Historic Route 66 runs 2,238 miles between Chicago and Los Angeles and around 300 of those miles run through Illinois. At every turn you’ll find something new and fun to see. Whether it’s a piece of original road, a classic diner, a weird roadside attraction, or an informative museum, Illinois Route 66 attractions abound on the Mother Road.
Are you ready to get your kicks on Illinois Route 66? Let’s check out the top 10 Illinois Route 66 Attractions to see on this stretch of your road trip.
- Top 10 Illinois Route 66 Attractions
Top 10 Illinois Route 66 Attractions
Route 66 Begins Sign
78-98 E Adams St, Chicago, IL 60603
Ready to get your kicks on Route 66? Every great road trip along the Mother Road starts here: the Historic Route 66 Begin Sign in Chicago, Illinois.
The Gemini Giant Muffler Man
810 E Baltimore St, Wilmington, IL
The Gemini Giant is a 28-foot tall muffler man who stands outside the Launching Pad restaurant in Wilmington, Illinois. He weighs in at a whopping 438 pounds: not counting his base of the giant 8-foot rocket he holds in his hands!
Giant Abraham Lincoln Statue on the World’s Largest Covered Wagon
1750 5th St, Lincoln, IL 62656
The Railsplitter Covered Wagon and giant Lincoln statue is 40-feet long, 12-feet wide and 25-feet tall. The big wagon is made of oak and steel and weighs five tons. It is officially recognized as being the world’s largest by the Guinness Book of World Records.
Henry’s Rabbit Ranch
1107 Historic Old Rte 66, Staunton, IL 62088
Henry’s Rabbit Ranch is a Route 66 visitor center and souvenir shop with a particular pedigree. The theme here, if you couldn’t guess, is rabbits. There are often dozens of real rabbits hopping around, a line up of VW Rabbits, and there’s even a big fiberglass jackrabbit beckoning visitors to hop on for that perfect Route 66 Instagram moment.
Pontiac Route 66 Shield Mural
Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum, 110 W Howard St, Pontiac, IL 61764
Pontiac, Illinois is known as “Route 66 Mural City.” The first, the biggest, and the most well-known Route 66 mural in Pontiac, Illinois, and perhaps on the entire Route, is the Route 66 Shield Mural.
Cozy Dog Drive In
2935 S 6th St, Springfield, IL 62703
Get a taste of history at this Route 66 institution: Cozy Dog Drive In in Springfield, Illinois. Cozy Dog doesn’t sell corn dogs, they sell Cozy Dogs. Yes, their signature item is a battered and fried hot dog on a stick, but they make it clear that Cozy Dogs preceded the modern corn dog and are superior in quality and taste to your normal cornmeal dipped fair dog.
Pink Elephant Antique Mall
908 Veterans Memorial Dr, Livingston, IL 62058
We’ve all heard of pink elephants on parade. But this location not only features a giant pink elephant but also a parade of one more giant thing after the next. At the Pink Elephant Antique Mall in Livingston, Illinois you can find their famous big pink elephant and also so many more Illinois Route 66 attractions.
Route 66 Memory Lane
Parade Rd, Lexington, IL 61753
Take a trip down memory lane in Lexington, Illinois. Route 66 Memory Lane, that is. An original 1-mile stretch of Route 66 has been restored and turned into an interpretive trail complete with original pavement and vintage billboards and signs for Burma Shave, Nehi, and more.
Paul Bunyon Muffler Man with a Hot Dog
103 SW Arch St, Atlanta, IL 61723
In 1966 a muffler man was erected in Cicero, Illinois at a hot dog and burger restaurant named Bunyon’s hot dog stand. Due to that this giant hot dog muffler man is known locally as “The Bunyon Giant.” In 2002 the Cicero restaurant closed but the legacy of the hot-dog wielding giant muffler man lives on when he was relocated to Route 66 park in Atlanta.
World’s Largest Catsup Bottle
800 S Morrison Ave, Collinsville, IL 62234
Unfortunately there is no ketchup in this 170-foot tall catsup bottle, instead the structure serves as a water tower for Collinsville, Illinois — original home of the W.E. Caldwell Company for the G.S. Suppiger who bottled Brooks catsup. The Collinsville catsup bottle water tower was completed in 1949.