Sedona, Arizona is a popular destination for people looking for a serene, relaxing vacation with gorgeous views of the rich orange sandstone that dominates the southwest part of the United States. For those looking for a balance between relaxation and activities, there are plenty of hiking and biking opportunities as well as Sedona's convenient proximity to popular tourist destinations like the Grand Canyon. It is also considered a very spiritual place, where several energy vortexes are located for spiritual renewal.
Not surprisingly, being that I'm a very unspiritual person, my decision to visit was purely for the photographic opportunities, as I'm not much into the mystical allure of the town. Alas, after going through my photos, I wasn't super happy with them, even post-processing. The lesson I learned is that to be successful in photography, you need to be patient and force yourself to really compose the photo and ensure your settings are accurate, then take more photos than you thing you need at various settings! Anyone who knows me knows that patience is not one of my virtues, but in this case I think I can work on it. Even with the photos not being 100% perfect, they still bring back good memories - which is really the ultimate purpose of a photograph, to capture a moment.
Some of the most prominent rock formations in the region include Courthouse Rock (above) and Bell Rock (below), which is also considered to be one of the energy vortexes. I believe these photos were taken from the Chapel of the Holy Cross.
A great viewpoint to capture the colors and grandeur of these rocks is from the Airport Mesa. There is a small parking lot part way up the hill, if you're lucky, otherwise you will have to drive to the top near the airport and hike down to set up for your sunset or sunrise shots.
In my opinion, one of the best ways to see the territory is getting off the pavement and into a 4x4. Pink Jeep Tours dominates the off-road scene in Sedona, offering several tour itineraries depending on your desired destinations or sights.
Look closely at the next photo and see if you can spot the geological history of the sandstone, where for a certain period, a different type of rock settled (maybe limestone?) creating a jagged shelf before additional layers of sandstone formed, which were then topped with a thick layer of limestone.
While Cathedral Rock, Courthouse Rock, and Bell Rock dominate the guidebooks, my two favorite rock formations were the two elephants and...
Snoopy Rock! With a little tiny Woodstock on his nose! Can you see it?