Marathons in California

Showing 1 - 48 of 55 events
JUL28
Registration Perks
The San Francisco Marathon
San Francisco, CA, United States

Set an early alarm for this bucket list event around SF. Get an all-access pass to the SF sights, including the Golden Gate Bridge and Fisherman's Wharf, and take up the challenge (expect hills - it's SF after all). Come for the finisher's medal and atmosphere of the on-course cheer stations.

$64 - $269
The San Francisco Marathon
AUG11
Registration Perks
Camarillo Marathon, Half Marathon, 10k & 5k
Sanger, CA, United States

Enjoy the whoops and cheers of the crowd as you take on 4 laps of this well-known course. Flat as a pancake and on entirely paved roads, this is a good one if you're after a PR. And who can say no to the promise of post-race street tacos?

$45 - $130
Camarillo Marathon, Half Marathon, 10k & 5k
NOV10
Registration Perks
Surfers Point Marathon, Half, 10k & 5k
Ventura, CA, United States

What better way to wrap up the fall running season than with a seaside marathon. This course will appeal to all types of runners, being largely flat and picturesque, with only a few hills to keep you on your toes. Treat yourself to free tacos and beer at the end of the race.

$45 - $130
Surfers Point Marathon, Half, 10k & 5k
AUG11
Rock the Coast Marathon, 3/4, Half, 15K, 10K, 5K
Long Beach, CA, United States

This course follows part of the Long Beach Marathon course along the scenic beach path with ocean breezes and beautiful views. Runners go 3.275 miles on the beach path, then reverse and go back 3.275 miles to the start twice for the half marathon, thrice for the marathon, and four times for the full marathon. For the 15K, runners go out 3.1 miles and back, and then out 1.55 miles and back. For the 10K, runners go out 3.1 miles and back, and for the 5K, runners go out 1.55 miles and back. Beach restrooms open at sunrise. Plenty of drinking fountains along the course.

$25 - $35
Rock the Coast Marathon, 3/4, Half, 15K, 10K, 5K
AUG17
Rock Ocean
Long Beach, CA, United States

The course follows part of the Long Beach Marathon course along the scenic beach path with ocean breezes and beautiful views. The beach restrooms open at sunrise and there are plenty of drinking fountains along the course. There will be a fully stocked aid station at the start area, with Gatorade, water, bananas, chips, cookies, and more.

$25
Rock Ocean
AUG17
Trail Run at Sly Park
Pollock Pines, CA, United States

This event is held at the Sly Park Recreation Area in Pollock Pines, and its held under special use permit with the El Dorado National Forest. The course follows the trails surrounding Jenkinson Lake through endless pine trees.

$40
Trail Run at Sly Park
AUG18
E.T. Full Moon Midnight Marathon, 1/2, 10K, & 51K
Alamo, NV, United States

Running along the fringe of the mysterious Area 51, this stretch of highway (375) has an overwhelming number of reported UFO sightings. So much so, that in 1996 the federal government officially named highway 375 the "Extraterrestrial Highway". The ET Highway has become a gathering place for UFO enthusiasts and nature lovers alike. With elevations ranging from roughly 4000-5600 feet, the high desert will enchant you with gorgeous vegetation, surrounding mountains, and stunning vistas. An additional treat is the cooler temperatures. Rachel, NV is generally 15 degrees cooler than the Las Vegas Valley; coupled with a midnight run, temperatures should be in the 60's in August!

The Extraterrestrial Full Moon Midnight Marathon, 1/2, 10K, 5K & 51K are run on the weekend closest to the full moon, starting at midnight for the marathon.

$55 - $115
E.T. Full Moon Midnight Marathon, 1/2, 10K, & 51K
AUG19
Mendocino Coast PAL Big River Run
Mendocino, CA, United States

We are pleased to announce that the the third annual PAL Big River Run and Walk in memory of Deputy Ricky Del Fiorentino.

Join us for the third annual PAL Big River Run and Walk in memory of Deputy Ricky Del Fiorentino. The course winds along one of the most scenic rivers on the north coast. The Big River 1/2 Marathon, 10K and 5K consist of a run along the scenic old logging haul road past groves of second-growth redwoods into the heart of the historic Big River Estuary. The flat and wide course meanders along the northern bank of Big River where runners will race out and back, retracing their steps at the turnaround points located 1.55, 3.1, and 6.55 miles out. The road is approximately 15 feet wide and maintained; it is commonly used by runners and bikers.

Free - $45
Mendocino Coast PAL Big River Run
AUG24
The Santa Rosa Full/Half Marathon & 5K/10K
Santa Rosa, CA, United States

The Santa Rosa Marathon weekend offers over 6,000 runners from across the U.S. and abroad the opportunity to race through the scenic vineyards of the Sonoma County countryside, the City of Santa Rosa, and the Prince Memorial Greenway. Marathon racers also run through the DeLoach Vineyards barrel room a once in a lifetime opportunity. The flat and FAST course is also U.S. Track and Field-sanctioned and certified, and the Marathon is a qualifier for the Boston Marathon.

The Santa Rosa Marathon is a fast road race course, a Boston Marathon qualifier, and a beautiful destination race in Sonoma County, California.

In 2018 the Santa Rosa Marathon is celebrating its 10th anniversary and will be marking the occasion with special limited-edition double-spinner medals, race swag and a bottle of DeLoach Vineyards wine for every Marathon and Half Marathon finisher.

Dont miss out on your chance to participate in this rewarding and fun wine country running event!

$135 - $145
The Santa Rosa Full/Half Marathon & 5K/10K
AUG25
Diablo Trail Run
Contra Costa County, CA, United States

Mount Diablo provides spectacular views of the San Francisco Bay Area and surrounding valleys. The 4 mile course is relatively flat and fast within Mitchell Canyon. The longer events are mountainous and very scenic.

$35 - $70
Diablo Trail Run
SEP7
Registration Perks
Lexus LaceUp Running Series - Orange County
Irvine, CA, United States

Throw yourself into the LaceUp Running Series kick-off celebration. Great for all levels of runner, with an additional kids run too. Come for a shot at a half marathon PR (the course has just 220 feet of elevation) or for the free beer and brunch at the finish line.

$20 - $300
Lexus LaceUp Running Series - Orange County
SEP7
Lexus LaceUp Running Series – Orange County
Ventura, CA, United States

The Lexus LaceUp Running Series once again kicks off the season in beautiful Orange County, CA. The Half Marathon, Marathon Relay, 5K, and Kids Run will take place at Irvines Mike Ward Community Park on a fast and flat running path that winds through the vast open space under massive, shaded trees. LaceUp is thrilled to announce the return of the half marathon course at the Orange County race. Back for 2019, teams will have access to the ultimate runner VIP experience as they race to complete 26.2 miles. Dont be surprised when you see the LA Clippers spirit squad cheering for you on the course and at the finish!

After setting a new personal record, kick back and relax with a complimentary Sierra Nevada beer and food truck brunch in a lively event hub. This race is great for the family too, with a Kids Run and childrens activities on the schedule. LaceUp Orange County is a community-oriented race with a big-race feel. You and your team will feel right at home.

$40 - $300
Lexus LaceUp Running Series – Orange County
SEP14
Echo Summit Trail Run Challenge
Twin Bridges, CA, United States

A bathroom is available for the 50Mi, 50k, and 20 mile runners at Lovers Leap Campground. 50 mile runners will pass through twice. Primarily single track trail, some dirt roads, a little pavement,very runnable sections, technical sections, climbs, downhills, great scenery, views, creeks, and lakes.

13.1Mi, 10 mile out and back.

$40
Echo Summit Trail Run Challenge
OCT5
Skyline to the Sea
Saratoga, CA, United States

This is the original Skyline to the Sea Trail Run. The trail begins at Saratoga Gap, near Castle Rock State Park and descends from the Santa Cruz Mountains to the deep blue Pacific Ocean. Along the way you will encounter amazing views of the Monterey Bay, coastal and redwood forests, lush ferns, chaparral, exquisite sandstone formations, crystal clear waterfalls and the beauty of California wildflowers. This gorgeous venue is not to be missed.

$137 - $157
Skyline to the Sea
OCT5
Dick Collins Firetrails
Castro Valley, CA, United States

Join us this year as we continue the tradition of Dick Collins Firetrails. This race has been run in one form or another for decades, going way back to when Dick Collins himself was the race director. Firetrails for many years was also directed by the great Anne Trason, as well as by Julie Fingar and her great NorCal Ultras. Now its up to us to carry on the tradition.

$95 - $125
Dick Collins Firetrails
OCT5
Bay Ridge 100K
Castro Valley, CA, United States

Run for the last few years as Bay Ridge Endurance Runs, we are proud to announce that we're returning to our classic name: Dick Collins Firetrails! Firetrails is home to 3 events: Bay Ridge 100k, Firetrails 50mile, and L'Petite Dick Collins Marathon.

$85 - $160
Bay Ridge 100K
OCT12
Blitz Shore
Long Beach, CA, United States

The course follows part of the Long Beach Marathon course along the scenic beach path with ocean breezes and beautiful views.

$25
Blitz Shore
OCT12
Registration Perks
JetBlue Long Beach Marathon
Long Beach, CA, United States

This epic seaside marathon takes place on the picturesque Long Beach. Great for runners of all abilities, the course is completely flat and takes you through downtown Long Beach and along the Pacific beach path. Come along the big finisher’s medal and post-race celebrations.

$30 - $110
JetBlue Long Beach Marathon
OCT12
Lake Tahoe Marathon
South Lake Tahoe, CA, United States

Our boutique races run on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday where everyone knows your name. Lots to choose from: run the Friday Lakeside Marathon or the spectacular all downhill Nevada Half Marathon.

$49 - $100
Lake Tahoe Marathon
OCT19
Registration Perks
Lexus Lace Up Running Series – Ventura
Ventura, CA, United States

Soak up the scenes and enjoy the downhills of this Boston qualifier marathon. Great for first-time distance runners and experienced racers, this is the perfect course for a new PR. Come for the the cheery afterparty or to tackle your next running goal.

$20 - $110
Lexus Lace Up Running Series – Ventura
OCT27
Halloween
Long Beach, CA, United States

The course follows part of the Long Beach Marathon course along the scenic beach path with ocean breezes and beautiful views. The beach restrooms open at sunrise and there are plenty of drinking fountains along the course.

$25
Halloween
NOV3
Registration Perks
Two Cities Marathon & Half
Fresno, CA, United States

Take your pick of a marathon and two half marathons across Fresno and Clovis. Runners of all stripes will enjoy the half marathons, and the pan-flat marathon is ideal for PR chasers. Come for goodies galore (pullover, t-shirt, medal) and enjoy the post-race Michelob Ultra beer garden.

$35 - $105
Two Cities Marathon & Half
NOV9
Trails of Glory
Las Vegas, NV, United States

Join us on the first weekend of November in Cottonwood Valley at the Late Night Trailhead. With great trails including the Duck Tree, Cottonwood Valley promises fun, fast trails with stunning views of Red Rock Canyon and Las Vegas.

$60 - $100
Trails of Glory
NOV16
Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon
Las Vegas, NV, United States

The Rock ‘n’ Roll running and music festival has closed down the famous 'Strip' for this out and back run. This party is perfect for everyone looking for a unique opportunity to experience Vegas in a different light. Don't miss out on the medal, t-shirt and, of course, post-race parties.

$62 - $152
Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon
NOV17
Bakersfield Marathon
Bakersfield, CA, United States

The 4th Annual Bakersfield Marathon is a USATF-certified full marathon, half marathon, 10K, and 5K taking place on November 17th, 2019.

This annual, world-class event features the starting line, finish line and celebration on the California State University, Bakersfield campus. Participants will run through dozens of iconic neighborhoods including the Stockdale Financial District, Oleander, Downtown Bakersfield, Westchester, Kern County Museum, La Cresta, Bakersfield College and finally along the striking Panorama Bluffs before returning to the finish line along the scenic Kern River Parkway.

$40 - $95
Bakersfield Marathon
DEC8
Registration Perks
California International Marathon
Sacramento, CA, United States

Not yet ready for the full 26.2-mile marathon distance but still want to take part in the CIM fun? Round up some friends and for a team for the CIM Relay! CIM Relay teams can be 2, 3, or 4 runners, and together teams complete the full marathon distance with each runner completing a leg of 5.7-7.3 miles (distances vary on each leg). And who knows . . . this years relay runner may be next years marathon finisher!

Marathon, Marathon Relay, Capitol 5K and Capital 5K Challenge, UC Davis Children's Hospital maraFUNrun Kid's 5K.

$39 - $275
California International Marathon
JAN11
Lake Mead Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K & 5K
Boulder City, NV, United States

Located entirely within Lake Mead National Recreation Area, the run will start at Boulder Beach and lead you onto the paved River Mountain Loop Trail offering a Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K and 5K. This epic run will take you on an a journey through time, with views of the largest man-made lake in US history. The January desert-temperatures and views of Lake Mead make this run a must-do!

$35 - $80
Lake Mead Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K & 5K
MAR8
Skechers Performance Los Angeles Marathon
Los Angeles, CA, United States

Join competitors from not just the US, but all over the world for this staple of the global Marathon calendar. You'll set off from iconid Dodger Stadium before rounding your run off over in Santa Monica to a well earned finishers medal you can treasure!

$175
Skechers Performance Los Angeles Marathon
MAR14
Registration Perks
Catalina Island Marathon
Los Angeles County, CA, United States

California's Oldest Trail Marathon. This "bucket list' marathon features the exciting and historic marathon course used largely since the first year on the Catalina Island Conservancys lands. This includes much of the rugged terrain, spectacular vistas, challenging climbs and special challenges enjoyed by thousands of runners over the years!

$15 - $160
Catalina Island Marathon
MAR22
Registration Perks
Oakland Running Festival
Oakland, CA, United States

Lace up your shoes for this bayside running festival. These races are great for those looking for PRs or those simply wanting to take in the views from the Oakland Bay Bridge. Come down for the buzzing atmosphere with official cheer stations, DJs and live music at the post-race festival.

$35 - $105
Oakland Running Festival
AUG10
Robinson Flat Trail Race
Foresthill, CA, United States

Come and participate in a family-friendly weekend full of running, eating, and singing around the campfire. Robinson Flat Campground is a remote free campground under stately pines and firs near a beautiful meadow and stream. The campground is the last stop on the Foresthill Divide Road Driving Tour.

The race starts right from the campgrounds at 6,700 feet above sea level. Runners doing the Marathon and 50K will get to experience the 5mi Little Bald Mountain loop taking runners higher than 7,100 feet. After the 5 mile loop, all runners will head east towards the Western States trail through Duncan Canyon to then complete the course by running down from Sunflower hill back to the campgrounds where a potluck style finish line will await.

Campsites are free and on a first come basis. This campground has vault toilets and a hand pump well nearby. There is no trash removal service so pack out what you pack in. The road to the campground is narrow and winding so trailers are not recommended. This campground is located on the Western States Trail.

Robinson Flat Trail Race
SEP14
Night Sweats Fall Marathon
Sausalito, CA, United States

magine looking across a valley and seeing runners' flashlights lit up like stars along the trail. Come and join the exciting adventures and enjoy the sight and sounds that can be found at this national treasure. The Night Marathon and 15 Km begins at Rodeo Beach. You will see from several vantage points on the trail the beauty of the lights of San Francisco, Tiburon and the Bay Bridge. We use the entire expanse of Marin Headlands, Golden Gate National Recreation Area. You will travel well-groomed trails to Rodeo Beach, Muir Beach while hearing the roar of the ocean and enjoy vistas of the Pacific Coastline.

Night Sweats Fall Marathon
OCT5
Dam Ruck ‘N’ Run
Moapa, NV, United States

THIS IS NOT JUST CARRYING A PACK KIND OF RUCK!! THIS RUCK ALSO INCLUDES BUT IS NOT LIMITED TO; Military style PT, trail hiking/running, night time navigation, testing your problem solving skills while under stressful situations, and extreme dependency on others to complete tasks. YOU WILL BE EXHAUSTED!! YOU WILL BE TRIED!! YOU WILL WANT TO QUIT!! BUT YOU WON'T!! WE WILL START TOGETHER AND WE WILL FINISH TOGETHER!! NO PERSON LEFT BEHIND!! And when this is all over, you will have made friends for life and the most rewarding and satisfying feeling of accomplishment!! Are you up for the challenge!? Let Coach Ryan and Corey TEST YOUR LIMITS!

Not up for the Ruck? No problem! We have some out-of-this-world trail races beginning at 7 AM. The distances range from a 5K, to a half marathon! The longer distances will experience an epic Nevada sunrise in the middle of the desert with a picturesque mountainous backdrop.

$55 - $155
Dam Ruck ‘N’ Run
OCT12
Registration Perks
Santa Barbara Endurance Run - 100km/ 50 Mile / 50km
Santa Barbara, CA, United States

Tackle your distance of choice in the notoriously difficult Santa Barbara Endurance Run. This challenging race provides relentless acsents and descents, sure to challenge even the most seasoned runners. Come for the spectactular views from Southern California's coastal mountain range.

Booking Closed
Santa Barbara Endurance Run - 100km/ 50 Mile / 50km
OCT20
Blitz the Marina
Long Beach, CA, United States

The course is run along the scenic city streets around a lake and a beautiful oceanfront view. Marathon & Half course is a 4.37 out and back loop where you will pass the aid station at miles 3.1 and 4.37. The course is run 3 times for the half marathon, 4 times for the 2/3 marathon, and 6 times for the full marathon. The out-and-back section of the course is a perfect 5k and it is run twice for the 10k and thrice for the 15k.

$25 - $35
Blitz the Marina

About Marathons in California

Marathons definitely tend to draw the biggest crowds as competitors race through all sorts of surroundings from magnificent cityscapes to vast countryside. Marathons make up some of the most iconic races in the Golden State. Whether you're running for a personal challenge or a public cause, in Cali it helps that the weather is almost always near perfect and the scenery beautiful. One motivation for competing is to qualify for the Boston Marathon, and one of the best opportunities to do so in the US is at the California International Marathon, a mainly downhill course with a reputation for being super fast.

What are the best marathons?

There are so many high quality marathons to choose from in California. If you like fancy dress then the Walt Disney World Marathon might get you all Goofy. Get a boost from rock 'n' roll jams blasting behind you in the Rock 'n' Roll marathon series. Top tip, if you compete in 3 of 4 Rock 'n' Roll marathons in a year then you can collect a special medal. For spectacular scenery look no further than the highly rated Big Sur International Marathon.

How long will it take me to run a marathon?

The world record for women was set in London by Paula Radcliffe of Great Britain in 2003 at 2h15m25s minutes, and is still standing strong. The men's record was beaten in Berlin in 2018 by Eliud Kipchoge and at 2h01m39s is pushing close to breaking the elusive 2 hour barrier.

The global average time to finish a marathon sits around 4h13m for men and 4h42m for women. Our best advice is that you keep your own pace and don't worry about others. If you're overtaken by a man dressed as the Mona Lisa, don't sweat it. It is worth pointing out that finishing times are greatly affected by the course - check our course descriptions for each race to get a better understanding of the route. Some marathons are particularly fast (e.g. A1A, Cali International), and some a bit more challenging (Avenue of the Giants).

How do you train for a marathon?

Training for a marathon takes a lot of motivation. Buddy up if you can, this will help you stick to your plan. You can download our free 16 week training plan, with nutrition and race tips included. 16 weeks should give you enough time to train up and set you in good stead for tackling 26.2 miles.

More Marathons Near You

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