What is Route 66? Map, how long is USA road trip that has inspired songs - and why Google is celebrating it

The latest Google Doodle celebrates America’s iconic Route 66, 

one of the most famous driving roads in the world and a bucket-list journey for road trip fans globally. 

Today (30 April 2022) marks 96 years since the name "U.S. 66" was first proposed for the cross-country route.

Route 66 was one of the first roadways in the United States Highway System, and served as a major route for people migrating west, 

Built in 1926, at the dawn of widespread car ownership in the US, Highway 66 made cross-country travel affordable for the first time.

The road also aided the economics of the communities it passed through, and people doing business along the route prospered as the highway grew in popularity.

Those same people eventually campaigned to keep the highway alive in the face of the new Interstate Highway System's threat of bypassing it.

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