Sedona, Arizona is one of the few places that has both struck and stayed with me (in fact, the only others I can think of are Stonehenge and Estonia). It is said that the reason so many people have a similar experience at Sedona is because of the vortexes and ley lines. There are allegedly 4 well-known vortexes (places in nature that are extremely “alive” with energy) with ley lines intersecting throughout them. They are: Airport Mesa Vortex (not an actual airport), Boynton Canyon Vortex, Cathedral Rock Vortex, and the Bell Rock Vortex. I did not know of these vortexes when I went to Sedona, and yet I found myself smack dab inside of one, almost as if I were drawn to it.
I went alone, because I was in the Phoenix area visiting a friend, who just before I came got a new job which required her to work weekends during the day. So, it was either be stuck alone in her house all day, fart around Phoenix (not super-duper interesting), or drive the 2 hours north to Sedona, a place I’ve dreamt about visiting. It was a no-brainer for me, and I didn’t mind going alone (everyone should go places alone from time to time- you learn a lot about yourself, as well as build independence). The drive to Sedona from Phoenix is *relatively* easy; not much traffic, but it wasn’t a clear road either. There are only so many highways that run throughout the state of Arizona, connecting the various hot spots (like Sedona, Antelope Canyon, the Grand Canyon, Tombstone, etc), so usually there is some traffic. It took me roughly 2 hours to get there.
I had no clear plans when I arrived in Sedona, so I just drove through town and out towards the trail areas. I found myself being pulled towards two rock formations in the distance, Bell Rock and Courthouse Butte, which are right next to one another. The parking lot was packed, with people circling around like vultures, waiting for a spot (I lovingly call this “The Hunger Games” when people do this). But as luck would have it (which is rare for me), a spot opened almost as soon as I arrived in the small parking lot. I’m telling you, it was like this place was working in favor of me or something. I sound crazy trying to explain it, but hey, we’re all a little crazy sometimes.
The initial paths around Bell Rock and Courthouse Butte start off extremely easy, wide, and smooth, and were clearly man-made with the purpose of offering easy access without requiring you to break a sweat. The farther into the wilderness that you go, the narrower the path gets, as well as rockier and more tumultuous. It’s not an expert-level hike by any means, but those with leg or breathing issues might experience some difficulty the farther out they get.
I eventually found myself close to the bottom of Courthouse Butte, with Bell Rock behind me and slightly to the side. I climbed up through the rock hill and onto a large, flat rocky area. I was well above the path and could see out for miles. I did bring some devil’s lettuce with me, so I can’t say if what I’m about to explain next is a result of that, or if Sedona’s vortexes ARE real and were in full effect, but nonetheless, shit went down.
I had the closest thing to a spiritual experience I think I will ever have. It sounds absolutely insane, and even as I type this, I’m thinking, “No, leave this out, you sound cray”, but it’s my truth and you gotta speak your truths, people. I was 100% alone the entire time I was in this spot, and nobody even walked by on the trail. I heard absolutely nothing expect nature – the wind, birds, animals, and the natural silence in between. It was surreal, yet so relaxing at the exact same time. I never wanted to leave, and lost track of time while I was there. I can’t tell you how long I sat there – 20 minutes? 30 minutes? 45 minutes? I honestly don’t know.
The only annoyance and break in the silence was the sight-seeing helicopter that would periodically zoom by (there are multiple helicopter tours you can take, with prices ranging from $120 to $395 per person). They would zoom by quickly though, disappearing behind the rocks, taking the sound with them. If you have the money to splurge on these pricey helicopter rides, then do it, but if you don’t have those kind of funds (I certainly don’t), don’t fret. You can experience Sedona in all its wondrous glory with your feet firmly on the ground.
If you want to stay in Sedona, well by golly, you’re in luck because the number of hotels here is unprecedented. Depending on your princess level, you can find hotels from $80 to $830 a night. While this place is magical and mystical, that also means it’s heavily trafficked with tourists and New Age groupies, and hotels love to take advantage of that. It is also a mecca for desert lovers, who want to be pampered while surrounded by the epicness of the surrounding rocks, and the resorts certainly deliver.
Sedona has been on my bucket list for quite a few years, and I was so happy I was able to finally cross it off. However, I don’t quite feel like I *did* cross it off. There is still so much to see and experience there, that I must go back. I’ve never given a lot of thought to vortexes, ley lines, and all that other natural geographical phenomenon stuff, but Sedona started to change my mind. I really do feel that I left a piece of my heart and soul there- and not because Sedona “took it”- but because I purposely left it there… guaranteeing that I must come back and retrieve it.