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What is Route 66 and what is not

Route 66 was once the most important route connecting the east and west of the USA. It was built gradually from 1926 until it was replaced by a highway between 1956 and 1984 and officially closed in 1985. Since 1999, it has been protected by law as a symbol of cultural heritage.


In some places, Route 66 is formed by a narrow cement road, in others it is an abandoned four-lane. In one area it’s a dusty dead end, in another it is replaced by the highway and simply can’t be found anymore.

Route 66 is NOT a complete and continuously marked road from Chicago to Santa Monica. It has many turns, several alternate routes from different periods of operation, and so you need to prepare before the trip and decide what route to choose. Route 66 is labeled only in some sections, each state having different labeling methods and traffic signs. Some signs are standing densely together and then they are missing for long stretches of road, whether because they were not installed or because tourists have been stealing them. It is also difficult to find sections of Route 66 in large cities without a map or GPS.

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