All input welcome; many questions below, thanks in advance for your patience and assistance.
We've never been to the SW before and will be staying about 15 miles south of Sedona (via arriving in Phoenix on 3.9.17) for 1 week. We'll also be visiting Flagstaff as well. Our group is two parents, 15, 13, 10 year old children.
Overall, we're interested in budget friendly / free options so we can afford 1-2 "big" things. Example of 1-2 "big things": maybe the train ride to/from the Grand Canyon? Or the pink Jeep tours? River rafting experience? Or something else we're unaware of?
Not interested in golf, zoos, or other science museums (except Lowell Observatory) as we have an incredible quality of zoo & many museums where we live which are free
* day trip to GC -- maybe train ride if possible but unsure of timeline & budget for GC train rides
* a few "not to miss" hikes (not necessarily the most famous, but just great hikes with beautiful terrain and views). However, we want to avoid endless days of hiking....with more days of hiking...and more days of hiking.... as we'd like to mix it up with other unique to the area experiences.
* guided river rafting or other H20 related experience
* some sort of a 'cowboy' or 'dude ranch' experience and/or AUTHENTIC Indian or Native American experience (hope I'm using the correct terms to describe this....) for our kids to experience and learn from
* thoughts on antelope canyon? The photos look beautiful online.
Also interested in: one day of either trout fishing or a more intense guided hike for my husband as a "thank you" for remodeling our house for the last year :)
Finally, we like to experience the Sedona, Flagstaff, and very nearby areas as "locals". Please pass along restaurants and other places that the locals know are either great restaurants or other places to visit. Every trip we try to immerse ourselves in "known by the locals" restaurants or experiences.
A small request....if there happen to be any gluten-free folks reading this post, please recommend a good place to purchase GF groceries and maybe the opportunity to enjoy a delicious GF meal while visiting the area.
Thanks in advance for your suggestions!