Sometimes, in order to fit a workout in to a busy schedule, you wind up running on the treadmill like a hamster in its wheel. You might argue that any endorphins are good endorphins, but I think the more interesting the workout, the better. From 5ks to marathons—these scenic and special races will make you forget how hard you’re sweating, and possibly give you an always-needed excuse to travel.
This half marathon and marathon take place on a Saturday and Sunday in May, with a prize for the brave souls who complete both races over the weekend. Much of the two courses include stunning coastline and charming beach houses. The half marathon starts and ends at the University of New England in Biddeford, Maine, while the marathon takes place in Kennebunk, Maine.
If you’re not from down south, you may not know how worth it it is to travel to Charleston, South Carolina. The historic city is full of colorful buildings, beaches and the best kind of southern charm. This 10K race begins just over the Arthur Ravenel Jr. bridge in Mt. Pleasant, and takes runners over the scenic Cooper River and through the cobblestone streets of the city.
This marathon takes place in Bordeaux, France, and incorporates—you guessed it—wine. Along the route, participants stop for french delicacies like wine, cheese and even oysters. Runners often dress up in costumes, as if running under the influence wasn’t absurd enough. This is one race that is less about the running, and more about the experience.
If the idea of drinking wine while running sounded intriguing but a little bit sickening, this race might be a better option. This half marathon starts in Napa and will take you through numerous vineyards and farms to Sonoma. There won’t be any wine or food stops along the way, but runners are encouraged to plan on attending many events throughout the course of the weekend such as a Wine and Music Festival featuring 20 wineries and breweries.
This half marathon takes place in Honolulu, Hawaii, so naturally the course features some beautiful beach scenery. One unique feature of this race is “The Chase,” which allows native Hawaiians with fast enough race times to start ahead of the world’s fastest runners. The first ten across the finish line win cash prizes.
This race is really more of a scavenger hunt. Teams of two must solve clues and collect pictures as they make their way to the finish line. The race will be taking place in 37 cities in 2015, and there are never roadblocks or street closures. Teams must make their way through the city and are allowed to use public transportation or their own two feet.
Help us add to this list by leaving a comment below containing the name of other cool races around the world.
ABOUT THE WRITER
Rachel Wallace is a graduate of the University of South Carolina, where she studied psychology, journalism, and warm weather. She recently moved back to her home state of New York to attend the Columbia Publishing Course and pursue a career in writing and editing. Some of her interests include poetry, hip-hip, yoga, and YouTube. She is adventurous when it comes to food and passionate about traveling. Her favorite places to be include London and the New York Renaissance Faire.
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