We all know that running is one of the best workouts. Not only does it provide you with a full body workout, but it also offers a chance to escape your daily life. Running in a natural setting allows you to connect with nature and enjoy life away from busy work schedules and daily monotone tasks.
Nothing makes it easier to run that being surrounded by gorgeous views. It’s much more motivating to complete a run out in beautiful nature as opposed to a monotonous treadmill. Get out of the gym, enjoy nature, and begin to take advantage of all the beautiful paths available! Grab your GPS watch and get moving!
Listed below are a few amazing paths around the US. Each offers a beautiful setting that is sure to keep you coming back for more.
Chicago Lakefront Path
Distance: 18.5 miles (37 miles round-trip)
Address & Parking: Parking is available in various parking garages and on city streets. The best place to start is near Millennium Park and continue going north towards Lincoln Park (201 E. Randolph St. Chicago, IL 60602). The trail stretches from 5800 N. Ardmore to 7100 South Shore.
One of the most beautiful urban paths is Chicago’s Lakefront Trail, an uninterrupted 18.5 mile paved path that winds along scenic Lake Michigan. This gorgeous path stretches from Ardmore Street on the North End to 71st Street on the South End. A portion of the scenic Chicago Half Marathon runs along this beautiful course!
During the course of your run, you will experience the best Chicago has to offer including amazing views of one of the top skylines in the world. There are so many unique places to explore along the way if you feel like taking a break. You will have access to Chicago’s wonderful museums, Buckingham Fountain, Navy Pier, and the Lincoln Park Zoo.
An easy choice for running in Chicago, the Lakefront Path has enough miles to train for your longest run. Restrooms, water fountains, and snacks can be found along the route. The Chicago Lakefront Path is not only the best attraction in the city, but also the best place for early morning weekend jogs.
The path is well-maintained, very flat, and clean. It tends to get very busy in the summer months, so get out there early to avoid the crowds. The Chicago Lakefront Path is easily one of the top urban paths in the country. Nothing beats the views and amenities offered on this grand trail. If you are looking to combine a run with a sightseeing adventure, Chicago is the place to be!
Tip: Visit during the fall months for fewer crowds!
Distance: 25 miles (50 miles round-trip).
Address & Parking: Parking in Julia Davis Park (700 S Capitol Blvd, Boise, ID 83702) is free and a great place to start your jog. There are plenty of amenities at this park including picnic tables to enjoy a lunch after your run.
What a treat to take a leisurely weekend morning jog along Boise’s amazing 25 multi-purpose paved recreational path. The tree-lined beauty provides fantastic views of the river throughout most of it’s course. The greenbelt is one of the most relaxing places to run in Boise. Early morning hours are prime time for wildlife spotting, including opportunities for numerous deer sightings.
Along the way, there are many sights to take in including the Boise skyline, various parks, and Boise State University. If you feel like taking a break, you can stop by for an hour or 2 visit to the Boise Zoo, check out the historic Anne Frank Memorial, or rent a paddle boat at beautiful Julia Davis Park.
If you are the type of person motivated by serene, natural surroundings then Boise’s Greenbelt Path will be a true running oasis. The path is flat, well-maintained and time will fly by as you are enjoying the peaceful views of the river. The path is almost never overly crowded, even on the weekends. A little bit of light traffic by Julia Davis park, although it tends to thin out after the park.
A beautiful path in an amazing little city. Don’t pass out on this free natural attraction – the best Boise has to offer. It makes running on your vacation that much easier!
The fall season is a particularly awesome time to visit as you are surrounded by beautiful fall colors, not to mention are treated to cooler temperatures and fewer crowds.
Tip: Book your stay at a hotel with direct access to the Greenbelt. Shilo Inn Boise Riverside is located directly on the path. What a great way to start out your day!
Distance: 4.5 miles (9 miles round-trip)
Address & Parking: Parking can be found along the side streets or in public lots. Parking meters are in effect weekdays until 6pm. The start of the path is near 312 Bayshore Blvd. Tampa, FL 33606. You will see a parking lot with the Gasparilla boat in front of it.
Tampa’s shining gem is downtown’s beautiful Bayshore Blvd., the longest continuous sidewalk in the world. A jog down this scenic path is a must while visiting Tampa. As you make your way down the path, you will enjoy beautiful views of the Hillsborough River and possibly even spot a dolphin or manatee if you arrive early enough. Coming down from the Southern half of the journey, you will be treated to one of a kind views of Tampa’s small, yet attractive skyline.
The path is very well-maintained and clean without a speck of any litter or garbage. There are resting benches and water fountains along the way for your convenience. For an urban path, it is very desolate, even on weekday mornings. Tampa’s mild climate makes running along Bayshore Blvd. a breeze even in the winter months! There is no excuse not to get out for your run now!
A winter visit to Tampa is not complete without an invigorating jog down Bayshore Blvd. While everyone elsewhere in the country is inside running on the boring treadmill, you will be enjoying the sunny skies and cool breezes as you stroll past palm trees, waterfront mansions, and serene views of the river.
Tip: Visit on a weekend for free parking (downtown Tampa meters are not in effect at this time).