Running in Seattle

Tips for Seattle visitors who love to run

Inn at the WAC guests often wonder about the best place to run in downtown Seattle. Although there’s no single right answer, there is a clear favorite—the waterfront. It’s easy to reach from the corner of Sixth and Union, and you can run almost totally free of traffic lights. To take on this run, leave the WAC front doors, turn left, and turn left again down Union Street. In five and a half blocks you’ll meet a long stairway. Go down, cross Western Avenue, and descend another stairway. Intersect the Elliott Bay Trail along Alaskan Way and head north (read: turn right). As you run up the trail—a mix of asphalt and cement—you’ll want to cross to the other side of Alaskan Way. Do so carefully at one of the lights. Continue to run north as far as you want. At the end of Alaskan Way you’ll skirt Olympic Sculpture Park. A popular turnaround point is a little farther on at the pocket beach at Myrtle Edwards Park. At this point, grass and dirt trails border the main path. Stronger runners can continue until the large cargo elevator that crosses the trail (pictured above), the bait shop, or continue all the way to Elliott Bay Marina. You’ll be putting in serious miles if you go that far—remember, you need to run back, too!

As you travel the waterfront, please pay careful attention to construction. This is true whenever you are moving around downtown. Frequent sidewalk detours during this booming construction period can make your route tomorrow different than your route today.

This Map my Run link will help you take a closer look at the waterfront run.

Other good Seattle runs, with Map my Run links, include:

Happy trails!

Photo courtesy We Can Run Away.

Users run at their own risk. The WAC takes no responsibility for the safety of the routes described or accuracy of the links. Effort has been made to provide the best information possible.

—Updated July 12, 2017

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