Last Updated on September 22, 2014 by Jody Halsted
I recently spoke to the Eastern Iowa Tourism Association. As we drove to the Quad Cities we passed the World’s Largest Truck Stop, which was our lunch stop as we relocated to Boston 2 years ago. I thought it would be fun to revisit the post. Enjoy!
Truer words were never spoken. As we set out today, van pointed east, destination Boston, our only real goal is to arrive before Doug has to be at work Tuesday. Which leaves little time for sightseeing.
With the rented minivan packed with necessities for our extended stay in Massachusetts and items that would, hopefully, keep the girls from getting too bored during our drive, we were off.
- Two Screen Portable DVD Player and lots of DVDs (and Animal Design Headphones so I don’t have to hear their movies)
- Activity bags from Tika Kids with dry erase boards & markers, magnets, notepads & pens, coloring books & crayons
- VTECH Write & Learn Letter Book & Barbie B-Bright Laptop (that I bought when Brenna was just over a year old!)
- VTECH KidiZoom Camera (it takes photos & has games!)
- Snacks & drinks
One thing you do see along the interstate, though, is truck stops. And the World’s Largest Truck Stop just happens to be located along Interstate 80 in eastern Iowa.
The Iowa 80 truck stop opened in 1964 at exit 284 just north of Walcott, Iowa. Interstates did not yet spread across the country and the trucking industry was only a fraction of what is is now. Today the truck stop includes:
- a sit down restaurant, the I-80 Kitchen which serves a full menu of “home cookin'” and offers a hot buffet (which featured meat loaf, chicken & pork loin along with sides and veggies when we were there) and full salad bar. The buffet is $10.75 for adults, kids 5 and under are free.
- a fast food court with Wendy’s, Dairy Queen, Taco Bell & Pizza Hut Express (you’ll find the restrooms and a family restroom back here)
- a huge convenience store & gift shop
- a showroom full of semi truck accessories. Two semi’s are there as well, one on a rotating show floor.
- a full semi & trailer with an incredible painted mural
- at least half a dozen antique cars and trucks
- a second floor for truckers with not only showers and laundry but a theater, dentist & chiropractor!
- a full service center to get any fixin’ done or add some chrome you just picked up.
- a truck wash
- the I-80 Trucking Museum is located just behind the truck stop. From antique pickups to classic semis…
My little girls were fixated on everything there was to see. This is definitely a fun stop even if you’re not a trucker. And if you’re near here in July you’ll want to stop in for the Trucker’s Jamboree (check website for dates). Live music, exhibits, antique trucks and much more!