Discovering Route 66

Route 66, also known as the « Mother Road, » is a legendary transcontinental highway in the United States. Stretching 3,939 kilometers long, it crosses eight states, linking Chicago, Illinois, to Santa Monica, California. Route 66 was inaugurated on November 11, 1926, and although it was removed from the national highway system in 1985, it continues to exist in the collective imagination as the ultimate symbol of freedom and discovery of America.

The history of Route 66 dates back to the early 20th century when the United States began to develop its road network. At that time, there was no direct route linking the east and west of the country. Motorists had to use several national roads to cross the United States. For this reason, the construction of Route 66 was undertaken to create a direct and convenient route to connect the two coasts of the country.

Route 66 quickly became a symbol of American culture. It has been immortalized in numerous songs, films, and literary works. It also played an important role in the economic development of the regions it crossed, enabling the development of many small towns that benefited from the constant influx of travelers. Route 66 also captured the collective imagination because of its association with western migration during the Great Depression, when many workers were fleeing regions affected by the economic crisis in search of better opportunities in the west.

Over the years, Route 66 has also witnessed many historical events. During World War II, it was used as a strategic route to transport materials and troops across the country. In the 1950s, Route 66 witnessed the rise of car culture with the emergence of the first motels, diners, and gas stations along the route. However, with the advent of highways and commercial flights, the popularity of Route 66 began to decline.

In 1985, Route 66 was removed from the national road system and replaced with modern interstate highways. However, this did not mean the end of the mythical highway. Route 66 was designated a historic route and continued to attract thousands of travelers each year. Many sections of the old road have been preserved and restored, offering visitors an authentic time-traveling experience. Automobile and history enthusiasts have the opportunity to drive along Route 66 in vintage cars and relive the glorious days of the road.

Today, Route 66 continues to draw travelers from all over the world. It offers a unique insight into the history, culture, and diversity of the United States, passing through varied landscapes, from desert areas to large cities, and the vast plains. Bikers, adventurers, families, and photography enthusiasts are all attracted to the beauty and authenticity of Route 66.

Route 66 has become an American icon, a symbol of freedom and adventure. It embodies the American dream of exploring new lands and delving into the unknown. Although Route 66 no longer officially exists, its legacy and history continue to live on through the people who have traversed it and continue to traverse it today, making this strip of asphalt a timeless link between the past and the present. If you are looking for a unique experience and to discover the authenticity of America, then you cannot miss Route 66.