Southwest Road Trip: Route 66 Fun in Seligman

Any great American road trip worth its salt needs a dash or two of roadside kitsch. On a southwest road trip, Seligman is a prime opportunity to indulge in the motherlode of roadside attractions: Route 66.

Seligman AZ, photo © Sam Topping

Route 66 in Seligman, Ariziona. Photo © Sam Topping, licensed CC BY.

A tiny roadside settlement 87 miles east of Kingman, Seligman holds on tightly to its Route 66 heritage. There are less than 500 full-time residents and often, especially on summer weekends, twice that number of travelers. Don’t be surprised to see European visitors, classic car nuts, and 60-something bikers passing through town. John Lasseter, co-director of the 2006 Disney-Pixar film Cars, has said that he based the movie’s fictional town of Radiator Springs partly on Seligman, which, like Radiator Springs, nearly died out when it was bypassed by I-40 in the late 1970s.

Stop at Delgadillo’s Snow Cap Drive-In (301 E. Chino St./Rte. 66, 928/422-3291, daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner, under $10), off Route 66 on the east end of town, a famous food shack dedicated to feeding, entertaining, and teasing Route 66 travelers for generations. They serve a mean chiliburger, a famous “cheeseburger with cheese,” hot dogs, malts, soft ice cream, and much more. Expect a wait, especially on summer weekends, and you will be teased, especially if you have a question that requires a serious answer.

The Roadkill Café (502 W. Chino St./Rte. 66, 928/422-3554, daily 7am-9pm, $5-24) is more than just a funny name; it’s a popular place for buffalo burgers, steaks, and sandwiches.

There are several small, affordable, locally owned motels in Seligman. The Supai Lodge (134 W. Chino St./Rte. 66, 928/422-4153, $66-80 d), named for the nearby Grand Canyon village inhabited by the Havasupai people, has clean and comfortable guest rooms at a fair price.

The Historic Route 66 Motel (500 W. Chino St./Rte. 66, 928/422-3204, $65-80 d) offers free wireless Internet and refrigerators in clean, comfortable guest rooms, and the Canyon Lodge (114 E. Chino St./Rte. 66, 928/422-3255, $65-80 d) has free wireless Internet along with refrigerators and microwaves in its themed guest rooms. They also serve a free continental breakfast.

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