Fast tourism: top running tours around the world

Want to exercise mind and body on your travels? Join a running tour and learn all about the sites as you pass them by.

Saturday, July 13, 2019,
By Sam Lewis
Trail running in the Scottish Highlands.
Trail running in the Scottish Highlands.
Photograph by Getty

Running tours are no longer the preserve of marathoners; more casual contenders are joining the race, too. “Many clients simply want to exercise and experience a new destination with a fun and friendly local,” says Lena Andersson, CEO and founder of Go! Running Tours. “Our tours range from 5km to over 25k, so if you’re a beginner, there’s the option of choosing one of the shorter tours.” Runners are likely to learn something, too, as many of the guides are experts in a particular field. One of the company’s New York tours is led by a Broadway actress/producer, and an architect serves as a guide for its running tours in Florence. There’s the chance to glimpse herds of a giraffes up close — a common site for joggers on the Ngong Hills tour in Kenya. 

For the views: Highlands, Scotland

Join a guided run along Perthshire’s many trails, amid woods and waterfalls, finishing with a pub lunch in the village of Dunkeld. From £45 a day, including map and audio guide.

For the burn: Dolomites, Italy

Take it up a notch at Hotel Sassongher with their Sky Running experience: jogs along steep, high-altitude trails amid the Italian Alps. From €280 (£241) per day with a guide for up to four people.

For the history: Siem Reap, Cambodia

Boutique retreat Anatara Angkor offers a dawn run through the jungle temple complex of Angkor Wat. From $100 (£76) per person. A fitness coach and temple guide are offered, too. Suites from £149 a night.

Running in New York.
Photograph by Getty

Three city sprints to try


Take in the Danish capital’s sights on the go. Looking for fun more than fitness? Try The Pub Run, with tastings at five pubs, or the atmospheric Night Run. From £43.


Lead guide Charles Greenberg has a PhD in urban geography so you’re sure to exercise mind and body on any of three guided runs (4.3 to 8.5 miles). From £22.90.


Uncover the city’s history, architecture, art and thriving food scene on the go. First four miles $35 (£27), with each additional mile costing $5 (£3.80).

Published in the July/August 2019 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK)

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