'Life used to be fair and hard back then. Tough men and tougher women. It was about taking things in your stride and face for a new day every morning.'
Art Bell, one of the most celebrated American radio personalities, thus wrote of his life in Amarillo, TX in his memoirs. The period that Mr Bell is talking about here is of the early 50's, a decade after the conclusion of the bloodiest war fought in the history of humanity.
The kind of beauty and longing that is stuffed into these honest words is beautifully incredible and it perfectly defines life in a city (what used to be a town back then) like Amarillo.
Amarillo of today is a mid-sized city where business thrives decently and people still struggle with changing times. It hasn't really shed its true, tough Texan skin and it probably never will. Perhaps, that's how things are supposed to be down south, and if the face of people living here are anything to go by, that sure isn't bothering them!
Apart from being an archetypal Texan town, Amarillo is also famous for a number of strange things that one wouldn't quite see coming.
For example, until not too long ago, Amarillo used to be the biggest producer of Helium gas (a noble gas) in the whole wide world. If that wasn't random enough, it would please tourists to know that Amarillo is one of the largest beef producers in America.
The largest claim to fame, however, comes in the form of its geographical location. Amarillo is the commonest pit stop for road trippers and truckers who travel to and fro between Oklahoma City and Albuquerque, along the famous Highway 66, perhaps the most pop-culture friendly highway in the world!
Finding Affordable Hotels in Amarillo
If you have ever ventured in the deep south of the US, you would know that small towns and cities there are not really expensive in terms of cost of living. Of course, large cities and metropoles like Dallas or Austin are going to test your wallet to the breaking point, but smaller ones, like Amarillo, for example, are not too harsh on the budget of travelers.
That's why, it's not much of a headache to spot and book cheap hotels in and around Amarillo. However, to be able to do that, you need to know where to look at, and that's exactly what we are trying to get done for you!
Playing it safe, we are going with two tried and tested options for cheap accommodation. Baymont Inn & Suites and Comfort Inn & Suites are these two top-rank members in this cheap hotels segment that can provide you safe and secure accommodation with a good deal of comfort, more importantly, at cheap fares!
Going All Out, Luxury Hotels in Amarillo
While budget hotels in Amarillo provide the much needed comfort of economy, luxury resorts provides the lavishness that splurging is usually associated with. But rest assured, staying at one of the luxury Amarillo hotels isn't going to be all that bad, because when you check out, you will be taking home memories that are well worth the big buck you would have paid for!
For many tourists who regularly visit Amarillo, Holiday Inn Express and Suites Amarillo West is the top-ranked luxury resort. It has everything one could ask for in the name of luxury. Great food, extremely cosy suites and a courteous staff that's always eager to help guests out, talk about living in luxury!
The next up, we have another local establishment that doesn't conform to the rules of any global corporation. Drury Inn & Suites is as authentic as a Texan stay can get.
Those who prefer a familiar brand of hospitality wherever they go, Courtyard by Marriott and Hilton Garden Amarillo are excellent picks among luxury Amarillo hotels.
Alternative Accommodation Options in Amarillo
There are not too many alternative lodging options other than regular inns or luxury hotels in Amarillo for the taking. This has much to do with the fact that Amarillo is not really a metro city.
Among those that are available, a few boutique resorts run by reputed chains like Hampton Inn & Suites and Fairfield Comfort Villas are definitely worth checking out.
Sightseeing Tips for Visitors Touring Amarillo
If you are visiting Amarillo for the first time, there are certain things and aspects of this trip that you will be better off knowing before you actually start your sightseeing journey.
It's always advisable to be on one's toes, especially while visiting dingy areas of the city. Not carrying too much of cash or valuables on your person can be a good idea, too.
Smaller establishments like local cafes and restaurants may not always accept credit cards, and hence, it's advisable to carry just the amount of cash that you would be needing for the day.
Amarillo is known for its vibrant food scene. So, not having a go at it can be a big mistake. Steakhouses in Amarillo, in particular, are quite famous around the country. Big Texan Steak Ranch, for example, provides a great behind-the-scenes look at how cows are fed, meat is processed and beef is converted into delicious staple food for the millions of Americans!
Being in the South also adds a whole lot of Mexican flavor to the food of Amarillo. Abulelo's Mexican Grill is a great place to have a taste of this fusion of Mexican and American cooking styles.
In all, it can be said that, while sightseeing in Amarillo, keep your mind open to new ideas and places, because sightseeing is not always about historic buildings and wonders of nature!
Hotels Near Amarillo Airport
Amarillo is serviced by a solitary airport, the eponymous Amarillo International Airport. While this has good air connections with Latin America and Canada, it is quite uncommon for tourists to be able to locate good lodges near the airport (10 miles from the city).
That's why, it remains the only and the best idea to just collect your stuff and catch a cab to Amarillo!