Length 10 km (6.4 miles), terrain: flat (it's Amsterdam, after all!)
Amsterdam running routes:
Three parks route
Amsterdam canals run
Sloterpark lake loop
Amstel river trail
Amsterdamse Bos run
For more running routes, see Route List.
There is an urban idyll on Amsterdam's south side that's a great place to run, bike or hang around.
Built as a make-work project during the Great Depression, the Amsterdamse Bos park is entirely man-made. The place is huge: 3 times bigger than New York's Central Park, and is covered by a mixture of woods, meadows, farm fields, ponds, ditches (like everywhere in the Netherlands) and sports fields. It's divided into 2 parts (northern- and southern halves) by the A9 freeway. It's located right next to Schiphol airport, but it's not normally loud.
|In Amsterdamse Bos|
NOTE: see the Destinations Tips page for tips about spending your free time in this great town!
The north edge of the park is moated with a long, straight rectangle of water, the Bosbaan, which is used for rowing competitions. And north of that, you'll find the Niewe Meer, a lake used by sailors and motorboats.
|The Bosbaan: an impressive regatta course, dug out by hand|
|One of the orange trail markers|
There is an interactive map at the park website at that shows the three routes. Just click on the arrow to the right of "Hardlooproutes" and click on/off the various routes to overlay them on the map (5-km is yellow, 10-km is red, and 21-km is pink).
NOTE: There are also two shorter, special routes. The purple "Trimroute" fitness route of 2.2 km connects various conditioning stops, and there's even a cross-country route (blue: 2.8-km), if you like hurdles!
|The visitor center|
|The start of the run|
So off you go, as the path first curves to the right, going through lawns and past a kids' wading pool. It crosses a bridge over a canal, then curves towards the left.
|The wading pool|
It then loops clockwise around a circular lawn, then heads north for a short ways, and then turns left, just before reaching the Bosbaan waterway.
In 200 meters, the main Hardloop trail turns to the left to go south. But you could go straight to follow the extra loop to the north side of the Bosbaan (if you want to run the 21-km section). It loops back to this same spot again.
Now you head south, as the trail winds through the woods along west side of the park. You cross a bridge, then turn right to follow the water on your right side. After 200 meters, the trail turns right, then left again to continue its southern meander.
|The canals in the Bos look like natural rivers|
After crossing another bridge, the trail splits. The trail to the right heads southwards, under the freeway and does the big loop through the southern part of the park.
For the 10-km route, just keep running straight, parallel to the freeway. In just 200 meters, you reach the eastern edge of the park, where you turn left and start the way home, heading northwards.
|Sports field along the eastern edge of the park|
|On the way back|