Bucketlist: The 7 Most Unique Marathons Around the World

August 29, 2016 - 4 minutes read

1. Great Wall Marathon; Tianjin, China

Over 2,500 runners flock to Tianjin, China each year to attempt one of the most challenging marathons along one of the most epic monuments in the world.  With incredible views and an influential piece of history under your feet, the Great Wall Marathon is surely deserving of a top spot on your epic running to-do list.

2. Marathon du Medoc; Bordeau, France

Limited to a maximum of 8,500 participants, the Marathon du Medoc is as sought after as the wines they serve en route. With a huge festival of events leading up to the race and both wine and cheese pit-stops stationed along the course, this marathon is the epitome of upscale active fun.

3. Inca Trail Marathon to Macchu Piccu; Cusco, Peru

While technically an “unofficial” event, this incredible run conquers over 10,000 feet of elevation gain, remarkably high cliff passes and thousands of ancient inca steps, all leading you to the unmistakable city of Machu Picchu.

4. Antarctic Ice Marathon; Union Glacier, Antarctica

Bundle up because the Antarctic Ice Marathon is no snowy walk in the park. Boasting an average windchill of -20 degrees celsius at an altitude of roughly 700 metres, you’re going to need a lot more than a light parka to make your way to this finish line.

5. Big Five Marathon; Limpopo, South Africa

As if the run itself wasn’t enough to get your heart going, this race takes you on a wild course through the best “Big Five” game reserves of the African savannah. Tie those shoes up tight and test your stamina as you run through habitats that are home to elephants, zebras, rhinos, giraffes, buffalo and antelopes; there’s even a section that takes you through leopard and lion country!

Photo: mynextrun.com

Photo: mynextrun.com

6. 3-Laender Marathon; Germany, Austria and Switzerland

This bucketlister’s dream begins it’s transnational journey with it’s start-line in Lindau Harbour, Germany. With the majority of the route winding along the waters of Lake Constance, you continue your run by making your way south into Austria, where you pass through several small towns before crossing the Swiss border to reach the finish line in Bregenz, Switzerland. One race, three countries…talk about bang for your buck!

7. Everest Marathon, Nepal

Deemed the “world’s highest marathon”, this race starts from Everest base camp and takes you downhill to Namche Bazaar by way of rough mountain trails. In a rush to get this one checked off? Better take it easy because runners are recommended to spend three weeks in Nepal prior to the race in order to acclimatize to the altitude.