For some green just south of the city center, enjoy The Meadows. The large public park consists largely of open grassland crossed by tree-lined paths, but also has a children’s playground, a croquet club, tennis courts and recreational sport pitches. It is bordered by the University of Edinburgh’s George Square campus and the Quartermile development on the site of the old Edinburgh Royal Infirmary to the north and Marchmont to the south. The cherry blossoms are lovely in the spring.
There are great paths for running within and around The Meadows. A full loop is about 1.6 miles, using Middle Meadow Walk . To add another 1/2 mile, run the trails of Bruntsfield Links just to the southwest where there is a free, public pitch and putt golf course.
There are lots of options to make this a longer run. Head up to Holyrood Park, about 1 km to the east. Or add another 1-2 km with a jaunt around George Square and the University of Edinburgh campus.