The South West | Part One

wan | der | lust
     noun
a strong desire to travel.

Sometimes you need to slow down. Sometimes you just need to pack up an go. Sometimes, it is both; and that is exactly what we did.

I am so beyond excited to share with you all our little South West adventure. I cannot do the awestruck and immense beauty of the sights we saw, but I am going to try! You can follow me through the next few installments for a daily adventure and photo diary. At the end, I am going to share with you our little video of our adventures as well.

 

We left our little home in Irvine on Wednesday. Excited and filled with wonder as we talked about our next 5 days out on the road. Of course, our wake up call was 4 am, so a coffee and breakfast run was much needed. Once our little Fiat was fueled and our bodies were fueled, we were off. The drive was pretty much like any other road trip until we got to Sedona.

 

The drive into Sedona was absolutely gorgeous. Watching those red rocks peak into the sky was stunning to see. You see, we have rocks and mountains here, sure, but NOTHING like those gorgeous red rocks. They were just, unreal.

 

Since our first day consisted of long hours on the road, we kept it pretty low key. We grabbed brunch at this cute little place called Creekside Sedona which had a killer view of the tree tops and red rocks. We explored the town a little bit and walked around one of the local trails. We decided it was time to go check in and unwind. We stayed at Sedona Rouge which was a bohemians DREAM (which also meant it was mine. Rain water showers, big pillow top beds, rust red, deep orange and mustard yellow accents, like HEY HI let me live here. We had double doors on each side of the room with picturesque views from both. If you are ever in Sedona, please check this place out; it is so beautiful.

 

After we were all unpacked, we relaxed for a while and decided to adventure out for some dinner. Now. It was about 9: 20 at night, which really is not that late, but there was virtually nothing open. So Pro Tip: Most of the places in Sedona close around 9, EXCEPT this perfect little hideaway Argentinean place called Dellepiane, which you absolutely need to go to. Holy dear lord, this place was delicious. Their burgers were sent from heaven and their smokin’ mac & cheese was literally the cherry on top. This place is super vibey; a really nice little bar area, a cool cork board area where you can write notes for future travelers, delicious food – sign me up. All in all, this place was so perfect and just what we needed to end our first night in Sedona.

 

On Thursday, we ventured to The Grand Canyon. We started our day by heading up through the red rocks and into Flagstaff. A little outside Flagstaff, we stopped at the Bonito point in Sunset Crater and the lava fields. This was so unreal because I, for one, was not expecting to see literal lava fields out in the middle of Arizona. #WhereThemCactusAt

 

Our next stop was a really scenic and beautiful drive to the Wupatki National Park. This was absolutely beautiful. We were able to walk around the Wupatki pueblo and learn so much about the lifestyle and culture. Inside the pueblo there were about 100 rooms, a ball court and area where meetings where held. We all sat on the beautifully sculpted seating area and just sat in silence. It was just amazing to be able to sit and be with a piece of history. I talked about slowing down, and this moment was it.

 

Now, the Grand Canyon was the reason we took this trip. I was so adamant about going to the Grand Canyon before I started grad school, and my boyfriend, being the perfect human he is, set it all up. So, I was very excited, to say the least, to get to the Grand Canyon. There are not very many words that you can use to describe the Grand Canyon because it is just, it is just that. It is so incredible. It is insane that something like this is so close to home. It is amazing that something like this was made by the force of nature. GUYS. If you haven’t been there yet, I really highly recommend going as soon as possible because it is life changing. Stunning work of art in our backyards.

 

I probably stood a little too close to the edge one too many times but I just could not help myself. It is mesmerizing. It looks like a painting because it is just so… huge. You feel so small standing next to something like that. And trust me, these pictures do not do it justice. This place is amazing.

 

We were able to stop at a few different viewing points, just to take all of it in. You could tell most people were just in awe of the place.

 

After the Grand Canyon, we made our two hour trek back to Sedona. We got back to our hotel, and got ready for a nice dinner. We walked around a little before we headed to dinner and the sky was on fire that evening.

 

We ended up going to a Mexican place called Barking Frog Grille. The restaurant was really cute. There was a lovely outside patio under twinkling lights, where people can sit, enjoy their dinner and drinks. This night, we wanted to indulge so we got fried cactus, which was super delicious. It is sort of pickle-ish, sort of sweet with a nice light breading to make it crisp. He got steak and shrimp fajitas, which were ALSO delicious; the steak was cooked so perfect that it was still pretty rare in the middle. I ended up noshing, and loving, goat cheese, smoked mushroom and butternut squash tacos. Like, who knew this was such a beautifully meshed combo? We ended the night with these delicious churros that I pretty much went to heaven over. I don’t know if being on vacation makes your taste buds go crazy but holy smokes, dinner was juuuuuuuust fine. Once again, highly recommend this place for a really great dinner. They took really great care of us and it was the perfect way to end our evening.

 

We closed out our night, full bellies, and pretty much rolling back to the hotel. A long day of travel, exciting adventures, breathtaking views and delicious food can make you one pretty sleepy pup. And we needed our energy for the off roading adventure the next day.

Stay tuned. Barbie pink jeeps, Cathedral Rock, Canyons and more on the road adventures are coming.

 

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