8 of the safest running spots in SA

Love a good run? We share 8 of the most popular and safest running spots in South Africa’s top cities.

1. Emmarentia Dam, Johannesburg
The well-marked, paved tracks in the peaceful grounds of Jozi’s Emmarentia Dam make for an easy post-work run in South Africa’s busiest city. Think woodlands, city views, natural grass and a fairly large area in which to get your limbs moving after a day in an office chair.
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2. Zoo Lake, Johannesburg
If you’ve never jogged in this city park next to the Johannesburg Zoo, you’re in for a treat. Although it offers a fairly small area in which to run, there’s much to look at and enjoy as you make your way around the breezy lakes. Keep an eye out for ducks, egrets, waterfowl, picnickers and the odd jazz musician!
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3. Voortrekker Monument Heritage Site, Pretoria
The historical Voortrekker Monument Heritage Site makes for an extraordinary running spot close to the city. Zebras, blesbok, springbok and impala, as well as beautiful indigenous gardens, offer runners a truly South African experience. Join the Parkrun every Saturday at 8am to discover interesting new routes in the reserve.
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4. Sea Point Promenade, Cape Town
The Sea Point Promenade, a paved walkway right next to the ocean, is one of the safest spots for a run in Cape Town. An outdoor circuit makes it easy to do resistance training before or after your run, and there’s lots of lovely green grass on which to stretch out and warm up. Get there in time for sunset – a delightful way to end the day.
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5. Rondebosch Common, Cape Town
This open common in the Cape Town suburb of Rondebosch is a mere 15 minutes from the CBD. The circular route makes for a lovely, safe running track in the southern suburbs. Go late afternoon on a hot summer’s day, when you’ll be running in the giant shadow of Table Mountain.
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6. The Promenade, Durban
The recently revamped, 6km paved walkway that runs between Blue Lagoon in the north and uShaka Marine World in the south is one of the most popular exercise spots in Durban. Join other runners, cyclists, skateboarders and walkers as they work out in the early-morning sea breeze, and watch sunseekers enjoy some of city’s best beaches.
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7. The Promenade, Port Elizabeth
The Windy City’s promenade, which also sits right next to the beach, is another gem for runners keen to explore South Africa’s best routes. Keep an eye out for Shark Rock Pier, which offers spectacular views, and run on the sand if you’re keen to do a tougher workout. Alternatively, join the Hobie Beach Parkrun, which takes place every Saturday at 8am.
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8. Naval Hill, Bloemfontein
Get some Free State dust on your running shoes: explore the gravel roads that run across Naval Hill and the 250-hectare Franklin Nature Reserve – the only nature reserve in the world located in the middle of a city. Enjoy panoramic views of Bloem while you build up a sweat, and watch out for giraffe and blue wildebeest as you run. Naval Hill isn’t safe for a solo exercise session, but fun to do in a group. Join the weekly Parkrun.
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