2024, 16 Nights, May 12 to 27
Starting in Las Vegas, taking in Bryce Canyon Utah, the Grand Canyon, deserts, diners and ghost towns along Route 66
Route 66, probably one of the most iconic roads in the world. Starting as a selection of dirt trails and unnamed roads that gradually became connected as people and goods began moving across this huge continent. By 1938 dirt gave way to a paved, often narrow and twisty, two lane highway. Later parts of the route were widened and straightened, some sections turned into four lane highways. Then, in the 1950’s, the interstate network began to take over. Many parts of old 66 were paved over, towns that prospered from the constant traffic on 66 were bypassed. Their lifeblood taken away, they slowly faded. The final nail in the coffin of 66 was the bypass of Williams Arizona in 1984 after which 66 was no longer an official US Highway.
Many of the gas stations, diners and motels went out of business and fell into decay. Whole towns lost their population and were abandoned. However all was not lost, volunteers and state associations sprang up. Old buildings were restored, neon signs were powered up and travellers began to come back to experience the nostalgia of travel from a bygone era. Over the decades many artists have sung “Get your kicks on Route 66” so come and join us as we guide you through what we believe to be some of the best parts of this iconic road.
Arrive in Las Vegas where we will meet you at the airport rental car location. Collect your rental car for the duration of the tour and then follow us to your hotel on the strip, only a short drive away from the airport. Once everyone is settled in the hotel it’s time for introductions, handing out the roadbooks and radios for the trip ahead.
Day 2 Monday
Total distance 236 miles. Approximate driving time 4 hours 30 minutes
Heading out from Vegas we drive through the Valley of Fire State Park and then on to Kanab to our hotel for the next two nights.
Day 3 Tuesday
Free day to drive out to Bryce Canyon and the Dixie National Forest or the north rim of the Grand Canyon.
Day 4 Wednesday
Total distance 298 miles. Approximate driving time 5 hours
From Kanab we head east driving through some stunning landscapes. Crossing the Colorado river at Marble Canyon to our destination just over half way to Albuquerque.
Day 5 Thursday
Total distance 163 Miles. Approximate driving time 2 hours 30 minutes
Our drive today brings us into Albuquerque where we will be staying in the old town. Time to relax and take a wander through the adobe architecture before heading out for dinner. Our tour of Route 66 begins.
Day 6 Friday
Total distance 175 miles. Approximate driving time 3 hours 50 minutes
Heading east from Albuquerque our route takes us on a mixture of the modern I40 that overlays the the old 66, and potions of the original route. As we leave Albuquerque old 66 climbs through the mountains via Tijeras Canyon and then drops down through Barton and Edgewood. Continuing through Moriarty, passing Clines Corners and on to Santa Rossa where we can call in for coffee at one of the old diners before stopping off to spend some time looking around the auto museum. From here we head to Cuervo and back on to the old 66 to take us to Tucumcarri, where we will stay at one of the most iconic original motels along 66. The Blue Swallow Motel, our home for the next two nights.
Day 7 Saturday
Optional drive out east following the interstate to Amarillo where we can stop by the Cadillac Ranch. If you are hungry try the 72 oz. steak meal at the Big Texan Steak Ranch. Free if you can eat the whole meal in less than one hour! After lunch head back on old 66 passing through Adrian, the midpoint of 66, at 1139 miles to Los Angeles and 1139 miles to Chicago. Glenrio, long since abandoned, provides plenty of opportunities for the photographers to get their first ghost town pictures of the trip.
Day 8 Sunday
Total distance 176 Miles. Approximate driving time 4 hours 05 minutes
We leave Tucumcari and head north west through spectacular open plains and mountains driving along the Santa Fe loop of 66. Through the Pecos National Park and the Glorietta pass, the highest part of 66 at over 7500 feet (at nearly 2300 meters this is about 140 meters higher that the Grimselpass in Switzerland). Today’s journey ends in the fabulous town of Satan Fe with its wonderful Pueblo-Spanish architecture.
Day 9 Monday
Total distance 234 miles. Approximate Driving Time 5 hours 20 minutes
We begin by heading southwest and back towards Albuquerque on the Turquoise trail. Once past Albuquerque we take the pre 1937 route that takes us through Los Lunas and then joins the post 1937 route. Past Mesita, around “Dead Mans Curve” then dropping down into Old Laguna. Passing the remains of old motels, gas stations, diners and trading posts as we drive through Milan, Prewitt and Bluewater. Parallel to our drive on our right is a beautiful long row of pink tinged hills, a magnificent backdrop all the way to our destination of Gallup and a stay at another of Route 66’s iconic hotels, the El Rancho. A destination for many of the stars of Hollywood in the 1950’s.
Day 10 Tuesday
Total distance 120 miles. Approximate driving time 3 hours 15 minutes
Our journey through New Mexico ends today as we head west and cross the state line into Arizona. Our route takes us through the Navajo Indian Reservation and to the Petrified Forest National Park. Time to drive through the park and take in the absolutely stunning scenery of the Painted Desert. Leaving the park a short drive takes us on to Holbrook where we will be staying the night in one of the original Wigwams at the Wigwam motel
Day 11 Wednesday
Total distance 136 miles. Approximate Driving Time 3 hours 15 minutes
Today we visit Winslow where we can stop for a break. Time for some “standin’ on the corner in Winslow Arizona” We are at the location made famous by Glenn Frey from the Eagles in the 1971 song “Take it Easy”. Although the original statue was not of Glen there are now two statues, the newer one in honour of Glen who passed away in January 2016. You never know you might just spot the girl in the flat bed Ford as she stops at the junction. Next stop is the old tourist town of Two Guns, the site of a zoo at one time on old 66 and then on to the giant meteor crater just a few miles off route in the desert before we get to Williams where we will stay for two nights.
Day 12 Thursday
Free day to explore Williams, the last town to be bypassed by the interstate in 1984 or take the optional excursion on a wonderful vintage diesel train to the south rim of the Grand Canyon.
Day 13 Friday
Total distance 181 Miles. Approximate driving time 4 hours 15 minutes
Leaving Williams we head through Ash Fork to Seligman, the birthplace of the Historic Route 66 Association of Arizona. A splatter platter for lunch at the Road Kill Cafe anyone? As we near Peach Springs you may catch a glimpse of the distant Grand Canyon from the hill. A little further on, the wide open spaces give way to craggy slopes, as we head through Crozier Canyon to Hackberry, a photographers delight . Through Kingman and onto the Oatman highway as old 66 climbs, twists and drops over the Black Mountains to our next destination of Needles in California.
Day 14 Saturday
Total distance 206 Miles. Approximate driving time 4 hours 15 minutes
Crossing the Colorado river we head into the California desert. At Goffs we have arranged a private tour of the Mohave Desert Cultural Centre. A chance to get an insight into the rich history of this area. As 66 continues through the desert we pass through Fenner and into Amboy. A short stop for the photographers at Roy’s cafe and motel in Amboy. Made famous by many appearances in videos, commercials and films, plus the absolutely sky high prices they charge for fuel. Lets face it when you are in the middle of nowhere and you need fuel you will pay whatever it takes to make sure you don’t run out in the desert! Continuing on we pass through Newbury Springs and Helendale before arriving in Victorville for our overnight stop.
Day 15 Sunday
Total distance 118 miles. Approximate driving time 5 hours
Our last day on this fantastic road. Heading out from Victorville we go over Cajun Summit, through Cajun Junction and Cajun Creek. Driving through some wonderful topography created by the San Andreas fault takes us into San Bernadino on the outskirts of Los Angeles. There are many variations of 66 over the years as LA expanded and changed. We have picked what we believe to be the best route past some of the old motels, neon signs, diners, gas stations and roadside attractions. Finally heading along Santa Monica Boulevard through Hollywood and Vine we come to our destination, Ocean Avenue and the Pacific Ocean. Our last night is spent just a stones throw from Santa Monica Pier and a few hundred yards from the end of this great road.
The end of a truly memorable drive through stunning scenery and along some of the best parts of Route 66. Time to return the rental cars to LA International Airport, say goodbye to our new friends and head back to home.
£3495.00 per person based upon 2 people sharing a double room.
Please contact us for pricing if you require single occupancy.
What is Included
Hire Car, typically Mustang or Camaro convertible, subject to availability
Want to use your own car? Not a problem please contact us and we will be happy to accommodate your requirements including arranging shipping if needed.
Double or Twin room in each of the carefully selected hotels and motels.
What is not Included
Flights, car rental one way drop off fee, meals (some hotels may include breakfast, this will be noted on the final itinerary), resort fees, drinks, incidentals, bar costs, road tolls, fuel and any other miscellaneous costs.
A non refundable deposit of £2300.00 is required.
Day trip to the Grand Canyon on a vintage locomotive and two and a half hour coach tour of some of the most recognisable view points. Tour tickets to be paid in full at time of booking and are non refundable.
Contact us for pricing.
Places are strictly limited to a maximum of 10 cars.
Call us on 01235 797200 or