Though many may see a trip to the South West as a time to relax and enjoy the beautiful scenery, some are coming to take part in some of the country’s most challenging running races! The National Parks of Exmoor and Dartmoor provide excellent terrain for pushing yourself harder than before, and combined with breathtaking views, it’ll make a race to remember!
If you and a few others have joined up for a race and are looking for large party hotels in Devon, we can help you out! The Langstone Cliff Hotel in Dawlish is located near to many attractions and makes for the ideal base for doing physical activities in the area from surfing to running! Read on to see our top running events in the first half of the coming year!
The Deep River Trail Race follows trails through the Teign River Valley, beginning and ending at Castle Drogo on the outskirts of Dartmoor. The race is organised by PureTrail, which focuses on trail running and have organised events such as the Hameldown Hammer and Great Escape Trail Races. The event is open to novice and experienced runners. Being a little different to the typical road race, some extra gear is required which includes a whistle, survival blanket, waterproof jacket and a mobile phone with an emergency number stored. A half marathon distance is an option too. For more information, visit the Puretrail website.
The Granite Way is a multiple lap race of the Granite Way cycle route, which takes you through Dartmoor, starting and finishing at the old Okehampton railway station. Entry to take part in the race this year has closed, but others are welcome to cheer people on as they start and finish the event. One lap is 10 miles, and two laps are 20 miles. There are fantastic views across Dartmoor to enjoy, and the route follows tarmacked paths, making it an excellent option if you are planning to cycle in South Devon when you visit. For more information, visit the City Community Trust website.
Exmoor National Park in the north west of Devon has a combination of thickly wooded valleys, high cliffs, open moorland and beautiful rivers, making it a fantastic location for an endurance marathon. No other course in Britain offers such a variety in a relatively small space. There are several options for the race, from a 10K to half-marathon, full marathon and ultra, which is a distance of 32.4 miles. For more information, visit the Endurance Life website.
The Exeter Marathon is taking place again this May, following footpaths and cycle tracks for 26.2 miles around Exeter and local towns. Welcoming both first-timers and seasoned runners, the course follows along the River Exe and Ship Canal. It is open to over 18s only, though the whole family can come and cheer along the runners. For more information, visit the City Community Trust website.
The Burrator 10K follows a flat route on mostly tarmac, with the starting line close to the Burrator Discovery Centre near Yelverton. The course does one complete loop of the Burrator reservoir and then a two-thirds of a second loop before finishing at exactly 10K. As well as being a great run for experienced runners and athletes, the Burrator 10K welcomes fun runners and beginners. The main race is open to people aged 15 and over, but there are 2K and 1K races available for children too. For more information, visit the Sportiva Events website.
The North Devon AONB Marathon and Half Marathon has established itself as one of the most challenging running races in the UK. Taking you through the North Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and along the coastline, you have stunning scenery to admire every step of the way. This is an extremely popular event, with the marathon and half marathon typically selling out months in advance; however, spectators are welcome to come and cheer on the runners! For more information, visit the North Devon Hospice website.
Parkruns take place all over the country every Saturday and are entirely free to take part. Only 5K in distance, parkruns are open to experienced runners and those trying running for the first time and are happy to welcome visitors to the area. The Teignmouth parkrun takes place at Teignmouth Promenade, and the Exmouth run takes place at the Esplanade. Races start at 9am, and all you need to bring is a printed copy of the barcode so you can find out your time!
If you are interested in other activities you can do in South Devon, check out some of our previous blog posts about cycling routes and the best places for family walks.
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