The Iconic Route 66 and Beyond

Today, nearly 65 years after the first cross-country trip by car, Route 66 still captures the imagination of drivers. Still known for its boutique motels and novelty stores, its mystique also accompanies its dilapidated two-story storefronts and deserted freight and tourism infrastructure. As long as you’re eager to explore a part of the world that hasn’t yet succumbed to modernization, you can find thrilling destinations along Route 66 that offer both excitement and curiosity.

Here are the two reasons to venture beyond the Route 66 monuments and quick travel stops, enjoying some fun on the best online casino platforms when you’re on the longer stops.

1. Los Angeles, California

If you’re trying to venture farther west and find a place with more parking, Los Angeles offers similar offerings for a faster experience. Among the top stops along Route 66 are the Skirball Cultural Center in Beverly Hills, California. Besides providing an understanding of the history of California, visitors can explore Native American culture. If visiting at the end of the summer, the museum also offers special programs for kids.

Want to explore the West Coast without flying? Why not get a ticket to the California Zephyr’s bus ride from the Lincoln Tunnel to Chicago? The one-hour bus ride gives you breathtaking views of the vast deserts and prairies. Instead of the glamour of being dropped off in downtown Chicago, just head to the Transit Center at the Truman College off Route 66, on the east side of the city. After checking in to your hotel, spend your day exploring the city and the many historic sites along Route 66, including Adler Planetarium, Columbia College Chicago, the Gage Museum of Contemporary Art, or Chicago Art Museum.

Stay at the Oakwood Hotel, a newly built boutique hotel in Chicago’s Near West Side, or the Oakwood Hotel in downtown Salt Lake City. Be sure to check out the Orpheum Theater, which hosts performances, concerts, and local art exhibitions. Once you have plenty of time to explore, you can consider visiting the Salt Lake City Museum of Natural History or The First Church of Latter Day Saints in Salt Lake City. In addition, the main attraction for this vacation is the Utah State Capitol.

When you reach Los Angeles, spend an afternoon in Beverly Hills and drive along Wilshire Boulevard, a short stretch of Route 66. As you make your way to the famous Rodeo Drive and Santa Monica Boulevard, visit popular attractions like the Observatory. A stopover there can be a relaxing, stress-free way to explore both the city and the newly revitalized tourist spots. Be sure to visit the historic Million Dollar Hotel, which is where Charlie Chaplin and his wife made a quick stopover before a long road trip to Hollywood.

For more inspiration, explore more of Route 66 by visiting vistitreakroute66.com.

2. Fort Smith, Arkansas

Visit Fort Smith on your way to Las Vegas. The humble site is a final destination for travellers on Route 66. Today, the location is more than an historical landmark. Fort Smith offers specialty shops, retail, and an eclectic blend of downtown amenities. You can shop for fashionable footwear in the Spirit of Memphis, a store that caters to women of all sizes. Take a stroll through the pedestrian mall, or stop in to shops like Academy Vintage Sportswear, Sunrise to Sunset Shoes, and Desert Gardens. Alternatively, if visiting Fort Smith on your own, plan your day with a guided walking tour.

For more inspiration, take a look at the Living Route 66 blog to learn more about the route and discover local businesses, attractions, and activities.

Krissy Georgiadis

Written by Krissy Georgiadis

Law graduate and wanderlust sufferer. I like rum and beaches.