Whether you’re a seasoned marathon runner, or you’re just starting your Couch to 5K journey, everyone knows a good running route can make all the difference. And living in Devon, we’re blessed with some incredible routes to inspire and challenge you.
1. Topsham to Exmouth
Best known as a cycle route, the Topsham to Exmouth path is great for runners. It’s flat, so not too taxing, and the views are incredible. We recommend an early morning run to avoid the majority of cyclists and make the most of these stunning estuary views.
2. Woodbury Common
The hidden gem of East Devon, Woodbury Common is perfect for runners of all abilities. There are a multitude of paths and tracks, with stunning views and different types of terrain. Just make sure you keep an eye on where you are so you don’t get lost!
3. The Green Circle
The Exeter Green Circle is a 12 mile walking route around the city, and we think it’s a great running track for all our city runners! It includes pavements, trails and footpaths, and you can join from pretty much anywhere! There are plenty of ‘Green Circle’ signs along the way to keep you on track.
4. Castle Drogo
The area around Castle Drogo makes for a fantastic (and sometimes challenging!) running trail. We’d recommend following the National Trust walking route, beginning below Castle Drogo and following the Hunters Path high above the river Teign. The route passes through woodland, over packhorse bridges and across open commons, so there’s plenty to keep you interested!
5. Haldon Hill
Known for its trail runs and cycling routes, Haldon Hill is a great place to go alone or with the whole family. The great things is that there are so many options – you can choose between flat or hilly routes – and the views are spectacular. It’s a great place to take the dogs too.
6. Tiverton Canal
If you’re looking for a good route in Mid Devon, check out Tiverton Canal. Apparently it’s a favourite of five-time Olympian, Jo Pavey, but it’s also not too taxing for the beginners amongst us! Starting at the Tiverton Road Bridge and begin by heading over the sandstone bridge, before taking a left to join the canal.
7. The Tarka Trail
The Tarka Trail is a 180 mile, figure of eight walking and cycling trail. The trail takes you through wooded valleys, along rivers and over moorland with spectacular views of Dartmoor and Exmoor. If you’re looking for something a bit different, check out the Tarka Trail website and plan your own route.
8. Exmouth seafront
It may be an obvious choice, but Exmouth seafront can be a stunning backdrop for a gentle run. Head out early in the morning or late evening to enjoy the sun low in the sky and avoid the crowds. To add some challenge, why not head up to Orcombe point and soak in the stunning views?
9. Princetown, Dartmoor
If you’re going to go running in Devon, it’s worth making the trip up to Dartmoor at least once to enjoy the incredible scenery. It’s quite easy to get lost on the moors, so for Dartmoor novices we’d recommend sticking to an out and back run. There’s plenty of parking at Princetown, so get your hands on a map and take a run along one of the bridleways to enjoy the landscape and feel invigorated!
10. River Exe
If you’re a city dweller, why not try running down by the river? As you build up your stamina, you can run further along the river, past Turf Locks and up towards Powderham Castle, and on to Starcross and Dawlish. Just make sure you have enough energy to make it back!