Sedona, AZ

During Week 11 we spent 2 days in Sedona.  In addition to great shopping for artists and turquoise jewelry lovers, Sedona is absolutely beautiful with its tall red rock backdrop.  We hiked Bell Rock (Johan actually climbed the rock while I walked around the base of it) and took the Red Rock Scenic Byway which I remember fondly from a high school trip with the fam over 20 years ago.  Then we went into town to wander.  After I said “It is SO cute here” for the 36th time, Johan decided he simply could not tolerate the cuteness any longer and so it was time to go.  Look at how they decorated their fountains in the Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village and try not to say, “It is SO cute there”…I dare you.  As soon as we buy our next home, my very first decorating project will be to get a fountain and stick some gourds in it.  Then everyone who visits us will leave our home saying, “It is SO cute there!”

Verde Valley, AZ

We spent Week 11 at a Thousand Trails Park in the Verde Valley of Arizona.  Would have loved a few more days as we met some of the coolest people – (Hi Jamie & Scott, @awaywewinnebage and Denny & Veronica @RVOutlawz!  We can’t wait to meet up again!)  Day 1 started with an afternoon and dinner in Cottonwood; adorable shops & restaurants in the old town district, and tasting rooms from wineries of the Verde Valley.  Our favorite is Alcantara, mostly because it’s where we sat with our new friends for a tasting right outside our RV Park (also it’s the only winery we tried on the VV Wine Trail).

Day 2 was a trip to Prescott; there’s a large city center with great places to shop and eat, and I don’t know why took so few pics.  We became busy looking for “Whiskey Row”, which we later found out was once home to over 40 saloons side-by-side but a fire destroyed most of the block.  When rebuilt, Whiskey Row would have been more aptly renamed “A Few Saloons”.  By accident we ate lunch at The Palace, which we later learned is the “most famous” saloon as it is the oldest frontier saloon in Arizona.  Unfortunately we showed up about 147 years too late to clink glasses with Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday.  The host, bartenders, and waitstaff dress in period appropriate western fashion which includes slinging a handgun at all times.  Johan took pics of one that was laying on the back bar next to the phone.  No funny business in this place!

Day 3 was a trip to Jerome.  Once a copper-mining town in the early 1900’s, Jerome is now a charming town that appears to be sliding off its perch at the top of the Black Hills in Yavapai County.  At the very top of this wedding cake-shaped town is the Jerome Grand Hotel, once the town’s hospital and now a destination for ghost hunters.  The hotel restaurant is called Asylum.  Like all of the other adorable towns in the Verde Valley, Jerome has unique shops, tasting rooms from wineries of the VV Wine Trail, restaurants, killer views, and as you’ll see in the pics, some very interesting outdoor art installations.

Last: Montezuma Castle National Monument in Camp Verde.  Access to the interior of the ruins stopped in early 1950, and while I shouldn’t judge without seeing it, I’m going to go ahead and say this is loose use of the word castle.  STILL, it’s pretty cool.