10 Popular Places to Go Running in Atlanta

10 Popular Places to Go Running in Atlanta

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From Piedmont Park to the Eastside Beltline Trail, and the Silver Comet Trail to Chastain Park, some of the best places to run in Georgia’s capital city.

1) Piedmont Park

In the heart of downtown is Atlanta’s own mini version of Central Park, Piedmont Park. Full of trees, fields, and greenspace, this park is the perfect place to step away from the bustle of city life. Runners can be found from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m., following the easily marked paved and gravel pathways that loop through the park.

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2) Eastside Beltline Trail

Three miles of this huge project are complete with another 30 miles planned for the future. Runners share the 14-foot wide paved expanse with bikers and walkers and beautiful weather can cause the path to become crowded on weekends. However, the convenience to downtown neighborhoods and restaurants can’t be beat!

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3) Cochran Shoals

Just beyond the perimeter of the city is the Cochran Shoals Trail located next to the Chattahoochee River. Runners flock to this level path for an easy 3 mile loop with picturesque views of the river. There are plenty of connecting trails to tack on additional miles at Sope Creek Park.

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4) Silver Comet Trail

Runners seeking a car-free place to complete a long run will enjoy the Silver Comet Trail. This paved pathway located just out of the city on the west side travels 61.5 miles and ends at the Georgia/Alabama state line. Built on abandoned railroad lines, this flat and easy-to-navigate trail is one the most popular in the Atlanta metro area.

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5) Big Creek Greenway

The Big Creek Greenway is a multi-use trail located in the outer suburbs of Alpharetta and Cumming. Eventually, the two paths will connect to form one long trail. At this time, the Alpharetta trail is approximately 8 miles and is mostly concrete from Mansell Road to Marconi Drive. The Cumming trail is a mixture of boardwalk and concrete and currently runs from McFarland Parkway to Kelly Mill Road.

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6) Suwanee Greenway

From the Suwanee Creek Park to George Pierce Park, the Suwanee Greenway offers runners a mixture of concrete, paved pathways, and boardwalks. The path runs alongside Suwanee Creek and features plenty of places to view wildlife and waterscapes. A covered bridge, side tributaries, and dirt side trails make this a beautiful place for a training run.

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7) Chastain Park

Tucked off of Roswell Road just inside the perimeter, Chastain Park is long popular with local runners. Three color-coded loops, two 3.1 mile loops and one 1.6 mile path, comprise the trail system and runners can mix and match the paths. Though this park doesn’t completely shut out the sounds of the city, there are plenty of nature-viewing spots and it is both well-marked and well-traveled.

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8) Riverside Park

Growing a bit year-by-year, the trails that connect to Riverside Park in Roswell are popular with local runners. The flat and mostly traffic-free paths that run alongside the Chattahoochee River offer runners waterfront views. Ample free parking and restrooms located along the way make this suburban trail runner-friendly.

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9) Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park

With more than 20 miles of trails and beautiful views from the summit, the paths at Kennesaw Mountain are popular with runners. Though there are easier trails located at lower elevations, the popular Battlefield Trail is the best loop to see the Atlanta city skyline. With elevation changes and dirt paths, runners should take note that this route is better suited for trail race training.

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10) Stone Mountain Park

Featuring over 15 miles of trails, Stone Mountain Park has long been a popular place for outdoor enthusiasts in Atlanta to get their fix. Runners can choose from multiple, well-marked trail systems to put together a run of nearly any distance. The 1 mile trail that leads to the top of the mountain is well worth the climb with views of the Atlanta skyline visible from the top.

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Carissa Liebowitz has run the New York and Boston Marathons as well as dozens of marathons and half marathons. You can follow her running adventures on StravaInstagram and her blog.

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