The Best Drive-in Theaters in the U.S.
Luxury movie theaters are the new trend across the country, offering padded and reclining seats, gourmet food and drinks, and even interactive elements like shaking seats and spraying water. But there are still old school ways to see a movie: drive-ins.
In grassy fields and paved lots across the country, you can pull up your car in front of a screen and take in a film or two (or three).
Some drive-ins stick to the classic model. Park your car and listen to the movie audio over your car radio. Others offer added twists to make the experience more interesting.
From the classic to the more unusual, here are some of the best drive-ins across the country.
Coyote Drive-In, Fort Worth, Texas
Pets are welcome at this drive-in theater — and that includes horses. In fact, the Coyote Drive-In is free if you’re on a horse. The theater provides hitches so you can tie up your ride while you take in a movie or refreshments from the cantina.
Wellfleet Drive-In Theater, Wellfleet, Massachusetts
This classic theater on Cape Cod also has miniature golf, a dairy bar with soft serve and hard ice cream, and a flea market during the day.
The Alamo Drafthouse, Austin, Texas
Watch the classic thriller “Jaws” from an inner tube on a lake. Luckily, drinks are served to calm your nerves.
Delsea Drive-In Theatre, Vineland, New Jersey
This theater’s food menu goes far beyond candy and popcorn. It has an entire gluten-free menu, Atkins items and menu options such as chicken cheese steak and teriyaki chicken with edamame.
South Bay Drive In, Imperial Beach, California
You can smell the ocean breezes from this spot right on the coast of the Pacific Ocean. The theater has three screens, giving you more double-features to choose from.
Field of Dreams, Liberty Center, Ohio
Built in the owners’ back yard, this theater takes “if you build it, they will come” literally. It’s also one the few theaters that lets you not only buy tickets online but pay extra to reserve a parking spot.
Fairlee Motel and Drive-In Theater, Fairlee, Vermont
One of the few motel-movie-drive-in combos left in the United States, this theater offers both a motel and an outdoor cinema. You can watch a movie from your car, or from your motel room.
Harvest Moon Twin Drive-In, Gibson City, Illinois
This is the first and likely the only drive-in theater to be powered by wind turbines. It also takes other environmentally-friendly measures, including using LED lighting and recycled materials.
Mesa Drive-In, Pueblo, Colorado
Take in a film or two with a beautiful Colorado backdrop. This theater has three screens and a call-ahead menu so you can order food in advance.
Malco Drive-In Theatre, Memphis, Tennessee
Part of a movie theatre chain that has been family-owned for more than 100 years, this classic theatre maintains its retro feel.
Bengies Drive In Theatre, Middle River, Maryland
This theater boasts that it has the largest drive-in screen in the country, measuring 52 by 120 feet. That means films aren’t cropped or cut in their displays.
Route 66 Drive-In, Carthage, Missouri
Located along the historic Route 66, this theater lets you bring in outside food and drinks but warns “if you do, you are contributing to the demise of drive-in theatres.”
Hull's Drive In, Lexington, Virginia
One of the only nonprofit theatres in the country, this classic drive-in is run by Hull’s Angels, which is dedicated to preserving the theater.