What are the best rest stops on Interstate 40?

I’m taking a major cross-country trip from North Carolina to California. Where are the best rest stops on Interstate 40?

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Answer provided by
Rachel Rigolino
Answered on Jul 14, 2022
Oh my—what an incredible trip you’re planning! As I’m sure you already know, I40 is just over 2,500 miles long. The list below attempts to highlight the best rest stops on Interstate 40—from East to West—in each state :
Rest StopMile Marker (MM) LocationAmenitiesFun Fact
Benson Rest AreaMM 324; Benson, NCRestrooms, vending machines, and picnic areas.This rest stop received 4.6/5 stars for its clean bathrooms and general maintenance.
1-40 Welcome CenterMM 446; Hartford, TNTourist info; 24-hour restrooms; picnic area; vending machines; free WiFi.This beautiful welcome center is on land that once was within the boundaries of the Cherokee National Forest.
Ozark Rest AreaMM 36; Watensaw Township, ARTourist info; 24-hour restrooms; picnic tables; vending machines.This rest area got great reviews for its parklike setting and views.
Oklahoma Welcome CenterMM 314; Sallisaw, OKTravel information; 24-hour restrooms; picnic area; vending machines.In Grapes of Wrath, the Joad family sets out from their farm in Sallisaw for California.
Texas Welcome CenterMM 76; Amarillo, TXThis state-of-the-art rest stop on Interstate 40 has tourist info; 24-hour restrooms; picnic area; vending machines; and a video theater featuring films about Texas attractions.This welcome center received a fantastic 4.8/5.0 rating for its grounds, main building, and overall cleanliness.
Rattlesnake Draw Rest AreaMM 207; Moriarty, NM24-hour restrooms; picnic area; water.This basic rest stop on Interstate 40 gets major points for having an incredibly cool name!
Meteor Crater Rest AreaMM 235; West of Winslow, AZ24-hour restrooms; water; vending machines; ability to camp overnight.The rock formations here are truly worth the stop, making this rest area unique and worthy of an Instagram photo shoot.
Desert Oasis Rest AreaMM 28; Newberry Springs, CA24-hour restrooms; water; picnic area.Newberry Springs used to provide water to the Sante Fe Railway in the 1800s, which put it on the map as an oasis.
Hopefully, this list of rest stops on Interstate 40 will help you plan your itinerary!
When you’re setting out on a long cross-country road trip, creating an itinerary with convenient rest stops on Interstate 40 along the way is important—after all, having to venture off the highway in search of a restroom or a bottle of water can be a big time waster.
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