14 days departing CHICAGO from

Style: Discovery
Destination: Cross Country
Tour Code: P6X

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Trip Overview

Immortalized in folklore, cinema and song, Route 66 remains the iconic symbol of the great American road trip; a journey of adventure, discovery and the freedom of the open road. Cruising "America's Main Street," the first direct route from the Midwest to the Pacific, you'll cross 8 states and make a small detour for the biggest sight in the West, the magnificent Grand Canyon. From snow-cones and corndogs, to cowboys, country music and rock-n-roll - its classic Americana all the way, as you travel from the heartland to the coast on the world's most famous road.

Included Highlights
  • Cowboy and Indian country
  • Gateway Arch in St Louis
  • Oklahoma City
  • "Official" Route 66 Museum in Clinton, Oklahoma
  • Visit Abraham Lincoln's house and museum
  • Stay in a historic property in Santa Fe
  • Crossing the Great Plains
  • Classic Americana
  • Two nights at Grand Canyon National Park
  • Two nights in Las Vegas
  • View of the Hoover Dam
  • Visit the iconic Santa Monica Pier
  • Stay at the famous El Rancho Hotel
  • Visit the Route 66 Vintage Iron Motorcycle Museum
  • Visit the Coleman Theatre
  • See the Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo
Tour Facts & Features
Accommodation: 10 hotel nights in 3 star twin share accommodation, 2 historic properties. For your own room request our optional Solo Sleeper (see Dates & Prices tab). Premium accommodation available on selected dates
Transport: All transportation by private vehicle
Meals: All meals paid locally
Guided: Services of a professional tour leader
Group size: Maximum 13
Age range: 18+
Wifi: Free wi-fi available in your vehicle (Max 5 users, restrictions apply)

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Trip Itinerary

Our routes have been carefully chosen to include the best night stops and highlights. However, as local and operational conditions may vary and unforeseen circumstances can arise, the following itinerary should be used as a guideline.

Download Trip Dossier (2015 version)

Download the Historic Route 66 trip dossier for tour-specific details including full itinerary, pre-departure information, packing tips and more about our style of travel.

2016 versions will be available in November. (Adobe Acrobat is required to read this pdf)

Download Dossier >

Optional Activities (paid locally)

Our optional activities offer the flexibility to do the things you want to and leave out the things you don't. Below are the main optional activities for this trip which can be arranged once you are on tour via your tour leader and paid for locally. Please note all costs are subject to change.

  • Helicopter flight - Grand Canyon US$284
  • IMAX Theater - Grand Canyon US$15
  • Clubs & casino shows - Las Vegas US$10+
  • Limo ride - Las Vegas US$25-$30
  • Helicopter flight - Las Vegas US$115
  • National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum - Oklahoma City US$13
  • Meramec Caverns - Branson US$25
  • Spray graffiti at Cadillac Ranch - Amarillo US$FREE
  • Acoma Indian Reservation & Sky City Pueblo US$23
  • Dixie Stampede dinner - Branson US$55-$60

Itinerary Update

For 2016 departures day 7 in Santa Fe will be replaced by a visit to Albuquerque.

Day : 2016 departures only - Arrival day in Chicago

Please note 2016 departures will be 13 days in duration including an additional night at the beginning of the tour. On this arrival day there will be a meeting at 18.00 with your tour leader and group, the tour will then depart the next day as per day one of the itinerary below. Fully updated itineraries and dossiers will be available from the end of October 2015.

All 2016 departure dates displayed online have been updated to reflect the inclusion of this arrival day.

Day 1: Chicago to Springfield

After leaving Chicago, you drive south to the first iconic Route 66 stop, Springfield, the capital of the state of Illinois. Springfield's favourite son was Abraham Lincoln and you'll pay a visit to the Lincoln Home National Historic Site, which is the home that he lived in with his wife, Mary Todd Lincoln, from 1844 until 1861 when he became US president. Springfield is also the birthplace of the corndog and drive-thru restaurants, so make sure you arrive with an empty stomach.
Accommodation: Hotel included | Meals: Paid locally

Day 2: St Louis

From Springfield, Illinois, it's only a couple of hours driving to St Louis, Missouri. St Louis is one of the largest cities in the USA with a metropolitan population of over 2.8 million. Founded in 1764 it became a major port on the Mississippi River and even hosted the Olympic Games in 1904. The Gateway Arch commemorates the settlement of America's West and it was from here that countless pioneers set out to conquer the wild frontier. Stop at Ted Drewes, an Iconic Route 66 attraction, and try a 'Concrete' - über-thick milkshake made from vanilla frozen custard. Perhaps you can spend the evening checking out the city's vibrant nightlife.
Accommodation: Hotel included | Meals: Paid locally

Day 3: Branson

Home to Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede and their version of 'The Strip', Branson has become to country music what Las Vegas is to gambling. With over 50 dinner theatres, shows and other entertainment oddities, Branson is where it's at in Missouri. It unleashes a hefty dose of pure Americana and a wonderful playlist to enjoy it to.
Accommodation: Hotel included | Meals: Paid locally

Day 4-5: Oklahoma City

Oklahoma, with more driveable miles of the old highway than any other state, is a mecca for fans of the Mother Road. Oklahoma City is the capital and the largest city in the state. You spend a couple of nights here and enjoy a full day to discover some of the city's many cultural attractions. Visit the Route 66 Vintage Iron Motorcycle Museum and the Coleman Theatre - built in the late 1920's, it defines an era of vaudeville and silent films. Oklahoma is also the gateway to cowboy country so what could be a better introduction to the 'Wild West' than an optional visit to the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. Originally established in 1955 as the Cowboy hall of Fame and Museum, it has broadened its scope to encompass both Western and Native American artwork and artifacts as well as historic photographs.
Accommodation: Hotel included | Meals paid locally

Day 6: Amarillo

Amarillo in the state of Texas is your destination for today. On the 'Way to Amarillo' and before you leave Oklahoma, you'll visit the 'official' Route 66 Museum, where you learn about the legends surrounding the road you're travelling on and a short stop at Lucille's Service Station & Roadhouse. Then it's on to Amarillo where you make your way to the Big Texan Steak Ranch for a steak meal (optional). If you can eat a 72 oz steak in less than one hour, you get it for free! This is man vs food for real!
Accommodation: Hotel included | Meals paid locally

Day 7: Santa Fe

Your Route 66 road trip continues with a visit to the Cadillac Ranch, where 10 classic cars are buried nose-down in the dirt. The owners encourage graffiti so grab spray can and leave your mark! Then it's on to New Mexico and the city of Santa Fe. Although it is the state capital it is only the state's fourth largest city and is known for its adobe architecture and new world spiritualism. The earliest settlements in the area were Pueblo Native villages that date back 1000 years, but the Spanish took over in 1598 and laid down the city's foundations. It wasn't till 1912 that the state of New Mexico became part of United States. The historic downtown area called the Plaza still retains reminders of the Hispanic era whilst the Palace of the Governors and the San Miguel Mission both date back to 1610 and are said to be the oldest European-era buildings in the United States. In the evening you may wish to visit Tomasita's for hands down, the best hatch green chili before overnighting in an historic and unique property.
Accommodation: Historic hotel included | Meals paid locally

Day 8: Gallup

From modern cultures to ancient civilizations you have the option to stop by the 'Sky City' ruins on the Acoma Native American Reservation. You spend the night in Gallup, New Mexico, home to a diverse population with a third of its residents being of Native American decent. Stay at the El Rancho Hotel, a little slice of history, counting John Wayne and Katherine Hepburn amongst its famous guests.
Accommodation: Historic hotel included | Meals paid locally

Day 9-10: Grand Canyon National Park

So it's not on the original Route 66, but it's so close it would be a crime to pass it by! The Grand Canyon is an iconic symbol of the desert Southwest and a spectacle not to be missed. This incredible natural wonder is difficult to comprehend, even as you stand at the rim or hike down into the canyon. Carved over several millennia, this massive wonder of nature is 445 kilometres (277 miles) long, up to 29 kilometres (18 miles) wide and over 1.6 kilometres (1 mile) deep. Snaking through the canyon floor is the mighty Colorado River, which runs 2330 kilometres (1450 miles) through seven US states and two Mexican states.

In your free time, we highly recommend a scenic flight over the canyon, which offers perspectives that you cannot see when exploring by foot. Also recommended is the film show at the IMAX Theater, which will give you a good overview of the area and how it developed. There are many walks that you can enjoy ranging from easy to moderate ones. There is also time to shop around for local souvenirs.
Accommodation: Hotel included | Meals paid locally

Day 11-12: Las Vegas

The historic Route 66 town of Seligman and the Snow Cap Diner make for a quirky stop en route for a view of the Hoover Dam before you hit Vegas, renowned as the 'tacky capital of the world'. If it is gambling you want, you have come to the right place as nowhere else in the world will you find so many casinos. In Las Vegas you'll enjoy a city tour that takes us to some of the quirky things that epitomises this city, as well as learning about some of its colourful history. You also have time for some last-minute bargain shopping and have some time to relax by the pool before a night out on the town amidst the bright lights, casinos and world-class shows.
Accommodation: Hotel included | Meals paid locally

Day 13: Las Vegas to Los Angeles

On your final day you have the endless sunshine of California in your sights, following the Route 66 across the great Mojave Desert to the city of Los Angeles. You'll toast farewell to an epic road trip and to your new friends from the iconic Santa Monica Pier.

This tour ends at our gateway hotel at approximately 17:00 hrs. We can book you post-tour accommodation at our gateway hotel if required. If you are planning to fly tonight, please do not book a flight that departs before 21:00 hrs.

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No credit card fes
  • A 10% deposit per person is required to book
  • Full payment is due 8 weeks before the tour departure
  • We charged no credit card fees or hidden surcharges
  • ABTA & ATOL licensed operator offering financial security for our tours
  • Prices are land only. Call 0333 999 7965 for a flight inclusive quote (UK)

Solo Sleepers Optional Solo Sleeper

There are no forced supplements for single travellers. Accommodation is based on twin-share, so if you're travelling on your own, you'll share with a fellow passenger of the same sex. However, if you would prefer your own space our Solo Sleeper Option can be requested from per person. This will guarantee you your own room for every night of the tour. The number of single rooms we can offer is limited, so it's best to book early. Simply select the "Solo Sleepers" check box on the booking form or request over the phone.

Important Notes

We highly recommend you book this trip at least 60 days prior to departure. Reservations received within 30 days will be on request and subject to availability of en-route accommodation.

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Available: Seats are available. Book Online now!
Limited: Limited seats only. Book Online now!
Contact Us: Seats may be available. Please contact us.

Private Departures

Why not arrange your own Grand American Adventures departure? For groups of 8 or more, we can offer private departures on any of our published itineraries enabling friends, families or organizations to enjoy our style of travel at special rates. Although tours will run as per our standard itinerary shown here, slight modifications may be considered and dates can be chosen to suit your needs. (Subject to seasonal/operational restrictions). So contact us today and start planning your own adventure.

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Tour Extras

We've offer a whole range of travel extras with everything from city sightseeing, additional hotel nights, insurance and more so you can organise everything you'll need for your trip in one easy place

Hotels Before and After your trip

Tours begin and end at designated hotels in the departure and arrival cities, starting at 7.30am (check your tour voucher for exact details) and finishing at around 5pm, so it's a great idea to book a room for the night before and after your tour. You can book hotels either online when you book your tour or by call our sales team.

Custom hotel

This full service hotel is luxury at LAX complete with a stadium-style sun deck and pool and minutes from Santa Monica and Venice.

  • Twin share:  per person per night
      Matched with another traveller of the same sex.
    Full room:  per room per night
      Single or double room for travellers on the same booking.

Red Roof Inn

This hotel is right in the heart of the city and within walking distance of some of Chicago's favorite attractions: The Magnificent Mile, Navy Pier and The John Hancock Building.

  • Twin share:  per person per night
      Matched with another traveller of the same sex.
    Full room:  per room per night
      Single or double room for travellers on the same booking.

Book Flights

Our specialist flights department can offer UK customers a great airline fare to all of our travel destinations.

Book Flights

We have preferred contracts with many international carriers and have secured some of the most competitive prices in the industry. We are also ATOL protected and IATA licensed.

Special offers are regularly available, so call us now on 0208 682 8921 or click below to request a flight quote by email.

> Request a flight quote now

Travel Insurance

At Grand American Adventures we believe that your safety and enjoyment are the most important parts of your holiday.

Travel Insurance

Before you join your Grand American Adventures tour you MUST be covered by insurance that includes adequate coverage for baggage, medical expenses and the cost of repatriation. We can offer you a comprehensive travel insurance policy which is completely tailored for your trip and is specially designed to include all the activities listed.

See our insurance page for more information.

City Sightseeing Tours

If you are spending extra time in our gateway cities, you can now plan in advance by pre-booking unique city sightseeing day tours in addition to your trip.

Los Angeles City Tours


All city day tours are operated by local experts who are dedicated to take you behind the scenes so you know it like a local! When booking your trip, simply select your chosen city tours from the Tour Extras section on the online booking form.

> View City Sightseeing Tours

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Call us on 0333 999 7961 0333 999 7965
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Call us on 1300 157 153 1300 157 153
+44 208 6828921
Real Americas | Real Adventure