Length 7.2 km (4.5 miles), terrain: flat
If you want to run in Frankfurt, Germany, this is a route where you can't go wrong. It circles the city center along the chain of narrow parkland that now replaces the medieval town walls on three sides, plus follows the riverside promenade on the fourth side.
There is plenty of variety in the scenery, with ponds, fountains, classical buildings, skyscrapers, riverboats, bridges to cross. I think you'll find it a fun and memorable run.
|Fiddler at the Old Opera House|
Frankfurt was a medieval treasure before the war, but the city was carpet-bombed and very little was built back in traditional style. The neighborhood around the Römer is one of the few spots to give you a feel for what the city once looked like.
|The Paulskirche, the first German parliament|
|At Römer square|
Now continue southwards on the little side-street called Fahrtor to the Main River, just 2 blocks away. You'll see a steel pedestrian bridge with a Greek inscription (what's it mean, anyway?), called the Eisernen Steg. Let's cross it: we'll have a great view of the Frankfurt skyline from the other side of the river.
|Eiserner Steg pedestrian bridge|
Now just enjoy the flat asphalt surface and the great views over Frankfurt. It's the only German city with a skyline of skyscrapers downtown, due to the number of banks in this financial powerhouse.
|The Frankfurt skyline, seen from Sachsenhausen|
Cross it back to Frankfurt. But we've come a bit farther westwards than we needed, so turn right to run eastwards for a block through the riverside park.
|Crossing the Holbein Steg back into the city center|
In just a block, you'll cross the same tram tracks again at Willi Brandt Platz, with the European Central Bank building, and it's big blue Euro-symbol to the right.
We're now following the parks from the old city walls. The park name keeps changing, but each piece is named one-or-another "Anlage" ("site" in english). Although it's normally just a hundred meters wide, there are all the bits and pieces that any proper park needs: statues, fountains, benches, flower beds, playgrounds...
Just past the Beethoven memorial, the park takes a turn to the right as it now follows the northern edge of the town center. Soon you'll come to the square with the beautiful Alte Oper (Old Opera), at the 3-km mark.
|The Alte Oper|
So pass the opera house on its right side and continue through the parkland, running along a big pond, the Mangelsdorff Weiher.
|The Mangelsdorff Weiher|
You'll then come to a spot were a bit of the old walls are still visible, with a long pond outside them.
You'll soon find yourself back at the Main River, at the site of the big Flösserbrücke (Rafter's Bridge). Take the steps down to the riverside park and turn right to follow the river along the Frankfurt side this time, passing the 5-km mark.
|The Flösserbrücke, head down to the water here!|
At the spot where the road comes down to the river level, turn right to exit the park, just a block before coming back to the Eiserner Steg.
|Blooming cherry trees along the Main trail|