Marathons don’t have to be all about the challenge, some you can do just for fun. The marathons in the run ’n’ dine category are more about the journey getting there than the competition of being first. Not just for running enthusiasts, they encompass the best of scenic adventures followed by some elegant and spectacular festivities and events. Giving incentive to crossing the finish line, what waits just past is a delight for all your senses.
Le Marathon des Chateaux du Médoc is about as unique as it gets in the running world. Routed to take running enthusiasts through over 59 vineyards across the countryside, elite marathoners make their way through the villages of the Medoc region as they race their way to the finish line. What adds a fun twist to this race is that you get to decide at each checkpoint “red or white?”. The best part, however, is that racers are encouraged to show their flair by dressing in whatever attire sets them apart. For 2017, the theme is “Music in 33 RMP Record”. Not just a run, the race is an entire getaway extravaganza that extends to a five-day event. With pre-race parties to wine tasting tours, it isn’t just about challenging your body; it is about having fun getting to the finish line.
Labeled one of the ‘Biggest Little Marathons in the West”, this Napa Valley run is one not to miss. Located in the heart of wine country, the air is always tepid and the sites always astounding. One of the most beautiful and scenic courses in the world, racers make their way through the wine-growing countryside. Beginning in Calistoga, which is known for the curative spring and Geysers, runners race through the panoramic views of the Silverado Trail. A completely rural course, runners can lose their train of thought while being immersed in the beauty of the journey. No high-stress pressure to this one, it is all about finishing the race and enjoying the fruits of your labor and the fruits of the countryside around.
24k & 12k
Located in the heart of the Southern Oregon’s Applegate Wine Country is a private race that is assembled by the winery owners of the Wooldridge Creek Winery. A great run for newbies and wine connoisseurs alike, one of the best parts of the race is the post-event wine tasting and unwind. Why is it called the Enchanted Forest run? Racers make their way through the enchanted countryside through a challenging rustic terrain trail that ends at the winery. Don’t be fooled into thinking it is a breeze; this winery run is a one of a kind experience that has as many flavors as the wine produced around it, running from top peaks to valleys this is a great run for a novice or seasoned athlete alike.
13.1 miles & 26.2 miles
Another fun and unique run, the Wineglass Marathon has runners perusing the New York Finger Lakes of Corning, NY. Not just about the beautiful wineries, this course runs along the Chemung River and the famous “Corning Museum of Glass”. Limited to only 5800 runners, it is an intimate affair that has an exclusive, yet, down to earth feel. Running along the river, there is a painted paved course for runners to follow as they make their way to the finish line. Once done, the post party brings everyone together to celebrate and toast a race well run. From newbie to seasoned athlete, it isn’t about the competition, it is all about the coming together.
Voted one of the most popular designation runs, the Kelowna Wine Country Half Marathon is held right outside the US border in the Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada. A trail run that is surrounded my mountainous countryside and beautiful sprawling vineyards, runners come for the challenge and stay for the fun. Athletes from novice to seasoned veterans race along the Okanagan Lake, getting views of the vast landscape, along with a birds-eye view of downtown Kelowna. After runners finish the course, everyone gathers to take part in a Wine and Music Festival in one of the most magical settings any vacationer can imagine. Whether you are a runner or not, this course is something to behold. It isn’t so much about the competition but about enjoying the view and spectacular nature of the course to meet the finish line.