United States

Los Angeles, CA

See Also Our Guides for Santa Barbara, North L.A., Orange County, Anaheim, & Long Beach

Sun. Beaches. Stars. Canyons. Hills. Those words describe running in Los Angeles. L.A. is the second most populated city in the country and it is geographically huge. Our guide to the best places to run in Los Angeles includes some fabulous places, with some of the greatest variety of any city anywhere. One can run for 20+ miles along a beachfront path from Santa Monica to Redondo Beach. Griffith Park and Runyon Canyon are great urban parks with hills and awesome views. Closer to downtown and the Hollywood areas, running along the wide sidewalks of famous Wilshire Boulevard, Sunset Boulevard, and into Beverly Hills are must-dos. To the north, enjoy the rugged beaches around Malibu and the incredible, but challenging running trails of Topanga canyon and the Santa Monica hills. Downtown might not be a runner’s paradise, but there are options.

Los Angeles is very spread out. Runners planning a trip to L.A. should know the principal ‘areas’ of L.A. We’ve groped runs by ‘theme’ and ‘geographic area’, in our Los Angeles Running Overview. See the ‘stay’ section for info about clusters of hotels in proximity to those areas. For more greater L.A. running options, see our guides to North L.A., Long Beach, Orange County, Anaheim, Santa Barbara, and San Diego. We even have a guide for Catalina Island.

L.A. of course is known for its near-perfect weather: almost always sunny, and rarely too hot or too cold. That might be monotonous for those who live there, but visitors rarely complain. Public transportation options in L.A. are famously limited, although the situation is improving with new construction in advance if the 2028 Olympics.

Editor's Picks

Some of our favorite runs in Los Angeles, CA

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  • Weather & Climate
  • Where To Stay
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Elysian Park (Downtown/East L.A.)

Los Angeles, CA

A large urban park in East L.A. There are many options for trails. Short run includes some of the park’s trails, including the ‘summit’, & roads around Dodger Stadium. Longer version starts from City Hall. Note: hilly and poor signage.

Not many cities in the world have a weather chart that looks like this. Take a glance at it, envy it, and be confident in the fact that you’re almost guaranteed a sunny, warm day for your run in L.A. Note that it can occasionally get very hot, with temps in the 90s. But rarely humid. Also, nights can be cool, due to the dry, desert-like weather, with average lows in the 40s or 50s except June-Sept. Rain can be plentiful in winter, but rare from May through September.Los Angeles W&C

There are hotels in nearly every major section of L.A. Our recommendation is to try to stay in a hotel close to where some of the great runs in L.A. See the maps below

North and West
There are tons of hotels downtown. Best runs near there are: Griffith Park and Runyon Canyon Park.

There are lots of hotels along Wilshire Blvd., which is also a nice run out to the La Brea tar pits and the L.A. County Museum of Art.

There are clusters of hotels in the Hollywood Hills, and the Beverly Hills area.

East L.A.
Best runs are Elysian Park and around Dodger Stadium.

Near the Airport
There is a cluster of hotels just west of the airport. Best runs are directly east, 4–5 miles to Playa Del Rey/Marina Del Rey/Venice Beach. If you need to be near the airport, try to stay east, in the Marina Del Rey area. Santa Monica, also fantastic,is 12 miles northeast of LAX.

Further South
The Manhattan Beach/Redondo Beach areas are 5 miles south, and there are lots of hotels along Rt. 1 (also called N. Sepulveda Blvd). Palos Verdes is a destination run

LA Map LA Map 1

Running Stores

L.A. is a huge city and there are many running stores — both locally owned and small regional chains, and outlets of national chains such as Nike and Road Runner Sports. Grouped by region:

Santa Monica: Road Runner Sports, along the 3rd St. Promenade. Other locations in Studio City, Costa Mesa, Torrance, Laguna Hills, Newbury Park.
Palisades/Topanga: Happy Feet
San Vincente Blvd: FrontRunners
Hollywood: A Runner’s Circle, on LaBrea in Melrose Ave. area
Griffith Park: A Runner’s Circle, in Atwater Village near park and L.A. River
Studio City: Road Runner Sports. Angela was super helpful! Other locations in Costa Mesa, Torrance, Santa Monica, Laguna Hills, Newbury Park.
Downtown: Gogi Sports
Manhattan Beach: Village Runner, (special thanks to Jeff) Garret’s Run Shop
Redondo Beach: Village Runner

Running Clubs & Group Runs

Santa Monica: Downtown Santa Monica Run Club meets Tuesdays, 5:30 p.m. in front of 1212 Restaurant on the Third Street Promenade near Wilshire Boulevard. Open to all!  Info.

L.A. Running Club. Lots of locations, resources, events.

Malibu Trail Runners Club. Regular group runs, including Sunday mornings 7am

Here’s an article that lists 24 running clubs in the area. Mainly there’s 1–2 for each major geographic area. Look for L.A. Leggers and DTLA (Downtown) Running Club.

Looking for road or trail races in this area? Find them on RaceRaves, the best online race calendar and reviews community for runners!

Find races in Los Angeles, CA


Given L.A.’s weather and size, you can probably find dozens of 10ks a weekend in the area. But here are some notable events:

Los Angeles Marathon. From the Stadium to the Sea. Mid-February.

LA Big 5k. Popular race in Elysian Park/Dodger Stadium the day before the LA Marathon.

Santa Monica-Venice Christmas Run. Very popular race nearing 40th year. Early December

Santa Monica Classic. September.

Malibu Half Marathon & 5k. November. One of the most scenic half marathons in the country, according to our friends at Halfmarathons.net.

Redondo 10k Super Bowl Run. Nearly 10,000 runners, Super Bowl Sunday, along the beach, 38th year.

Rock ‘N Roll L.A. L.A. version of the popular series, usually in October.

Topanga Canyon Turkey Trot. Trail race on Thanksgiving Day with several distance options. Part of a series of trail races in the area.