One of the fastest growing cities in the world over the past two decades, this metro area of nearly 20 million in Guangdong Province is part of the Pearl River megalopolis. Named a ‘Special Economic Zone’ in 1980, Shenzen is a major technology hub and a highly visited destination for business and leisure travel. Given the extensive development and dense population, the area is not exactly ‘running heaven’, so you need our guide to find the best places to go running in Shenzen. A running culture is developing in Shenzen, but it’s not as prevalent as in Hong Kong and some other major Asian cities.
Shenzen is divided into nine ‘districts’. The signature running spot is the 10+ km that stretches along Shenzen Bay. In the central business district of Futian, three interconnected parks — Central, Bijiashan, and Lianhuashan — provide a green, runnable oasis. A free and publicly accessible running track is located in Futian Sports Stadium, just to the east of these parks. Other good parks for running include Donghu Park in the Luoho District and Dashashe in the Nanshan District. In the northeast part of Shenzen, Pinghu Ecological Garden Park has a good variety of more rugged running.
A few notes about running in Shenzen. First, be aware of the heat and air quality, especially in summer, and the fact that there can be monsoonal rains from May-September. Air quality is better than in other major cities such as Beijing, but sometimes not great. Note also that there aren’t a lot of trail maps available online for the parks…but we’ve done our best to consult with local guides. Finally, the transport system is excellent, including the ever-expanding metro and extensive bus lines.