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Great Hakka Marathon

The Great Hakka Marathon takes place among century old Hakka roundhouses, close to the city of Xiamen in Nanning Country (Fujian Province).

Situated 2hrs by car from Xiamen, you will experience perfect air quality, century old folk traditions and unspoiled landscape, making it an ideal location for a marathon. For runners who want to leave the the hustle and bustle of the city for the cosy life of the countryside with its rice paddies, tea plantations and water buffalos, the Great Hakka Marathon makes a unique weekend getaway.

The setting of the Great Hakka Marathon is against the backdrop of the beautiful Hakka roundhouses, recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

About the Hakka Houses

After the Great Wall of China, the roundhouses built by the Hakka people spread all over Fujian province, are amongst the most famous and precious architectural treasures of China, and regarded as one of the most iconic tourist attractions for visitors to the country.

The Hakka roundhouses – called ‘Tulou’ in Chinese, literally meaning earthen buildings – are large, enclosed and fortified earth and stone structures of rectangular or circular shape with walls up to 1 meter thick, which are often three to five stories high and can house communities of up to 100 families.

The unique structures resemble small fortified villages and offered their inhabitants protection from plundering and war for centuries. Today, there are still more than 20,000 Hakka roundhouses of varying size and condition that can to be found among the lush, subtropical mountain landscapes of Fujian and Jiangxi.

In 2008, a total of 46 Fujian’s roundhouse sites – of which some of the finest examples are located along the race track of this marathon – were recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage sites, and described as ‘exceptional examples of a building tradition and function exemplifying a particular type of communal living and defensive organization in a harmonious relationship with their environment’.

The Hakka roundhouses are a must-see even for experienced China travellers, and the Great Hakka Marathon offers the opportunity not only to visit and experience them, but also to enjoy a great run in this unique scenery and atmosphere.

Here is some feedback from the Great Hakka Marathon:

‘This was the nicest run I have ever done. I am sure this marathon will become a very popular race in the future.’

‘I was very happy and impressed about the race. Everything was very well managed and planned.’

‘Let me congratulate and thank you for the event organisation. It was really a special one and fits perfectly with your GWM race.’

‘It was a very nice run, actually the most beautiful I have ever been running, and I will for sure be back.’ 


The marathon route will take in the famous Hakka roundhouses (Tulou), follow ancient mountain paths, pass through romantic village lanes and winding roads.

As the route passes through Xiabanliao village you will notice a square Hakka House or tulou on the right and one of the iconic, round Hakka Houses on the left. The road follows a wide valley with the river on the left. On both sides you will have great views of the mountains and terraced fields. While there is a gradual downhill on this section, you will be facing some sections on uphill running during the gradual descent.

Part of the marathon course is on cobbled and unpaved surfaces and country laneways and the final 9km of the marathon traverses the mountains, before descending to the finish line in Hekeng Village.

The Half Marathon course is on the same course as the marathon, before doing a u-turn and heading back to the finish line. The Fun Run course follows the marathon course, turning for the finish line just before the 8km mark.

Click here to view the course map.


Half Marathon


Entry to the Great Hakka Marathon must be purchased in conjunction with a travel package and is not available as an entry only option. 

Start Time & Race Day Schedule

  • 6:00am     Transfer from hotel to Race star
  • 7:15am     Warm up, Race Briefing, Opening Ceremony
  • 8:00am     Start of Races
  • 10:00am   Lunch served at the finish venue
  • 12:00pm   First bus transfers to hotels - shuttles run continuously throughout the afternoon
  • 15:00pm   Cut off time
  • 19:00pm   Bus transfers to celebration party
  • 21:30pm   Transfers to hotels

Lunch is provided for participants.

Cut Off Time

7 hours

Water Stations

There will be water stations at approximately every 4 kilometres along the route. Some stations will also serve energy drinks and bananas. All stations provide bottled water.


Medical assistance is provided prior to, during and after the race.

Bag Storage

Bag storage is available at the race start. Do not check anything valuable or fragile in your bag as the Great Hakka Marathon is not liable for any loss or damage.Bags must be checked in no later than 15mins prior to the start of the race.


Weather in mid November is usually cool and dry, with little probability of rain.Average temperature is 15-23 degrees.


2019 Great Hakka Marathon 3d/2n Itinerary

Day 1:  Arrival

Bus transfer from Xiamen to Nanjing Country (2½hrs)
Bus transfers 14:00, 16:00, 18:00, 20:00, 22:00
Race packs will be handed out today

Day 2: Race Day!

6:00     Transfer from hotel to race start in Nanjing county town
7:15     Warm up
8:00     Marathon and Half Marathon start
8:20     Spectator buses to the finish are
10:00   Lunch served at the finish venue
15:00   Race cut off. Transfer back to hotels
19:00   Transfers from hotel to Celebration Party
21:30   First transfers back to hotel

Day 3: Sightseeing and Departure

Breakfast at hotel
09:00  Sightseeing tour, to the famous World Culturla Heritage site, Hakka House area
10:00  Buses depart for Xiamen (2½ hours) for those not on sightseeing
11:00  End of sightseeing, back to hotels
13:00  Bus departures to Xiamen. Stops at the airport and railway station

Great Hakka Marathon 2019 Entry and Accommodation Packages

Join us in the beautiful tulou area for the Great Hakka Marathon.

Entry to the Great Hakka Marathon must be purchased in conjunction with a travel package and is not available as an entry only option. 

All packages are inclusive of your transfers, race entry and celebration party. As well as the Great Hakka Marathon Weekend Package we are offering the opportunity for you to spread your wings in southern China and explore the local area. You will be absolutely stunned at the location of this marathon and be seeking more once you’ve had a taste of what the area has to offer.

3d/2n Great Hakka Marathon Weekend 

From $590pp twin share, $730 single


  • 2 night’s accommodation in a local 3* hotel
  • Breakfast daily
  • Guaranteed entry to the Great Hakka Marathon (or Half Marathon or Fun Run)
  • Marathon Celebration Party, inclusive of beer and soft drinks
  • Medical assistance by specialised medical team (race day only)
  • All transfers on race day and for the Celebration Party
  • Guided tours
  • Airport transfers on arrival and departure in Xiamen


  • International flights
  • Items of a personal nature during your stay, eg alcoholic drinks, snacks, etc
  • Optional sightseeing tours, not included in your itinerary
  • Chinese Visa
  • Travel insurance (mandatory for all travellers) – for your peace of mind RunFun Travel offers travel insurance to cater for all your travel plans. Please contact us for further information or obtain a quick, obligation free quote by clicking here
    Contact us directly for a further 25% discount on your travel insurance!



RunFun Travel is a fully licensed travel agent and can assist you with:

  • Flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Overseas SIM (phone) card
  • Airport transfers (where not included)
  • Overseas car rental, driving routes, suggested stops along your way
  • Ongoing transfers and travel plans

Please contact us for an obligation free quote that will enhance your trip and we’ll make sure you run the time of your life!

Booking and Deposits

An initial non-refundable payment of $350 is required to secure your Great Hakka Marathon travel, entry and accommodation package.

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