Join thousands of runners and spectators on the streets of London for the Virgin Money London Marathon 2017.
Every year, more than 30,000 people run the 26.2-mile (42.2km) marathon through the streets of London. Last year saw close to 40,000 runners on the starting line, after almost 250,000 people entered the 2016 marathon ballot.
Some run for personal achievement, some to raise money for their favourite charity; and many run in outrageous fancy-dress. Previous years' costumes have included a giant penguin, a London bus, Superman, dinosaurs and a slow-moving snail. The Virgin Money London Marathon is open to all abilities, from beginners to professional athletes. Celebrities who have run the London Marathon in previous years include Princess Beatrice, Gordon Ramsay, Agyness Dean, Ronan Keating and Jenson Button.
London Marathon Route
The first half of the route runs just south of the Thames through Greenwich and Blackheath. After crossing the river on Tower Bridge, runners pass some of the capital's famous landmarks, including the Coca Cola London Eye and the Tower of London, before finishing in front of Buckingham Palace.
With such vast and impressive scenery, it's no wonder the organisers have dubbed it a "historical jog around London".
History of the London Marathon
The London Marathon was created after the former Olympic champion Chris Brasher returned from running the New York Marathon. He was so inspired by the sight of more than a million people from different cultures united by this one challenge, he felt London had to have its own marathon.
After months of studying the race organisation and finances of big city marathons, Brasher established the organisation's charitable status. His vision was realised on 29 March 1981 with the inaugural London Marathon. It was an instant success.
London's Marathon: For Fun and Charity
Each year, millions of people watch and cheer from street corners and London pubs. You could call it London's 26.2-mile street party!
Whether you're supporting from the sidelines or sweating it out the road, at the end of the day the winners are the charities. Between 1981 and 2015, participants raised £716 million and the race holds a Guinness World Record for one-day charity fundraising, a record it has broken each year for the last eight years.