Can You Name All of the Most Important Route 66 Stops?

AUTO

Dave Davis

7 Min Quiz

Image: maydays / Moment / Getty Images

About This Quiz

You can learn about America from a book or through videos, but to really get a feel of the country and what makes it unique on the world stage, you need to immerse yourself in it. You need to meet the people and see what excites them. You need to know what makes them tick.

For decades, one of the best ways to get this kind of knowledge has been found on Route 66. 

Also known as the "Main Street of America," U.S. Route 66 starts in Chicago, goes through Illinois and then turns west, cutting through the Southwestern United States. The route, which is 2,448 miles long, is one of the most picturesque drives available in the country and goes through many terrains and through many cultures to expose travelers to a healthy cross-section of the American experience.

First established in 1926, U.S. Route 66 was the primary way people went from east to west (or back) by road. The Interstate system that came in the 1950s and '60s by and large replaced large sections of the Route, but the mystique it created endured. Traveling west via Route 66 is a "bucket-list" item for many, and the path has grown its own culture over the years, with motels, diners and ... strange attractions vying for their attention. 

Natural or man-made, iconic or kitschy, there's no better way to take a crash course in Americana than to take a trip down Route 66 and see the sights. This quiz will test your knowledge of the Mother Road of the U.S. Strap in — we're going on the ultimate road trip!

Located in Tucumcari, New Mexico, the Mesalands Community College has a museum dedicated to ...

Mesalands Community College in Tucumcari, New Mexico has, among other things, both a paleontology and a fine arts program, and has joined the two pursuits together to create bronze statues of the dinosaurs that could be found in New Mexico millions of years earlier.

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The inspiration for which Pixar character can be found in Galena, Kansas?

Pulling up to Cars on the Route, a former gas station in Galena, Kansas, it's easy to see how the character of Mater the Tow Truck from Pixar's "Cars" movies came to be. A former Kan-O-Tex gas station, the gift shop and snack bar have put "eyes" in the windshield of the old tow truck in front to complete the picture.

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Winslow, Arizona was immortalized in a song by which of these bands?

The line "Standing on a corner in Winslow, Arizona," from the song "Take it Easy" by The Eagles is fun to sing along to, and earned the town some notoriety — so much so that there's a statue of a man with a guitar standing, yes, on a corner in the city.

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It's huge and made of stainless steel — which city is the home of the Gateway Arch?

The 630-foot tall Gateway Arch, located along the banks of the Mississippi River in St. Louis, Missouri, is commemorated by many as the "doorway" to the American West. Constructed in 1967, the Arch is covered in stainless steel and is the world's tallest arch, as well as the tallest man-made monument in the Western Hemisphere.

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Which of these trains travels between Williams, Arizona, and a world-famous national park?

The Grand Canyon Railway is a great way to see the beautiful sights of the country along its 65-mile path. And the train offers more than just scenery! "Outlaws" attempt to hold up the train along the way. Who knows? One of these times they might be successful!

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Which of these is another name for Route 66?

Route 66 isn't just a road; it runs through the heart of the western half of the country and offers unique views of the country's past, present and, in some cases, the future. It was established in 1926 and has seen a lot of changes over the years as the country surrounding it evolved.

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Which national park landmark was there well before Route 66 was created — and will be there long after we're all gone?

It's not a "pretty good" canyon; it's the Grand Canyon! One of the West's great draws, the Canyon, located in Arizona, is about 1,900 square miles and a mile deep at some points. The national park sees about five million visitors each year.

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A museum in Tulsa, Oklahoma serves as a memorial and an archive for which American singer?

American folk musician Woody Guthrie is considered one of the greatest songwriters the U.S. has ever produced, and travelers along Route 66 can make a stop at the Woody Guthrie Center in Tulsa to learn more about the man who wrote "This Land is Your Land." It's also the spot that will house the archives of Bob Dylan.

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If you started in Chicago, in which city will you end your Route 66 journey?

The path of Route 66 ends 2,448 from its start. If you began your journey in Chicago, you'll end it at the Santa Monica Pier in California. You might be sad it's over, but the pier offers an amusement park, an aquarium and a beach, so you can't be TOO sad.

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Which town, named for the Native American nation located there, is located in the eastern section of Arizona?

Located just south of what is now I-40, Navajo is a small town located in the eastern part of Arizona in the Navajo Nation. Route 66 offers those interested a good chance to learn about the culture of Native Americans in the area.

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Sometimes you can see glimpses of a possible future along Route 66! What type of farm can be found in Weatherford, Oklahoma?

The Weatherford Wind Energy Center is the second-largest wind farm in Oklahoma and is located near Route 66. The farm offers more than clean energy — it has an interpretive center where you can learn about wind energy and has an example of a turbine blade on the ground to show just how huge the structures are.

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Located in Springfield, Illinois, the Cozy Dog Drive-in is famous for inventing which five-star menu item?

If you want a corn dog on a stick served at the place where the concept was born, get yourself to the Cozy Dog Drive-in, located in Springfield, Illinois. First opened in 1949, the drive-in is still open and serving food you really need to eat to be a TRUE Route 66 tourist.

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Meteor Crater, site of a massive ancient impact, is located in which state along Route 66?

Meteor Crater — the mile-wide and 550-foot deep site of a meteor that crashed to Earth 50,000 years ago — is located near Winslow, Arizona. The meteor hit the ground at an estimated 26,000 miles per hour with the force of 20 million tons of TNT. It left a mark.

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They're not authentic — not in the least — but what Native American structure can you stay in when you find yourself in Holbrook, Arizona?

The Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Arizona is one of the most iconic stops along Route 66, captured in snapshots and postcards throughout the decades. Constructed in 1950, the establishment offers 15 concrete motel rooms shaped like Native American teepees.

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The stars have never been closer when seen at the Lowell Observatory, which is located where?

The Lowell Observatory, located in Flagstaff, Arizona, is a working research observatory, but it is also open to tourists interested in astronomy. It's also the place where Clyde Tombaugh discovered Pluto, which will always be a planet to us.

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Which of these attractions opened in 2007 to celebrate something that many Americans covet?

Pops 66 Soda Ranch opened in Arcadia, Oklahoma in 2007 and celebrates all things cola. The giant neon soda bottle outside lures people in to see the hundreds of soda bottles, arranged by color, collected from around the world. They also offer food as an excuse to indulge your cola cravings.

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While not as famous as a similarly named Rt. 66 attraction, which of these animal-themed stops should you make time to see?

If you love (or like, or even just tolerate) bunnies, then Henry's Rabbit Ranch, located in Staunton, Illinois is a "must stop" along Route 66. Besides the Route 66 souvenirs you can get, visitors also can see pet rabbits trained to perform tricks and VW Rabbits buried in the ground, Cadillac-Ranch style. C'mon — bunnies!

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Which of these is the name of fossilized vegetation and can be found on Route 66?

Petrified wood is another name for a special type of fossilized vegetation where minerals have replaced the organic matter, and can be found in the southwestern part of the U.S. The Petrified Forest National Park is a 109,000-acre area along Route 66 that has one of the largest concentrations of petrified wood in the world.

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In what year was the iconic Blue Swallow Motel built?

There are a lot of examples of motels that didn't survive the switch from Route 66 to the highway system (and the general decline in people choosing motels in general), but the ones that survived have become attractions all their own. The Blue Swallow Motel, located in Tucumcari, N.M., was built in 1939 and offers travelers both a bed and a time machine of a sort for the night.

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Which U.S. president had strong ties to a town along the Route 66 path?

Abraham Lincoln called three states home before going on to immortality as the 16th president of the United States. At the age of 28, he came to Springfield, Illinois to practice law and lived there for many years. The city is home to many Lincoln-themed attractions, as well as his official presidential library.

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A newer attraction on the Route, the "Meow Wolf" art installation in Santa Fe, NM was funded by which of these authors?

"Meow Wolf," a multimedia art installation located in a former bowling alley and created by the group of the same name, describes itself as a "visionary public benefit corporation by supporting systemic social change and well-being through the arts." The project was funded by "Game of Thrones" author George R.R. Martin.

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The studio of which visual artist has been turned into an attraction for fans in Santa Fe, New Mexico?

The Santa Fe, New Mexico home and studio of Georgia O’Keeffe has been preserved and kept to honor her memory. The artist, known for her paintings of flowers, skyscrapers and landscapes, has been called the "mother of American modernism."

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Acoma Pueblo, one of the nation's longest inhabited towns, is located in which state on Route 66?

Part of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Acoma Pueblo is one of America's longest-settled communities, founded in the 13th century. The area is the home of the Anasazi people, and travelers along Route 66 can take tours and learn more about the land and its people.

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Assuming a Chicago start, about how far from the beginning of your trip will you find the "official" Route 66 museum?

The Route 66 Association Hall of Fame & Museum, located in Pontiac, Illinois, is operated by the Route 66 Association of Illinois and is dedicated to keeping alive the memories of the path, including those of attractions swallowed by time (and, sometimes, the desert). It's a great way to get yourself situated and to plan your trip!

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What was the "Fair Oaks Pharmacy" before it became a stop for tourists making their way along Route 66?

One of the last stops along the way (or first stops, depending on which direction you're going), California's Fair Oaks Pharmacy started its life as the South Pasadena Pharmacy. When Route 66 was established, the business soon started to cater to travelers, offering a soda fountain and food.

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While Bruce Springsteen wasn't actually singing about this stop, his song WILL get stuck in your head at which attraction?

An art project started in 1974, the Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, Texas, is formed by 10 Cadillacs, ranging from 1949 to 1963 models, partially buried (hoods-down) in the ground at the same angle of the Great Pyramid of Giza. The stop is a colorful one because visitors are encouraged to spray paint the cars.

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Twin Arrows, marked by — yes — two giant arrows alongside the road, is an example of what site often found along Route 66?

The drive along Route 66 is dotted by ghost towns, left by communities that went into decline with the advent of the highway system. Established in the 1940s as a trading post, Twin Arrows was abandoned in 1995, leaving an interesting, if eerie, stop along the way for travelers.

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The 66 Diner, considered by many to be one of the best dining experiences along the trail, is located in which state?

Made from a 1940s era Philip’s gas station in the 1980s, the 66 Diner is a favorite of many travelers along the Route. With giant burgers, thick milkshakes and homemade pies, the 66 Diner ensures that customers don't go back to their journey hungry.

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What is the origin story of the Blue Whale of Catoosa, a Route 66 favorite located in Oklahoma?

The Blue Whale of Catoosa is a stop in the Oklahoma leg of Route 66 that was created in 1970 by Hugh Davis as a token of love for his wife, Zelta, who had an extensive collection of whale-related items. The site offers a picnic area and is one of the Route's "must-stops."

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Which of these roads in Chicago is the historic start (or end) of Route 66?

The eastern terminus of Route 66 is at the intersection of Lake Shore Drive and Jackson Boulevard. It's a bit tricky to navigate now because of one-way streets that have been established in the intervening years, but your journey should start right here.

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Start (or end) your trip with some culture! Which of these museums is closest to the eastern start of Route 66?

There are actually two attractions for those wanting to educate as well as entertain themselves close to the start of Route 66 — the Field Museum of Natural History and the Shedd Aquarium. You're going to see ... many things on your trip; you might as well make room for some highbrow stuff!

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What's the name of the limestone cavern along the Route that not only is a geologic wonder but has ties to U.S. history?

You'll see billboards and barn-roof advertisements for Meramec Caverns as you get closer to Stanton, Missouri, which has been a popular stop along Route 66. Not only are the caverns awe inspiring, but the site has historic links to U.S. history, as well. It was part of the Underground Railroad, a hiding place for Jesse James and was mined to make gunpowder in the Civil War.

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What CAN'T you get at the Hackberry General Store in Arizona that Route 66 travelers could once get?

Located near Kingman, Arizona, in the former mining town of Hackberry, the Hackberry General Store has historic gas pumps outside, but don't expect to get any fuel. The establishment, which has no signage, is nevertheless a famous stop along the journey for many.

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If you follow the classic Route 66, which of these states will you NOT be traveling through?

The National Scenic Byways Program has Route 66 going through four states — Illinois, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Arizona — but the path also went through Missouri, Kansas, Texas and California. Kansas has the shortest amount of the Route (just over 13 miles), while New Mexico has the most (392 miles).

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What is the large tiki head on display along Route 66 in Arizona called?

"Giganticus Headicus" is a half-buried tiki head made of metal, wood, chicken wire and other materials near Kingsman, Arizona. The nearly 14-foot-tall green tiki was built by Gregg Arnold, who was inspired by the works of Andy Warhol. Will you learn anything there? Probably not. Will it make an interesting spot for a selfie? You bet!

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