Thanks to all of the helpful information derived from TA, we were able to put together a fantastic trip that included 3 nights in Sedona, 1 night at GCNP, 3 nights in Page, few hours in Bryce, 2 nights in Zion, and 1 final night in Las Vegas. To keep this brief, I will provide the highlights below:
Flight from the East Coast into Phoenix, Drive to Sedona where we stayed at a VRBO property.
While in Sedona we did-mostly in this order-Pink Jeep Broken Arrow Tour (highly recommend-teenaged boys loved it), Lunch at Cowboy Club, Camp Verde and Montezuma Castle, Bell Rock trail, Dinner at Elote (fabulous), Devil's Bridge hike (challenging but again, boys loved it), Lunch at Wildflower (great lunch spot), Slide Rock (fun to see, crowded but manageable as it was a week day), Dinner at Oak Creek Brewery (very average, wish we had gone back to Elote), and sunset up on airport road. Thought Sedona was beautiful. Only disappointing thing were the shops, particularly on Main Street. I was expecting more boutiques.
Drive to Grand Canyon. Nice trip through Oak Creek Canyon. Last minute decided to stop at Sunset Crater and the Native American ruins. Worthwhile to see. Lunch at Cameron Trading Post. Navajo Tacos all around! We were there the day before (and then day of) Nik Wallenda's skywalk so we were able to stop and see the set up and even the wire through binoculars. Upon entering GCNP, we stopped at Desert View Observation Tower, Moran Point. We stayed in Maswick Lodge. We enjoyed a beautiful sunset and Dinner at the Bright Angel (not bad). The next morning we did some hiking and the enjoyed the lovely El Tovar for breakfast. After breakfast we rode the shuttle bus out toward Hermit Road and got off at several points. Amazing how each spot offers a different view. We left in the early afternoon for Page.
I must say that the drive to Page from GCNP with the detour is pretty miserable. I think it took us about 4 hours. We did hear people in Page saying that some of the locals were talking about an alternate route that included a few miles of a dirt road. Don't know if anyone has any other details on this.
We stayed in a lovely VRBO home in Page that was out by Lone Rock Beach. We hiked out to Horseshoe Bend and did the Colorado River Discovery Float ride on our first full day in Page. The next day we toured Lower and Upper Antelope Canyons. We enjoyed both. We did the 12:30 Upper Photography tour which still allowed for nice light but was at the lower $25 price. Beware that the ride out to the canyon can. E really rough. I was surprised to not see any warnings about people with back issues or other medical conditions. We then spent a few relaxing hours at Lone Rock beach. Very nice spot. The house that we stayed in was so nice that we actually cooked dinner in two evenings. The other night we ate at John's BBQ which was quirky and fun.
We next headed to Bryce Canyon. Based upon some TA suggestions, we concentrated on the viewpoints close to the main amphitheaters-sunrise, sunset,inspiration point and hiked for a while down Queen's Garden trail. We had a nice lunch at the Bryce Lodge. Only a few hours but it gave us a sense of Bryce. We then drove to Zion.
Wow, couldn't believe the switchbacks and winding road into Zion. My husband loved it but I would not want to drive it. We checked into the spectacular Desert Pearl Inn for two nights. Not sure if I have ever enjoyed a hotel this much. The room was huge-like a studio apartment with kitchen. Staff was very accommodating and the pool was so lovely. We had planned to hike Angels Landing the next morning but with 107 temp, we decided to hike to breakfast and the pool. We had a very relaxing day and then hiked part of Angels Landing early the next morning. We really enjoyed Oscars and also had great pizza at the Flying Monkey.
Final night at the Trump in Vegas. We did not find it any more expensive to fly into Phoenix and then out of Vegas. We were able to get a fantastic car rental through Travelocity which ended up being the large Mercedes SUV. Nice to have a luxury ride for this road trip.
Thanks again for all of,your contributions that helped to shape our trip.