I started my 2019 travels off with an extended weekend in Arizona. We flew in midday Saturday from our colder states to a lovey and warm Phoenix. After a mildly confusing time in the airport, we picked up our rental car and headed to Mother Brunch Brewing for a late lunch. After lunch, we made our way from Phoenix, caught the sunset in Sedona before checking into our adorable Airbnb in Flagstaff.
Per my request, we woke up around 4 am to head further up north to catch the sunrise at Horseshoe Bend. Let me tell you. it did not disappoint. Stunning doesn't do it justice and neither do the photos. I will say though, people need to stop being so careless on the edges of cliffs. A short drive away, we stopped for breakfast before our scheduled tour of the Upper Antelope Canyon. In case you didn't know, you are required to see Antelope Canyon with a guided tour through the Navajo Tribe. This element of it was very cool to be able to learn about the canyon, surrounding area and the history of it. Moving on from Antelope Canyon, we drove a couple of hours to The Grand Canyon. We didn't plan in our schedule for anything more than just seeing the canyon but it was amazing and a sight to see regardless. It goes on my list of things to revisit when I return. We ended our very long day of amazing sights and a lot of driving with some AMAZING burgers at Diablo Burger in downtown Flagstaff.
Monday morning began how everyone begins their Mondays while on vacation: at the gym! When I say "gym" I actually mean Orange Theory. I had never gone before so we thought on vacation while 7,000 ft above sea level was a good idea. Seattle is at sea level and let me tell you, it was not a great idea. I have never been so out of breath in my life. We rewarded our efforts with brunch at The Toasted Owl and some coffee at Matador Coffee Roasters off Route 66 before leaving the cold and snow for sunny Phoenix. Our Monday finished off with a walk around the Desert Botanical Gardens and dinner with friends in Scottsdale.
Our last day in Arizona was more of a half day which we started fairly early with coffee at Songbird Coffee and Tea and then a small amount of wandering to look at all of the street art and murals of Roosevelt Row. Honesty, I could have spent all day down there looking at all the art. The last few hours spent there were with Cave Creek Outfitters on my first ever horseback riding adventure that involved a two-hour ride through the McDowell Sonoran Preserve and the Tonto National Forrest. It was a very cool and very Arizona way to end my first trip in 2019. I look forward to the rest of the trips 2019 holds and my next opportunity to explore more of what Arizona has to offer!