After traveling through Galena, Riverton and Baxter Springs, Kansas, Route 66 entered Commerce, Oklahoma, and headed southwest through Miami, Chelsea, Claremore and into Tulsa.
Once inside Tulsa, Route 66 traversed the city east-to-west on 11th Street into downtown, crossed the Arkansas River, and headed westbound to Sapulpa, Davenport, Chandler, Arcadia and Oklahoma City.
As other segments of Route 66, alignments around Tulsa varied and improved over the years.
In general, it followed the route of present-day Interstate I-44.
The city is known for its art deco architecture in the central Deco District. Landmarks like the Philcade and Philtower buildings reflect a 20th-century construction boom fueled by the prosperous local oil industry. It is often called "The Oil Capital of the World". The city is home to Oral Roberts University, the University of Tulsa and the popular Cyrus Avery Centennial Plaza celebrating the history of Route 66.
|Map of approximate Historic Route 66 path through the Tulsa, Oklahoma area
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Route 66 in Tulsa
There are dozens of fun and interesting places to see and visit in Tulsa, both along and outside of Route 66.
Tulsa is an exciting, bustling city, an attractive destination for travelers.
The city offers a large array of museums, night life, events at the BOK Center, sports, lodging options and historic venues for visitors.
Tulsa has attractions ranging from trendy nightlife to first-class art museums, family fun destinations, shopping, Route 66 stops, and much more.
Among the most popular attractions is the Cyrus Avery Centennial Plaza and Historic Route 66 bridge downtown on the Arkansas River.
The Route 66 Plazas on the River in Tulsa
Two plazas in Tulsa celebrate Historic Route 66 and Cyrus Avery: Centennial Plaza on the east bank of the Arkansas River, and Southwest Plaza on the west bank.
Included below is a map showing the location of Centennial Plaza and Southwest Plaza in Tulsa
The Cyrus Avery Centennial Plaza
Map showing the key elements of the Cyrus Avery Centennial Plaza (click for interactive map)
A Skyway with observation deck leads pedestrians from the visitors parking lot across Southwest Boulevard to the plaza.
The park and sculptures are an artistic representation of the use of automobiles and highways spreading across the country in the late 1920s and 30s. Future plans for the Avery Centennial Plaza include a visitor’s center and the Route 66 Interpretive Center, to be located on the hill beside the Skywalk near the parking lot. It would feature Route 66 exhibits, historical perspectives, restaurants and gift shop.
Centennial Plaza is located at the east entrance to the historic Route 66 bridge at the intersection of Southwest Boulevard and Riverside Drive.
A visit to Centennial Plaza is highly recommended for Route 66 fans!
|View of Skyway looking west
|Walking across the Skyway
|View of bridge from Skyway
|Memorial Bridge Marker
|Sign near the entrance to the observation walkway under I-244
|Observation walkway under I-244, looking east, old Route 66 bridge & Skyway to the right
|Cyrus Avery ... The Father of Route 66
The Cyrus Avery Southwest Plaza
The Cyrus Avery Southwest Plaza is located near the west side of the historic Route 66 bridge.
The plaza includes replicas of three neon signs from classic Tulsa-area motels: Tulsa Auto Court, the Will Rogers Motor Court, and the Oil Capital Motel (see photos below along with vintage images of the three motels).
|Replicas at the Plaza
|Tulsa Auto Court
|Will Rogers Motor Court
|Oil Capital Motel
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Route 66 in Tulsa
Route 66 Road Trips in Oklahoma
MORE OKLAHOMA ROUTE 66
Oklahoma Route 66 Passport
The Oklahoma Route 66 Passport from the Oklahoma Tourism & Recreation Department helps Route 66 travelers find new destinations to explore and document their progress along the way. A new updated passport (yellow) is being offered beginning in 2023.
The Route 66 Passport, which is available free at TravelOK.com, features 66 of the state’s memorable Mother Road attractions. It includes iconic stops like Catoosa’s Blue Whale, Stroud’s Rock Cafe and Clinton’s Oklahoma Route 66 Museum along with many newer favorites.
Get your passport stamped at each stop, then take it to a Tourism Information Center to be verified and earn an exclusive Route 66 coin.
Both the new yellow and previous red Route 66 Passports are now available in a digital format. Download the official TravelOK Trip Planner app on the Apple App Store or Google Play to get started. When you get to each stop, you'll find a code displayed that you can enter to digitally check in.