps

Want To Travel Easier?

Get my Free Guide to the Best Travel Apps straight to your inbox

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Similar Posts