Top marathons of 2010 with additional registration dates, including New York, London, Boston, Berlin, LA and Rome; the Athens Classic, the Swiss Jungfrau mountain marathon, and Norway's Midnight Sun Marathon.
Barcelona Marathon, Spain, March 7, 2010
Registration: Open, ends February 21
The Barcelona Marathon encompasses the old and new of Spanish monuments, with monuments such as Gaudi's Sagrada Familia church and Camp Nou, the home of FC Barcelona, and has a reputation of feeling fairly flat whilst incorporating sharp turns and steady inclines.
Los Angeles Marathon, USA, March 21, 2010
Registration: Open, until capacity is reached
The LA Marathon is a relative newcomer on the international marathon schedule, starting as it did in 1986 as a result of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. Still, in the quarter of a century since it has established itself as an accessible event, one of the few without a minimum age requirement, and has a new course for 2010 running from the LA Dodgers' stadium in eastern LA down to Santa Monica beach in the west.
Rome City Marathon, Italy, March 21, 2010
Registration: Open, ends March 8
The 2010 Maratona di Roma comes on the 50th anniversary of the 1960 Rome Olympics and is another of Europe's scenic marathons, encompassing as it does the Coliseum, Saint Peter's Basilica, the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. As well as the marathon itself there is the traditional 4 km Fun Run that uses part of the official route for its mass of 80,000 all-age participants.
Paris Marathon, France, April 11, 2010
Registration: Closed. 2011 registration expected September 2010, likely to reach capacity by November.
The Paris Marathon takes in all of the major landmarks within the City of Light during its 42.2 kilometers, with the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, the Louvre, Champs-Élysées, Pont Neuf, the river Seine, the Bastille, and the serene Bois de Boulogne and Bois de Vincennes parks.
Boston Marathon, USA, April 19, 2010
Registration: Closed. Registration for 2011 will begin September 2010.
Successful entrants to the Boston Marathon, one of North America's most prestigious, must have completed a certified marathon under a set time in order to qualify. Eligible marathons are certified by the USA Track & Field association, Athletics Canada, or the Association of International Marathon and Road Races.
Stockholm Marathon, Sweden, June 5, 2010
Registration: Closed. Registration for May 29, 2011 begins June 5, 2010. The 2010 marathon took four months to reach capacity, after a course adjustment increased the total number of possible participants.
This marathon starts and ends at the city's 1912 Olympic Stadium, looping round Stockholm twice and crossing the Riddarfjärden bay both times. Inspired to start in 1979 after a magazine article on the New York Marathon, it became a nationally televised event in 1997, and has introduced innovative run-through "shower stations" in the last few years as Swedish summer temperatures have been warmer than usual.
Amsterdam Marathon, Netherlands, October 17, 2010
Registration: Expected February 2010
Said to be an ideal beginner's marathon because of the flat route, and also one of the fastest marathons in the world for the very same reason - the maximum elevation is 33 feet (10 meters) - while the route meanders along the Amstel river, past Amsterdam's largest public park, and both starts and finishes in the 1928 Olympic stadium.
Intercontinental Istanbul Eurasia Marathon, Turkey, October 17, 2010
Registration: January 1 - September 30 2010
The intercontinental marathon takes advantage of Istanbul's Bosphorus-straddling situation in order to be the world's only marathon that starts in one continent (Asia) and ends in another (Europe). The race organizers make the most of Istanbul's heritage, with a route that passes by the Blue Mosque and the Hagia Sophia, crosses the Bosphorus once and the Golden Horn inlet twice, and finishes at the ?nönü Stadium, home to football club FC Be?ikta?.
London Marathon, UK April 25, 2010
Registration: Closed, though charity registration is still possible. Registration for the 2011 marathon will open on April 26, 2010 on a first-come, first-serve basis. The 2010 London Marathon reached its allocation in a little over two days. A total of 35,766 runners finished the race in 2009, the highest number ever for the London marathon; the Thames-hugging event is well known for the large amounts of charity fundraisers who use it as a focus for generous giving.
Great Wall Marathon, China, May 15, 2010
Registration: Open until capacity is reached
The Great Wall Marathon is said to be one of the hardest in the world, with seasoned runners taking up to two and a half hours longer than usual due to steep staircase climbs in amongst the picturesque historical scenery.
Midnight Sun Marathon, Tromsø, Norway, June 19, 2010
Registration: Open until capacity is reached
The Midnight Sun Marathon commences as one would expect at midnight, and yet in full sunlight, taking advantage of the endless daylight hours at the peak of the Scandinavian summer.
Jungfrau Marathon, Switzerland, September 11, 2010
Registration: Open, ends December 31, 2009
The Jungfrau marathon starts in the city streets of Interlaken and soon enters Alpine scenery, climbing to a height of 7,234 feet (2,205 m) near the end of the race before a sharp decline down to the finish.
Berlin Marathon, Germany, September 26, 2010
Registration: Opens January 1, 2010
The Berlin Marathon is a festival of long distance races, incorporating an inline skating marathon on Saturday September 25 as well as a children's Bambini Run event and a mini-marathon.
Košice Peace Marathon, Slovakia, October 3, 2010
Registration: Expected April 1, 2010
The Košice marathon maintains its status as the oldest in Europe by including Hungarian Košice marathons when occupied during World War II, and as such manages to be the second oldest in the world, second only to Boston.
Chicago Marathon, October 10, 2010
Registration: Expected February 1, 2010
One of the World Marathon Majors along with Berlin, Boston, London, and New York, the Chicago marathon came to prominence in the 1970s and 1980s following the increased popularity of long distance running thanks to the New York Marathon and an American gold medal in marathon at the 1972 Munich Olympics.
Athens Classic Marathon, Greece, October 31, 2010
Registration: Opens February 2010 until capacity met (estimated mid-April)
Beginning in the town of Marathon and ending at the 1896 Olympic site, Panathinaiko Stadium in Athens, the race includes a coastal route and a steep 21km climb halfway through.
New York Marathon, USA, November 7, 2010
Registration: Open, ends 11:59pm Eastern Time, March 5, 2010
According to the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races, the five largest marathons in the world have been the 2004-2008 New York marathons with around 38,000 finishers in recent years, taking in as it does all five boroughs of the city, the Queensboro and Madison Avenue bridges, and Central Park. Places are allocated via a lottery system, with the only guaranteed entries going to New York Road Runners club members, fundraisers for selected charities, those who have purchased an official international travel package, and competitors who have successfully completed 15 previous NYCMs.