Kansas Route 66

Historic Byway

Kansas' Historic Route 66 Byway offers opportunities for visitors to enjoy a variety of experiences to "get their own kicks" while driving the original Kansas portion of Route 66, found in the "Ozark Plateau" or Southeast corner of the state.

Drive over many of the original structures of "The Mother Road," including the only remaining Marsh Arch Bridge on Route 66, or stop at the Nelson's Old Riverton Store, known as one of the most authentic, still working 75+-year-old stores of its kind on all of Route 66. Take your picture with the tow truck that was the inspiration for the character "Mater" from the "Cars" movie or discover Schermerhorn Park and the Southeast Kansas Nature Center.

  • Route Description

    Distance: 13 miles

    Gelena to Baxter Springs: Starting on Route 66 at the Kansas/Missouri border just west of Joplin, MO, head west into Kansas towards the city of Galena, KS. Continue heading west for about 7 miles towards the infamous Rainbow Bridge midway between Galena and Baxter Springs. Stay on Route 66 heading south and you'll eventually reach Baxter Springs, KS. The route eventually concludes at the Kansas/Oklahoma border just south of Baxter Springs.

    Baxter Springs to Gelena: Starting on Route 66 at the Kansas/Oklahoma border just south of Baxter Springs, KS, head north into Kansas. Continue heading north for about 6 miles towards the infamous Rainbow Bridge midway between Baxter Springs and Galena. Stay on Route 66 going east towards Galena, KS. The route eventually concludes at the Kansas/Missouri border just east of Galena, KS.

  • Marsh Arch Bridge

    Visit the one of the few remaining Marsh Arch Bridges. This bridge, commonly know as Rainbow Bridge, is the only driveable bridge of its…

    Cars on the Route

    It is this old garage on the old Route 66 in Galena, Kansas, where the director John Lasseter and Joe Ranft of Pixar “Cars” saw the rusty…

    Nelson's Old Riverton Store

    Operating along Historic Route 66 since before the Route officially opened. You'll find groceries, gifts, Route 66 memorabilia and local…

    Somewhere in Time Antiquities

    Somewhere in Time Antiquities is the only Antique store on Route 66 with over 60 Root Beer's & 300 Craft Sodas! Amish Jellies & other jarred…

    Streetcar Station Coffee Shop

    Gourmet Coffee, Latte, Cappuccino, Smoothies, Hot Chocolate, Italian Soda, Daylight Donuts, Biscuits, Gravy, Eggs, Lunch Daily Streetcar…

    Fort Blair Historic Site

    Replicated Civil War fort includes breastworks, block house, brush harbor and extensive signage. The fort was attacked by William…

    Schermerhorn Park

    Visit this wonderful Nature Center with picnic area, playground equipment, and shelter house. Back your car up to the edge of the creek and…

  • Things to do along the way

    Photos

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    Wetlands + Wildlife

    Along the byway, you'll encounter landscapes and communities shaped by the powerful forces of motion and change. You're entering a…

    Glacial Hills

    The Glacial Hills Scenic Byway gets its name from the rolling hills and rock-strewn valleys carved by ancient glaciers. 

    For more information about the Kansas Historic Route 66 Byway, contact:

    Mary Billington (620) 856-2385
    Janet Miller (620) 762-0717

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