A change of scenery and new places to explore through running can provide a big motivation boost for runners, any time of the year, but especially now. Here's a look at a few winter getaways we've enjoyed that make perfect mid-winter runcation destinations.
With a temperate climate, quaint charm complete with cobblestone streets, an impressive food scene and packed with history, this is clearly a great city to explore running with plenty of non-running diversions.
- Where to run: Waterfront Park and the Battery Promenade provide stunning views of the water. Wander through the neighborhoods to take in the beautiful homes.
- Where to eat: Eli's Table, Fleet Landing, FIG, Jestine's Kitchen
- What to see & do: spa services at the Charleston Place, explore the vendors in the City Market, walk through the old neighborhoods, shopping along King Street, head out of town a bit for visits to Fort Sumter and the Middleton Place plantation.
- Where to stay: Charleston Place is a bit pricey but has a great location, excellent service and the rooms are beautiful. To stay like a local, this charming carriage house might be just the thing you're looking for.
Savannah oozes history and southern charm. You can't help but feel like you've been transported to another time and have walked into the film "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil." With parks and gardens around every corner, stunningly elegant homes and southern cooking, it's easy to start your day with a run exploring the city then filling the remaining hours with any number of activities.
- Where to run: Forsyth Park (below, top) and Daffin Park are beautiful but offer limited trails. Include one of the parks in your run but meander through the neighborhoods.
- Where to eat: Angel's BBQ, Soho South Cafe, Clary's Cafe, Crystal Beer Parlor, and Leopold's Ice Cream
- What to see: Owens-Thomas House (below, bottom), Mercer Williams House, SCAD Museum of Arts, shopping in the historic district
- Where to stay: The Mansion on Forsyth Park is beautiful while Hotel Indigo and the Andaz Savannah are closer to the action.
Yes it can snow in Santa Fe but the area still provides a great getaway during the colder months and plenty to keep you busy for a long weekend. This is a great option if you particularly enjoy trail running, art, margaritas and soaking tubs.
- Where to run & hike: The Dale Ball Trail (below bottom) system offers 22 miles of well marked but challenging trails with stunning views and varying terrain. Additional trail options can be found here.
- Where to eat: Maria's, The Shed, The Teahouse, Plaza Cafe
- What to do when not running: See all the art - there are more than a hundred galleries to explore along Canyon Road and the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum is not to be missed while the Loretto Chapel's staircase is a mysterious work of art. Schedule time in a soaking pool at Ten Thousand Waves for after a long run (tip: try to get a private pool/sauna and arrive early to enjoy the foot soak). Stop by the farmer's market at the Railyard (below top) for fresh food, chilis, spices and more.
- Where to stay: Casita Hopi through Airbnb is a bit out of downtown but incredibly comfortable and a perfect home base if you like to prepare some of your own meals and enjoy privacy. La Fonda on the Plaza, Hotel St. Francis and the Old Santa Fe Inn are steps from the Plaza, restaurants, and more.
Alright, 75 degrees is the middle of January and to go out for a run in shorts and a tank is pretty nice. It almost feels luxurious. What most surprised me about Phoenix is that while it's mostly flat, there are mountains in and surrounding the city. While the 1,000-ish ft elevation was a nice change for our group from Colorado, it might add a little challenge for those coming from sea level.
- Where to run & hike: Piestewa Peak and Dreamy Draw Recreation Area (below bottom), Camelback Mountain, find more trails here. To hit the pavement, head to Tempe Town Lake, the Arizona Canal or the Indian Bend Wash Greenbelt in Scottsdale.
- Where to eat: Luci's at the Orchard (below top), True Food Kitchen, Culinary Dropout, Sauce, Desoto Central Market
- What to do when not running: Papago Park (featuring hole-in-the-rock, the zoo and the botanical garden), the Phoenix Art Museum, take a tour of Frank Lloyd Wright's winter home Taliesin West, visit old town Scottsdale, all the golf you could want.
- Where to stay: The Embassy Suites where we stayed is close to Piestewa Peak and the Biltmore Fashion park, and also a throwback to the 1980's. The Hotel Valley Ho in Scottsdale has a cool retro vibe, while this cute bungalow in a quiet neighborhood or private guest house with pool and hot tub might be more your style.