11 Dec

Spectacular running in Patagonia

The start of the Patagonia trail race

Surrounded by three oceans it's one of the most remote places on earth. But over 4,000 runners have travelled to this southernmost outpost of South America since 2012 to take part in a unique event.

The Patagonian International Marathon is the dramatic road race race set in the majestic surroundings of the Torres del Paine National Park. And its programme of marathon, half marathon and 10k has attracted runners from 65 countries around the world, all converging on the southern tip of Patagonia to fulfil the dream of running in one of the most pristine places on the planet.

In 2014 event organisers added a trail race to the programme and invited runners of all levels and experiences to tackle forest climbs and river crossings over distances of 14k, 35k, 50k or 80km. The event they called Ultra Paine has been a magnet for runners from over 30 countries who were looking for  the perfect way to get up close to the stunning natural beauty of Chilean Patagonia.

The following year Ultra Fiord was established as one of the wildest, and most challenging trail races on the planet. Since its origin, experienced racers have battled Patagonia’s unpredictable conditions to experience some of the most iconic images of high-mountain passes, glacier crossings and the views towards the fjords and mountains of Torres del Paine National Park.

“Through these events, runners have the unique opportunity to experience running in Patagonia,” says race director, Stjepan Pavicic. “By holding these races during the low season, not only does it help support the local tourism industry, but runners are also guaranteed greater access to accommodation, travel and other services, and all at a more affordable price.”

In the middle of autumn 2020 (southern autumn that is), the sixth edition of Ultra Fiord sees runners opt for several distances ranging from 21k to 136k, racing over either one or two days, as they tackle Southern Patagonia’s fjords and glaciers across 24th & 25th April.

Then, as winter draws to an end, the 9th Patagonian International Marathon will be taking place on Saturday 5th September, maintaining the same race route as in previous years. As spring arrives, the 7th edition of Ultra Paine will be held on Saturday 26 September as runners converge once again for this international trail running competition.

These three distinct events cater for a wide range of levels and tastes so if you love running, nature and travel, then the opportunity to run in Patagonia is a very tempting prospect.

Find more details about the Patagonia events here:

Dramatic mountain background shot of the Patagonia Marathon