Escapes

Q:

What Should I Know About Running Tours?

A runner enters Machu Picchu during the Andes Adventures Inca Trail Marathon.     Photo: Andes Adventures

A runner celebrates at Machu Picchu.

A:If you don’t just want to run on vacation, but you want to make running the vacation, book a running tour. There are two primary categories of tours: those tied to an event, such as a marathon, and those tied to a destination.

Marathon Tours & Travel builds packages to 39 race events worldwide, from the Ackland to the Tokyo Marathons. Although the itinerary centers on the race, it also includes other, non-running-related activities. Running the Marathon du Medoc in Bourdeaux, France? Enjoy wine tastings and castle tours while you’re at it.

Sports Tours International also focuses on cultural attractions in its agendas, but the company provides ample time for inspecting the racecourse and celebrating the finish.

Amazing Running Tours' itineraries include active and non-active outings. For one, the Bangkok Marathon Tour includes bicycle jungle tours and a day trip to famed Angkor Wat temple.

Booking a tour such as these will keep non-running members of your family engaged. Because the tour company arranges for accommodations, several meals, and, often, transportation to the race, you’ll also be able to keep your eye on the tape rather than on coordinating logistics.

If you want to make the journey the destination, here are a couple trip ideas: In the U.S. circumnavigate Lake Tahoe or stretch your legs on alpine trails at Mount Rainier with Adventure Running Co., which offers supported (read: they carry your gear) lodge-to-lodge trail runs in scenic U.S. locations. Running is also the agenda with Arctic Running, which delivers local guides and routes through Iceland’s National Parks and Highlands. Trips range from daylong to eight-day, 140K excursions.

Finally, Andes Adventures provides bucket-list trips, such as one through the Peruvian Andes beginning in Cusco and traversing the ancient Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. Daily runs on that trip range from 4.5 to 8 miles—at more than 11,000 feet in elevation along mountain trails. All tours will outline the distances and terrain in the itinerary; read closely to decide if the destination and fitness expectations fit your desires. 

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