Centrally located to many “you don’t want to miss” vacation destinations in the Southwest is Flagstaff, Arizona. We really had no idea when we planned to stay in Flagstaff for 6 days just how perfectly central it is for vacationing. Additionally, Flagstaff is just a great town with much to do and see within and outside of the city limits. Flagstaff, in our opinion is possibly one of the most ideal places to live as well as vacation. Here are some of the reasons why you may want to consider Flagstaff as a vacation destination or home base.

The majestic 12,633 ft. San Fransisco Mountain Range just north of the city and the spectacular Oak Creek Canyon on the south side which leads to the mystical beauty of Sedona’s red rock country are all within a 30-45 minute drive from Flagstaff proper. If you love mountains, canyons, streams, deserts, and forests, then Flagstaff¬† is the perfect locale for you and your family. On the picture perfect day in October that we drove to Sedona from Flagstaff we went from the cool Flagstaff temps of about 36 degrees Fahrenheit to the 70’s in 45 minutes as we traveled down the winding and scenic 89A through Oak Creek Canyon and into the red rock desert. This was after we had seen both the North and South rims of the Grand Canyon also located within a day trip from Flagstaff, and the beauty of it all took our breath away.

Sedona Arizona Red Rock and Hills

All within minutes from Flagstaff are hiking, camping,¬† fishing, mountain biking, snow skiing and swimming. It’s quite possible that in this climate and topography you could be snow skiing at the Snowbowl in the mountains in the morning and swimming at Slide Rock in the canyon in the afternoon of the same day. There are numerous state and national parks and monuments all within minutes from Flagstaff as well including Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument, Waputki National Monument which features the Pueblos of the ancient Sinagua Indians, Walnut Canyon National Monument, and The Coconino National Forest to name a few. The Coconino National Forest is one of the most diverse forest eco-systems in the US and includes snow capped mountains, canyons, streams, lakes and red rock deserts.

When visiting this area you will want to make sure you have an America The Beautiful Interagency, a Golden Age, or a Golden Access pass all of which can be purchased at any National Park. If you don’t have one of the above passes, purchase a Red Rock Pass. You can get a Red Rock Pass locally through many government offices or vending machines. Whatever pass you choose to use, one of them is required when recreating and that mean even just parking to use the creek in Oak Creek Canyon) on National Forest land in Red Rock Country. The pass system was implemented to help cover the additional costs of maintaining this high-impact recreation area.

Oak Creek Canyon Overlook. (Look closely and you can see 4 roads in the picture)
The pic is a little washed out because I had to take it almost directly into the sun to get the 4 roads.

In the city of Flagstaff itself are additional sites and activities worth enjoying including Riordan Mansion State Historic Park, Northern Arizona University, the Museum of Northern Arizona, The Arboretum, The Orpheum Theater, Lowell Observatory, numerous unique eateries, coffee shops and a historic downtown area that is bustling with activity. Flagstaff is also known for being a bike friendly town. So what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip to the Southwest and plan your stay for centrally located Flagstaff Arizona.

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One Response to “Vacation In Flagstaff Arizona”

  1. […] 13-18 Drive from Marble Canyon, AZ to Flagstaff, AZ Stay: Howard Johnson’s 198 E. Lucky Lane Eat: Wildflower Bread Company, Morning Glory Cafe, […]

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