The Saint Charles streetcar line has been running since 1835, making it the oldest continuously operating streetcar line in the world. Now, in 2016, as we jog throughout the city, along the lines of this historic New Orleans icon, we can feel the age of the dirt beneath us and the vibration of the streetcars as they approach and pass us. What a unique addition to a morning run!
While it may seem easier or more convenient to get our daily exercise “out of the way” on the treadmill at our hotel gyms, something about New Orleans’ distinct opportunity to run along these historic trails is enticing and exciting enough - for us at least! - to force ourselves to go outside and take the extra time to exercise. After seeing the beauty of this running route, you’ll realize that there is much more to exercising in New Orleans than just “getting it out of the way.” Done correctly, working out in this city could even be the highlight of your trip!
Running along the streetcar line has many advantages. For starters, it’s almost impossible to get lost! Just continue along the same streetcar path, and it should be a straight shot :) Secondly, hearing and feeling the streetcar rumbling up as it slowly but surely approaches your fast-paced feet is a unique experience that only New Orleans can offer. Make sure you’re alert though and not too plugged into those headphones - while the streetcar driver will never run you over, we can guarantee that he’ll blare his horn impatiently until you get out of the way! Thirdly, running on softer dirt and grass paths benefits your joints much more than running on concrete or any other solid surface does, so give your ankles, knees and hips some TLC with this route.
The final, and possibly the most crucial advantage of running along the streetcar line: when you get tired, or hungry, or thirsty, you can hop on the streetcar for a mere $1.25 and have one of New Orleans’ most iconic and oldest forms of transport zip you away to any of the local poboy or daiquiri spots along famous Saint Charles Avenue. Now that you’ve gotten your exercise in, it’s time to laissez les bons temps rouler! (Which means, let the good times roll!)
Here's where you want to start. Now run away from the French Quarter and enter the Lower Garden District! Here's a link to the Google Map featured below.