Stretching close to 4,000 km, Route 66 is dotted with unforgettable experiences, sights and memories. So, what happens when you don't see everything on your first journey along Route 66? You go again, of course!
Victorian-based Rod Madden knows this sentiment first-hand, having travelled on no less than five Route 66 Tours – soaking in new adventures and experiences every time. We caught up with Rod to learn more about his trips and what attracts him back each time.
Every tour as special as the last
"The drive is made so easy as you follow the comprehensive itinerary prepared by Route 66 Tours."
Rod has always been interested in the history and romance of the legendary Route 66. When researching his first trip to the US, he found Route 66 Tours and decided to embark with Dale and the team.
In spring 2010, Rod and his wife completed the self-drive Route 66 tour from Chicago to Las Vegas before returning the following summer to do it all again on his own. There is always more to see on Route 66 so Rod jumped at the chance to join three reunion tours with his wife and brother for return clients – exploring other destinations around the country.
For Rod, driving down the old Route 66 in a Mustang, Camaro or Harley is pretty special and much simpler than people think.
"The drive is made so easy as you follow the comprehensive itinerary prepared by Route 66 Tours using the supplied road atlas, GPS, two-way radio, and cellphone," he said.
Although Rod noted that driving on the opposite side of the road takes some getting used to, since the group is driving in convoy, everyone is kept safe and accounted for.
Rod's top destinations
Most Route 66 Tours last around three weeks, allowing plenty of time to see the 'real America'. In contrast to other tour operators who will take you along the interstate (I40) which bypasses much of Route 66, Dale and the team ensure you experience the genuine sights.
"We found ourselves visiting places and meeting people we would never have seen or met if we had not been with Route 66 Tours," Rod said.
"I40 is rarely seen as you drive through the small towns with their 'Mom and Pop' businesses surviving on people like ourselves. Dale takes you on all the original roads as much as possible."
Rod explained some of his favourite locations along Route 66 included:
- Painted Desert (Arizona)
- Acoma Mesa & Sky City (New Mexico)
- Deserted and restored gas stations (all Route 66 states)
- Chain of Rocks Bridge (Mississippi/Missouri)
- Mustang restoration workshop (Missouri)
"Professional and well-organised"
One of the things that stood out for Rod was the professional and well-organised Route 66 Tour team. He said that there were many occasions when the tour leaders went out of their way to make the journey more interesting and personalised.
"At every stop, we were made to feel like we were becoming a part of the road's growing family," Rod explained.
"The pre-booked accommodation is excellent and ranges from retro and restored hotels and motels to those built more recently. All are clean and usually within easy reach of local sights, restaurants, the quintessential diners and other local attractions."
Why Route 66 is great for everyone
Rod said that he would recommend Route 66 Tours to anyone who is keen to explore the history, culture and scenery of this special part of the US – and hasn't ruled out returning himself in the future.
"I think it's excellent value for money and compared to what other people offer, they're at the front of the race," he summarised.
If you would like to book your trip to Route 66, take a look at all the options on our website and get in touch with our expert team today!