Amboy, California Route 66: Attractions & Map

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In the heart of California’s Mojave Desert lies a ghost town whispering tales of the past. This is Amboy, California, a once-booming stop on the legendary Route 66, now a nostalgic echo of Americana that beckons travelers seeking a taste of bygone days.

Founded in 1858 as a railroad town, Amboy found new life in the 1930s with the arrival of Route 66. Mom-and-pop motels, cafes, and gas stations sprouted up in town, catering to weary travelers on their westward journeys.

When I-40 replaced Route 66 in 1973, this once bustling town began to suffer and Amboy fell into desolation. A local resident tried to maintain the town as best as could be, but, eventually he sold it. Amboy cycled through many owners after that and was even once listed for sale on eBay. Today Amboy is owned by Albert Okura, the owner of California-based fast-food chain Juan Pollo, who is making efforts to restore Amboy one step at a time.

Visiting Amboy is a journey into time. It’s a chance to disconnect from the digital hum and reconnect with the simple pleasures of a road trip. It’s a place to breathe in the dry desert air, marvel at the vastness of the sky, and let your imagination wander to the days when Route 66 was America’s Main Street. So, fill up your tank, pack your sense of adventure, and head to Amboy. You might just find yourself falling in love with a ghost town that still holds the beating heart of America’s highway history.

Amboy, California Route 66 Attractions

Amboy, California is by all means a ghost town, with little to see and many deteriorated relics of the past. But recent efforts have been made to revitalize the town and even if there are few places to explore, the ones that are there are worth adding to your California Route 66 itinerary.

Roy's Motel & Cafe

Roy’s Motel & Cafe

Roy’s Motel & Cafe is a Route 66 institution and one of the most photographed sites on the Mother Road. While it has fallen into disrepair over the years, the property is slowly being restored, with the giant neon sign brought back to life in 2019.

Guardian Lions of Route 66

About four miles east of Roy’s find a pair of solid marble Chinese guardian lions at the side of the road watching over the Mojave Desert.

Amboy Crater

Amboy Crater is a dormant cinder cone volcano located within Mojave Trails National Monument. You can take a short hike to the top of the crater to admire the far-stretching views of Route 66.

Map of Amboy, California Route 66

Plan your visit to Amboy, California Route 66 by loading this map the your Google Maps app on your phone. Explore all the best attractions in Amboy on your Route 66 road trip through California.

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Last modified: January 22, 2024
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