Get Your Pics on Route 66

From the green, Easter Island Moai statue-esque Giganticus Headicus perched next to the Antares Point Visitor Center and Gift Shop in Kingman to the iconic teepees of the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Route 66 in Arizona is adorned with a unique blend of special landmarks, classic eateries and nostalgic Americana.

Now, the undeniably Instagrammable landmarks and one-of-a-kind experiences that can only be found along Arizona’s Mother Road are easier than ever to access through the Arizona Office of Tourism’s new digital Route 66 Passport.

“Route 66’s colorful history, quirky attractions, lively dining and beautiful landscapes are the types of treasures that beg to be shared,” says Debbie Johnson, director of the Arizona Office of Tourism. “Our latest passport is a perfect invitation to explore it for the first time or get reacquainted and find something new!” 

Access to the free digital map and passport is delivered instantly to phones and mobile devices after a quick sign-up. Starting from eastern Arizona, Arizona Office of Tourism outlines a few of the sights Route 66 travelers can discover.

Painted Desert Trading Post – Between Chambers and Holbrook

In an effort to restore this historic Route 66 landmark, volunteers relied on an old postcard, a colorized photo, a few scenes from a home movie and an old matchbook cover. Dotch Windsor and his wife, Alberta, opened the Painted Desert Trading Post in the early 1940’s as a gas station, but it closed by the late 1950s and fell into disrepair until 2018. The grassroots efforts of volunteers, countless hours of labor and a $20,000 cost-share grant from the Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program, enabled the restoration of the picture-worthy trading post, which was completed in 2021.

Standin’ on the Corner Park – Winslow

When songwriter Jackson Browne wrote The Eagles’ famous hit “Take it Easy,” with its infamous line about standing on a corner in Winslow, Arizona, he was actually driving through Flagstaff. But he thought Winslow had a better ring to it. Route 66 trundles through the heart of Winslow, and at the center of town you’ll find this corner park. A life-size statue of a man with a guitar perches in front of a two-story mural that pays tribute to the popular 1970’s song. The town estimates that 100,000 people stop by every year simply to stand on its corner. 

Hackberry General Store

Hackberry General Store – Hackberry

When Route 66 came through Hackberry in 1926, this store was a popular stop. In later years, it was owned by Hackberry’s sole resident from 1992 to 1997, famed Mother Road artist Bob Waldmire. Even though the Hackberry General Store no longer serves as a fuel stop, visitors can still see an impressive collection of vintage gas pumps, original Burma Shave signs, hundreds of old license plates, classic cars and other Route 66 odds and ends. The store also sells sodas and snacks.

Giganticus Headicus – Kingman

This unique, 14-ft. work of art sits at Antares Point, the longest continuous curve – about two miles – on any U.S. highway. In 2004, local artist Gregg Arnold built this towering pseudo-tiki sculpture out of metal, wood, chicken wire, styrofoam and cement. The location, formerly known as the Kozy Corner Trail Park, also features more of Arnold’s imaginative artworks.

Shaffer Fish Bowl Spring – Between Kingman and Oatman

Among the many natural wonders along the Mother Road, Shaffer Bowl Spring is perhaps one of the most picturesque. A remote enclave sitting right off one of the most popular roads in America, the continuously fed hidden spring houses a watering hole stocked with goldfish. From the 1940’s through the 60’s, Route 66 travelers would stop to cool themselves – and their cars’ radiators – at the cool pool. Find it at mile marker 30, at the top of about 30 stone steps.

Remember, these are just a few of the more than 25 sights and landmarks in the Route 66 Digital Passport. And don’t forget to check in at each stop along the way to be eligible to win Route 66-themed prizes! Get started with the passport here.

Photo credit: Jessica Dunham

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