Thirty years ago, in 1984, the last remaining section of the iconic Route 66 in Arizona, USA, was decommissioned following the completion of Interstate 40.
One year later, the Main Street of America officially ceased to exist and the road revolution, started by President Dwight D. Eisenhower when he enacted the Federal Aid Highway Act in 1956, was complete.
But although officials were able to erase Route 66 from the map, something they couldn’t eradicate was the Mother Road’s legacy.
Ever since the two-lane, 2,448-mile-long stretch of tarmac opened in the 1920s, people have yearned to hit the road and drive from east to west, experiencing the sensation of freedom and adventure that completing this epic journey gives you. And it’s a concept that lives on today, despite the vast reach of the US domestic airline industry.
So to mark this anniversary and celebrate the spirit of adventure synonymous with Route 66, TrekAmerica, the group adventure holiday specialist, has created an infographic outlining some of the lesser-known facts about the wonderful places you can visit on an east-to-west trip in the USA – experiences that you’d never have if you simply flew from New York to Los Angeles.
From pretending to be Rocky in Philadelphia to partying on Bourbon Street in New Orleans, and from UFO spotting in Roswell to admiring the spectacular Grand Canyon, life on the road in the USA really is about the journey, not the destination.
“Although America’s Mother Road was decommissioned thirty years ago, the spirit of the great American road trip still lives on today,” says TrekAmerica’s senior marketing manager Hayley Griffiths.
“Our infographic is based on our ‘Southern Sun’ itinerary, which was the first tour we ever led back in 1972, and is still our most popular trip today. It’s mind-blowing how much there is to see in the USA, and our infographic aims to show America’s diversity and appeal in a fun and interactive way.”
About ‘Southern Sun’
‘Southern Sun’ was the name given to the very first trip organised by TrekAmerica founder Jeremy James – a 21-day cross-country adventure starting in New York and ending in Santa Monica, Los Angeles. It remains TrekAmerica’s most popular trip today.