Thursday, 1 January 2015

Go running on your layover

Tempelhof Airport, Runway 09 Left
If you are in Berlin, you can have a real airport run by heading over to the old, closed Tempelhof Airport (now Tempelhofer Park) and take to the runway

Go for a run? Go sightseeing? Why not do both? UPDATED

Have a layover? Stuck somewhere new? Have your sneakers?

Why not take a run? A benefit of going for a run on a layover is that you'll come home with memories that will transport you back to your layover destination. Even different trees, or bird songs, or cityscapes can be refreshing - and make for pleasant reflections and memories.

Combining running and sightseeing may seem like a no-brainer, but there is actually lots to consider before you lace on your own.

Foreign lands can be, well, foreign, and venturing out on foot could bring you face-to-face with all manner of risks, from simply getting lost and runner-unfriendly-roads to suddenly dodgy parts of town and even real danger. So it pays to plan ahead.

CYVR - Vancouver Intl
The "runner" sculpture at
Vancouver International Airport
Consider these possible approaches to planning your run:
  1. Check for an airport trail
  2. Take an organized running tour
  3. Follow an airport layover running plan developed by another traveller
  4. Join up with a local running group
  5. Make your own plan
To get you started, we have collected a range of options and suggestions below, from all 5 approaches.

1. Check for an airport trail

Victoria International Airport's new Flight Path trail
More and more airports are creating trails on the airport property.

Many other airports have mapped out routes off-airport for walking, jogging and running in the surrounding community, complete with information on distances. Typically, a printed map is available, but not always.

Either way, the airport will have information on their website, so be sure to scour the official site for your destination airport. If you find a map, be sure to print off a copy, just in case. If the airport has an app, download it to your smartphone. You can also check Google Maps for signs of jogging trails.

2. Take an organized running tour

Buckingham Fountain Here are some well planned sightseeing runs (aka "sightjogging") in cities around the world:

Athens, Greece
Ancient Athens Running Tour 10k
Running in Athens

Austin, Texas, United States
Austin Running Tours

Barcelona, Spain
Running in Barcelona

Bergen, Norway
Running in Bergen

Berlin, Germany
Chuck Taylor's sneakers 90-Minute Jogging Tour of Berlin Highlights
1-Hour Jogging Tour of the Berlin Wall
Sightjogging Tour - Berlin Highlights 60 Minutes
1 Hour Sightjogging Tour - Politics and History Berlin

Bratislava, Slovakia
Running in Bratislava

Bilbao, Spain
Bilbao: 1-Hour Guided Sightrunning Tour
Running in Bilbao
Premium Running Tour at Bilbao

Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Boston Running Tours
Boston's Freedom Trail 5k Run

Brugge, Belgium
Running in Brugge

Brussels, Belgium
Handpainted Shoes - Sweet Candy SightJogging : Old Brussels, the heart of Belgium
Running in Brussels
How to go running through Brussels on a BRU layover

Budapest, Hungary
Running in Budapest

Buenos Aires, Argentina
Urban Running Tours: Buenos Aires

Cape Town, South Africa
Running in Cape Town
Historical City Running Tour of Cape Town - just added!

Chicago, Illinois, United States
City Running Tours: Chicago - temporarily unavailable
Chicago Running Tours

Copenhagen, Denmark
Plaid to the Bone
Running in Copenhagen

Cusco, Peru
7K Running Tour from Sacsayhuaman to Cusco's Historical Center - just added!

Denver, Colorado, United States
country-fied cons
Denver Running Tours

Edinburgh, Scotland
Running in Edinburgh

Florence, Italy
Florence Running Tour
The Florence Run

Geelong, Australia
Geelong Sights Running Tour - just added!

Guanajuato, Mexico
Running in Guanajuato

Healdsburg, California, United States
3-Day Trail and Road Running Tour of Sonoma Wine Country

Helsinki, Finland
Run Helsinki

Honolulu, Hawaii, United States
Diamond Head Running Tour - just added!
Diamond Head Sunrise Run and Yoga Tour - just added!
Oahu Sunset Run and Yoga Tour - just added!
Honolulu Beer Run Tour - just added!
Historical Downtown Honolulu Running Tour - just added!

Juneau, Alaska, United States
Juneau Trail Running Excursion
Juneau Running Tours

Kandy, Sri Lanka
Private Full Day Tour: The Kandy Temple Run Tour - just added!

Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Running in Las Vegas
Las Vegas Strip Run - just added!
Las Vegas Trail Run - just added!

Lisbon, Portugal
Running in Lisbon
Modern Lisbon - City Run in Portugal - just added!
Green City Trail - City Run in Portugal - just added!

London, England
13/8.2012 - orange chucks London Jogging Tour: Thames Riverside
London Jogging Tour: Iconic Landmarks
London Jogging Tour: Royal Parks

Maastricht, Netherlands
Maastricht Highlights 1.5-Hour Running Tour

Madrid, Spain
new balance shoes Private Tour: Madrid Running Tour
Small-Group Madrid Running Tour
Running in Madrid

Melbourne, Australia
Guided Running Tours of Melbourne
Dandenongs Trail Running Tour - just added!

Mexico City, Mexico
Running Tours Mexico City

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States
Milwaukee Running Tours

Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States
All things old are new again: Shelby and her new shoes. Note: these are woman's size 6 (she's 10). Minneapolis Running
Minneapolis Running Tours

Moscow, Russia
Moscow Running Tours
Maria Moscow Running Tours - just added!

New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
New Orleans Jogging Tours

New York City, United States
New York City Running Tours
The Village Running Tour - just added!
Brooklyn Bridge Running Tour - just added!
American Roots Running Tour - just added!
Central Park Running Tour - just added!
Crossroads of the World Running Tour - just added!

Nice, France
Running Tour in Nice
French Riviera Sightrunning - just added!
2-Hour Cimiez Hill Sightseeing Running Tour in Nice - just added!

Oslo, Norway
Oslo Running Tours

Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Running in Palma de Mallorca

Paris, France
Untitled Paris Running Tours
Secrets of Paris: Running in Paris
City Tour: Running the streets of Paris
Meetup: Free running tours in Paris

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Philadelphia Running Tours

Portland, Oregon, United States
Best shoes of the day Running in Portland

Porto, Portugal
Porto Running Tours

Prague, Czech Republic
Guided Sightseeing Running Tour in Prague - just added!
Prague Running Tour: City Highlights and Hidden Places - just added!
Private Custom Running Tour Around Prague - just added!
Prague: Historic Center 1.5-Hour Private Running Tour
Prague: 3 Viewpoints 1.5-Hour Private Running Tour
Prague Sightrunning Tour: Into the Green
Prague 1.5-Hour Compact City Center Running Tour
Prague 1-Hour Sight Running Tour
Running in Prague 

Providence, Rhode Island, United States
Day 074/365 - New Chucks Providence Running Tours - currently unavailable

Reims, France
Reims Running Tours

Rome, Italy
Rome Running Tour
Running in Rome

San Antonio, Texas, United States
River City Run: Running Tour of Downtown San Antonio
Downtown San Antonio 5k Running Tour - just added!

San Diego, California, United States
San Diego Running Tours

San Francisco, California, United States
Day 78 San Francisco Running Tours

San Jose, Costa Rica
Running and Hiking Tour to Manuel Antonio - just added!

San Sebastian, Spain
San Sebastian 1.5-Hour Running Tour
San Sebastian Run For Fun Tour 

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Running in Sarajevo

Seattle, Washington, United States
Seattle Running Tours

Sedona, Arizona, United States
Mogollon Rim Run - just added!

Seville, Spain
Running in Seville

Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt
2 Hours Personalized Run/Jogging Tour in Sharm el Sheikh

Singapore, Singapore
Running in Singapore

Split, Croatia
Split Small Group Running Tour - just added!

St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands
Key on the Shoe St Thomas Waterfront Running Tour 5k
A 5k Historic Running Tour of St Thomas, USVI  - just added!

Stockholm, Sweden
The Stockholm Running Tour
Stockholm Running Tours
Run With Me Stockholm

Sydney, Australia
Private Sydney Running Tour
Running in Sydney
Story of Sydney Running Tour

Valencia, Spain
Why Valencia is the City of Running
Valencia: City of Art and Sciences Sight Running Tour
Running in the Gardens of the Turia - just added!

Venice, Italy
Venice Running Tour
Running in Venice

Verona, Italy
Verona Running Tour

Vilnius, Lithuania
Running Tours Vilinius - just added!

Washington, DC, United States
My Sneakers - Day 14 Washington Running Tours

Zagreb, Croatia
Zagreb Grand Running Tour - 12km - just added!
Running Tour Zagreb - Upper and Lower Town - just added!

Zurich, Switzerland
1.5 Hour Jogging Cathedral Tour through Zurich

3. Follow an airport layover running plan developed by another traveller

Layover at LAX? Then run Venice Beach!
Wayan on how to run Venice Beach on your LAX layover
If it just works out better for you to head off on a run on your own, save yourself time and energy by checking out who has done it before you, and has shared share their experiences online.

Remember that Google is your friend, but here are few well planned airport layover runs in cities around the world:

4. Join up with a local running group

If you are a runner, then you likely already know your local running group. If you are a runner that travels, then you know these running groups exist pretty well wherever..... people want to run!

Plan ahead - or even see if you can connect after you arrive - to connect with local runners - like the Trail Runners. See if there is a local run happening somewhere that is easy for you to reach. Have a chat with someone in the group about what you want to do (just have a run, see a bit of where you are, or be able to say you "saw" such-and-such major sight. Lift the lid off your bucket list - and you never know who will help you facilitate your plan.

To find the right friendly folk, do a Google search, drop by a running store (virtually or otherwise), or join an online running club with a local presence. If you find a runners forum in your destination, join, introduce yourself, and ask the locals for advice.

5. Make your own plan

Public art to inspire tarmac
runners at Berlin's
Templehofer Park
Of course, if you are resourceful, you can always plan your own route. There are ample resources available to help you create a safe, fun and enjoyable plan. Here are a few to get you started:

In summary...

Running shoes Whichever approach you choose - and you may use a combination based on where your travels take you - enjoy where you are, and enjoy taking what fulfills you (running!) on the road.

All photos in this post are creativecommons on Flickr; click each photo for source information

Related resources:

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