Ready, set, go! The best 5K coastal runs in the UK

Love running? Love the seaside? The guys over at the Color Run, which hits Brighton on 23rd September, have compiled some of Britain’s most loved beach run routes – perfect for a 5-kilometer run (or longer), which can be enjoyed by runners of all ages and abilities.

Soak up the sea breeze and pace along some of Britain’s most remarkable coastlines from Brighton to Newcastle, all the way down to the north coast of Cornwall.

Each route varies in terrain, distance and incline and those brave enough can even take a dip in the ocean post run to cool off! At your own risk, of course!

Brighton Pier

Famous for its nightlife and personality, Brighton pier offers fun filled destination for a 5K run. The path that runs along the pier – Madeira Drive is great for beginners or those who want to incorporate some interval training due to the flat terrain.

Start anywhere along Madeira Drive and head south towards SEA LIFE, then turn left towards the pier. Once you’ve run to the end head back and turn left towards the Bandstand, at the end of the beach, where you can soak up the epic views and get that Instagram worthy picture.

To make it a 5K head back to SEA LIFE. This popular route is also the home to this year’s Color Run. If the sun is shining make the most of the beach or head into Brighton town which is a 15-minute walk from the seaside.

Fistral Beach 

Just around the corner from Newquay is Fistral Beach, which is on the north coast of Cornwall and is one of the best places in the UK and Europe to surf. Fistral is often the host of many prestigious surfing competitions throughout the year, so as well as stunning views, you might also spot a professional surfer.

This picturesque route starting at Fistral Beach is just short of 3 miles (4.8K) and boasts panoramic views of the ocean. If you want to make it a little longer, just start the run in Newquay, heading North towards Fistral and then onto Pentire.

Combine your run with a surf lesson to make the most of your weekend!

Bournemouth to Boscombe (or Sandbanks)

Vibrant seaside town Bournemouth has 7 miles of sandy coastline, making it a great choice for a weekend run. For a 5K jog, start at the pier and head north until you reach Boscombe then head back to the pier.

For something slightly more challenging, jog south until you hit the small peninsula of Sandbanks, which some argue is home to one of the most beautiful beaches on the South Coast. This is closer to 15k in distance, but well worth it.

Both Bournemouth and Sandbanks have plenty of cafes, bars and restaurants that you can refuel at after your run – Sandbanks even boasts some of the UK’s most expensive property.

Brean Down, Somerset

Make the most of Somerset’s coastline by jogging along Brean’s peninsula which is just 1.5 miles in length. For a good work-out run there and back again, making sure to take in the spectacular views of the Bristol Channel towards South Wales and the Somerset levels.

For the ultimate experience, we’d recommend arriving at the crack of dawn to witness the breath-taking sunrise over the Mendip hills. Don’t forget to refuel at the Brean café afterwards. For a longer run start at Brean town Centre heading north towards the headland and around Brean Down. Head back south towards Brean Town Centre to rack up 11 kilometers.

Camber Sands, Sussex

Famous for being one of the most beautiful beaches in the UK, we’d recommend grabbing the next train to Rye, Sussex and heading south to Camber Sands beach for a breath-taking run along the coast.

The newly built National Trial enables joggers to take full advantage of the scenic views which include the White Cliffs of Dover, as well as unique areas of Dungeness and Pegwell Bay. Start at Camber Sands Holiday Park and head south along Lydd Road – once you get to the end of the beach turn around and head back.

For more of a challenge try running on the sand on the way back – it forces your body to work harder, which in turn creates a greater resistance training workout.

Newcastle – The Leas, Tyne and Wear

Starting in Whitley Bay jog north towards St.Mary’s Lighthouse for epic views of the North Sea. The Lighthouse is on the tiny St Mary’s Island and is the highlight of the run, however be sure to go at low ride, as the concrete causeway can be submerged at high tide restricting access to the island.

This jog is just under 5K, but if you want an extra challenge climb up the 137 steps to the top of the lighthouse.

Tickets for the Color Run Brighton are now on sale and can be bought here.

The race is on Sunday 23 September with two waves at 11am and 4pm.



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