In Shape / It's Life

12 Beautiful Places to Run In Houston

Houston is such a beautiful city with an incredible amount of green spaces to visit. If you like running, walking, biking, or just spending time outdoors there are plenty of places to explore and be active. If you’re one of those people who don’t like taking the same path twice I would encourage you to try one of these many fantastic places on this list and check out Bayou Greenways for some other exciting trails outside the city.

If you like bayous…

1. Buffalo Bayou Park: Crazy beautiful views of the Downtown Houston skyline. Nice concrete paved trails. Full loop is about 8 miles, but there are bridges every half mile or so that you can loop back whenever you please.  Lots of art, lights, and even a dog park. Read more here.

Downtown Houston, Buffalo Bayou, Houston Skyline at sunset, Buffalo Bayou Park, Sabine Street Park, running, #runhappy, marathon trianing, half marathon

2. Brays Bayou Trail: Long open trail that runs literally on the bayou edge at points and traces its way from UH Main Campus through the Medical Center to about Bissonet and Gessner. It’s a super long trail–16.4 miles if you need the distance, but beware of homeless people who hang out under bridges. Read more here for east side.  And here for west side!

Bill Coats Bridge Brays Bayou

Bill Coats Bridge

3. White Oak Bayou Trail: Short 1.5 mile trail just north of Downtown. You can reach it by parking in the UH Naylor Student Parking Lot. High recommend checking out the Houston Wellness Project Free 5k series that takes place there. Read more here.  And here!

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4. TC Jester Bayou Trail: Long 7 mile trail that traces the White Oak Bayou and winds its way through the Heights and north of 610. Not too shady (so beware on hot days) but its filled with play grounds and volleyball courts and even a dog park. Read more here.

White Oak Trail along TC Jester

Mile 5 of White Oak Trail along TC Jester

5. Terry Hershey Park: Seven miles of paved trails running behind the houses that line Buffalo Bayou. Not too shady, but great if you live out in West Houston. There are mile markers every half mile or so and actual working water fountains. Beware…it’s HILLY.  Read more here.

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If you like parks…

6. Hermann Park: Two mile loop that traces possible the prettiest part of Houston including the Houston Zoo, Miller Outdoor Theatre, giant fountains and art.  Super shady run. Great pace to go on the weekends for some solid people watching–because that park is packed. Read more here.

Art in Hermann Park

Art in Hermann Park

7. Memorial Park: Fairly shaded three mile gravel trail. Well lit. Lots of other runners. Water fountains at regular intervals. Great if you want to run early in the morning or later at night but don’t want to be the only one out. Read more here.

8. Rice University Trail: Three miles of gravel trail that traces the Rice University campus. Great for summer runs when it’s hot af and you need shade. Beware, it can get a bit puddle-y when it rains. Read more here.

They say Rice has more trees than students on its campus. I believe it.

They say Rice has more trees than students on its campus. I believe it.

9. George Bush Park: Just over 11 miles long, the paved concrete trail starts at Highway 6 and traces through George Bush Park all the way to Katy. Nice flat even paths, great for biking.

If you like neighborhoods…

10. Montrose: The living mosaic of Houston. Great for house watching. Every home is different and unique ranging from ultra-modern town homes to super quirky bungalows. Fairview, Waugh, Vermont and Avondale are some great streets to run down.

Stopping to smell the roses on my run #htx #montrose #roses #run

A post shared by Anastasia Hansen (@anastasiachansen) on

11. West University Place:  Gorgeous homes. Low traffic so you can run in the streets. Nice fat shady trees. Generally a lot of other dog walkers and families out walking about. Sunset Blvd. to Mandell to North Boulevard to Morningside to Rice Blvd. make for a nice loop.

12. River Oaks: Some of the largest homes in Houston reside here. Great place to run/walk around during the holidays because these places get decked out. On other parts of the year, the neighborhood is also typically low traffic and runner friendly. Great streets to run down include Kirby, Ella Lee and Delmonte.

Did I miss anything? Where do you like to run Houston?

12 thoughts on “12 Beautiful Places to Run In Houston

  1. Willow Waterhole (SW Houston @ S. Post Oak / Hwy 90) has a great trail! It’s only about a mile, but you can loop it as many times as you like. Beautiful scenery, too!

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