One of my favorite "kitschy" things about Amarillo is how closely it's associated with all the retro nostalgia of Old Route 66.

The Mother Road was an integral part of American culture, and as a city we were right smack dab in the heart of it. You can't go down 6th Street without a swarm of the iconic Route 66 sign memorabilia surrounding you.

I think it's easy to forget just how integral Route 66 was in the development of Amarillo as a city and its influence on our culture. And when I think about what it might have been like to travel through this town on the Mother Road I start to get curious and when I get curious, I get to googling.

One thing in particular stood out to me: so many of the old motels are still standing. Heck, I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw that more than "a few" of them were still operating.

attachment-Palo duro motel (1960s)

It is amazing to me that we still have these motels. Some of them are recognized historic landmarks, some are in decent shape, and yet others are just still hanging on by a very thin thread. I think we overlook these motels and their rich history because of the area of town most of them are located.

attachment-Palo Duro Motel (2022)

You'll find the majority of these Route 66 relics over on the Boulevard. And as I saw with the recent murder that took place at the Cowboy Motel, most residents write these places off as "seedy" or of ill-repute.

Yet, they still remain as they are: historic gems who have stood the test of time, from the glorious golden days of the post-war years all the way to today. Check out these neat motels and how they looked then, and how they look now.

Look at How Amarillo's Old Route 66 Motels Looked Then & Now

The heyday of the Mother Road may be long gone, but would you believe that there's still plenty of the old motels where many a weary American family rested their heads during their interstate travels?

You won't believe some of these are still standing, much less still alive and (wait for it..) kickin'!

The Drive-In: Amarillo's Classic Drive-In Theaters, Past and Present

Any resident of Amarillo worth their salt knows about the Tascosa Drive-In movie theater.

But did you know about the other drive-in theaters?


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