Houston, TX

Buffalo Bayou Park & Trails

Buffalo Bayou Park is located directly west of the central business district at downtown. The centerpiece of a $30 million urban revitalization plan that has won national acclaim (More info here), Buffalo Bayou Park is one of the most popular places to run in Houston. One can out together a run of varying distances, using the numerous bridges that are about 1/2 mile apart, using Allen Parkway as a guideline. Bonus: well-lit at night. About 1.5 miles south of the trail, there’s nice running in the Montrose neighborhood. Can also connect to the White Oak Bayou Trail.

A popular, pretty  5.6-mile loop runs from downtown to Shepherd Street Bridge to the west. The loop runs along both sides of Buffalo Bayou, offering scenic views of Houston’s downtown skyscrapers. You also pass by some lawn areas and bridges as you run. We recommend to cross Rosemont Bridge at the halfway point of the loop for a spectacular tree-top view of Buffalo Bayou and Houston skyline. Paths feature one lane for cyclists and one for pedestrians, and several water fountains along the route. It is a little hilly, too. Note, at Waugh Dr. is a “bat bridge”, where there are reliably at sunset, thousands of bats.

For longer run (~11.5 miles), you can combine Buffalo Bayou with Seymour Lieberman Exercise Trail at Memorial Park. You can find an underpass at Shepherd Street Bridge which leads to a sidewalk that will get you to Memorial Park, about 1.5 miles west of the bridge. See route here.

Essentials
  • 5.6 mile (9 km) loop; option for ~11.5 mile (18.5 km) run including Memorial Park
  • 256 feet
  • Downtown near City Hall