17 Most Scenic College Town Half Marathons You Can Run

If you’re like us, college was the best time of your life. No, it wasn’t the fraternities, sororities, libraries or social events – it was the fact that we could eat a burrito at 3:00 in the morning, feel amazing the next day, and never gain a single pound. Those were the glory days. Luckily, some of the most prestigious universities in America have half marathons that run right through them. Whether you’re an alum, a current student, or just happen to live in one of these cities – these are the 18 best college half marathons you should have on your calendar.

War Eagle Run Fest Auburn University in Auburn, AL

The War Eagle Run Fest has everything that a college running experience could ask for. The energy from students and crowds alike has been described as electric. The course finish line takes runners across the 50 yard line of this Division 1 Football program’s stadium and the Auburn University campus scenery is some of the best you can find in Alabama.

February 18, 2024 Race info & signup

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - North Carolina College Half Marathons.

Tar Heel 10-Miler UNC Chapel Hill in Chapel Hill, NC

This year marks the 16th year of the Tar Heel 10-Miler which takes runners on a tour of UNC’s campus as well as the surrounding gorgeous Chapel Hill residential neighborhoods. The course winds through the historic Rosemary district, downtown Chapel Hill, and concludes as Kenan Memorial Football Stadium. While not a full half marathon, use the energy you would have used running the additional three miles, visiting the college bars on Franklin Street or looking for Michael Jordan memorabilia.

April 20, 2024 Race info & signup

University of Oregon - Oregon college half marathon

Eugene Half Marathon University of Oregon in Eugene, OR

Runners get a chance to trek through Oregon’s “Emerald City” at this race, which runs through several of the city’s urban parks, the campus of the University of Oregon and across the Willamette River. The University of Oregon is home to the founding of Nike. Alongside Phil Knight, co-founder Bill Bowerman was the track & field coach at the University of Oregon and helped produce some of the United States best track and field athletes as well as and famously coached Steve Prefontaine. One of the most popular college half marathons on the west coast.

April 28, 2024 • Race info & signup

Virginia Tech - Virginia college half marathon

Hokie Half Marathon Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA

You’ll get to soak up the atmosphere of this beautiful college town near the Alleghenies and the Shenandoah Valley at this race, which unfolds just outside the Virginia Tech campus along paved biking and running paths. The “Hokie” is the bird Virginia Tech mascot which evolved from turkeys. So, now you know that!

October 2024 Race info & signup »

University of Virginia - A Virginia college half marathons

Charlottesville Fall Classic Half MarathonUniversity of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA

Run in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, at the home of the Thomas Jefferson-designed University of Virginia campus during the fall when the fall foliage should be around its peak, at this out-and-back race. The race features a number of stretches through some of Charlottesville’s most historic neighborhoods. A great college half marathon that will give you views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the college campus, and historic neighborhoods all in one.

October 2024 • Race info & signup »

Purdue University college half marathons in Indiana

Purdue Boilermaker Half Marathon Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN

Long stretches along the wide, scenic Wabash River are a signature of this race, which runs at the home of Purdue University along an out-and-back loop course with a combination of hills and flat stretches both through the university campus as well as several city parks. As many great half marathons do, the start and finish of the race lies on the campus at the Ross-Ade Stadium.

 October 2024 • Race info & signup »

College Half Marathons in Georgia!

AthHalfUniversity of Georgia in Athens, GA

There’s probably no more iconic college town in America than Athens, Georgia, the home of the University of Georgia. Here, you’ll take in the unique architecture, neighborhoods and the rolling green spaces of the ‘Classic City,’ and run past Sanford Stadium, the home of the Bulldogs. If the description doesn’t have you hyped up just yet, the Sanford Stadium holds around 100,000 people – a daunting, glorious course spectacle. One of the most well known college half marathons in the country.

November 3, 2024 • Race info & signup »

Strategic Plan | University of Arkansas

Fayetteville Half Marathon • University of Arkansas Fayetteville, AR

Set among the mountainous green terrain of northwest Arkansas, the home of the University of Arkansas Razorbacks football team plays host to a race that takes runners through the university campus and the city at large. While in Arkansas, consider a trip only a few miles north is Bentonville, home of the very first Walmart.

December 2024 • Race info & signup »

Marshall University - Wikiwand

Marshall University Half MarathonMarshall University in Huntington, WV

If you’ve ever seen the 2006 film “We Are Marshall,” then you have an excellent picture of what this race is like for the thundering herd of runners along its green, tree-lined campus — a fast, flat run that race organizers say is a “perfect” qualifier for Boston. Participants finish the half marathon at goal line of Marshall’s Joan C. Edwards Football Stadium – they even get the option to carry a football with them for the last 100 yards.

November 2024 Race info & signup »

Universities of the World: Princeton University | Engoo Daily News

Princeton Half MarathonPrinceton University in Princeton, NJ

World-renowned Princeton University (pictured in the photo above) served as the filming location for 2001’s Academy Award-winning “A Beautiful Mind” and was also the home of Albert Einstein in his later years. The race is great for science enthusiasts as runners will find themselves along Oppenheimer Atomic Hill, the home of the inventor of the atomic bomb, and Neumann’s Curve, home and hangout of Richard Feymann, John von Neumann, Kurt Godel, and Max Veblen.

November 2024 • Race info & signup »

UC Berkeley Campus - Visit Berkeley

Berkeley Half Marathon • UC Berkeley in Berkeley, CA

You’ll run through one of the most famous college campuses in America at this race, where student protests played a pivotal role in the civil rights and Vietnam War debates of the 1960s and 70s, and run through some of the city’s and the university’s most iconic and scenic spots.

November 17, 2024 • Race info & signup »

Life at Texas A&M University | Texas A&M University Engineering

BCS Half MarathonTexas A&M University College Station, TX

Set for its 11th annual running this year, this race takes runners on a winding tour of the home of the “Aggies,” through the campus of Texas A&M University and a series of local parks and shaded neighborhood streets in College Station.

December 2024 • Race info & signup »

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Berry Half Marathon • Berry College in Rome, GA

What race organizers say is the largest college campus in the world (at 28,000 acres which is about 44 square miles) is the setting for this race, which takes runners on a tour of this college’s hilly, wooded campus set in the foothills of the Appalachian mountains. 

March 2, 2024 • Race info & signup »

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Bearathon Half Marathon • Baylor University in Waco, TX

The organizers say it’s “the hardest half-marathon in the state of Texas,” and many runners say it’s true. Following a circuitous out-and-back loop, this race that takes runners from the stately, tree-lined campus of Baylor University on a tour of the city along the Brazos River.

March 23, 2024 • Race info & signup »

United States Military Academy at West Point - Profile, Rankings and Data |  US News Best Colleges

West Point Fallen Comrades Half Marathon • West Point University in West Point, NY

Run through America’s first military academy at this race — as well as an important part of American history, the place that Thomas Jefferson helped create with one of his first official acts as president in 1801 and was hugely influential in the development of higher education in the U.S. One of the only college half marathons on a military campus.

March 2024 • Race info & signup »

Apply to University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Illinois Half Marathon • University of Illinois in Champaign, IL

Starting from Assembly Hall on the University of Illinois campus, this race follows a winding loop through the city, all the way in toward the finish line on the 50-yard line at the University’s Memorial Stadium, the home of the “Fighting Illini.”

Saturday, April 25, 2024 • Race info & signup »

Apply | Undergraduate Admissions | University of Notre Dame

Notre Dame Holy Half Marathon • Notre Dame in South Bend, IN

Designed as a fundraiser for nonprofits like the South Bend Center for the Homeless and the Michiana Down Syndrome, which serves people and families living with Down Syndrome, the Holy Half Marathon unfolds through the campus made famous on-screen in 1993’s “Rudy.” There’s a lot of history in this college half marathons.

April 13, 2024 • Race info & signup »

Middlebury College - Profile, Rankings and Data | US News Best Colleges​​

Middlebury Maple Run Half Marathon • Middlebury College in Middlebury, VT

Rolling green hills, quaint New England streets and a college town atmosphere are just a few of the charms of this annual springtime race, nicknamed “The Sweetest Half.” In addition to being through a majestic New England university campus, you can’t beat the foliage of October in Vermont.

November 2024 • Race info & signup »

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