A Perfect Long Weekend With Friends (Complete Itinerary)

Planning a weekend away with friends? This guide has all the info you need, from what to do in each town and where to eat on your journey.

If you’re looking for a weekend getaway with friends, this is the perfect long weekend itinerary. The “how to plan a weekend getaway with friends” includes everything from where to stay, what to do, and how much it will cost.

Are you thinking about visiting Sedona, Arizona? Here’s a look at our daily schedule, complete with hotels, eateries, and treks.

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For the last 25 years, my high school pals and I have gotten together once a year, every year (2020 was the only year that derailed us).

We usually get together at each other’s homes, taking walks, dining out, and reconnecting.

This year, we enjoyed a wonderful weekend in Sedona, where the Arizona sun took away our Winter blues.

A few key factors to remember regarding our itinerary:

  • We visited Sedona in late January, when the average monthly temperature ranges between 31 and 56 degrees Fahrenheit. The weather was chilly in the mornings but warmed up over the day. Sedona’s average monthly temperatures are shown below.
  • We aren’t party animals. We didn’t go looking for popular pubs or restaurants. If that’s what you’re searching for, you won’t find it here!
  • We weren’t on a shoestring budget. As a surprise for our 50th birthdays, we splurged on a big Airbnb close to shopping and restaurants.
  • We aren’t the most ardent hikers. We donned sneakers or hiking boots and went on simple to moderate treks.
  • Our Airbnb included a Red Rocks Pass, which must be shown in your vehicle’s windshield at specific paths. A Red Rocks Pass may be purchased here.

I hope this offers you some ideas–or at the very least motivates you to go see this lovely site for yourself!

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: How to See 7 Utah & Arizona National Parks in 6 Days

Itinerary for Sedona

DAY 1

  • Arrive at Phoenix International Airport in the afternoon, pick up your rental vehicle, and travel to Sedona.
  • LUNCH: Wildflower Bread Company is a good stop along the road.
  • Arrive at Airbnb: We splurged on this four-bedroom, three-bathroom Airbnb home, which has a huge kitchen and living area, a hot tub, and a wide terrace with a spectacular view. We liked how restaurants and shopping were within walking distance. Take a look out the kitchen window at the vista!

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  • Take a stroll around town and get a bite to eat at Elote Cafe. Make a reservation as soon as possible since tables fill up months in advance (or, if you wait too long like we did, stop by and order take-away).
  • Local Safeway (2300 W Hwy 89A) has groceries, as well as a Whole Foods and various local food shops.
  • Takeout from Elote Cafe may be delivered to your house and eaten inside or on the terrace.

SATURDAY

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  • On the way back, stop at the Chapel of the Holy Cross. This location is popular, but we were fortunate enough to get a parking place. We strolled up to the church, had a look inside, and took in the breathtaking views.
  • Stop by Son Silver West for some amusing mementos: This unusual location functions as both an art gallery and a gift store.
  • Pump House Station for LUNCH. On the screened-in front porch, we ate large, wonderful salads.
  • Walk over to Cream & Cake Couture for treats. 
  • Return to the home and relax in the hot tub or on the veranda with a good book. The view from our terrace (along with my mismatched socks!).

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  • Part of the Oak Creek Canyon Scenic Drive should be completed (AZ 89A). This is a lovely drive, although it has numerous switchbacks, therefore it is not recommended for anxious drivers. We drove around 30 minutes to a magnificent overlook, then drove back (arrive before 4pm, when the viewpoint shuts!).
  • Dinner leftovers from Elote Cafe with homemade guacamole and chips

SUNDAY

  • BREAKFAST: Have breakfast at Airbnb.
  • Cathedral Rock ($10 parking charge) is a great hike. The trek to Cathedral Rock is beautiful yet challenging. As a result, we chose to go along the stream below. From the parking lot and picnic area, here is the vista of Cathedral Rock. From there, you may access the lower path.

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  • LUNCH: At 89 Agave Cantina, sit on the terrace (there are heaters). Take a look at these delicious enchiladas with rice and beans!

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  • Shop in the heart of the city
  • Brin’s Mesa is a great place to hike (access from Jordan Road trailhead). My favorite trek of the weekend was this one. There are a few overlooks with stunning views. Stop, take a seat, and take in the stillness!

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  • Dinner will be served at Hideaway House. We dined on the Kat’s Way pizza and Fall Harvest Salad on the terrace, which gives the impression of being in a treehouse. Take a look at our breathtaking panorama! (It was cool, but we had heaters on both sides of our table to keep us warm.)

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  • Return to the home and relax in the hot tub while admiring the spectacular, star-studded sky.

MONDAY IS THE FOURTH DAY

  • Breakfast at the Airbnb, with whatever groceries are still available.
  • Say your goodbyes to Sedona and fly out of Phoenix!

What to bring on a Sedona vacation

I packed a lot of items into these packing cubes. They include a “compression zipper,” which allows you to conserve even more room. If you’re traveling, this is my favorite ultra-light luggage that you can check or carry on.

  • a hat (baseball or wide-brimmed for sun, warm winter hat for cool mornings)
  • Sunglasses
  • Hiking boots or tennis shoes with thick soles and decent socks are recommended.
  • Hiking pants that are comfortable (shorts if warm weather)
  • Hiking socks that are good
  • Shirts with long and short sleeves (layering is key)
  • If you’re coming during the winter, bring a warm coat or vest.
  • Sweatshirt or a jacket made of fleece
  • (For the hot tub!) bathing suit
  • Day pack
  • Face sunscreen (stick), body sunscreen (spray/cream)
  • Hand sanitizer is a product that is used to disinfect the hands.
  • Bottle of water that may be reused

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We got groceries for a weekend in Sedona.

We didn’t need many groceries since we ate a lot of lunches and dinners out, and the Airbnb was well-stocked with essentials like sugar. We went to the local Safeway to get our goods. In town, there is also a Whole Foods Market, as well as smaller local markets.

  • Cream cheese + bagels
  • Oatmeal
  • Packets of peanut butter
  • Eggs
  • Crackers
  • Cheddar is a kind of cheese.
  • Apples
  • Berries
  • Clementines
  • To prepare my easy guacamole, combine avocados and limes.
  • tortilla chips made in the area
  • creamer + coffee
  • Bars of granola
  • Chips made with potatoes
  • For walks, bottled water (two of us remembered to bring reusable bottles, and two of us didn’t!)
  • Juice from an orange
  • Beer

Would you want to see more of Arizona?

Check out my post How to See 7 Utah & Arizona National Parks in 6 Days for details on our family trip. Our stops included parks in Arizona including Monument Valley, Lake Powell, and the Grand Canyon.

A Perfect Long Weekend With Friends is a complete itinerary for a long weekend with friends. The itinerary includes everything from the best places to eat and drink to where to go hiking, what activities to do while there, and even how much it will cost. Reference: family getaways near me.

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