You cannot mention Odense without mentioning Hans Christian Andersen. The famous Danish fairy tale author was born in the city, and it now does everything possible to keep his stories alive. So does the H. C. Andersen Marathon, in Denmark called the HCA Marathon, which is named after the writer. The route resembles the scenery from one of his fairy tales; there are characters from his stories on each kilometre sign, and you might even spot him cheering for you on the route. But that is far from everything that makes this race like a fairy tale. “Odense is completely flat, which is one of the reasons why we have a very fast route.