Top NYC Neighborhoods for Runners

By: ROS Team

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NYC is one of the best cities for runners. Those who have never been or spent much time in the city may perceive it as a concrete jungle of walkways and towers, but the truth is much different. The city provides runners with a diversity of landscapes, such as bridges, boardwalks, parks, and promenades.

Here’s a look at some of the best NYC neighborhoods for runners based on terrain, distance from transit lines, and more:

1. Brooklyn Heights

Brooklyn Heights is a great neighborhood for runners. It’s got a lot of parks and waterfront views, and it’s close to the Brooklyn Bridge. You can run through the park and then go for a walk on the Promenade after your workout!

There are so many running routes within Prospect Park that you won’t get bored easily. There are also more than 20 miles of bike trails that connect Prospect Park with other neighborhoods like Park Slope or Windsor Terrace (which also has some nice outdoor spaces). Here are some popular running routes:

  • The loop around Meadow Lake in Central Meadow (1 mile)
  • A scenic route through Nethermead toward Lefferts Historic House (1 mile)

2. Prospect Park

For runners looking for a park with a little more space, Prospect Park is the place to go. The second-largest park in Brooklyn, it offers plenty of room for runners to stretch their legs and enjoy the scenery – and if you’re lucky enough to have some time during summer months, there’s also swimming at McCarren Pool.

The Brooklyn 5k loop makes its way through Prospect Park every year as part of the NYC Mini Marathon (or “NYCMM”).

It starts on Flatbush Avenue near Grand Army Plaza, then heads south down Eastern Parkway until it hits Ocean Avenue; next, it turns around at Parkside Avenue before heading back north on Ocean Avenue again until reaching its starting point, where Flatbush Avenue meets Eastern Parkway again.

3. Park Slope

Park Slope is a great neighborhood for runners, walkers, and bikers alike. It’s also a great place to bring your dog–there are many dog parks in the area. Park Slope has lots of restaurants and cafes where you can eat after your run or walk.

If you’re into culture, there are museums nearby, like the Brooklyn Museum and Prospect Park Zoo.

4. Greenwich Village

Greenwich Village is a splendid location to engage in your running pursuits. This tranquil neighborhood offers an abundance of opportunities to explore its numerous parks and verdant spaces.

Additionally, the eastern edge of this neighborhood is bordered by the majestic Hudson River, affording an exhilarating challenge for runners who seek to elevate their training to new heights.

If you’re looking for more food options than just bagels and coffee shops (though those are still available), there are several restaurants within walking distance that offer healthy options like salads or smoothies with fresh juices on top – and they won’t break your bank account!

5. East Harlem

East Harlem is an up-and-coming neighborhood that’s perfect for runners of all ages and abilities. The area has a lot of great parks and playgrounds, as well as restaurants and shopping options. It’s also a great neighborhood to live in if you’re a family with kids – there are tons of schools nearby!

Harlem is also a great place to go biking. The area has some great bike paths, so it’s easy to get around without worrying about traffic. There are plenty of places to rent bikes as well if you don’t have one already.

6. Astoria

Astoria is a diverse neighborhood with a ton of personality. It’s one of the most popular neighborhoods in New York City, and with good reason: it offers plenty of options for runners who want to explore the area.

You can find countless running routes along Astoria’s streets and trails, from scenic waterfront paths to quiet side streets lined with trees. There are also plenty of parks within this Queens community where you can run your dog or enjoy some outdoor exercise yourself!

7. Long Island City

Long Island City is a great place for runners. It’s close to the water and has easy access to Manhattan, making it ideal for those who want to run in Central Park or Prospect Park.

There are also plenty of parks and open space where you can take your run outside on a nice day, like Gantry Plaza State Park and the Hunters Point waterfront park.

There are plenty of restaurants and bars around here, too – you’ll never be far from your next brunch or post-workout beer! You’ll find everything from fancy French restaurants to casual pubs with TVs showing sports games (or even just SportsCenter).

And if you’re looking for something more kid-friendly, there are plenty of places that serve breakfast all day long – the perfect opportunity for brunch after a morning jog!


So, what’s the takeaway?

When it comes to finding a suitable neighborhood for your running endeavors, the key consideration is to ascertain the type of running experience you desire.

In order to attain optimal results, it is paramount to identify the requisite factors that complement your unique fitness goals. Perhaps you covet a more expansive area to engage in your fitness pursuits, in which case Brooklyn or Lower Manhattan would be the ideal locale.

On the other hand, if you are inclined towards running in the company of fellow enthusiasts and exploring diverse neighborhoods, then Central Park or Prospect Park would be the ideal settings to satiate your needs.

And if convenience is key (and let’s be honest: it is!), then there are plenty of options close by that will suit your needs perfectly – from Battery Park City on Manhattan’s southern tip up through Harlem all the way north into Fort Tryon Park at 190th Street off Broadway!

Final Thoughts

We hope you’ve enjoyed this list of the top NYC neighborhoods for runners. Undoubtedly, the city has countless other magnificent spots for running, but these are the ones that we truly adore. Each of these neighborhoods has a unique character that makes it an excellent choice for runners, whether you prefer a tranquil riverside or a bustling cityscape.