The annual marathon in Florence takes place each November, attracting thousands of runners and spectators. It is the largest marathon in Italy other than the Rome Marathon that takes place earlier in the year. The first Firenze Marathon was in 1984, which included rough terrain around the cobbled streets. However, since 2011 it has become a more traditional flat road race attracting bigger numbers. The first winner was the British sprinter Andrew Robertson, who has since gone on to represent his country in Commonwealth Games and World Indoor Championships. The event also hosts both a family fun run and a wheelchair race.
The nearest airport for Florence is Amerigo Vespucci Airport, which is an hour and fifteen minutes away from the city centre. The Firenze Santa Maria Novella train station will drop you close to the main areas, close to where the race will be held. If you are taking part then you need to fill out an online form in advance, or email the organizers directly, prices vary so check online nearer the time. Once confirmed you need to be available at the venue on the Friday or Saturday in order to complete your registration, between 9.30am and 8pm. The race takes place on the Sunday morning.
If you are only spectating, decide where you wish to watch the action, as the streets will be busy. It is free to attend if you are only watching but the event is always looking for volunteers to help. Wrap up warm as the marathon is out of the holiday season, make a day of it and arrive early for the elite athletes but stay until the final runners have crossed the line. Those of you running, then book up for the Marathon Party in the evening at a 10 Euros, or an extra 15 Euros for each guest.
Choose from a wide selection of houses, apartments and other private rentals near the starting line at the Piazza Duomo, or the nearby Piazza Giovanni where the race finishes. Wherever you stay, you can easily walk around Florence or travel into the city centre from other regions by hopping on and off the buses.
The top of the Piazzale Michelangelo gives a stunning view of the city as well as being adorned with replicas of the great artist’s works. See original artwork by Michelangelo, Raphael and Da Vinci at the Uffizi Gallery. Cathedral Santa Maria del Fiore is an impressive building and a popular place to visit.
Visit the official website for more details including: rules and race information, a map of the course, how to enrol and the relevant forms, other services including volunteering, other events such as the wheelchair marathon and family run, visitor and tourism information.
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