Hey Girls! Wow, it has been a minute since I have written post on my dear Vida Noel! Life has been crazy to say the least. I often find that I simply do not have the time to do all the things! With that being said, it is completely okay to feel that way. There is always something that I can do for work in this industry but it is finding that fine balance of work and family. Today’s long overdue post is covering the trip Brody and I took last week to Arizona! If you have been following my page, you have probably caught on that we love Arizona. We first visited in 2018 when Noelia was young and that trip blew us away. We fell in love with the state! This Arizona trip round-up is going to cover what we did, where we stayed, food reqs, and all my outfit links!
Our Arizona Trip Round-Up
Brody and I started feeling comfortable taking Mom and Dad trips last July when Reina was 1. With him being a teacher and myself staying home with the kids while working, having time to connect is slim most days. The school year can be long for us and my work flow seems busier than ever. Although I get that Mama guilt, I find time away from the kids is beneficial for all of us. The kids get a “break” from Mom and Dad and we get time to connect and recharge. We get to indulge in uninterrupted conversations and discuss things that will help us be better parents. We are very fortunate to have my parents nearby to help watch the girls. I do not take that for granted!
We tend to take most of our vacations during the Summer months that Brody is not teaching. Arizona is HOT during July but to be honest we do not mind it. If we love it in July we must really love it, right?! Summer months are their slower season but in recent years the Phoenix area is only getting busier and busier. There has been a huge influx of people moving to AZ since the pandemic which naturally makes the area a little busier. For this trip we wanted to experience something new so we headed to Sedona for the first two days of our trip.
Once we landed in Phoenix and got our rental car, we started driving to Sedona which is close to a 2 hour drive. The views were beautiful and the time flew by. There was always something to look at on the way.
TIP: Sedona is elevated which makes for some crazy roads along the way and back. It gets very dark at night driving in he desert. Try to drive during the day or right before sunset!
We stayed at Amara Resort and Spa which is tucked into the Sedona landscape. You are about 4,500 feet elevation and within walking distance to all the cute shops and restaurants. The SaltRock Kitchen on their property is delicious. I had the Dark Acaï Bowl for breakfast and it was phenomenal. They have a fabulous infinity pool that overlooks the forest landscape and Red Rocks. The pool isn’t very deep and is zero-entry which is great for kids.
Your view when you dine at SaltRock Kitchen. So pretty!
We got up at 4:30am to hike Devil’s Bridge and the views did not disappoint! The early mornings in Sedona were cool with a light breeze which made the 6 mile hike very enjoyable! TIP: The parking lot at the trailhead is very small so get there early! I had some people ask me HOW DID YOU GET THAT PHOTO?! There is almost always people overlooking Devil’s Bridge and taking photos. If you take photos for other people on the bridge they will return the favor. Everyone is so kind and willing to take it. After all, who hikes to that view to NOT get a photo?! The bridge seems more narrow than it actually is. Brody was freaked out to go on it but one we were on it, it wasn’t so bad. Just keep looking ahead! 😉
We weren’t planning on doing two hikes in one day but since the weather was so nice we also hiked Cathedral Rock. If I had to choose between the two hikes, Cathedral was my favorite. The hike is shorter but definitely harder. Be prepared to use your hands many times to climb. The elevation is also over 5,000 feet so I got tired quicker. We went slow and made sure to take breaks when I felt out of breath. There are many photo worthy spots on this hike so make sure to take your phone/camera with you.
WHAT TO TAKE WITH YOU ON YOUR HIKE
Small Day Pack
Plenty of water
Thick, long socks
Dry fit clothing
This was our view when we ate at Hideaway Cafe. Breathtaking!
RESTAURANTS WE WENT TO:
Black Bear Cafe
This photo was taken at the Gateway Trailhead in North Scottsdale. It was such a cool experience to be doing photos in the desert terrain! This fun jumpsuit is linked below
Scottsdale will always be my favorite area! We drove back from Sedona and stayed at Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort and Spa. The property is tucked into cambelback mountain in the Paradise Valley area. The views are immaculate! You feel secluded but you are still only a 5 minute drive from shops, restaurants, and golfing. The Elements restaurant was probably one of my favorite dinner experiences and the views while you are dining are breathtaking. The restaurant faces the sunset which serves for optimal pictures. The Sanctuary also has an infinity pool with pool-side service. If you are looking for a romantic escape, this property is for you! My tip would be to book during their off-season (Summer months) for discounted rates.
This was taken at Sanctuary by the pool area! This swimsuit ran small on me so order up if you purchase!
These were the Lemon Ricotta Pancakes from the Elements restaurant at Sanctuary. Their breakfast spread was delish!
AREAS IN PHOENIX TO EXPLORE
Camelback Mountain (hike before sunrise in Summer months)
Fashion Square Mall (indoor mall full of designer stores)
Gateway Trailhead (North Scottsdale, great photo spots!)
Old Town Scottsdale (Sugarbowl is Noelia’s favorite!)
ASU (if you are a football fan!)
FAVORITE COFFEE/FOOD PLACES
In N Out (duh!)
Phoenix Beer Co
Weft and Warp on Andaz Resort
Elements on Sanctuary Resort
Canal Club at The Scott Resort
YOUR ARIZONA QUESTIONS
Was the resort all inclusive? No, I wish! I do not believe there are any all inclusive resorts in AZ but I could be wrong. Most resorts will charge a resort fee so be mindful of that when booking your stay.
Would you take your kids to AZ? Debating on taking our 2 y/o hiking there. Yes! Noelia has been to AZ a few time and we took Reina for the first time last Summer. I would only hike with the girls if we went during Arizona’s Winter or Spring and doing more of a walking trail than a hike. I would not feel comfortable taking the girls the hikes we went on. Too many places they could fall.
Good place to Babymoon? 100%, yes! I would definitely book a resort stay for this. Old Town Scottsdale tends to get busy with Bachelorette/Bach parties which would make me uncomfortable belly-out pregnant. I would book a stay closer to Paradise Valley.
Is there a lot of stuff walking distance like Vegas or is it more spread out? There are a lot of shops and restaurants near Old Town Scottsdale but I wouldn’t compare it to Vegas. Instead of a long strip it is just a few blocks of things to do. The Scottsdale/Phoenix is big and there is plenty of things to do and places to go! I definitely recommend renting a car so you have the freedom to explore the city and see the mountains!
Press Coffee was so good! I am picky about the taste of espresso and this oat milk latte was the *chefs kiss*
Other Arizona posts of mine you can checkout!
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