Ed­in­burgh Marathon

ROAD – TOWN/ RU­RAL – FLAT This is the big­gest marathon in Scot­land: each year around 16,000 run­ners turn out to en­joy cruis­ing past some of Ed­in­burgh’s best-known land­marks (in­clud­ing Holy­rood Palace, Arthur’s Seat, Mead­ow­bank sta­dium and Mus­sel­burgh Link

Runner's World (UK) - - Race -

LON­DON MARATHON ROAD - TOWN - FLAT What kind of best-race run­down would this be with­out the Lon­don Marathon? Thirty-six years old and grow­ing big­ger ev­ery year, it’s a must-do for elites, club run­ners, those tick­ing off a bucket list (or at­tempt­ing a nutty world record), char­ity run­ners and the rest of us. Lon­don, April 23, vir­gin­money­lon­don­marathon.com

CH­ESTER MARATHON ROAD – TOWN/ RU­RAL - FLAT This is one marathon where car­ry­ing your smart­phone might be the smart thing to do – there are so many sights to snap. Run­ning in both the his­toric city cen­tre and through sur­round­ing coun­try­side, you’ll take in the Ro­man Walls, the Cathe­dral, the Duke of West­min­ster’s Es­tate and much more. Cheshire, Oc­to­ber 8, ac­tiveleisureevents.co.uk

WALLED CITY MARATHON ROAD – TOWN/ RU­RAL - FLAT This is a great way to see the his­toric city of Lon­don­derry. The race, now in its fifth year, takes in the city’s fa­mous walls – which have stood since the early 17th cen­tury – and sends run­ners along the banks of the River Foyle and out into the sur­round­ing coun­try­side be­fore re­turn­ing to end in Guild­hall Square. Derry, North­ern Ireland, June 4, the­walled­c­i­ty­marathon.com

BOURNEMOUTH MARATHON ROAD - TOWN - FLAT This speedy route takes run­ners along the stun­ning Bournemouth coast, first head­ing through Boscombe be­fore dou­bling back all the way to Sand­banks beach. Run­ners re­turn to Bournemouth Pier for a buzzing finish. The fast, flat course is ideal for first-timers and PB hunters, and there’s a beau­ti­ful sea view to boot. Bournemouth, Oc­to­ber 8, bournemouth­marathon.com

MANCH­ESTER MARATHON ROAD – TOWN - FLAT The first thing that springs to the minds of race geeks/en­thu­si­as­tic com­peti­tors when this race is men­tioned is that it’s the flat­test marathon in the UK, with less than 50m of climb in the whole thing. It also boasts wide roads, no dif­fi­cult turns and an al­ways chirpy field who are un­ruf­fled by the tra­di­tional north­ern weather. Manch­ester, April 2 greater­manch­ester­marathon.com

YORK­SHIRE MARATHON ROAD - RU­RAL - FLAT A pop­u­lar and pic­turesque run that has quickly es­tab­lished it­self as one of the high­lights of the White Rose County’s sport­ing year. Although not com­pletely flat, it has de­cent PB po­ten­tial and sees par­tic­i­pants ab­sorb some of York’s splen­did his­toric sites and scenic coun­try roads, mak­ing it an at­trac­tive prospect for run­ners of all abil­i­ties. York­shire, Oc­to­ber 8, they­ork­shire­marathon.com

GI­ANT’S HEAD MARATHON TRAIL - UR­BAN - HILLY If you’re af­ter a chal­lenge, you’ll get your money’s worth here. This very hilly but beau­ti­ful course takes you through the Sy­dling and Cerne val­leys and un­der the fa­mous Cerne Ab­bas Gi­ant. Upon fin­ish­ing, you won’t know which to visit first – the beer stall, the hog roast, the af­ter-party tent or the ice cream van. Dorset, June 24, whites­tar­run­ning.co.uk

BEACHY HEAD MARATHON TRAIL – RU­RAL - HILLY For­merly known as the Seven Sis­ters Marathon, this romp across the South Downs Na­tional Park near East­bourne is now one of the big­gest of­froad marathons in the UK. As well as run­ning over Beachy Head it­self, there are 300 steps and 14 gates to ne­go­ti­ate. Leave your GPS watch at home for this one. East Sus­sex, Oc­to­ber 28, beachy­head­marathon.co.uk

EDEN MARATHON MIXED TER­RAIN - RU­RAL - HILLY This of­fers a unique ex­pe­ri­ence. You’ll run in and around the Eden Project, tak­ing in the gor­geous coun­try­side, with its clay land­scapes and min­ing her­itage, and also get to trot past the im­pos­ing eco Biomes that have now be­come a such a pop­u­lar tourist at­trac­tion. Corn­wall, Oc­to­ber 15 eden­pro­ject.com

SNOWDONIA MARATHON TRAIL - RU­RAL - HILLY A pre­vi­ous win­ner of Run­ner’s World’s best marathon award, this 26.2 around the sec­ond-high­est peak in the UK fea­tures a route that gives you the best of both worlds: you get some su­perb views of the moun­tain with­out hav­ing to haul your­self up the brute. Mid Wales, Oc­to­ber 28, snow­do­nia­ma­rathon.co.uk

LOCH NESS MARATHON ROAD – TOWN/ RU­RAL - FLAT You can make up your own joke about this be­ing a ‘mon­ster’ race while we fo­cus on telling you that it is ev­ery bit as lovely as you imag­ine run­ning along­side this fa­mous loch would be. With its 2,500-strong field this is the big­gest ru­ral marathon in Scot­land. High­lands, Scot­land, Septem­ber 24, lochness­marathon.com

FORT WIL­LIAM MARATHON TRAIL - RU­RAL - HILLY A marathon set in the heart of the High­lands – what’s not to like? A tough, un­du­lat­ing sec­tion com­prises the first six miles, but the views of Ben Nevis, the fields of wild flow­ers and one epic down­hill sec­tion will make it all worth­while. Mind you, there’s a hill at the end. High­lands, Scot­land, July 30, fortwilliammarathon.co.uk

CAUSEWAY COAST MARATHON ROAD/ TRAIL – RU­RAL - HILLY Some­times you come across a race so stun­ning you may be tempted to stop along the way and ap­plaud the scenery. This event, which takes in the UN­ESCO World Her­itage site of the Gi­ant’s Causeway, is one such event. North­ern Ireland, Septem­ber 23, 26ex­treme.com

ROCK ‘ N’ ROLL LIVER­POOL MARATHON ROAD - TOWN - FLAT As be­fits a city with such a rich mu­si­cal her­itage, Liver­pool plays host to one of the ri­otously en­joy­able Rock ‘n’ Roll series of races, where you’ll find a live band play­ing at each mile to help keep your spir­its up and your legs turn­ing over. Leave your head­phones at home. Liver­pool, May 28, run­rock­n­roll.com/liver­pool

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