10 Top Things To See And Do On Route 66


With its very quirky roadside diners, retro neon signs, world-renowned museums, spectacular national parks and iconic landmarks there is plenty to see and do on Route 66. The ‘Mother Road’ is an US institution and bisects the heart of the country providing a glimpse into the individualism and idiosyncrasies of American society and culture. Here are our highlights of the key places to visit on Route 66.

  1. Cadillac Ranch (Amarillo, Texas)
Cadillac Ranch / Credit: Mobilus In Mobili

A short 15-minute drive from Amarillo lies one of the most iconic and quirky sites on Route 66; Cadillac Ranch a public art installation and sculpture. Amongst the red Texan desert sits 10 half-buried graffiti-covered Cadillacs nose-first in the ground. Visitors are encouraged to create their own art by spray painting a part of their chosen Cadillac.

2. The Painted Desert (Indian Wells, Arizona)

The Painted Desert

It is the absolute kaleidoscope of colours and layers gives this vast and beautiful landscape its name. This region of rocky badlands located in northern Arizona features rocks in every hue, from sunrise pinks and oranges to deep greys and lavenders. Take a short detour from Route 66 and be sure not to miss the quintessential experience of watching the sunset over the Painted Desert, where the sky and rocks morph into a canvas of fiery colour.

 3. The Milk Bottle Grocery (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma)

Milk Bottle Grocery / Image credit: Nicolas Henderson

A top a traditional red brick building sits a giant milk bottle. Why you ask? Well why not, this is Route 66. A classic landmark and photo stop of the Mother Road in Oklahoma City, the Milk Bottle Grocery historically served as a grocery and milk store, however now it is home to a Vietnamese café serving bánh mì and iced coffee.

4. St Louis and the Gateway Arch (St Louis, Missouri)

The Gateway Arch

St Louis is generally the first or second stop after starting the Route 66 drive from Chicago. Situated along the Mississippi River, it is a melting pot of culture, history, music and sport. Cheer on the St Louis Cardinals during a baseball game, hike or bike through the beautiful Forest Park and explore the city’s fine food and drink offerings. The iconic Gateway Arch is also an attraction not to missed, visitors can take a 630-foot ride to the top of the famous monument for sensational views of the city.

5. Route 66 Hall of Fame Museum (Pontiac, Illinois)

Route 66 Hall of Fame Museum

One-hundred miles from the traditional start point of Route 66 stands the Route 66 Hall of Fame Museum which is home to thousands of pieces of historic memorabilia and artefacts from the glory days of the Mother Road. Get a photo of the iconic Route 66 mural at the museum, view images of the road’s history and learn about life when the route was the most important highway in America.

6. Ed Galloway’s Totem Pole Park (Foyil, Oklahoma)

Ed Galloway’s Totem Pole Park / Image credit: CGP Grey

Holding the record for the world’s largest concrete totem pole lies Ed Galloway’s Totem Pole Park, an art installation three miles off Route 66. The park was built in 1937 by retired art teacher Ed Galloway because, well he could! It is the oldest and largest example of folk art in Oklahoma and the cleverly carved and painted structures featured are mainly based on the figurative images of birds and Native Americans.

7. The Wigwam Motel (Holbrook, Arizona)

The Wigwam Motel / Image credit: Joseph Novak

The infamous Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Arizona is one of the two remaining Wigwam properties on the Mother Road and is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.Built in 1950, this kitsch and original motel offers guests the chance to sleep in wigwams for the night, although funnily enough, the rooms are shaped like tipis not wigwams!

8. Palo Duro Canyon State Park (Amarillo, Texas)

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

A short 30-minute drive from Amarillo lies the intriguing and stunning Palo Duro Canyon State Park. It is the second-largest canyon in the US and one of the most magnificent natural attractions with extraordinary vistas of colour and rock formations. Follow the trails used by Native Americans and early Spanish explorers by hiking, biking or horse riding, or enjoy a picnic to take in the mesmerising vista.

9. Tee Pee Curios Shop (Tucumcari, New Mexico)

Tee Pee Curios Shop / Image credit: el-toro

The colourful concrete wigwam and neon signs of Tee Pee Curios are hard to miss whilst driving through Tucumcari. Once a gas station built in the 1940’s, the business had to lose its gas pumps due to the widening of Route 66. However, not one to miss an opportunity, the owner turned the quirky building into a souvenir shop selling kitsch gifts and Route 66 memorabilia to passing drivers and still stands today.

10. Santa Fe (Santa Fe, New Mexico)

Santa Fe

Founded in 1610 as a Spanish colony, New Mexico’s capital is renowned for its Pueblo-style architecture and sweeping views of the Sangre de Cristo Rocky Mountains. The exuberant and colourful city can be explored on your Route 66 journey as a side-visit between Amarillo and Albuquerque. Discover the various flea markets, sip margaritas in traditional plazas and wander down the twisting streets gazing at the adobe landmarks of the city.

If you’re looking for Christmas Markets to visit this year.. We have you covered!



The words “UK” and “beautiful coastal scenery” don’t usually go together. Right? Actually no, wrong. Forget all you know about Britain’s drab pebbly beaches, and start imagining white sandy beaches, as that’s what you’ll find if you embark on the North Coast 500 route. If you dream of rocky mountains and quaint fishing villages, take a look below at the tour you can take for yourself without leaving the country.



The NC500 begins in Inverness, right by Inverness castle. Being the most southern location of the trip, Inverness has a whole host of tourist attractions to appreciate. As well as admiring the castle, you can visit the beautifully landscaped Inverness Botanical Gardens, or take a look at historical military base Fort George. As there’s a lot to do, it’s recommended to spend a day in Inverness taking it all in before heading off on the proper journey.

There are plenty of castle ruins to explore in Inverness. Photo: Robin Canfield on Unsplash

Black Isle

When taking the counter-clockwise route, one of the next interesting destinations is Black Isle, a peninsula home to a number of small towns. Black Isle brewery will be a pleasant stop for any beer lovers, or if you’re more into nature you’ll want to seek out Fairy Glen Waterfall and the Pictish Stones.

Fairy Glen is one of many Scottish waterfalls. Photo: Gordon Millar on Unsplash

Easter Ross


Labelled as a romantic area, Easter Ross is definitely somewhere to stop if travelling with a loved one. Not far from Black Isle, you can stop off at Glenmorangie Distillery to get some authentic Scottish whiskey, or chill at Portmahomack Beach if the weather is pleasant enough.

Glenmorangie is some of the finest Scotch Whiskey. Photo: Antonio Castellano on Unsplash


The North-most location on this tour, Caithness is an essential place to stop and take in your surroundings. Smoo Cave offers scenic boat trips so you can really explore, and Dunrobin Castle is a wonderful old house which will be worth your time.

Dunrobin Castle demonstrates Scotland’s almighty architecture. Photo: Colin Horn on Unsplash


As you begin your descent down the east coast, Sutherland is another notable location in the Scottish Highlands to take a rest. Scourie is a picturesque village where you’ll find bed-and-breakfasts to stay and take in the views of the deep blue sea. If you’re feeling more adventurous, Achmelvich Beach is a hub for all kinds of watersports, plus it’s gorgeous.

Achmelvich Beach rivals tropical seas with its beauty. Photo: Steve Bittinger on Unsplash

Wester Ross

Coming to the end of your journey, it’s only right to stop in Wester Ross, the counterpart of Easter Ross which you visited in the beginning. Here you’ll find the famous Inverewe Garden, or the Russian Arctic Convoy Museum if you’re into your Second World War history.

Along the way, there are so many hidden gems to be discovered, and certainly things to cover all kinds of tastes. The beauty of the trail is that you can have an action-packed trip, or use it as a time to relax surrounded by breathtaking views. The power is in your hands.

Finish off the journey with some impressive scenery. Photo: Visit Wester Ross

If you want more travel options, take a look at our Most Scenic Road Trips You Can Take In One Day.



There is still one voyage in the world that needs someone to accept the challenge and complete it.

Since humans have pretty well explored the majority of the world, there aren’t many adventures left to be had on Earth.


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One obstacle, however, has yet to be overcome and is only waiting for someone with the strength, tenacity, and about a year of free time to achieve it.

It’s an improvement over the man who walked from London to Birmingham “for a laugh,” but if another fight with his wife arises, the man who walked 450 kilometres may find it useful as a means of escape.

A route connecting Cape Town, South Africa, and the port city of Magadan, in the far east of Russia, is the longest walking distance in the world that no one is known to have successfully completed.

Nobody else on Earth has ever completed this trek, which is one of the world’s longest walking lengths and is only surpassed by the route your parents allegedly took to get to school each day.


If you decide to make this brave adventure, you’ll need to pack a few different outfits because you’ll have to endure everything from blazing desert heat to trudging through icy Siberia.

This astounding journey is 22,387 kilometres long, which, if you walked continuously and did not stop, would take you 187 days.

Even the most resilient among us occasionally need to take a little nap, thus travelling this distance would likely take you a year or more as you pass several countries.

As a small benefit, since you’ll need to board a ferry to traverse the Suez Canal, you’ll get to rest your tired legs once.

That is, unless another ship accidentally rams into it; in that case, you might be able to use that as a makeshift bridge and just walk the whole way.

It might also be a bit of a tricky path to walk considering it takes you through some of the more conflicted regions in the world.

Your route would have you marching through the Middle East and take you near the Russian border with Ukraine where Vladimir Putin’s troops are currently trying to invade.

There really isn’t any sort of reward for completing the gargantuan distance apart from the experiences you’ll have along the way and being able to one-up almost anyone else’s story at a party.

The only people who would have bragging rights over you are those who’ve managed to walk the Pan-American Highway between Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, to Ushuaia, Argentina.

That’s a very small list of people, but imagine how disappointed you’d be to tell your incredible tale only for it to be outdone by someone else.

One thing’s for certain, if you walked this road your feet would be really tired by the end!