Every year runners from 30 countries gather near the top of Norway to run a midnight marathon - in daylight.
At almost 70° north and above the Arctic Circle, the Midnight Sun Marathon in Tromsø is one of the world’s northernmost marathons and an event worth experiencing.
The pure feeling of the midnight sun in astounding surroundings is one reason why the race is a target for so many runners worldwide. Plus there are shorter distances available for those not ready for the full 42,195km.
In that part of the world, the sun doesn’t set from the middle of May to the middle of July. Even in cloudy weather, it is broad daylight 24 hours a day.
Most of Tromsø, including the city centre, is located on the small island of Tromsøya. One of the city’s most distinctive features is the “Arctic Cathedral”, a modern church built in 1965. The city also has the only wooden cathedral in Norway, completed in 1861.
The marathon starts and finishes in the city centre. After 2km runners face the Tromsø Bridge; an uphill climb from 6 to 43 meters above sea level. After running about 20 km on the mainland, runners recross the bridge and return through the city centre. The rest of the course is mostly flat and easy.
Next event date:
2010: 19. June
Next event date:
Registrations have opened for the world's most historic marathon.
This year marks 2500 years since a Greek soldier ran 26 miles from the battle site at Marathon to the city of Athens to deliver a message of victory against the Persians.
The modern Athens Classical Marathon covers the same route as much as possible and entries this year are expected to be high. Numbers in the marathon distance have been limited to 12,000 participants. It is perhaps distance running's most unique and ultimate race. There will also be 10km and 5km road races within Athens.
To mark the anniversary of the battle at Marathon and to honour the history of the marathon race, a commemorative medal has been produced in a collaboration between SEGAS (the Greek Athletics Federation) and AIMS (the Association of International Marathons).
The medal will be offered for sale at marathon races around the world this year as a special reminder of the huge achievement that is a marathon and the dramatic history of the event.
Athens Classic Marathon will award a completely different medal to marathon runners as they cross the finish line in the Panathenaikon Stadium this year. However it too will commemorate the significant 2500th anniversary of the marathon.