Top 10 Destination Runs in the World
From the team at Smashrun.com
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Runners are some of the most resolute athletes you’ll ever meet. They’ll not only cover a given race distance, but can also pull it off with a whole lot of personality - even if it means carrying a replica of a giant monument over 42 kilometers. Like Michel Bach who finished the 2009 ING NYC Marathon carrying a soaring plastic replica of the Eiffel Tower on his back or Jesus Christ who, apparently, ran the Tokyo Marathon three times while carrying the cross.

Whoever said that runners were a serious bunch, have yet to experience some of the world’s best marathons. Luckily, if you’re in search for your next big race, we’ve got your list of top 10 destination runs.
Run the Walt Disney World Marathon FLORIDA
The course takes you through all four Walt Disney World Theme Parks starting at Epcot, through Magic Kingdom, the Animal Kingdom, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Not to mention, you’ll probably get a chance to meet Mickey and Minnie along the way. Go ahead. This is the time to act like a 5-year old. (Held in January - Website)
Run the Boston Marathon MASSACHUSETTS
Known to annually produce the second largest single day sporting event in the world (ranking just behind the Super Bowl), the Boston Marathon receives more than 1,100 onsite media coverage, representing more than 250 major news outlets. That’s a lot of press! Boston currently holds the largest field of finishers in marathon history with 35,868 finishers from its centennial run, and it continues to be a popular race among the most competitive of athletes. (Held in April - Website)
Run the Marathon de Paris FRANCE
Notable for its attractive course and its characteristic oyster stations, the Paris Marathon runs down Avenue des Champs-Élysées, passing the Louvre, around the Place de la Bastille, Cathédrale Notre-Dame, along the Seine, and finishing just a few hundred meters away from the Arc de Triomphe. Experience joie de vivre in the way that only Parisians do! (Held in April - Website)
Run the London Marathon LONDON
Most runners would agree that the history of the Marathon began in Athens, Greece in 490 B.C., but few of them are probably aware of the fact that the modern day marathon distance of 26.2 miles actually started in London in 1908. Set along the River Thames, the London Marathon follows a mostly flat course from Blackheath, across Tower Bridge, past Canary Wharf, and finishing at The Mall near Buckingham Palace. We should mention that it’s also notoriously well known to attract fun runners that dress to entertain. (Held in April - Website)
Get inspired with these ideas for interesting and different experiences around the world.
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Run the Rotterdam Marathon NETHERLANDS
Five of the ten fastest marathon runners ever ran their fastest time in the Rotterdam Marathon. It doesn’t draw the largest crowds and it’s not the most scenic on our list, but it’s well organized and there’s cake stops along the course. That’s right. There are dessert stations. (Held in April - Website)
Run the Big Five Marathon SOUTH AFRICA
If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to run across a savannah in Africa, you should consider running the Big Five. The race gets its name from the famous animals of Africa, referred to as the Big Five Game, which includes the lion, leopard, elephant, rhino, and buffalo. It’s a challenging course set along dirt paths with steep ascents and warm weather conditions. Not to mention, you’ll be crossing lion territory. Adventure, anyone? (Held in June - Website)
Run the Maratona Do Rio De Janeiro BRAZIL
Samba culture is ever present in Rio, even along its marathon course. The lively and scenic route will take you through Rio’s city streets, along its beautiful coastline, and past famous beaches like Copacabana and Ipanema. Just make sure you keep an eye out for the occasional Carioca driver that veers off their side of the road. (Held in July - Website)
Run the Berlin Marathon GERMANY
Renowned for its flawless organization and superbly fast marathon route, the most marathon world records for both men and women have been set at the Berlin course. Even if you’re not a very competitive runner, it would be tough not to run this course while aiming for a personal best. (Held in September - Website)
Run the Amsterdam Marathon NETHERLANDS
As a two-loop course, Amsterdam might end up being the least favorite on our list, but seriously… it’s Amsterdam. The marathon route will take you through the original 1928 Olympic course, past the old-city center, Vondelpark, and along its many canals. Much like Rotterdam, it’s also a small affair with just over 2,000 runners and it generally attracts a predominantly European crowd. (Held in October - Website)
Run the New York City Marathon NEW YORK
The NYC Marathon is undoubtedly one of the largest marathons in the world and an event that tops almost every runner’s list of destination runs. Each year, more than 2 million spectators line the streets of New York City’s five boroughs to partake in this full-day event. It’s loud, it’s colorful, and it might just be the most fun you could have while running 26.2 miles. (Held in November - Website)