New York City's
6 best
running routes

There’s no question that New York City is the USA’s most exciting city but, for those who enjoy exploring while keeping fit, this concrete jungle might not seem like the best place for a run.

But the Big Apple has some great routes to raise your heart rate, from riverside runs and park paths to bridge-crossing, icon-spotting breath-takers. Here are our top 6 running routes in NYC.

Over the Brooklyn Bridge

Start along the Brooklyn waterfront: the renovated piers are now attractions in their own right but the stars of the show – the skyscrapers of Wall Street – draw the eye across the East River.

From Pier 1 (warning: confusing street layout ahead!) go along Old Fulton St and Prospect St and up the slightly hidden stairs in the underpass to reach the city’s most iconic bridge.

If the run hasn’t left you breathless, the view of Lower Manhattan through the Brooklyn Bridge’s support cables will. The promenade across the bridge, and the run, finishes at City Hill Park.

Start/Finish: Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 1 ferry stop/City Hall subway station. Distance: 2.5 miles. Why? For the best views of the Lower Manhattan skyline. When? Sunrise or sunset.

Central Park #1: Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir Loop

Manhattan makes up for a general lack of green spaces with one of the world’s best, Central Park. Within the park, the loop around the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir is a favorite with runners.

Head counterclockwise on the flat path that follows the reservoir, enjoying the shade of the trees and views of the fancy apartment blocks that border the park and the Midtown skyline.

Start/Finish: 86 St subway station (A, B, C lines). Distance: 2 miles (more laps equal more miles). Why? To join locals on a classic run. When? Any time.

Central Park #2: the full monty

If the Reservoir Loop has whetted your appetite for more Central Park runs then you’re not short of options. A full circuit, beginning at the southeast corner, roughly follows the park’s east side.

You'll pass well known sights like the Central Park Zoo, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the reservoir before you get to the much quieter northern section.

Head west and then south, past the reservoir again to the almost-rural Ramble; another body of water, the Lake; and Strawberry Fields (created in memory of John Lennon who was shot nearby).

Finish at the statue of Columbus just outside the southwest corner.

Start/Finish: 5 Ave subway station (N, R, W lines)/59 St–Columbus Circle subway station (A, B, C, D lines). Distance: as far as you like. Why? Fresh air and famous sights. When? Daylight hours.