26 Scenic Half Marathons Across the Northeast

“I run because if I didn’t, I’d be sluggish and glum and spend too much time on the couch. I run to breathe the fresh air. I run to explore. I run to escape the ordinary. I run…to savor the trip along the way. Life becomes a little more vibrant, a little more intense. I like that.” — Dean Karnazes

1) Hampton Half Marathon • Hampton Beach, NH

Come out for a cold, wintertime run along the windswept Atlantic Ocean coastline of New Hampshire’s beachfront towns at this race, which takes runners from Ashworth-by-the-Sea just north of Hampton Beach, along a route that passes alongside the sandy beaches near the area’s summertime resort hotels.

Sunday, March 3, 2019 • Race info & signup »

2) Twin Lights Half Marathon • Gloucester, MA

The sounds of seagulls calling in the wind and the waves rushing in along the shoreline will be familiar sounds by the time you reach the finish line at this race, which runs along the Massachusetts North Shore coastline.

Saturday, April 27, 2019 • Race info & signup »

3) Novo Nordisk New Jersey Half Marathon • Long Branch, NJ

Starting in nearby Monmouth Park, this race takes runners through the seaside towns of Long Branch and nearby Monmouth Beach, and features a stretch along the famed New Jersey boardwalk, with plenty of views of the ocean.

Sunday, April 28, 2019 • Race info & signup »

4) Middlebury Maple Run Half Marathon • Middlebury, VT

The rolling green hills, quaint downtown streets and college town atmosphere of this small city in central Vermont — parts of the race run through the Middlebury College campus — are just a few of the charms of this event, nicknamed “The Sweetest Half.”

Sunday, May 5, 2019 • Race info & signup »

5) Providence Rhode Races Half Marathon • Providence, RI

You’ll spend much of the first few (and last few) miles of the course along the Seekonk and Providence Rivers at this race, which includes stretches through downtown Providence and two bridge crossings — one on the way out and on the way back.

Sunday, May 5, 2019 • Race info & signup »

6) Shipyard Maine Coast Half Marathon • Biddeford, ME

The course for this race is filled with the scenery that makes this small coastal Maine town’s population swell every summer, from the rocky shoreline of Fortunes Rocks Cove, Horseshoe Cove and Biddeford Pool to the gorgeous oceanfront homes and cottages along the roads that wind along the shoreline.

Saturday, May 11, 2019 • Race info & signup »

7) NYRR Popular Brooklyn Half Marathon • Brooklyn, NY

More than 25,000 runners take to the streets of Brooklyn for this race, which unfolds through many of Brooklyn’s most famous sights and attractions, including Prospect Park, the New York Aquarium and the Coney Island boardwalk.

Saturday, May 18, 2019 • Race info & signup »

8) Mystic Half Marathon • Mystic, CT

You’ll run through a piece of America’s maritime history at this race, which unfolds through a place with gorgeous views of the Connecticut coastline, and where you’ll get to see historic ships sailing in the Mystic Harbor as you run the course.

Sunday, May 19, 2019 • Race info & signup »

9) Steel Rail Half Marathon • Lanesborough, MA

You’ll run along the gorgeous, tree-covered hills and woodlands of Berkshire County in western Massachusetts at this race, which follows a point-to-point route along the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail, whose 10-foot-wide path is paved and flat throughout and features only three turns.

Sunday, May 19, 2019 • Race info & signup »

10) Amica Iron Horse Half Marathon • Simsbury, CT

You’ll run between tree-lined roadways and wide-open farm fields here — no doubt part of the reason why famed Runner’s World columnist Bart Yasso selected this race a few years back as one of his favorite races across the country.

Sunday, June 2, 2019 • Race info & signup »

11) Gorges Ithaca Half Marathon • Ithaca, NY

A land filled with forests, rail trails, lakeside stretches and plentiful waterfalls — that’s what awaits runners here in Upstate New York, on a course organizers describe as “one of the fastest and most scenic half marathons you’ll ever run. Period.”

Saturday, June 15, 2019 • Race info & signup »

12) New Paltz Challenge Half Marathon • New Paltz, NY

Fast and flat and run on a combination of paved surfaces and gravel and packed dirt trails, most of the race takes place along the former railroad corridor now known as the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail, just outside this small town in southern New York state.

Sunday, June 16, 2019 • Race info & signup »

13) Mad Half Marathon • Waitsfield, VT

Rolling country roads along a route that alternates between the quaint streets of this small central Vermont town and the countryside framed by the nearby Green Mountains await runners at this race, run through an area well-known as a wintertime ski destination.

Sunday, July 7, 2019 • Race info & signup »


14) Kingdom Run Half Marathon • Irasburg, VT

You’ll run just a short drive from the Canadian border at this easy-on-the-feet dirt road race, which follows an out-and-back route through and around this small town in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom region.

Saturday, Aug. 10, 2019 • Race info & signup »

15) Blueberry Cove Half Marathon • Tenants Harbor, ME

Run through a Maine town where boats are said to outnumber cars at this late summer race, which starts at Blueberry Cove Camp and follows winding back roads, with views of the ocean crashing against the rocky shoreline.

Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019 • Race info & signup »

16) Swanzey Covered Bridges Half Marathon • Swanzey, NH

This race features views of some of the most quaint, picturesque parts of New England, taking runners through several covered bridges, most of which date to the pre-Civil War era.

Sunday, Sept. 1, 2019 • Race info & signup »

17) Bar Harbor Bank & Trust Half Marathon • Bar Harbor, ME

You’ll get to run this race through the grounds of a U.S. national park — at Maine’s Acadia National Park, making this the only race of its kind anywhere in the U.S. — at a time when the autumn leaves are turning brilliant shades of orange, red and gold.

Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 • Race info & signup »

18) Jamestown Half Marathon • Jamestown, RI

With its rocky shorelines, historic lighthouses and windmills that still stand as a reminder of the small coastal towns and villages of New England’s past, Jamestown and Conanicut Island make for a beautifully picturesque course.

Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 • Race info & signup »

19) Jersey Shore Half Marathon • Fort Hancock, NJ

Set for its 47th annual running this year on the fast, flat grounds of New Jersey’s Gateway National Recreation Area, this race is one of the oldest anywhere in the Garden State, in a place known for its marshes, sandy beaches, and wildlife sanctuaries as well as its historic military installations.

Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019 • Race info & signup »

20) Hartford Half Marathon • Hartford, CT

The vibrant colors of fall are on display for runners, walkers and relay participants all through Connecticut’s capitol city at this race, which features a mostly fast and flat course and features a stretch along the riverfront, including a run through the city’s Great River Park.

Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019 • Race info & signup »

21) Amica Newport Half Marathon • Newport, RI

The beautifully scenic rocky coastline of southern Rhode Island forms the backdrop for this race, which takes runners on an out-and-back course along this town on Aquidneck Island, and features views of the water for nearly the entire race route.

Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019 • Race info & signup »

22) Boston Athletic Association Half Marathon • Boston, MA

Run by the same athletic organization that stages the fabled Boston Marathon each April, the B.A.A. Half is a much younger sibling of its 26.2-mile-long counterpart, starting from Franklin Park and heading through the city all the way to Roberto Clemente Field in the Back Bay Fens neighborhood near Fenway Park.

Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019 • Race info & signup »

23) NYCRUNS Brooklyn Half Marathon • Brooklyn, NY

Take a run through a piece of New York history at this race, which runs through Brooklyn’s iconic Prospect Park, a 585-acre oasis of green space that opened to the public back in 1867 as a retreat from nearby Manhattan’s urban bustle.

Saturday, Oct. 19, 2019 • Race info & signup »

24) Cape Cod Half Marathon • Falmouth, MA

Hailed by publications like Runner’s World as one of the country’s most scenic marathons, thanks to a course that unfolds along the shoreline of southern Cape Cod, this race features stretches along the beachfront and finishes in front of at Falmouth’s Town Hall Square.

Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019 • Race info & signup »

25) Franconia Notch Half Marathon • Franconia, NH

Set to run this fall among the stunning beauty of the White Mountains of western New Hampshire, this race keeps runners almost entirely on the paved bike paths that run alongside the Pemigewasset River.

Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019 • Race info & signup »

26) Princeton Half Marathon • Princeton, NJ

This late fall face will take you on a run through this iconic Ivy League campus which also served as the filming location for 2001’s Academy Award-winning A Beautiful Mind — and was also the home of its most famous resident, Albert Einstein.

Sunday, Nov. 3, 2019 • Race info & signup »

5 comments… add one
  • Paul Roche February 28, 2019, 9:02 pm

    The name of the race is Bay of Fundy International Marathon

    The link is: https://bayoffundymarathon.com

  • Paul Roche February 27, 2019, 5:14 pm

    You missed one of the most beautifu halfs. Scheduled for June 23, 2019 this half event starts in New Brunswick and finishes in Maine.
    A set of unique races for the discerning runner: run across the Canada-USA border without stopping; no crowds or traffic lights; no more than 350 runners in each event; beautiful scenery and the world’s biggest tides; bald eagles, seals, sometimes whales seen from the course; medals and awards handcrafted by local artists; a challenging fully certified, chip timed, Boston qualifying, not-for-profit event organized jointly by the friendly welcoming communities of Campobello Island, New Brunswick, Canada and Lubec, Maine, USA on the shores of the magnificent Bay of Fundy.

    • Terrell Johnson February 28, 2019, 9:29 am

      Hi there Paul — thanks for the suggestion! It sounds like an amazing race, and I’m really sorry I didn’t include it. Can you reply back with the name and the link to their page? I’ll add it 🙂


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