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Facts About Route 66

Prepare to be astounded as you embark on a journey along the most renowned road in the world, harboring enigmatic secrets and facts about Route 66.

Route 66 was inaugurated in November 1926 , but it was not fully paved until twelve years later. It was created with the intention of connecting rural communities with large cities, a fact that encouraged the appearance of small towns around them. This road, almost 100 years old, runs through a large part of the United States and is visited annually by thousands of motor enthusiasts.

The most famous road in the world is full of incredible towns and corners that very few people know about. Spectacular museums, exhibitions, restaurants, and hotels fill Route 66, but there are many curiosities about its name, history, and route that are still unknown to many, even to those who have already visited it.

Discover 10 Fascinating Facts About Route 66:

1. Cadillac Ranch

Facts About Route 66 Cadillac Ranch

A group of Cadillac-loving hippies decided to create this car ranch in 1974. The reality is that it is a work of art that aims to honor the evolution of the rear of the Cadillac. The Ant Farm group with the help of Stanley Marsh built this place that is already part of the culture of Route 66 and one of its biggest tourist attractions.

2. Grand Canyon Railway

Facts About Route 66 Grand Canyon Railway

Not everything was going to be cars and motorcycles, from Route 66 the Grand Canyon Railway leaves, a train that runs through the famous Grand Canyon. Departing from Arizona, this railway set with western musicians and cowboy characters in old wagons is an ideal activity to enjoy two of the most famous places in the United States.

3. A movie route

Bagdad Cafe  Facts About Route 66

The locations and landscapes of Route 66 make it an ideal place for filming movies and series. The little ones will recognize it in the movie Cars, whose plot takes place entirely on this road. Another of the most famous films that revolve around this place is Bagdad, in which this cafeteria on Route 66 is the protagonist.

4. 50’s restaurants

Facts About Route 66

With a movie atmosphere and a spectacular road, the best restaurants could not be missing. Route 66 has plenty of 1950s and 1960s-themed eateries all along its route, where music plays on a record player and waitresses serve huge burgers to hungry travelers. At the foot of the road and with striking signs, these restaurants are a mandatory stop on your trip along Route 66.

5. Route 66 Museums

Route 66 Museum in Oklahoma

Such an important road should have museums that collect the story of its life. In various towns and cities on Route 66, there are buildings dedicated entirely to explaining its beginnings, its contributions to the country, the best period of the route, or its construction. A hall of fame in which the road and the motor world are the protagonists of the numerous museums that hundreds of travelers visit each year.

6. The longest highway in the United States

route 66 longest highway

Although the entire route cannot be covered today and new and longer highways have been built, there was a time in history when Route 66 was the longest in the United States. A total of 3,939 kilometers of highway connect Chicago with Santa Monica. Right now you can do Route 66 but not all of its sections are enabled.

7. Tour 8 states and 3 time zones

Route 66 Sign

Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California, a total of eight states in the American country contain sections of Route 66. Some, obviously, have more of the immense highway, but all of them can boast of having a little piece of the route most desired by motorcyclists on your land. By crossing so many states, the time is changed up to three times. One when passing from Texas to New Mexico; the second from Arizona to Utah and the third from Utah and Nevada.

8. The initial name was not Route 66

66 route sign in arizona

Everyone knows this road as Route 66, but this name was decided at the last minute. Before giving it the name that would go around the world, numerous options were considered, such as Camino de Chicago (the place where it starts), Greater Sheridan highway, Mississippi Valley, or Camino de Pontiac. 

9. 15 days to tour it

Route 66

To do Route 66, absolute prior preparation is necessary since it is not a two-day trip. The journey can be done in about ten or fifteen days, with breaks in different cities and organizing the stages. To complete the route, the ideal would be to travel between 300 and 500 kilometers a day approximately.

10. Route 66 Motels

You can’t say you’ve done Route 66 if you haven’t spent a night in one of its famous motels. The Blue Swallow Motel and El Rancho Hotel are two of the best known, but along the entire road, you will find hundreds of incredible lodgings where you can enjoy a classic and rustic atmosphere where you will feel at home.

Blue Swallow Motel On Route 66

The reality is that the best way to discover all the secrets of this magnificent road is to travel it yourself. Whether by motorcycle, car, motorhome, or even by bicycle, Route 66 will continue to be one of the most desired places for lovers of the motor and the good views that must be done at least once in their lives.