13.1 Bucket List Half Marathons for 2017

The starting line at the Surf City USA Half Marathon. (Photo courtesy RaceForce)

1) Surf City USA Half Marathon • Huntington Beach, CA

Run mostly along the beaches of Southern California’s Pacific Coast Highway at this late winter race, considered one of the country’s best thanks to its gorgeous oceanfront views and a beautiful stretch through an ecological reserve in its middle miles.

Feb 5, 2017 • Race info & signup »

2) Sedona Half Marathon • Sedona, AZ

Run through the heart of central Arizona’s stunning red rock spires and mountain valleys at this race, a challenging, hilly and high-elevation run on paved and dirt terrain, filled with dramatic landscapes and awe-inspiring natural beauty.

Feb 4, 2017 • Race info & signup »

3) Austin Half Marathon • Austin, TX

Recently named by US News as one of the nation’s best places to live, Texas’s capital city plays host to this annual race where runners make their way through tree-lined city parks, cross over the Colorado River, and run past its famed State Capitol building.

Feb 19, 2017 • Race info & signup »

4) Asheville Half Marathon at Biltmore • Asheville, NC

You’ll run around the grounds of the largest privately-owned home in the U.S. at this early spring race, whose more than 250 rooms and 75 acres of French and English landscape gardens draw tourists from around the world.

Mar 11, 2017 • Race info & signup »

5) Canyonlands Half Marathon • Moab, UT

A stunningly scenic run in the shadow of the majestic red rock formations of nearby Arches National Park, this race is now in its fifth decade of bringing some 3,000 runners through the breathtaking red rock canyons carved millennia ago by the Colorado River.

Mar 18, 2017 • Race info & signup »

6) Big Island International Half Marathon • Hilo, HI

Lush, verdant hills and the brilliant blue water along the coastline of Hilo Bay form the paradise-like backdrop for this race, which features some of the most beautiful scenery runners are likely to encounter at any running event anywhere in the world.

Mar 19, 2017 • Race info & signup »

7) Rock ‘n’ Roll DC Half Marathon • Washington, DC

You’ll run the largely flat, fast streets of our nation’s capitol at this race, which unfolds past the U.S. Capitol building, the Washington Monument, the White House and the U.S. Botanical Gardens, to name a few highlights.

Mar 11, 2017 • Race info & signup »

8) Savannah Women’s Half • Savannah, GA

Begin this race in the heart of Savannah’s historic district, captured so eloquently in John Berendt’s “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil,” where you’ll run along streets with trees draped in moss and past several of Savannah’s historic city squares, which date back to its founding in the 1730s.

April 8, 2017 • Race info & signup »

9) Blue Ridge Half Marathon • Roanoke, VA

Considered one of the toughest — perhaps the toughest — road marathon in America, this half starts and finishes in downtown Roanoke and then climbs the towering hills of nearby Mill Mountain Park, for a total elevation gain of roughly 1,900 feet.

April 22, 2017 • Race info & signup »

10) La Jolla Half Marathon • La Jolla, CA

Challenging and yet also a gorgeous run through Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve just outside San Diego, this race has several major hills and plentiful dramatic scenery, especially of the steep rocky bluffs that tower over the Pacific Ocean below the race route.

April 23, 2017 • Race info & signup »

11) SHAPE Women’s Half Marathon • New York, NY

Organized by the New York Road Runners and run along a course that unfolds entirely within Central Park, this race draws more than 7,000 runners to the park each spring and starts just off Central Park West, and runners like NBC’s Natalie Morales, Hoda Kotb and Mika Brzezinski.

April 30, 2017 • Race info & signup »

12) Revel Mt. Charleston Half Marathon • Las Vegas, NV

Fast, stunningly scenic and all-downhill, this race starts in Kyle Canyon just outside “Glitter Gulch” and finishes at Centennial Hills Park in Las Vegas, dropping some 2,200 feet in elevation by the time runners cross the finish line.

April 29, 2017 • Race info & signup »

13) Tinker Bell Half Marathon • Anaheim, CA

Designed especially for “fairies and princesses,” this Disney race (which also hosts several other distances throughout the weekend) unfolds through the heart of California’s Disneyland theme park, and often features thousands running in costume.

May 14, 2017 • Race info & signup »

13.1) Santa Barbara Wine Country Half • Santa Ynez, CA

Organized by Destination Races, which puts on events just like this one in a number of wineries across California, this race starts in this small wine country town and rolls past several farms and vineyards on the way to a wine and music festival at the finish line in Solvang Park.

May 13, 2017 • Race info & signup »

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