The city of Madrid is prepared for the phenomenon of spring runners. Everywhere you go you will find a couple of people running that may be enrolled in one of the many running groups in the city.
Running in the streets might be complicated due to the sheer volume of people walking in all directions. That is why there are so many parks that make it ideal for this activity. They are free, some very close to the city center, and are open for most of the day. That said, continue on for Madrid Fitness Vacation: 3 Great Parks You Must Visit for a Run!
1. Parque de El Retiro – Madrid’s “Central Park”
El Parque de El Retiro is situated in Madrid’s city centre and opens at 6am. It is perfect for running before going to school or work. The routes can be varied in its almost 5km perimeter.
It has a dirt and gravel route of about 4 kilometres, perfect for runners to exercise without suffering the hard impact of a tarmac surface through their knees and joints. There are showers and lockers available in the park. If you run with your kids, there are many playgrounds. If you need to rest, or whenever you are done, you can reward yourself in one of its kiosks or terraces.
Since July 25, 2021, the park has been recognized, as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. El Retiro houses notable sculptures and fountains. The statue of The Fallen Angel, is the only sculpture in the world that represents the devil.
2. Madrid Río
Madrid Río is a park located in the middle of Arganzuela and in which the runners have a circuit of approximately 9 kilometers, which is well signposted, and with an abundance of facilities for outdoor sports such as paths for bicycle touring, 33 skating and skating rinks, football, basketball, paddle tennis or tennis, and spaces for climbing.
On weekends you’ll be sharing space with walkers, bikers and skaters. It is advisable to go early in the morning, though you can also run at night since it never closes. There are many water fountains from which you can cool off. They are indeed needed as it is a place where the sun usually shines strongly since the trees there are not very big yet!
3. Parque del Canal de Plaza Castilla
This last one is for those that like to run in the city, and it has a shorter route than the others. El Parque del Canal de Plaza Castilla is located at the end of Paseo de la Castellana, in the middle of Plaza de Castilla and very close to the Fundación Canal.
All the city noises disappear as you enter the park. It is only 800m, and perfect for doing laps and for a quick jog. In addition, there is abundant shade and fountains. In spring, a detour through the rose garden and blooming pear trees is a must. It is open every day. In winter from 10:00am to 8:00pm and in summer from 9:00am to 10:00pm.
This park is a fantastic space to walk in and for children to play in. The vegetation mixes with the impressive views of Madrid’s skyscrapers, the Kío Towers, the four towers and the elevated tower of the water tank. After trying these parks, ask yourself if you feel ready to enroll in one of the many races that run through the most central streets of the capital throughout the year.
Some of them are the Ponle Freno Race (Put a Brake on Racing) which aims to run for the victims of traffic accidents, the proceeds are used for comprehensive support of those who have suffered road mishaps or the La Carrera de la Mujer (Women’s Race) the most important women’s and solidarity sporting event in the capital fighting against breast cancer.
We hope you’ll be more motivated to go running, especially in these parks when in Madrid! Keep a few things in mind; as the warmer weather arrives across Europe, use sunscreen, hydrate regularly and avoid running at midday when the sun is at peak heat.
Running for just 30 minutes will make you feel better, and doing so outdoors will boost your mood a lot more! In the meantime, put on your running shoes and go to your nearest park.