Asia Pacific

Ankara, Turkey

A Comprehensive Guide to the Best Places to Run Ankara

Ankara is the capital of Turkey and the country’s second largest city. It’s an ancient city, with a rocky hill rising 150m to the Ankara Castle at its center. Finding a good place to run in Ankara can be a challenge. You can’t expect to walk out the door of a random hotel and start running — the city is crowded, and a bit of a concrete jungle outside the historic center. Note: running in Ankara can be very hilly!

There are some decent spots for running in central Ankara. The highlight is Gençlik Parkı, a nice green oasis, which can be combined with a nearby track and the stairs to Ankara Castle if you’d like to get the heart rate up. Another running ‘experience’ in Ankara is the approach to the Ataturk Mausoleum (Anıtkabir), which also has a running track nearby. Good additional parks for running include the combination Independence Park and 50th Year Park, and Dikmen Valley Park in the southern part of the city. The paths around Metu University (ODTÜ) are good for running. Trail runners will love then adjacent Metu Forest. A good spot for a running ‘excursion’ is the loop around Lake Eymir, which is near Metu Forest.

For getting around Ankara, a metro serves the central city pretty well. Runners should be aware that Ankara winters can be cool to cold and somewhat snowy.

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Dikmen Valley Park

Ankara, Turkey

This man-made park in a sunken valley in south Ankara is a good spot for a longer off-road run. A loop around the park is ~5 km on concrete paths surrounded by trees, landscaping, and a lake. Note: hilly!

Ankara has a cold semi-arid climate with warm to hot summers and cool to cold winters. The city’s elevation contributes to the colder winter weather and keeps temperatures more moderate in summer (for Turkey). Average summer high temperatures are in the 30C (86F) range, though nights cool off pleasantly. Winter temperatures are a bit above freezing by day (4C, 40F) and a bit below it at night (-3C, 26F). There can be some snow in winter. Summers are quite dry.

If you stay in the Old City area south of the D200, there’s access to several of our good running routes. All our other routes are well served by the subway, except Lake Eymir.

There are outlets for several running shoe and apparel companies in Ankara. See the overview map on the city home page.