Best Walking Shoes: 2007
Foot-loose and fancy-free is not so easy in the wrong shoes. What are the best travel shoes for you and why?
Read the Distillation: Best Walking Shoes, 2005
- Please don't post questions here. Use our Travelers Helpline.
What is the name of the style?
It would be so much more helpful if everyone would include the style name along with the brand name.
SULPHUR SPRINGS, TX USA Sat 12/29/2007
Best Walking Shoes
I wore Dansko clogs for most of my trip to France-they were fine, until I hit the cobblestones in Carcassonne. I got huge blisters, because my feet slipped around too much in the shoes. I bought a pair of lace-up Mephisto "Slackers" 8>D , which were perfect for the uneven surfaces of the walled city.
San Rafael, CA USA Fri 12/28/2007
Shoes PLUS socks make it!
Have travelled Europe extensively for past 7 years. Swear by Reiker (European Walking Shoes - lightweight but supportive) and also take a pair of Merrills as backup. (Sometimes it does rain and one needs dry shoes.) Also, try Coolmax socks -- no stretch, no creeping, wick moisture away from your skin. These socks can make the difference in "marginal" shoes, though now that I've found Merrills and Reikers, I never have "marginal" shoes.
Arkansas City, KS USA Tue 12/25/2007
Keens were perfect
My husband and I bought closed toe Keens two weeks before we hit Italy for 9 days. We barely broke them in. We wore them every single day walking all day long and did not ever get a blister. Our feet felt great and the shoes were perfect for all types of terrain and weather. There was zero "breaking the shoes in." I wear them ALL the time now and they are my best shoe purchcase ever. We are now Keen lovers for life.
Tulsa, OK USA Fri 12/21/2007
Walking in running shoes?
I don't know anything about running shoes other than the fact that some are under 13 ounces(for a men's 9 medium, which is the standard men's sample shoe). It is hard to find walking shoes that are under 13 ounces each. From past experience, I tend to like the lightest shoes the best.Anyone here care to comment whether certain lightweight running shoes might or might not be good for long distance walking?
NY, NY USA Tue 12/18/2007
Best Walking Shoes
LL Bean Outdoor comfort mocs! Very affordable at $36, yet stylish and comfortable too! I wear them around town and am looking forward to wearing them in Italy next fall.
Tucson, AZ USA Thu 12/13/2007
Salt is very damaging to shoes
If you are out in the snowy weather and get salt on your shoes, wipe it off as soon as possible with a damp paper towel, then wipe the shoes again with another damp paper towel to be sure that all the salt has been removed. If you don't do this, the salt may eat into the leather and permanently damage the shoes.
One other point. Waterproof shoes are waterproof for plain water. I once made the mistake of walking near some swimming pools in waterproof shoes. The pools were heavily chlorinated, and the chlorinated water caused the soles of the shoes to fall apart before the end of the day! If you plain to walk near swimming pools(or to walk on the beach), I suggest that you wear rubber beach shoes rather than wearing waterproof leather shoes.
NY, NY USA Sun 12/09/2007
There are also shoe reviews at
Buzzillions.com product reviews
I am still looking for detailed reviews and specifications(including weight)and comparisons of walking shoes that are similar in price and function(ie comparing models of waterproof dress walking shoes to other models of waterproof dress walking shoes that are similar in price).
NY, NY USA Sun 12/09/2007
Zappos does give the weight for some shoes, but for many others it doesn't list it. They have reviews, however most are not direct comparisons to other models. Many reviews on Zappos are for example I like Rockport shoes and I like this model of Rockport shoes as well. I find reviews like that not very useful.
NY, NY USA Sat 12/08/2007
Getting data on walking shoes?
I have been searching the net for data on walking walking shoes and not having much success. It would be nice to find a website that lists the most popular walking shoes and lists their weight, and comparisons between different models that are similar in price. There are some sites that do have reviews of some shoes, however rarely do comparisons appear. For example, it would be nice to see a detailed comparison of the Rockport World Tour Classic, Encounter, Prowalker Classic, New Balance MW901UBK, and some of the New Balance running shoes when they are used for walking. Comparisons of weight, durability, comfort, etc. would be nice. One thing I have noticed is that I tend to like the lightest shoes the best, and tend to be able to comfortably walk faster and walk a longer distance before becoming fatigued in ligher weight shoes. The insole used with a shoe is very important, and a good very lightweight insole can greatly improve how a shoe performs. For example, the Rockport classic Prowalker when used with its original insole is good, but when used with a Rockport Aero 3 insole it is excellent.
NY, NY USA Fri 12/07/2007
Best walking shoes(for women)-Rockport
Re: Best walking shoes(for women)
Why do many women think of Rockports as being men's shoes? Some of Rockports most popular shoes also come in women's sizes, or in a model for women that is similar to the men's model. Rockport also makes models just for women. I find it strange that when I mention Rockport shoes to some women they immediately say that Rockports are men's shoes.
NY, NY USA Sat 11/24/2007
shoes for walking in Europe-Rockport
For men, any of the black soft leather shoes approved for U.S. Postal service workers are good. Sometimes those shoes, at discounted prices, are advertised in the mail-order catalog of The Sportsman's Guide. One of those shoes, that I have, is the black Rockports. Stiff when new, so wear them for several momths, to cause them to fit better, before you walk all over Europe. Black is a good color for men's shoes in Europe. And many men wear black casual shoes in airplanes.
MO USA Thu 11/22/2007
Rockport shoes for men.
One kind of shoe that is certainly good enough to be the only shoes that a person wears in Europe, for most men, is the old Rockport Prowalker. (not the Rockport "World" shoes that have the word Prowalker at the rear of the shoe. The Rockport "World" shoes are European style, that means the shoes fit tight at the top of the foot: uncomfortably tight for most men). Old Rockport Prowalker shoes are comfortable for many years. After thousands of miles of walking, if the insole is firm, because of being compressed by weight from your feet, put a new Dr. Shoals foam insert in the shoe.
MO USA Thu 11/22/2007
Great Walking Shoes! Ecco
After years of traveling to Ireland, Scotland, England, & even here in the states, in all kinds of weather conditions, the best all around walking shoes that work for me is: Either the Ecco "Sea Walkers"(4 colors: abt $150) or the Ecco "Tracker IV" (low top, blk or brn..abt $190)) I'm sure there may be a few others who may disagree, but if you get the right fit, & can spare the wee bit extra $$, your feet will thank you, & you'll have a great trip..wherever you travel. The comfort, the quality, the proven excellent reputation of Ecco over the years, speaks for itself! Try one of these crafted shoes..before you buy! Happy travels & happy trails! Jack
Chesapeake, Va USA Thu 11/22/2007
Re:Rockport Shoes For Men
Re:Rockport Shoes For Men
I have a number of different Rockport models, including the classic Prowalker 7108, the Prowalker World Tour Classic, and the new Rockport Prowalker On Road. The classic Prowalker 7108 and Prowalker On Road look much like a sneaker, and have perforations to help ventilate the shoes. That makes them more suitable for use in hot weather and not as well suited for use in colder weather. I have been using the classic Prowalker 7108 for over 15 years. The 7108 is quite a good shoe, however the insole it comes with is quite inferior to the Aero 3 insole which comes with the Prowalker World Tour Classic and the Prowalker On Road. The Prowalker On Road looks very much like the classic Prowalker when viewed from the top, however it has the same sole and insole as the World Tour Classic. The Prowalker 7108 is also noticeably lighter in weight than the World Tour Classic, while the Prowalker On Road seems to be between the two in weight. I took a Rockport Aero 3 insole and used it to replace the insole in the classic Prowalker. This made the shoe realy great. My recommendation would be to buy the Prowalker On Road for use in the hot weather(unless you can get the classic Prowalker much cheaper, the you can buy Rockport Aero 3 insoles separately perhaps at around $12-15?). I would buy the classic Prowalker again if I coluld get it very cheaply, otherwise I would buy the Prowalker On Road. For use in colder weather though, I prefer the World Tour classic. For use in the rain, the Rockport Durant or Rockport Dunmore would be a good choice. They are part of the Rockport "Works" series which are waterproof and have Vibram soles. The Durant looks more like a dress shoe, while the Dunmore looks very much like the classic Prowalker. The Durant seems to cut a bit wider though.
As for the fit of the clasic Prowalker vs the World Tour Classic , I don't find very much difference in the fit between the two.
NY, NY USA Thu 11/22/2007
Dankso, Dansko, Dansko...nothing more to say :)
Chicago, ILlino USA Sat 11/17/2007
Don't forget to polish new shoes before you wear them the first time. This will help protect the leather, and help them stay in good shape much longer.
NY, NY USA Thu 11/15/2007
Anyone tried Paul Green shoes?
Has anyone tried "Paul Green" shoes? I tried some on at Nordstrom's in a style called "Savy" and am wondering if they would be good for a 2-week trip. For a shoe to be comfortable for me, I think it needs a lot of cushion/support on the bottom since walking a city for hours in the wrong shoes takes a toll on the feet and overall energy level.
San Diego, CA USA Wed 11/14/2007
Just returned from Italy and wore the same pair of black Merrell's this year as I wore last year. I also have worn them on a couple of other trips in this country. There just can't be a more comfortable pair of shoes and, believe me, I have tried many brands! I will probably retire them now as they have given me many miles of rugged service and are starting to look a little worn. I also wear another style of Merrells to work and have a couple of pair of Merrell sandles. You just can't beat them! Yes, Crocks are great around the house and yard but, you won't catch me out in public in them!
FL USA Tue 11/13/2007
Best Walking Shoes-Impo sandals
I hate sneakers! You can't wear them with a skirt or dress without looking dorky. And I like to take skirts because they are lightweight, comfier, and dressier than pants. My last comfy pair had worn out, and I was lucky to find a pair of sandals made by Impo. I could climb hills and stairs, with or without hose or tights. I think I will buy another pair now for when these wear out!
Torrance, CA USA Tue 11/13/2007
I bought a pair of Mephistos at the Rue Cler shoe store in August of 2007. I'd just completed the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage from St. Jean to Santiago - a distance of 500 miles. I needed something besides boots or sandals for my aching feet, and the Mephistos were great - probably the most comfortable pair of shoes I've ever owned.
Ridgefield, WA USA Wed 11/07/2007
Great Shoes- Crocs
i bought a pair of Crocs Celeste shoes last weekend, walked miles, no problems at all. i have wide feet, and these were wonderful. more mainstream looking than most crocs, too.
Carrie L Roe
Pacific Grove, CA USA Mon 11/05/2007
Ecco Gore-tex hikers
To: Warren (Jack)Voth...You are soo right about your comments about the benefits of the popular Ecco Gore-tex Hikers! However, you didn't tell us which style you were referring to. Ecco makes several, including both the "original" Track II Hiker,and the newer model, the Track IV Goretex hiker... both are light weight, & waterproof.(high or low top)They are avail in both Bison brown, or basic black. (abt $200) They sure do work for my feet, & keep me "comfy" in any type of weather, or on any footing...whether here in the States, or walkin "High & dry" on my frequent travels to Scotland & Ireland. Please see my postings on Best Walking Shoes..on Apr 23, 2006 & Jan 29, 2007..Happy travels!..
Chesapeake, Va USA Sun 11/04/2007
Gel insole caution
Be advised: Gel insoles are not allowed on flights. If the screeners notice them, you'll be stuck! If you have gel insoles, keep your original insoles in your carry-on.
Columbus, OH USA Fri 11/02/2007
Best Walking Shoes - Ecco
My best ETTBD shoes came from the Walking Store in Fashion Valley, San Diego. I had actually only planned to buy some travel socks, but the salesperson, a savy twenty something gal, asked me where I was going. I said I am going to walk across Europe, I think! She said check out these Ecco hiking boots. I said I am leaving in three days and I don't have time to break in a new shoes. She said, "Try them on. If they feel good, they are broken in." I did and they did! I wore them every day for almost a month. Ecco boots are very light, GoreTex lined and dry, with great Track soles that love cobble stones and stairs. For me, they are the perfect travel shoe and the only pair I took on my trip. A little pricy maybe, but I don't drive my BMW on cheep tires either.
Warren (Jack) Voth
El Cajon, CA USA Fri 11/02/2007
Best Walking Shoes-Stonefly or Geox
One brand: STONEFLY
Second choice: Geox
WA USA Fri 11/02/2007
I heartily reccommend Clark's Regina. They are an ankle height boot, waterproof and lined but not too hot. I tromped for three weeks through bigger cities (Dublin, Galway & Cork) and through a LOT of fields and castles, even rode a horse in them in Dingle and loved them so much. Not a great show for dresses but so so good for everthing else/
Seattle, WA USA Mon 10/29/2007
Backpacking Shoes - Ahnu
Backpacking thru Europe for three months I found my Ahnu shoes to be the best. Indestructable, Waterproof, nice enough appearance to wear to the opera, and the break in time was under a week.
Krakow, Poland Sun 10/28/2007
walking shoes - SAS
Just came back from my first trip to Europe. 7 days in London and 1 day in Paris. This would have been impossible without my SAS (San Antonio Shoes) Freetime walking shoes. I am very heavy and have small feet (size 4-5 wide) so getting something that fit and supported was a great boon to me.
Salem, OR USA Thu 10/25/2007
Walking shoes - Postal Shoes
I worked as a city letter carrier for 2o years. I had my postal shoes for the trip, I even bought my husband a pair. Our feet didn't hurt the whole trip and it was 30 days of walking. If you are interested in purchasing a pair you can get them at any uniform shop that has postal or police uniforms.
Ney, Ohio USA Thu 10/25/2007
I have had problematic feet for ages. Last winter I wore a pair of "walking" shoes (I THINK they were Easy Spirit, but am not positive) while spending a week in Koln Germany and then in Paris. My feet were so blistered on the soles that I would wake up to puss oozing out of them. For my trip to Italy next month I went to Nordstroms where I was properly fitted and found that I had been wearing shoes that were nowhere near the right size. I had been buying 9-1/2-10's and it turns out I'm actually an 8w, BUT my foot is "taller" than normal so the mary jane styles I'd been choosing won't fit in the strap area despite fitting properly everywhere else. The girl who helped me was so patient and brought out everything that they had in my size that would be good for walking in - there must have been close to 20 pairs. I ended up with a pair of Danskos "Gretchen" and have been wearing them for the past 2 weeks so that they'll be broken in properly by the time I get to Italy. So far I have not had a single blister and these have got to be the most comfortable shoes I have ever put on my feet. I really think the fit is what makes the difference and am so glad that I took the time, and spent a little extra money, to go to Nordstroms and have someone who has been properly trained help me find the right shoes for my feet.
Sacramento , CA USA Mon 10/22/2007
Good shoes - Propet Washable Walker
For women with double wide feet, shoe options are slim. But the Propet Washable Walker did a great job on Paris streets. Shoes are lightweight but sturday, and the colors - blue or beige - avoid the white-boat-shoe look.
Torrance, CA USA Sun 10/21/2007
Want great affordable walking shoes?
The US Postal Service does extensive testing of walking shoes and issues a list of approved shoes for postal workers. Why not choose a shoe on their list? These shoes aren't typically stocked in regular shoe stores though. It is easy to buy them on the net though. The New Balance Postal Shoe is a very popular postal shoe. If you do a Google search you will see that some places even sell it for under $70. The NB Postal is very light(13.1 ounces per shoe-I guess that is for a men's 9 medium), has great cushioning and also great support. You can also find reviews of the shoe by doing a Google search. I already wore out one pair of NB Postals(it took a very long time!) and am about to start using my secong pair. I have been a long time Rockport user and have also tried Timberland and Clarks lightweight shoes. The NB Postal is a very special shoe though.
NY, NY USA Sun 10/14/2007
Never underestimate the power of socks
I agree wholeheartedly with those advising GOOD SOCKS! absolutely crucial. I like smartwool. I have 2 or 3 different styles for different levels of cushy-ness. They all have a supportive band around the instep that is a little tighter. This helps with sore arches/heelspurs AND keeps the socks from shifting around. I wear them in all seasons.
plummer, idaho USA Fri 10/12/2007
walking shoes & inserts
A good pair of walking shoes is great, but what really helps a lot is inserts. Gel inserts, or they sell athletic type inserts at sporting good stores. Saves the feet, calves, shins, ankles.
Poulsbo, WA USA Fri 10/12/2007
Best Walking Shoes - Birkenstocks
If i'm doing mostly city travelling, i.e. paris, barcelona, rome, florence, venice, etc, i swear by the standard, old school birkenstock sandals. (3 straps).
i see other folks recommend sneakers, but i don't want my feet cooped up all day in an sneaker that doesn't breathe.
if i'm going to somewhere more rugged, i.e. costa rica, i'll bring my water-proof sandals instead.
As with any new footwear, break in very well at least a month before going on your tripm otherwise, you'll find yourself with blisters for sure.
san diego, ca USA Wed 10/10/2007
Nike Free Shoes
I'm surprised no one has mentioned Nike Free shoes. Blisters have become nonexistent in my world since wearing them for over a year. They come in running, cross training, walking, and hiking styles and the colors are completely customizable online if you want. I've used cotton socks with them, even, and still my feet were fine. Highly recommended!
USA Mon 10/08/2007
I took a 3 month vacation at the end of last year with Paris as my home base. I must have walked, on average, at least 15 miles a day over that 90 day period with my $30 Sketchers Klone sneakers. Most comfortable shoes I've ever owned. Here I am a year later, and I'm still occasionally wearing them! The tread is all but gone, but they're still comfortable. I'm planning a 6 week backpacking trip for next spring, and I'm seriously considering getting another pair of the same shoes for the trip.
San Francisco, CA USA Sun 10/07/2007
Comfortable walking shoes- Merrell
I just returned from 4 weeks in Eastern Europe. I've had foot problems for several years, so imagine my surprise when I was able to walk comfortably in my Merrell Via 111 sandals, with no blisters, etc. They felt so good that I ordered another pair when I returned home.
Tunkhannock, PA USA Fri 10/05/2007
walking shoes - New Balance
I used one pair of brown New Balance AL-1 Country Walk shoes (about $70) for the entire month of June traveling in Europe. They were attractive, inconspicuous, and comfortable. I walked so much I lost 2 lbs in spite of the fact that I ate two whole baguettes almost everyday.
Vallejo, CA USA Thu 10/04/2007
Best walking shoes - Croc
My husband and I both purchased Croc sandals for our recent 2 week trip through Italy and absolutely loved them. They were extremely comfortable, good support, not clunky looking at all. It got very warm somedays, and they kept our feet very cool. If they mark me as an American, so be it. After seeing every race of humanity , the least of my worries is looking like an American.
Laguna Niguel, Ca USA Wed 10/03/2007
Best Walking Shoes/Ecco Cosmo Sandal
Hands down, Ecco Cosmo Sandals are wonderful for late spring through early fall. My feet are "European" in that they are wide (great for swimming!) and most so-called "comfort" shoes are a bust for me. I'm still searching for a good winter walking shoe that is attractive. My Ecco Shakers are great, but not for long walks.
West Lafayette, IN USA Sun 09/30/2007
walking shoes-Keen sandals
Keens for walking during the day and a pair of dressier Rieker sandals for the evening. These were the only shoes I packed for a recent trip to France and Italy. Over different terrain, for long periods on my feet, both shoes provided great support and comfort.
Tacoma, WA USA Sat 09/29/2007
walking shoes - Merrell
I spent 3 weeks in Ireland and Italy this summer and I wanted to look somewhat fashionable and be comfortable. I ended up wearing Merrell Barrado leather in Ireland and Merrell Savannah sandal in Italy. They were perfect. They were not clunky but were very comfortable.
San Diego, CA USA Tue 09/25/2007
Shoes - Keen & Venice sandals
Keen Walking Shoes - Venice Sandals. We walked all around Italy, Florence, Rome and Sorrento, we walked pretty much from 8:30am to midnight every day and my feet never hurt, never throbbed! Every day I was so glad for my shoes, they where the best investment of my whole two week vacation! That and luggage with 4 wheels!
Highlands Ranch, CO USA Mon 09/24/2007
I love my Clarks. I just bought some cute, flat but funky Clark Unstructured from the Walking Company and logged in 30+ miles of walking in London over five days with nothing needed but some band aides for my ankles. (I get blistered easily.) My feet overheat and, if you do, don't wear them in weather above 70 degrees. Otherwise they were fabulous. I really liked my Clark Privos as well and they're cute, although they don't offer quite as much support.
I must say something about dress here: as much as I worry about not dressing like a European, I should not have and agree with the previous poster about a good attitude being more important than clothing. Many Euros dress just like normal folks. Still, big white sneakers should be relegated to the gym at all times. IMHO. (-:
Seattle, WA USA Mon 09/24/2007
Keens are fabulous
My Keens were(and still are) the BEST shoes ever...I wore the suede Mary Jane type with the strap that crosses at a diagonal. I just returned from two weeks in England and Ireland and was on my feet daily for at least 8 hours with several miles each day of walking. I never had sore feet or legs. I didn't wear them through the tall wet grasses of Ireland--reserved some old sneakers for this--but they were perfect for everything else. Love them.
Mill Valley, CA USA Sun 09/23/2007
My Finn Comfort sandals saw me through Berlin, Prague, Vienna and more. The Mephistos that I'd brought along as an alternative completley let me down. The Finn Comforts kept me going. I like them so much that I've bought a pair of their clogs for winter. I'm stunned that there's only one other post on these shoes. They are worth every penny.
MADISON, WI USA Tue 09/18/2007
Socks are as important as the shoes...
Everyone writes about shoes, but the right socks are just as important. Do NOT wear cotton sox - go for acrylic or wool such as SmartWool. (My dad was a competitive tennis player and taught us this early; he played before acrylics were invented and always wore wool, even in hot weather.) I shared this with a friend who thought her shoes were the problem; when she switched from cotton to acrylic her feet didn't hurt anymore. Cotton threads just cut into your skin.
Cincinnati , OH USA Sun 09/09/2007
I highly recomend going to The Walking Store, if you have one in your area. The staff are wonderfully trained and the selection is amazing. Everything is specifically designed for (bet you can't guess) comfortable walking. I tried on about 8 pairs of great shoes and settled on a pair of Merrell's Plaza Bandeau. My husband bought Clark's Uncoil. Both pairs can dress up or down.
Chicago, IL USA Sat 09/08/2007
Shoes for Europe - Crocs & Asics
Don't even buy into the "blend in & you'll be treated nicely" spill. I just returned from Europe for 3 weeks (went all over western Europe), and what gets people to treat you nicely is YOUR ATTITUDE. Attempting to speak in their language is a must - even if "hello" and "do you speak English?" is all you know, and of course a smile always helps! :) If you go over there acting like an ugly, arrogant American, you're not going to be treated well...no matter what you have on your body!
While on my trip, I wore Crocs, my Asics Gel Kayanos and some Clarks sandals (Sunspots I believe is the name), all of which are sold all over the world - and yes, some Europeans had them on. So don't even bother trying to blend - Europe is actually more eccentric with their clothing & shoe choices than America. I don't expect Europeans to buy a new wardrobe to come to America, and they certainly don't expect it of you either. Just hang on to your goodies and dress comfortably - a "Blister Medic" kit helps alot too - you'll need it after all that walking!
Philly Burbs, PA USA Wed 09/05/2007
Heavyweight walker - Keens & Brooks
Just back from a 4 week experiment that included two weeks on a Rick Steves tour. I weigh 275 lbs and I walked at least a half hour every day for 4 months before the trip. Then I bought two pairs of shoes a month before the trip and switched back and forth between them: a pair of black (with ridiculous yellow accents)KEENS close-toed sandals and a pair of bright white BROOKS strong-support walkers from a local shoe guru at The Everyday Athelete. The plan was to beat the heat of Italy by wearing sandals when it was hot. Result was happiness but for unexpected reasons. The BROOKS walkers were absolutely necessary for all the heavy walking and standing days and performed admirably. Luckily August was unusually cool and cloudy when we were in Italy so sandals were left for easy days or when "dressing for dinner". Conclusion: The most important thing by far was to have walked every day for four months before the trip followed by the need for a strong support, well-cushioned walking shoe to stand up under my weight. The sandals were nice to have and felt cooler but did not provide nearly the comfort on hard surfaces day after day. Have fun and take some gold bond foot powder if you are traveling in hot weather (I even sprinkled some in my underwear)
Kirkland, WA USA Wed 09/05/2007
KEEN walking shoes
Took Athens/Heart of Greece tour in June, and we walked and walked, often over very rough, stony areas and up and down stone steps and gravel. We wore KEEN shoes and were glad we did, as they took us everywhere with no problem. Certainly one of the best walking shoes anywhere. Great place to get them in Zappos - order several to try on - shipping BOTH ways is free!
Gahanna, OH USA Tue 09/04/2007
Walking Shoes - SAS
American made SAS walking shoes are the best for comfort. I just spent 19 days in Austria and Germany and did not have a problem with my feet. My feet even stayed dry in the rain.
St. Louis, MO USA Tue 09/04/2007
Ecco and Clarks
I have very sensitive feet (easily blistered plus I have flat feet), and I am always on a quest for the best travel shoes. I have tried all sorts of shoes. So far, I've found the best shoes for me were Ecco Cosmo II sandals, Clark's Privo Vault, and Clark's Mallo sandles.
Baltimore, USA Tue 09/04/2007
Mary Jane Crocs Work!
I just returned from a trip to France and UK, and loved my Mary Jane Style Crocs. I bought a pair in black, to be less conspicuous, and found them to be extremely comfortable as well as versatile. I wore them with socks and without, which I couldn't do with my other walking sandals. And also I used them as shower shoes. Also felt they looked "dressy" enough to wear with a casual skirt. I probably could have used them as my only pair of shoes for this trip!
Crocs are being marketed heavily in UK, but I didn't see many people wearing them (yet).
Calgary, AB Canada Mon 09/03/2007
Sandals for Women - Dnsko
The best sandals I ever bought are Dansko. They are made in Portugal. (made in Europe, but I bought them here) I have used them to Trek through much of northern Italy, Sicily, Switzerland, and even Hawaii. They have a thick rubber sole that absorbs the shocks of the cobble stone streets, and a good enough if you need some stable footing. Mine are black and strappy, so I could put on a simple black casual dress. If you need to wear more of an athletic shoe, go with the athletic inspired walking shoes from Privo or other brands. If you wear true athletic shoes or crocs you will look like a complete tourist, but then again you are so... But, if you want to blend in just a bit, then go with something that both Americans and Europeans wear...the world isn't that big. The more you try to blend in the better you'll be treated...might sound unfair, but it's reality.
Milwaukee, WI USA Sun 09/02/2007
Keen Mary Janes
I also wore Keen Mary Janes throughout Italy during our vacation. I cut out the hidden elastic strap across the top before I left because I knew my feet would swell. I wore the thin discretely hidden foot socks inside to keep my feet from sticking. The foot socks didn't show at the tops at all. I tried several brands to get them totaly hidden (trial and error before travel).
I also took a pair of black Merrell slides which worked as bedroom shoes, sandals for the agritourismo and looked fine with black slacks. I wore those when we weren't out for really long walks.
Chapel Hill, NC USA Thu 08/30/2007
Crocs--pros and cons
For me, here's the pros and cons:
Pro: very cheap, comfortable, wide toe box, orthotic friendly, non-skid on wet surfaces, absorb shock on uneven surfaces like cobblestones, extremely lightweight for packing and toting purposes
Con: "Classic" Crocs can be a bit hot in steamy weather, look goofy to many, probably can't be worn in the nicest restaurants.
Mixed: May mark the wearer as an American, though recent empirical evidence throughout Europe seems to show that Europeans--at least young ones--are adopting them too.
Bottom line: Wear what makes you comfortable. If they clash with your sense of style or you have formal dress occastions planned, you'll need something else.
Seattle, USA Wed 08/29/2007
ACTUALLY, I saw lots of crocs in Germany last summer. And there are new and interesting styles available.
pacific grove, ca USA Tue 08/28/2007
Crocs are still stupid
It doesn't matter how many Crocs you see around the world...they are still a stupid looking shoe and belong in the garden or around the pool, and not as touring shoes for anyone with style or taste.
I am comfortable in REAL shoes when traveling...just as I dress cleanly and tailored when traveling. I don't have to "blend in" in Europe, but I still want to represent myself in a manner that reflects my tastes and style.
CO USA Tue 08/28/2007
Crocs for the clueless American
As for looking like a clueless American tourist for wearing Crocs Europeans already know you're an American, clueless or otherwise. Just like you can pick out a German Frau by her clunky jewlery or an Italian man/woman by their chic cloths (which frequently they have 7 sets of rotating them through the week - Monday is Gucci, Tuesday is well, whatever.) I wear my Crocs on the plane (easy on that security screening thing), as hotel shoes etc. Good walking shoes are a must in Europe but you can give your walking shoes an occasional breather (literally) wearing Crocs during a day of museum touring. Looking like a American! Da, you are. Smile, be friendly and appreciative - that's what really matters!
San Diego, CA USA Mon 08/27/2007
Been wearing Mephisto Altinas for about ten years now. LOVE THEM! They are dressy looking sandals. Great walking/hiking shoes as well as looking good enough for dress up, too. Can walk all day for days on end. Legs and hips get tired, but the feet are still going. It's kinda like walking on clouds. They aren't cheap, but they are WELL worth the cost. Got my last two pairs in Venice...now how fun was that?! And, less expensive than buying them here at home, too! Just another good reason to go to Venice. :)
WA USA Mon 08/27/2007
Best walking shoes. Naot Sandals
I purchased a pair of black Naot Sandals, named "Paris" and that is where they went, spending hours and hours walking every day. Nice looking , definately can wear them with a dress, or jeans! We must have logged 10 to 15 miles a day. Feet never hurt,, but must admit my knees started to go after yet another stair climbing session..LOL>..
Naots are great for narrow feet, alot of other " comfort" shoes can be too wide for narrow feet.
USA Sun 08/26/2007
Shoes! Chacos & Merrells
I spent 9 days in Greece and I wore my Chacos and a pair of Merrell's that were a cross between a hiking shoe and a sneaker. Between the two, I never was lacking for the footwear I needed.
Chicago, IL USA Fri 08/24/2007
Shoes are only as good as your feet...
Reading through all these comments only brought me back to my original thought: a good walking shoe will only be as good as your feet will let it be. After all, your feet have to carry around all of you plus your backpack and the three different kinds of tortellini you had for lunch. I'm the medical office manager for a podiatrist in the Bay Area and I see a lot of patients in pain because they voted for style or fad over comfort. Their feet became reformed from the styles and it isn't a pretty site to live with. In searching for walking shoes, I always allow room for the metatarsal and phalanges spread (middle of foot to the tip of the toes). Walking 10 miles a day for 7+ days will start to reshape any foot (think of the corsets in the 19th century). The closer you feel like the shoe is a perfect glove, the better. It shouldn't be loose or too snug. It should fit the plantar (bottom) portion of your foot and give support that follows your normal instep. Granted, there are some who have "problem" feet. If you have foot pain, or have ever been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis or pes planus, it would be a good idea to try orthotic inserts. For very painful cases, a custom made orthotic 97% of the time will work wonders. Order or buy these months before to make sure they will be compatible with your feet. I took Rick's advice and broke in my walking shoes months before our departure date. The I LOVE COMFORT line from Sears gives plenty of cushion, but the life span is shorter that ECCO or KEEN. I try to look for European walking shoes that I can try on instead of ordering. Only your feet can tell you if you've got the perfect fit or not. After working for years in the medical field, I've found it's your feet that let you love to roam in Rome. Like THE MAN says, "Keep on Traveling!"
San Carlos, CA USA Wed 08/22/2007
Ugliest, most embarassing fashion statement in recent memory
Crocs...the Ugliest shoe ever massed produced and bought by tourists. I mean, come on, these are shoes for the garden or the kitchen, not something you want to wear around on your vacation! Could there be more ridiculous thing to put on your foot and walk around Paris, Rome, London, or Athens in?? Nothing screams "I am a clueless American tourist with no taste" more than these hideous "shoes". I can't wait for this phenomena to pass and people get back to wearing sensible shoes that are also somewhat fashionable. You don't see Europeans wearing these train wrecks and when you look back on your photos in a couple of years, you'll be rushing to learn Photoshop in order to airbrush out these eye-sores. TIP: When you plan a your trip to Europe, expect to walk more ona regular basis than you do at home (if you ever do) and just bring some normal, comfortable shoes...don't buy into the idea that you HAVE to wear Keens, Crocs or some other gimmick just because you are coming to Europe. Remember, you're visiting cities, not hiking through the outback. Have some taste.
Montecatini, Italy, ITALY Mon 08/20/2007
I have Keen Boston's (a closed shoe, not the sandal) in black. Have worn them throughout Florence and London. I took some lovely vasque hiking boots to Florence but never ended up wearing them. The keens were lighter and more comfy, and less obtrusive. Am headed out on a canal boat trip soon and will take the keens again. Don't know what I'll do when they wear out...the new styles don't fit the same way.
Plummer, ID USA Mon 08/20/2007
Keen walking shoes
We just got back from 14 days in Paris and London and I have to say my new Keen walking shoes saved me! I got the new Mary Jane style in black, which worked for everything from miles of city walking to light hiking to dressing up for a play in London. Had a hard time finding them locally, but ordered them through LLBean - and then found them all over London once I got there!
Tallahassee, Fla. USA Sun 08/19/2007
Walking Sandals - Ecco & Teva sandals
Just got back from Rick's 17 days in Italy tour. You walk a LOT, including (if you choose to do so) walking miles and miles of towns along the Cinque Terre. I cannot emphasize enough how important comfortable walking shoes (or sandals in our case in hot summertime) are to enjoy your trip. My husband hiked merrily along in his Ecco sandals and I in my Teva 'Ruggeds'over rocks and cobblestones without ever twisted our ankles or getting any blisters. We DID witness people on our trip slipping on damp cobblesones in Venice (humidity)and some people had to use moleskin on their blisters, because of taking the wrong shoes. At night for walking around town I changed into a lighter weight but still very comfortable sandal by Naturalizer, called 'Montealto', which are not just comfortable but cute too and they got lots of compliments. They have an adjustable cross strap, which is attractive AND practical, and look great with skirts, pants and shorts. All of these sandals were bought on Zappos. (In my opinion)You can't beat them for customer service and selection.
Seattle, WA USA Thu 08/16/2007
Crocs in the Rain
This July in northern France it rained spontaneously quite a few of the days I was there. Once on a Paris street, and again in Blois...both of those times I was wearing my Crocs. As I stood under an awning, waiting for it to slacken to a drizzle, a young woman sploshed up in her black leather ballet flats. She and the shopowner, out watching the downpour, watched sadly as she pulled them off. Her feet were dyed black on the soles and the shoes a dripping mess. While earlier I tried to not notice my clunky Crocs amidst all the stylish footwear surrounding them, it was certainly nice to squish off a few minutes later with no worries. Also, on hot sunny days when you've been walking forever, it sure feels good to stick your feet under a stream of water in a fountain, Crocs and all- instant refreshment and they dry instantly. I alternated wearing them with my Keen sandals (which take longer to dry and feel clammy when wet)for days with big cobblestones. They are a wonderful back up pair to take on your trip. Also, they are selling for 30 euros in beach stores there!
USA Mon 08/13/2007
Another Recommendation for Privos!
Another vote for the Clark's Privos - I wore them most of the RS Paris & Provence tour in July. Comfort and style - I have a size 5 wide foot and these shoes were the best! I had little black sockettes that I used when walking long distances and they blended in so that they were almost invisible. I wear them without socks around home now.
I also wore my black Birkenstock "flip-flop" style sandals when I wanted a dressier look
Canada Sun 08/12/2007
Dr. Martens Men's Jed 7 Eye Shoe
Sorry, I'm one of those people that think the current trend in active footwear looks like pinatas on your feet. Boots were out of the question because of previous experience & the need to be able to remove them quickly. These Doc Marten's shoes are well-made, stylish and my feet never had a problem in 2 months. In fact, I am still wearing them at home. A++++ (good socks, from REI, were a necessary addition - don't cheap out on Target tube socks)
Seattle, WA USA Fri 08/10/2007
Having spent the summer living and traveling all over Europe I can tell you that I wouldn't have made it without my Privo's! They look great and function well as walking shoes in all kinds of weather. When I need to dress up a little they also work with skirts (and little booty socks.)
UT USA Wed 08/08/2007
Good Shoes - Lands End All Weather Mocs
The best walking shoes that I've found are Lands End All Weather Mocs, $20 at Sears, I walked at Gimmelwald, Dachau, and around Paris. They were great, light weight and comfortable. Wear good socks, my feet only hurt once when I wore a thinner dress sock with them, otherwise my whirlwind 12 day trainriding trip was great with these shoes!!
Franklin, Ohio USA Mon 08/06/2007
Discovery !!! Best Footwear for travel
Converse is now making military spec boots for our troops in the middle east. These boots are FABULOUS. They are designed for hot climates but keep you warm in the cold as well. They are optionally available with a zipper side (which I highly reccomend for security screening ease) and can be ordered with a composite stealth safety toe is you desire. Let me tell you, these boots are amazing. They are super light. Available in 8" or 6" and the best part is the shock system. I think I could jump out a 2nd story window and bounce. They are amazing. I just wore them on a 12 day trip through Egypt, Turkey and Greece and they were so amazing I'm wearing them everyday now. They don't look like combat boots and if you pull a pant leg down over them, they are VERY low profile, looking like any other timberland type 'casual' out-doorsie shoe. Search the internet for "converse tactical boots". 8895 are the ones I have but any of them are AWESOME. Available in black and tan, with or without composite safety toe, with or without zipper, and all are totally non-metallic. They are CHEAP too. in the 80-90 $ range.
Florence....kentucky :(, ky USA Sun 08/05/2007
On a recent trip to Japan, I opted to use only a pair of Keen sandels, as that they were grey, a pair of black ankle high running socks, turned them into a more formal shoe at night, but by day they were the perfect walk all over, trails, city streets, and bullet train companion. Plus being that June is thier raining season, with temps in the 70 - 80 range, they easily dried, as to the lack of fabric. My wife on the other hand opted for some pink and white scetcher sandles, again, socks can make them formal enough for a dinner out.....
Portland, OR USA Thu 08/02/2007
Crocs All Terrain
I don't travel during the summer so I've been searching for shoes that cover the whole feet. I've fallen in love with Crocs All Terrain shoes. They don't look bad with jeans (bootcut, at least), they cover the whole foot, and they are waterproof (and of course are very comfortable). Additionally, I have two pairs of Keen trailrunning shoes that I use for exercise and everyday wear that I love as well. However, I'll be traveling this fall with my Crocs.
Durham, NC USA Wed 08/01/2007
best walking shoes - Ecco & Siebel
I have done quite a few trips to Europe. I have used Ecco and my favorite is Joseph Siebel. We usually walk about 10 miles a day. The Joseph Siebel shoes are great if you have a wider foot - lots of toe room.
Tarpon Springs, FL USA Tue 07/31/2007
I have to agree with the Chaco sandles. I have been to Europe twice in them and they still look decent have not worn out. I have even hiked the Alps in them. They have a nice arch support to them and traction on the bottom of them. I have walked miles in them and wouldn't trade them or wear any other shoe when I do any type of traveling/hiking.
Puyallup, WA USA Sat 07/28/2007
I wasn't sure about the Ryka Versa (Mary Jane style). I use Ryka's for exercise, but the Mary Jane's looked awfully clunky online. When I got them, though, they turned out to be a CUTE pair of shoes. I was sooooo glad I had them when we spent three days in a row walking on cobblestones. The traction was great and I never slipped. The black ones looked good with all my capris and they didn't look like exercise shoes.
Arnold, MO USA Thu 07/26/2007
Great Shoes - Daniel Pliner & Cole Haan
When we visited Italy and France in mid March to Mid April. We love to walk and did a lot of walking, at least 10 miles a day. My wife wore Daniel Pliner and loved them, says she could not have walked that much without them. I wore Cole Haan high tops with the air sole and was very comfortable.
San Anselmo, CA USA Thu 07/26/2007
Great walking shoes - Keens
I have Mortons Neuroma on my left foot and my food doctor told me to throw away all my shoes and get something with more support and bigger toebox. I bought myself some Keens and they are wonderful. Hiked the Cinque Terre and Sud Tirolean alps in Italy, as well as several cities and my feet are quite happy. I could almost hear them singing "Grazie, grazie, molto buono" as I walked.
Annapolis, MD USA Wed 07/25/2007
Happy feetEcco & Merrell
We just returned from 18 days in Italy. I was concerned about my feet and read these recommendations. I tried Mephistos but ended up with Ecco Yucatan sandals and Merrill light hiking shoes (along with a pair of Merrill thongs). I was very happy with all three; we walked at least 6 miles a day, and my husband was the only one with foot problems (he had no concerns beforehand!)
Quincy, CA USA Thu 07/19/2007
Chaco's... WOW..They avoid the "Hey! I am a tourist look". I stomped around Italy and France in these great looking yet extremely supportive sandals. The best thing about them, no need for socks, and they dry quickly when immersed in puddles or streams!
Issaquah , WA USA Wed 07/18/2007
I just got back from a month in France and a few days in Germany, and my Ecco sandles were on my feet every day. They look like Mary Janes, so not as clunky and touristy as tennis shoes, and great for cobblestones!
Seattle, WA USA Tue 07/17/2007
Crocs and other shoe stories
Michelle, I just ordered a pair of Crocs Patra online and I have high hopes for them! They do indeed look much nicer than the clubby clogs. I happened to develop plantar fasciitis a couple of month ago, and I leave for Europe on August 16. I have to heal fast, so I switched to Crocs. They are the most comfortable shoes for problem feet. I also got a pair of Crocs Relief which are clogs designed specifically for problem feet. I also love my new pair of Dansko Maribelle - they looked god-awful on the photos and in my hands, but oh miracle - on my feet they look cute! And the comfort is unmatched. So I think between the two pairs of Crocs and these Danskos I will be ok. No, I won't be able to wear my hand-made Italian delicate beauties - sigh - but on vacation I've got to go!
Concord, CA USA Tue 07/17/2007
BEST SHOES: for women: Keens - Mary Janes. Flat, no stacked heel, but with good Keen arch support. I walked all over Italy, 3 weeks this summer, and they always looked great and felt wonderful. Wore them by day and even out for dinner; Italians commented positively about them, said they looked European. I bought them at a terrific independent shoe store, Mirage Shoes, in Wallingford neighborhood, Seattle.
Seattle, WA USA Mon 07/16/2007
My 2 cents on CROCS
I love my crocs!! Crocs now make a ton of new styles not just those holey clog kind. Ladies, there's the new Patra which is like a sandal. Its actually dressy looking and I wore it with my sundress, shorts and pants. To top it off, its slip resistant which works very well when walking those cobblestones. Word to those with wide feet: Patra style run a bit narrow. They do stretch but don't be shocked if its snug when you first try it.
USA Fri 07/13/2007
good shoes - New Balance
New Balance Country Walk shoes worked well for me. I probably averaged 4 miles per day for a month in Europe. They are attractive too.
Vallejo, CA USA Thu 07/12/2007
Freaky Ugly Comfy Shoes
I scoured the shoe racks for a comfy pair of shoes that would let me save my money for my two week trip to Paris. I took two pairs, and after the first four days walking non-stop, I gave in and wore my HIDEOUSLY freakish looking off-brand crocs. My feet stayed dry and had plenty of room to swell as I sashayed down the Champs-Elysees in my ugly comfy shoes.
Lexington, SC USA Wed 07/11/2007
KEENS ARE SIMPLY THE BEST!!
I recently came back from a 3 weeks stay in Spain. I used my KEEN shoes and fell totally in LOVE with them. They are simply the best. Great arch support. We walked/hiked all over 13 cities in Spain and at the end of each day my feet felt refreshed, never tired or blistered! http://www.zappos.com/n/p/dp/15392490/c/529.html
Houston, TX USA Tue 07/10/2007
Just purchased Propet "Twilite" Mary Janes for October trip. Never heard of them before, but they were the cutest Mary Jane I could find. :o) Any experiences with this shoe? Open to other suggestions, but my left foot is an 8 1/2 and right foot is a 9---so shoe must have an adjustable strap. (love the Merrell's Tetra Sprite, but they are not adjustable). Thanks.
Staten Island, NY USA Tue 07/10/2007
Keens were the only shoes my husband took for 21 days with lots of walking.
Horicon, WI USA Sat 07/07/2007
Easy Spirit, Free your Feet
My favorite walking shoes are Easy Spirit Traveltime clogs. They feel like slippers and come in both regular and wide sizes. Plus, they are CUTE!!
Fremont, Ca USA Thu 07/05/2007
UK Shoes - Keens
My brother and I just spent 2.5 weeks walking all over Britain. I wanted to take Rick's advice and only bring one pair of shoes. I went to REI and was convinced to buy a pair of Keens. I LOVE THEM! I never had a blister or callous after logging over 100 miles. I wouldn't have done it any other way.
Houston, TX USA Thu 07/05/2007
Shoes - Aravon
Andrea - my neroma history is the same as yours and so I'm always on the outlook for shoes that allow me to walk for more than an hour.
Try Aravon shoes - they are made by NB but come in (cute) sandals and dressier shoes. Also, Keen shoes with their wider front allow more 'wiggle room'.
North Vancouver, BC Canada Wed 07/04/2007
SAS can't be beat for comfort!
When I went to England the first time back in 1997, I knew I would be doing a lot of walking, so I went to a shoe store that specialized in good walking shoes. Since I am a woman with a 12W foot, I was recommended to try SAS men's since they would have had to special order the women's in my size. OMG! Those shoes were the best! The toe box area is roomy and your toes and the front of your feet will never feel pinched. I must have walked close to 10 miles a day all over London for a week solid and my legs gave out before my feet did. I have been a faithful SAS customer since. My SAS got me through sight seeing in Italy and when I've had to do trade shows in Las Vegas for work where I do 10 miles a day running all over those massive convention halls. I have a narrow heel and a wide ball of the foot, so if your feet are equally hard to fit, go SAS. If you buy them with enough time before your trip, you can get 12WW in women's since that is what I wear now.
Castro Valley, CA USA Tue 07/03/2007
CORRECTION to SOCKS post
Sorry about that. The correct url for the Berlin socks is socksfox.com/#
Fort Collins, CO USA Wed 06/27/2007
Falke's Berlin Sensitive socks
Just a suggestion for those who may be planning fall and winter trips. I so agree with those who say your socks are almost as important as your shoes. By accident when I was in Berlin about 5 years ago, I just happened to buy the greatest socks at KaDaWe. They are called Berlin Sensitive made by Falke. www. sockfox.com# No I don't work for them or this web site. These are especially made for women (however, they also make men's socks), and Berlin Sensitive are very fine, thin wool. I just love them and the first 3 pairs lasted about 5 years. Earlier this year I bought 6 pairs and have been wearing them all spring. Unfortunately, they are pretty expensive--about $15.00/pair. When I originally bought them they were about $9.00/pair.(Our poor dollar:)
Ft. Collins, CO USA Sun 06/24/2007
Skechers Energy in Wide
Comfy, Comfy, Comfy!!! I bought these Skechers in a wide to wear in Europe. I also have them in the medium with but the wide ones I wore with black slacks for almost 29 days straight and over 100 miles. (I am sure I did at least 50 of them on the Rick Steves City tour of Rome!!!) I did use an over the counter set of orthotics so I am not sure about the support but it was hot in Rome and snowing in Bavaria and my feet stayed happy. Since they are almost all black, they are very low key. Along with my dark clothes I must have fit in well because I was asked directions in Italian, by an Italian. I didn't wear them with my jeans, though, they were a little too chunky to wear with my straight jeans but that didn't matter, I took only one pair of jeans. I did take along one pair of black lofers to wear with my jeans for dinner at night but I ended up with a blister from them but these Sketchers were the best!!!! Again... VERY Comfy.
South, FL USA Sun 06/24/2007
Clark's Privo shoes
We went to Italy recently and I bought myself a pair of Clark's Privo shoes.
Then, only 3 days into a three week vacation, I sprained my ankle in Assisi. We iced it for a couple of hours, put a tensor bandage on it, etc.
The next day I managed to hobble slowly about Assisi for hours and, with the eventual help of lots of ibuprofen and a compression bandage from an extremely halpful Italian pharmacist, I walked just as much as I would otherwise have done. I wouldn't have been able to do this without my Privos. They cushioned my bad ankle so well.
And in Venice I fell in a canal. I rinsed the leather Privos and let them dry for a couple of days. They were none the worse and served perfectly for the rest of the trip.
I would highly recommend them, and they come in several colours and funky styles.It's the shoe that all the clerks in the "healthy shoe" shop were wearing when I bought them!
Burnaby, BC Canada Thu 06/21/2007
We just got back from Italy. On the way there, the airline lost our luggage, so I had to buy an extra pair of shoes. I went to a chain store called Stefan and bought a lovely pair of espadrilles for 12 Euros. They were perfect for walking on cobblestones. They were light and breathable and didn't get stinky the way Tevas do. I could wear them with both dressy and casual clothing. I will definitely bring them on future vacations.
Naples, NY USA Wed 06/20/2007
My daughter and I each wore the Teva Sandals and the Teva tennis shoes for 8 weeks in Europe. Still no smell 2 years later.
The most comfortable shoes we have worn. My daughter has feet that normally start hurting after a few hours of walking or hiking. They do not hurt her feet.
Another shoe we rely on are the Birkenstocks.
CA USA Wed 06/20/2007
My best walking shoes are red and white with orange flowers. People always comment on them and that is a wonderful way to start a conversation.
USA Wed 06/20/2007
Wear what is comfortable
Wear whatever is the most comfortable for you - you are going to be walking A LOT and the enjoyment of your trip absolutely depends on your feet being happy.
Europeans don't really care what you wear, just as North Americans don't really notice what others wear on their feet. You are going to be seen as a tourist anyway, so wear the NB shoes if you want.
Cayuga, Canada Tue 06/19/2007
HELP - I have a neuroma and wide feet and so far can only wear NB sneekers, both at home & at work. Yes, I have also had the operation and still can only wear NB. Now I'm needing a dress shoe and having difficulty finding anything I can wear that's comfortable. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks,
NY, NY USA Mon 06/18/2007
Best Walking Shoes - Clarks
Wear your most comfortable walking shoes but take one extra comfortable pair with you (sandals, flats, whatever). Your feet will thank you. I took my white leather NB (yes, people wear white in Europe) but wished I had my grey NB running shoes because they breathe and leather shoes don't. I was glad I had my Clark's Privos to give my feet a breather. When the weather is snowy (we had 16" in Murren in June), the leather shoes came in handy as they kept my feet dry. Always take two pair of shoes!
Keizer, OR USA Sat 06/16/2007
Walking shoes - SAS
I wore my SAS loafers during my entire trip-very comfortable and they come in a large size range (I wear a woman's 12B)
Norfolk, VA USA Thu 06/14/2007
Paul of May 22, 2007
USA Sun 06/10/2007
For the Narrow & Overpronating Feet!
I have the above-mentioned feet - narrow & overpronating (i.e., they roll inward toward each other), so it can be REALLY difficult to find supportive shoes.
I found ASICS to be fabulous! The Gel Kayano line comes in narrow (& wide) & is great for overpronators!! I can only wear ASICS now - any others cause me lots of pain!
For my sandals, Birkenstocks are the only ones I found that I could wear. They have a footbed that supports your foot & makes u walk correctly. I tried a billion other sandals & none of them except the Birks kept me from rolling inward into the sandals' straps & were narrow enough.
So if u have crazy feet like mine, try these 2 out!!! :)
Yardley, PA USA Fri 06/08/2007
I have travelled to Italy for 2 years in a row walking all day uphill and downhill through cobblestone streets - For both trips I have worn Mephisto AllRounders - they have been super comfortable and suitable for museums, restaurants and the eyes of style-conscious Italians! I found them through a site called Most-Comfortable Shoes.com - I notice that this web site also has a Comfortable Walking Shoes Top 10 List for 2007. http://www.most-comfortable-shoes.com Most Comfortable Shoes
New York, NY USA Fri 06/08/2007
For a trip to Ireland in May, I bought Northface - don't remember which model, but they're mid-height to support my ankle. I wanted something waterproof, but when I got over there I was told I needed "Wellies" to hike the bogs to get to some standing stones. Anyway, they're very comfortable shoes for street walking and great for hiking in Colorado too.
Denver, CO USA Thu 06/07/2007
Several years ago I had a pair of Tevas that got quite stinky. Someone recommended I put them in the freezer, which I did (sealed in a plastic bag). Left them a week or so, and they came out great. Apparently it freezed the bacteria that cause the smell. Plus, I assume you know Keen sandals are washable--our family washes ours all the time, and that helps too.
USA Wed 06/06/2007
I meant it FROZE the bacteria (I teach grammar so I couldn't let my own typing mistake go by)
USA Wed 06/06/2007
K- i bought a pair of Keen Sanndals, and have been wearing them non-stop since. Had a little discomfort with them rubbing one of my toes- but that went away...absolutely the most comfortable shoe I have. One thing tho- any tips on de-funking them? They do get a little stinky....
Issaquah, WA USA Tue 06/05/2007
Comfortable Sandals the look great!
I found Clarks (Artisan Line) Jasmine on Zappos (best online shoe company, no tax or shipping and you can send them back as long as they have not been outdoors, with no return shipping). Jasmine look great with pants/shorts/skirts AND are so comfortable. Look very like Ecco at half the price. For a more dressy sandal for evening AND comfortable, I bought Hush Puppies 'Serafina' (also Zappos). Sorry all you Keen fans, except for the Mary Janes, I think they look too klunky with skirts, and PLEASE no socks with Keen sandals and capris!!! :-)
Seattle, USA Mon 06/04/2007
Best Walking Shoes - Noat
NOAT - They are pricey but well worth the support, comfort and ease especially walking all over Paris!
Vero Beach, FL USA Mon 06/04/2007
Best Walking Shoes - New Balance
Wear what is comfortable and supports your foot well. And make sure you break-in your shoes for at least two weeks prior to your trip. My favorite shoes are athletic shoes. I have a narrow foot and those fit best. You can get New Balance in brown and black if you object to white. Across Europe, the UK, China, and the Caribbean, athletic shoes abound. They are everywhere now.
Denver, CO USA Fri 06/01/2007
Great walking sandals
I LOVE my Merrell sandals! I have a wide foot, so I ordered a man's sandal. We went to London and the West Midlands and did miles of walking and I never had a problem with these sandals. I switched to tennis shoes for our last weekend and got blisters, toe cramps and leg pain that I never had with my sandals.
Big Bear Lake, CA USA Fri 06/01/2007
My SIL swears by her Chaco's. I have been hesitant, because I have very wide feet, and can't find my size. But I heard that the men's are wider than the womens.
USA Thu 05/31/2007
I love my Keens. Buy them a half size larger, though, because they run small. I have the Seattle (Mary Jane style) and the Newport H2s. I'm leaving for Europe soon and I hate wearing socks during the summer but I thought about taking the Mary Janes. Any idea what kind of socks would go with them? I don't want to stick out if I have capris on.
USA Wed 05/30/2007
Another Hurray for Crocs
My wife and I just got back from hiking the Dales Way in England. We packed our stuff on our back, so I wanted a light weight shoe to wear in transit and at the end of each day. I picked up a croc-like sandal from Target for $10. They weigh only 8 ounces. They worked out wonderfully. They were so confortable that at the end of the trail I hiked another whole day in the crocs alone.
Salinas, CA USA Wed 05/30/2007
For two weeks in Italy and all walking/public transport, I loved my Reikker ballet-style shoes with adjustable cross straps. Yes, I DID wear very low cut, white quick-dry socks and it made a BIG difference. They knew I was American anyway, so who cares? I took a pair of Dansko clogs, but found that with all the cobblestones/ledges/stairs I tended to turn my ankles.
Carbondale, CO USA Wed 05/30/2007
Keens are the best!! I just got back from 2 weeks...and wore them everyday!
Sarasota, FL USA Tue 05/29/2007
DANSKO Shoes Rule!
I recommend Dansko for comfortable walking shoes. I have a very bad back and flat feet, and these are fantastic shoes. They are orthopedically approved, but there are some really cute styles and colors available for those of us who still want to look hip!
Colorado Springs, CO USA Tue 05/29/2007
I recently spent 3 1/2 weeks walking all over Europe. I wore a pair of Privo Sofritos by Clark's, and they were great. Not only were they very comfortable, but they looked great too.
Texas USA Sat 05/26/2007
Clark's has an "artisan" series which are a little dressier. I have a pair which I think are called "Crocodile". They have nice padding right under the heel, good arch support, and even a little padding sewn in to the strap that goes across the achilles tendon!
Seattle, USA Thu 05/24/2007
Just returned from three weeks in central Europe, where we did a great deal of walking every day. I took along Crocs for the airplane and going down the hall to bathrooms. However, I ended up wearing them every day for the entire trip. My feet never felt tired.
Enumclaw, WA USA Wed 05/23/2007
Paul- I'm with you on the socks and sandals! I can't believe the teenagers were doing that for a while. ACK!
As for my favorites I have to give a shout out to Tevas. I bought a pair of hiking sandals 3 years ago and wear them nearly every day all summer. They've been through rain, mud, waterfalls, and they still look and feel great. I did buy a men's though because the arch fits me better. Don't be afraid to try on both.
IN USA Wed 05/23/2007
Siebel and Keen...a happy marriage
They may be, let's face it, rather ugly, but I love love LOVE my Josef Siebel Eliza sandals in black. I swear they are like hugs on my feet. I did Germany, Austria, and Switzerland in these babies last summer and I intend to take them for a whirlwind around Italy this summer.
I also ADORE my black Keen sneakers. They are so comfortable and lightweight and they make me feel like being active. They are also kind of funky and attractive (I think anyway).
I am still searching for a comfortable but dressier sandal or sling-back to wear for evenings.
Tulsa, USA Wed 05/23/2007
best for comfort
For my feet, the most comfortable shoes for miles of walking are New Balance 992 (sneakers) and Ecco Cosmo II sandals. I've tried many of the products listed on this board, but in my opinion, nothing compares to these for comfort.
North Hollywood, CA USA Wed 05/23/2007
Walking Sandals & Blisters
I just got back from a 3 week tour of Turkey where I used Chaco sandals for the first time. They were recommended by my podiatrist for their arch support, which is uncommon in sandals. REI sells them and the salespeople raved about them. I had no problems with my plantars fascitis while wearing them.
I also discovered another essential travel product - BandAid's Blister Block. Blister Block looks like a miniature deodorant stick and you can find it in the bandage section at drug stores. You rub Blister Block on your feet where there is friction and your skin is coated like teflon so sandal straps don't rub. I used it daily and couldn't believe how effective it was. After 3 weeks with the new sandals I had no blisters.
Orinda, CA USA Wed 05/23/2007
Crocs, plus the new style
This is for fellow Croc lovers- or doubters! I, too, plan on taking mine to Europe this summer and have taken to wearing them at work here at home. Now at the end of the day I find my legs are not as tired. I am on my feet all day and in fairly dressy outfits, but I no longer care that they don't exactly match my ensemble! I have them in brown and black. I was excited to try the new sandal style- with two thin straps across the top, intending them for Europe. There is a contrasting colored footbed. Hence the warning to always wear new shoes indoors at least a day- one felt like the typical Croc heaven (and has nifty massage lumpy things in the footbed) but the other side rubbed. They are slightly narrower than the regular style. Sadly, I returned them. So sizing and width can vary within brands and styles, even a tried-and-true that you personally swear by. The recommendations here are wonderful, but no substitute for test driving your selection before the big trip! If they have to be "broken in"- try another!
USA Wed 05/23/2007
socks and sandles....GRRRR
NEVER wear sandles with socks..... I don't care what kind of sandles you get. it screams tacky american
USA Tue 05/22/2007
Best Walking Shoes
I followed Rick Steve's guidebooks through Italy and England in my New Balance 992s with no pains at all and have since recommended them to others who think they are the best shoes they have ever owned. I heard via a riends orthopaedist that the New Balance 800 series and higher have the most supportive insoles of any shoe and biggest toe box. They are grey instead of white as an added bonus.
Atlanta, GA USA Tue 05/22/2007
Re: Chaco question
To give my opinion regarding your question about which kind of Chaco sandals to get, well, I spent a month and a half in Europe wearing the toe hold Chaco sandals. My feet were a tad bit chilly in May, when we began, but by July, I was SO thankful to have the ones that I could wear without socks. They were very comfortable, and I could wear them in water, too, if needed. Hope this helps! Bon Voyage!
Chicago, IL USA Mon 05/21/2007
Chaco sandals - type?
Re: Chaco sandals Which ones are better? The one you can wear socks with or the one with the toe hold? Or Isabella better. Thanks!
Honolulu, HI USA Sun 05/20/2007
For the Hard-to-Fit Foot
If you are hard to fit, consider SAS shoes. I wear a 10 1/2 narrow, a size very few manufacturers even make. But I got a pair of taupe nubuck shoes from SAS that fit perfectly. I walked six miles the first day I wore them without any problem. SAS also makes extra-wide sizes.
Hudson, WI USA Sat 05/19/2007
I have to say that, for non-hiking/hippy type shoes, aerosoles makes pretty but comfy shoes. They're really a great option for us non-earthy, non-sporty but still active types.
bend, OR USA Fri 05/18/2007
Athletic Shoes ( aka Sneakers)
Good old fashion sneakers are still the best walking shoes. My wife and I went to Italy in May. We were told beforehand that you can't wear sneakers, especially white sneakers. That we had to wear shoes or else we'd stick out like ugly American tourists. That advice was so wrong. Everywhere we went in Italy we saw people wearing jeans and white sneakers. And not just tourists. Most of the Italian working people we saw wore white sneakers. The point is: wear whatever is most comfortable for you and don't worry about the fashion.
Boston, Ma USA Thu 05/17/2007
Hiking Socks - Big Yes
Regardless of what shoes you buy, make sure you invest in a few pairs of padded hiking socks that are appropriate for the kind of travel you're doing. I have a great collection of urban walking shoes by Keen, Ecco, Dansko, Tsubo, and the list goes on. As comfortable as they all are, none of them would work if I didn't have the hiking socks.
Pacifica, CA USA Tue 05/15/2007
best walking shoe
Birkenstocks. Anytime, anywhere, any style!
Atlantic Beach , Fl. USA Mon 05/14/2007
Has anyone used Earth shoes for traveling? (I noticed one entry of someone who had used a pair of their sandles and liked them.) I just bought a pair of Earth Shoes - Lazer. The fact that they're so light makes them seem ideal for travel, but I'm wondering if anyone can share their experience using them. Please email me. Thanks!
Santa Barbara, CA USA Mon 05/14/2007
You can also go to a store that carries them, try on different sizes and models, and not buy them there, but order them off the net, where it would be $50-60 dollars less.
Concord, CA USA Sun 05/13/2007
Best walking shoes
I wore a pair of MaryJane-ish style Merrill's every day for 11 months while traveling in Europe in 2004. I hiked in them, walked city streets, trekked through water, wore them with shorts, skirts, pants. I know that I walked in them for hundreds and hundreds of miles. I vowed that I would tout their value on the Rick Steves site one day - it just took two and half years!
Eugene, OR USA Sun 05/13/2007
Nike Sport Sandals!
I went to Germany and Italy in Summer of 2005. We walked A LOT. And in places such as the Roman Forum, Heidelberg, Neuchwanstein Castle (it was raining that day), and my Nike Sport sandals did the trick! I love them! Never had to wear socks, and gave my feet the support of tennis shoes.
San Diego, CA USA Sun 05/13/2007
WALKING SHOES FOR BAD FEET
I am going to Europe for the first time the beginning of June and had really bad feet. Bad toes and heal spur. The lifesaver for me has been my Mephisto Sharks but don't knows if they are good to use on cobblestone and uneven surfaces? What walking shoes do you veterans suggest, thank you.
PHILADELPHIA, PA USA Sun 05/13/2007
MBT by Swiss Masai
If you want to buy MBT shoes online, just like going to a shoe store it is very important that you are fitted correctly with the MBT. Ideally you want some room for your toes since the construction of the MBT shoe is exaggerating your toe-off movement. At the same time you want both of your feet to be securely locked into your MBT shoes.
Since the function of the MBT is to enhance and smoothen transition within your entire foot-strike activity, this causes more movement (and need for precise fitting) than in most regular shoes.
If you are interested in trying MBTs, but have nowhere to go to try them on, the first challenge is to get an accurate measurement of your feet in "European Size" and always use this as your standard for fitting MBTs. For accuracy it is always best to use the sizing of the country of origin (MBT's are engineered and were developed in Switzerland).
So how can you get your correct fit if you are not able to visit a shoe store? How can you prepare yourself to buy MBTs online? Very simple -- www.FeetFirstFitness.com outlines some very basic but excellent online MBT fitting techniques that guarantee you will be fitted with the MBT as professionally as is possible (prior to actually trying on the shoe).
Boca Raton, FL USA Sat 05/12/2007
I also have Privos, and they worked really well when walking through Amsterdam and Paris! My feet were sore after walking through the Louvre all day, but I didn't have blisters, and was fine after resting for a while. The ones I got (Privo Colada) can also look somewhat dressy if you need them to be, although you wouldn't be able to walk into a Michelin 3 star restaurant with them. I don't know if you should get 1/2 size smaller than you normally wear, but it's ok for them to fit snugly.
CA USA Thu 05/10/2007
I love my mephistos but Finn Comfort from Germany are in my opinion the best shoes ever, they fit well and you can walk on them for days. One can't never put a price on comfort both well worth the price. I'm totaly against sandals they may be confy but one stamble and that goes your trip.
CA USA Thu 05/10/2007
Shoe Brands/models- my thoughts
I'd suggest that it is helpful to hear about comfortable brands. Not all models of a brand will fit your foot the same way as the poster. To say that Naot is comfortable is correct, but to say one specific model is best, that's hard to predict. It's all about YOUR foot. Each of us has different issues. Some have high arches, some flat feet, some wide feet, etc. I find it very helpful to hear about experiences from posters here about specific brands, then I go to the store and try the different models to find the one that is to MY liking, not just fit, but style, fashion too!
So THANKS readers for writing about what brand you like, it sure helps me in my search for new shoes!
NYC, NY USA Wed 05/09/2007
Privos size suggestion
I am thinking of trying the Clarks Privos, and was wondering if anyone else would suggest, like another poster Sally, to get a half size smaller. Has that been others' experience also? Thanks!
MD USA Wed 05/09/2007
Crocs are a traveller's best bet
I spent seven weeks backpacking with a college friend through Spain, France, Italy and Greece. Every day we walk a minimum 8 hours and climb to the top of some mountain to see a random basilica or chateau. This could of been very painful on the feet if it weren't for my Crocs. That's right, those rubber-made, weird looking clogs with holes saved my feet on many an occassion. I climbed to the top of the Acropolis, used them on a challenging bike tour of Imperia, Italy and they cushioned my feet as I waded in the water on the stone covered beach of Nice, France. I almost forgot, they were also perfect for sloshing through the flooded San Marco Square in Venice...better than going barefoot like the rest of the tourist. I wore them with skirts, dresses, and pants. I didn't have any blisters and my feet didn't get sore from walking. They are a best bet for traveling shoes. You really only need to bring Crocs on your trip so it will save you valuable backpack space as well.
Blackstone, MA USA Wed 05/09/2007
I very much agree with Christy re Crocs, and take a look at www.crocs.com, the current variety of styles is amazing. The company is doing an incredible job keeping up to date. One does ot have to put up with the bulky basic style, there is so much sleek stuff to choose from.
Concord, CA USA Wed 05/09/2007
I highly recommend Earth sandals! I put miles on them every day while in Italy and France for a month and I was the only person in my party w/out any blisters or lower-back complaints. The leather is very soft (stretches out some, but my foot remained stable in them) and the heel sits lower than the toe, which helps the lower back. I am very style conscious and was even able to wear them in Paris without reservation. Well worth the $$! I bought them from Zappos, which had reviews that I found very helpful when I was buying!
Williamston, MI USA Wed 05/09/2007
The best walking shoes for me are the ones I can wear without socks and get no blisters...for that reason I wear sandals when traveling. I love Chaco as they stay on my feet, the straps can be adjusted when my feet swell from the heat. The footbed is amazing - arch support, etc. The sole is Vibram, so no worries hiking, or walking on slightly wet pavement. And if I should get them really wet, it actually cleans them off and the straps are dry within an hour or so. I don't remember the last time I traveled in the spring/summer months when I wore closed toe shoes! It's Chaco for me!
USA Tue 05/08/2007
Lots of experience
I have worn Eccos all over the world, and I have found nothing better. I have worn them with a tie and sport coat in front of a crowd, and I have worn them with jeans walking on Mt. Blanc. If you can find the "Made in Denmark" Eccos, they are superior to the ones made in Portugal and Thailand. Nothing keeps my back as pain-free, my feet as lively and comfortable, or my hips and knees as at ease. Great traction, support, and cushion. I haven't yet found a replacement, and I'm down to my last Danish pair. Anyone who has walked long miles in Ecco Tracks know of an equivalent quality shoe?
Eugene, OR USA Tue 05/08/2007
Crocs Makes a cute walking shoe at last! Its called the PRIMA, very cute ballerina-shoe soo comfortable! For Cheap Prices you can get on ebay! I got mine for $5
FL USA Tue 05/08/2007
Shoe Brands and Models
Would all posters please specify not only the maker of the shoe, but also the models. It really is of no help to know, for example, that Clarks Privos are comfortable. Privo line has dozens of different models, all vastly different.
Concord, Ca USA Tue 05/08/2007
I bought a pair of the Clark Privos and love them! Very comfortable and more stylish than running shoes. I got 1/2 size smaller because they stretch to fit your foot.
Atlanta, Ga USA Mon 05/07/2007
Sandals - for Anna
Hi Anna: You might look at Dansko sandals. I like the Golden Gate collection. Zappos.com is one site that sells them - and they have customer reviews too, which I always find helpful.
USA Fri 05/04/2007
Hi Angela: Have you checked out Clarks Privo line? They're not Sarah Jessica Parker-ladylike, but their styling leans toward young/fun/athletic. (Don't know whether they come in narrow sizes though.) I particularly like this one, which could work with pants, capris and skirts: http://www.zappos.com/n/p/dp/16240886/c/5393.html
USA Fri 05/04/2007
I also have very narrow feet & it was a challenge to find sandals that would double as casual & dressy for my trip to Europe.
I ordered a ton of shoes from Zappos & tried them all out (free shipping both ways!). The Clarks Katerpill sandal worked out best for me...Clarks were the most comfy overall. (If u don't like that style, they have many more to choose from. However, I was looking for one with a back & an ankle strap.)
Here's the link:
Yardley, PA USA Thu 05/03/2007
I am still looking for comfortable and chick, and so far no luck. I've also bought lots of shoes from Zappos lately, and sent them all back. I have not found a pair that would be both comfotable and stylish, in the way I see style. I love pointy-toed shoes, with a small elegant heel (not square), about 1.5 inches high. I have a nubmer of shoes like this, and they are super-comfortable for my normal daily activities. But I don't think I can wear them all day long walking Paris. I've been trying out at work a nubmer of shoes by Beautifeel, Romika, Merrell, Easy Spirit and the likes over the last few weeks. They are very not-my-style, even my coworkers commented on it! On top of that, even though they are very comfortable during my regular work day, they do not stand up to the full day of being a tourist. Very orthopedic-looking, too. So I think I will take many pairs with me (6 to 7, as it stands now), and will be changing them often. I will be leaving my studio in Paris wearing one pair and tucking another in my shoulder bag, so I can change them without having to return. At least they are all light-weight. So no, I won't be "packing light":)
Concord, CA USA Thu 05/03/2007
What a great site! I am heading to India for a fellowship for a year. I am looking for an open-toed sandal that is VERY comfortable to walk in but has some height (1.5-2 inches) I want them to be secure on my foot but not look too clunky or grandma-ish. You guys really seem to know what you're talking about, so I hope you can help me. Any advice (specific styles please!) is appreciated - help me find the perfect shoe!
San Francisco, CA USA Thu 05/03/2007
Want Cinderella not big dinosaur feet
I am going to Paris for a week this June and need good walking shoes-
wear a size 6 have very narrow feet blister easily can walk in heel or flat don't want grandma shoes
I have checked out many of the brands mentioned here in the mary jane route and they seem so...orthopedic and grandma/hippy. I need some that could go with my preppy capris as well as a skirt. I am looking for comfy, but a small (not dinosaur) looking shoe.
Atlanta, GA USA Wed 05/02/2007
2 shoes for every season
Always take at least 2 pair of shoes. Winter - Ecco boots are heavenly, durable and look good with jeans or trousers. Merrells are the best bet for a second pair. Summer, Clark sandals are very very comfortable and work in cities or on hiking trails. Crocs are also a comfortable but "loud" choice (not worn in Europe) they are also bigger and harder to pack. Timberland makes a great cross between tennis shoes and hiking boots - comfortable and very durable. Don't forget good socks. TEFLON socks are the ultimate - 100% blister-proof.
Clarkston, MI USA Mon 04/30/2007
As a poor backpacker, last summer I shuddered to think of spending precious pennies on Chaco sandals... but they were worth every penny! Every day I was thankful for those sandals. After a month and a half of backpacking, including hiking, I didn't have one blister or callous! My feet felt great and I couldn't think of taking such a trip without those sandals. Get Chacos-- they are SO worth it!
Chicago, IL USA Sat 04/28/2007
Switched to Keen
We used to wear Merrells until we found Keens. You can wear them all day, day after day, without problems. Merrells started giving us problems. Keen offers a lot of great styles on their web site that you can't always find in a store. But...be careful. Some of their styles run normal size while others you need to order the shoe 1/2 size larger.
Denver, CO USA Tue 04/24/2007
I can't find Merrell Phase II anywhere. There are Merrell Phaser Peak, Burst, Inferno, Rush. All of them look too much like hiking boots, I can't see myself wearing them in Paris in August.
Concord, CA USA Sun 04/22/2007
best and most stylish walking shoes
Romika style Isabella are the most comfortable and stylish shoes I have ever worn. I looked for years to find these shoes as most are very ugly on my feet. L like walking miles in total comfort.
Rehoboth Beach, de USA Sun 04/22/2007
I wear the Phase II Merrells. They look a lot like the other styles, but they are all leather and have an extra rigid plastic heal cup on the outside. I've worn mine the last three trips and recommend them for comfort and sturdiness.
USA Fri 04/20/2007
I just bought a pair of MBT sandals. They are expensive - $235.00 but I have a 30 day trial period. Today I walked on them for the first time. They have a rolling motion. Very different. They are supposed to be very good for the body. Just curios if anyone else has tried this brand.
sacramento, CA USA Fri 04/20/2007
Versatile & Tough?
Any recommendations for a shoe that can do some heavy-walking? I'm back-packing for 8 weeks in September and want something really versatile but that can hold up to all the touring. I seen a lot of recommendations for Merrell shoes, but the only ones I've seen are mostly mesh and I want something to keep my foot dry and give me good support. Any suggestions are welcome!
Charlotte, NC USA Thu 04/19/2007
I absolutely recommend Merrell shoes. I have used them on previous European vacations and they have been amazing. Most importantly, I bought them as a gift to my mom who took a month long European tour. First, let me tell you that my mom has suffered from achy feet for as long as I can remember -- no sneaker is ever good enough. She wore her Merrells every single day for a month on a guided tour trip and her feet felt wonderful! I'm now planning a 6 month European trek and have already picked my next pair of Merrells! I know I sound like a commercial, but I (my husband and my mom) absolutely love them. Dillards and now Macy's have a variety of models - beyond the mesh ones you've seen.
Alpharetta, GA USA Thu 04/19/2007
Orthotics? Use them!
For my first trip to Italy I wore a new pair of Ecco walking shoes and they saved the day. Our group was on its collective feet about 12 hours a day and I could not have done it otherwise. By the time of my second trip I had had orthotics [from work] made, added them to my New Balance hiking boots and that enabled me to go from 7:00 am to 10:00 pm, no soreness whatsoever. This was in cooler weather both times, so as for summer I don't know yet. If you have orthotics - use them. From my experience in Italy [over two dozen towns, villages & cities]there is very little in the way of smooth outside surfaces to walk; that usually happened only once I got inside a cathedral, museum or cafe.
USA Sat 04/14/2007
Lower Heels Are Better!
Skechers for example make some good-looking styles of shoes that have very little heel lift - important for long hours of walking over Europe's stone cobbles.
(The men's style Skechers 'Serene' work well for me.)
A clean new pair of Birkenstocks is fine in the summer, if anyway you look neatly groomed and wear newer clothes. It is more about conveying overall respect than hiding your toes.
Birkenstocks have zero heel lift. I like the solid Milano style in black.
Toronto, CAN Tue 04/10/2007
It is funny how people's opinion (and feet) differ. I absolutely can't wear flat shoes, and never could. I have to have some elevation under the heel to be comfortable. If I try to wear flat shoes, I stumble a lot, and my gait becomes strange. I've been buying (and sending back) a lot of shoes on Zappos lately, trying to find chic and comfort at the same time. I definitely keep my new Romika's Mokasettas (I've been wearing them for the last 10 years, same sole and foot bed, different uppers). It is like walking on the clouds. BeautiFeel felt wonderful on my feet, but have to order a different size. Mephisto and Camper went back to Zappos, no go for me. I also have an older pair of Hogans that are super comfortable and oh so Italian-looking, but they are quite heavy. And I am trying to be good and pack light. All in all, I think the key to comfort is to have several different pairs and change them.
Concord, CA USA Tue 04/10/2007
best walking shoes
surprised how many responders seem to take only one pair of shoes; I find trading off every other day gives both ny feet and the shoes a breather
Hayden, ID USA Mon 04/09/2007
Totally agree, travelers should bring 2 pairs of shoes. It is easier on your feet to trade off day to day. I bring one pair of sandals (Chacos that I love) and a pair of "tennis" style shoes.
Go for function over fashion...good arch support, great out sole, etc.
USA Mon 04/09/2007
Hotter brand sandals
About halfway through my trip to England, I realized that the shoes I had brought were not suitable for cobblestones, and I was beginning to suffer from knee problems. I happened upon a shoe store that was having a clearance sale and upon the recommendation of the owner, bought a pair of sandals manufactured by a British company called Hotter. They were the cure for what ailed my feet, and the price was right, only £45 on sale.
Minneapolis, MN USA Sun 04/08/2007
Surprised that nobody's mentioned Z-Coils. Designed primarily for PF, they are terrific for anybody with back, knee, ankle joint pain. I have arthritis and a torn ACL but walked 160 miles across northern Spain in them without any problems. They come in many styles (even Mary Janes). Not cheap, but a life saver.
Chula Vista, C USA Sat 04/07/2007
Just back from 2 weeks in Britain with my Ecco Neoflexors. Put in 5-7 miles a day walking and they were very comfortable even in Scottish highlands. Good soles for slippery steps in castles and looked presentable in cathedrals.
Clovis, CA USA Sat 04/07/2007
I haven't seen Naots mentioned on here. I absolutely love my sandal Naots, and have walked in them for an entire day in Seattle (up and down the hills, in and out of the shopping). They are similar in feel (at least to me) to the Birkenstocks, but a bit fancier. I do recommend breaking them in/getting your feet used to them well before a trip. I started wearing mine again this week, and I feel it a little - no blisters, but occasionally feel a little heat on my little toe. Also bought a new pair, and get the same feeling as the old pair. (Which you really can't tell are "old" so they also don't show wear and tear) By the end of the summer, that will be LONG gone. I am planning on buying a pair of shoes that would be more fall/winter appropriate when they come out.
These shoes would be perfect for someone needing a pair of shoes that would be comfortable all day, but also needing a pair for a "fancier" event such as a concert or play.
DuPont, WA USA Fri 04/06/2007
Birkenstocks Not For Everyone!
You do have to be careful with Birkenstocks, and be sure your feet are right for them. I have a low arch, and these shoes were very painful for me. My Mom has very high arches and she wears them all the time, and will never wear anything else! So we all are very different.
Austin, TX USA Thu 04/05/2007
Chaco Isabella sandals - great support
I bought a pair of Chaco sandals (Isabella) and wore them daily last summer, including a 2-week trip in England. Never a blister, good arch support and you can wear them with pants or a skirt (not super dressy but passable). Great for those with high arches, a wide ball and narrower heel.
Ohio USA Thu 04/05/2007
Best Walking Shoes
I started off with a year old pair of NB walking/cross training shoes...we walked about 6 - 10 miles per day in Copenhagen, Aero, Stockholm and then finally after much suffering, I bought a new pair of ecco's in Helsinki...(I think they are model number 22464)...and the rest of the trip was wonderful. They can double as a decent looking dress shoe (black with a fairly simple looking toe), so apart from my flip flops, I don't need anything else.
San Leandro , CA USA Thu 04/05/2007
I wore my birkenstocks all over Munich, probably put at least 10 miles on them daily. I swear by these, no problem going into churches...and hey, maybe it made me look more German :-) So comfy! I plan to do so again this year in Paris and Prague!
Houston, TX USA Wed 04/04/2007
NEW BALANCE W/ROLLBAR
NEW BALANCE 926's are my choice. I got a pair for our first European trip a year ago and they were fantastic. I wore them 10-12 hrs. a day for 3 weeks with no problems. (Of course had broken them in first.) My feet got tired, but never hurt, and my back, and my 3-month-old faux knee didn't ache enough to slow me down, either. They come in both women's and men's sizes, in white, black and gray (leather), and one style has velcro straps instead of laces. The Rollbar inside is what saves my arches. I also wear these shoes to work nearly every day (I'm a teacher) and they are holding up just fine. Hubby and I are hoping to return to Europe a year from now (yep, we've been bitten by that travel bug!) and I plan to get another pair of NB 926's. For more info, go to nbwebexpress.com
USA Tue 04/03/2007
Dansko Mary Janes and LLBean Mary Janes
My Dansko Mary Janes have a section of elastic on the strap, so it has "give." The only time I ran into trouble with the strap was when it tore off, about two years ago (the shoes were 4 at that point). I took it to a shoe repair and had it stitched up for $6 (a minimal "tune-up"), and it has stayed on since. The elastic stretches about 1/2 inch.
The other day, a friend had gotten a new pair of velcro-strapped Mary Jane sneakers from LLBean. That may better serve some of the folks with high-arches, as it seems the velcro gives you more control. The strap is also in a stylish sideways-V. She said they felt good and I'd be curious to know if anyone has tried them out on an extensive basis.
Seattle, WA USA Mon 04/02/2007
I sympathize with the person with the hight arch with pointy bone on top. I have a very high arch, high instep and pointy top bone. I usually have a lot of pain from the tops of my shoes. The Keen Vancouver Mary Jane style was very comfortable the first moment I had them on. If you can get past the funky looks, they are really good for walking everywhere. Read the reviews for them on Zappos.com. I typically wear a size 7 and they run true to size for me.
Santa Barbara, CA USA Thu 03/29/2007
Merrell Mary-Janes were perfect for me. I bought mine at Nordstrom and wore then almost every day of our 2-week trip. I was worried about the strap too, but Merrells have thick straps with some elastic. Try them.
Seattle, WA USA Wed 03/28/2007
Keens are comfy and alternative lacing techniques
So nice to see a topic that has been on my mind for the last few weeks.
After my sneakers gave out, and realizing I would be heading to Italy in 4 weeks, I started to look for replacement shoes. After 4 days of trying practically everything on the walls, I finally found the Keen Targhee II Mids.
I have a narrow heal and a normal forefoot, but my baby toe always gets squished. Not in these babies! With the low top version, my heel slipped too much. But with the mids (high-tops) I can get that heel to stay in place and they are SOOOO comfortable! It's a light hiking shoe, so getting off the beaten path is no problem, and I feel they offer great arch support. Added bonus, they're water resistent! (the disadvantage, a bit much for the budget shoestringers like myself, but feet are the one thing I will definately take care of on a trip!)
Also, I HIGHLY recommend getting some great socks, like the Smartwool Adrenaline Light. Smartwool socks simply don't stink (I wore them 4 days straight as an experiment and it was only on the last day they finally felt slightly damp -- still no odor though). And they made my already comfy shoes that much better. It's amazing what a difference a sock can make!
As for the lady with the high arch problem, I can sympathize. While I don't have one, I usually end up cranking my shoelaces too tight trying to get my heel to stay in place (that is, with any shoe other than my Targhees). There are a variety of ways to lace your shoes to take care of the problem (surgeons knot, heel lock, skipping the holes that cause problems, etc). A good shoe salesperson should be able to help you out (REI tends to be very helpful).
San Diego, CA USA Wed 03/28/2007
Best walking shoes
I was wondering how other people feel about wearing shoes with straps on top? (i.e. Mary Janes). I have problems with straps rubbing the tops of my feet and it is very painful. I can't even have any type of tennis shoes or any that tie on top tied too tightly or it really hurts my foot. I would like to try the many, many styles of Mary Janes I have seen, but don't know how it would work with my high arches and the pointy bones on the tops of my feet....any comments? Thanks.
USA Tue 03/27/2007
I got a pair of puma's and I find them so comfortable but the key is to get an insole for them....
USA Tue 03/27/2007
I love my Clarks. Wore them on a great 13 day tour of Eastern Europe in '04 and I'm still wearing them now, they last forever. Just bought a pair of Teva Kira Mary-Janes for $32 on Sierra Trading Post, for a trip to Roma this Summer. Hope they last as well. And are as comfortable!
Kissimmee, FL USA Mon 03/26/2007
I must say that my fake Crocs (the real ones don't fit me well) are the best shoes I have EVER found for walking on cobblestones. I don't know how they'd be for LONG walks (although the suggestion of putting orthotics in them is appealing), but they are awesome on cobblestones!
Lubbock, TX USA Mon 03/26/2007
easy spirt / colombia's
I love my colombia hiking boots and for nicer attire i wear easy spirit shoes. I have a nice pair of mary janes by easy spirit that are comfortable and fashionable. As far as prices go you can get some good deals on easy spirit shoes.
East Meadow, NY USA Thu 03/22/2007
Merrell Mary Janes
Before our trip last spring, I looked on this message board for recommendations. Someone mentioned the Mary Janes by Merrell and they were perfect! I wore them with skirts, slacks and jeans, even went hiking in them. I work in a hospital and a few of my coworkers have bought and love them. They cost about $80 (worth every penn), are sold online and in department stores, and they run about a half size big. While they look like cute dress shoes on the upper, the sole is more like an athletic shoe.
Cincinnati, OH USA Sun 03/18/2007
Dansko Pro and Con
I have two pairs of Danskos and wore one pair to the UK April '06. Here are my observations: I bought the Dansko clogs just 3 weeks before my trip and broke them in by wearing them every day. They worked fine through the whole trip, but I've noticed that I tend to turn my ankle when I wear them. Simply walking on the sidewalk, my foot inexplicably tips over to the side which has been a bit painful at times. It doesn't happen with my other shoes. But the clogs are serviceable and have not fail me, even on the 10 mile jaunt around Edinburgh and on Aberdeen granite cobblestone streets. I use them for my work shoes and a med student friend swears by them. But on my next trip, I will go with my Dansko Mary Janes. I've had them for 6 years now, and they are perfect. The soles are exceptional and the strap has never bothered me, even without socks. Buttery in every sense of the word. But they show their wear-and-tear so I had purchased the clogs for a nicer, newer look. Good luck and good travels!
Seattle, WA USA Sat 03/17/2007
get used to the shoes before travelling
I love my dansko and my fake crocs (couldn't give in to buying the real ones until I tried some others) I was just in NYC, but am also getting ready for Europe. I tried on Keen's and they hurt the top of my foot. I wore adidias to blend in and I definitely wished I had my crocs as a back up. (or my dansko or Simple flip-flops). Try walking in your area a lot before going anywhere. I wanted to travel light but my feet would have been happier if I had brought the ugly crocs.) After walking all day on concrete, I would have been happier wearing ANYTHING that made my feet happy!
Chapel Hill, NC USA Fri 03/16/2007
My 18 year old daughter and 25 of her closest girlfriends all wore flipflops with knee length summer skirts and dresses to the Vatican last July--the photos are lovely!
USA Thu 03/15/2007
OK, I admit it. I've laughed at how silly they look and couldn't imagine ever buying them, let alone wearing them in public. (And in Europe?? Forget it!!) But I bought a pair (the Relief line designed for people with foot problems like plantar fasciitis) for use as gardening clogs. They're obviously perfect for that--comfy and the mud etc. washed right off. Then I started wearing them around the house. (Who cares what your feet look like when no one's around?) Then I started wearing them out on weekend errands. And then...I took them to Barcelona for a week-long trip. And it turned out that I wore them all over the place! (It helped my self-consciousness that they're black.) Here's why I recommend them: they're perfect for the beach (sand and salt water washes right off), lightweight in the backpack (mine weigh 9 ounces for the pair), perfect as slippers or shower shoes in hotels where it's too sketchy to go barefoot, and their over-sized fit means if other shoes give unexpected blisters, the Crocs don't rub on the painful places. I foolishly wore a pair of sandals that rubbed me raw on the back of the ankles my first day in Spain and really was grateful that the Crocs' backstrap could be moved over the instep, leaving my sore spot unrubbed. And there's even room to add orthotics if you want (I did on days that were walking intensive.) And I never got any funny looks from anyone--in fact, I saw quite a few folks in Crocs.
USA Wed 03/14/2007
Sandals in cathedrals OK
I've worn sandals to cathedrals in France, Spain, and Italy without any problems--also at the Vatican. But they were rather nice sandals. Perhaps flipflops would be a problem?
Based on my experience, as long as shoulders and knees are covered, you're fine.
USA Tue 03/13/2007
Sandals in Cathedrals
It's my understanding that sandals are not allowed in some cathedrals in Europe. I know that's the case with shorts and bare shoulders.
Seattle, WA USA Tue 03/13/2007
For Tammy and Others Seeking Foot Comfort
People new to the boards do not always realize the posting guidelines, so no worries, Tammy. Now, some suggestions for you:
First--read through the suggestions by other posters below. That's how I first learned about Keen shoes. Second--after making note of the some of the brands, visit their websites to look at styles that interest you. Third--go to a nicer dept. store or shoe store that carries these brands and start trying them on. Some brands fit differently from other brands (run big or small, etc.). Everyone's feet are different and what works for one person might not work for someone else.
Good luck and Happy Traveling (A comfortable shoe will really help with the "happy" part)!
USA Tue 03/13/2007
Tammy - shoe question
First---questions of ALL kinds are to be posted on the Traveler's Helpline...not here.
Best Walking Shoes board is for people to offer what has worked for them.
Plus- based on your question. You need to go to a shoe store. Unless a reader here owns a shoe store, no one is really qualified to answer a question like yours. How can anyone answer your question without looking at your feet and asking questions about your personal foot mechanics?
USA Tue 03/13/2007
Sizing and Suggested Brands?
I am going on a study abroad trip through Europe for all of May and June this year hitting Italy, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Enland, and Spain and will be on my feet a lot. I am looking for some sandals (since the weather will be warm) and would like some suggestions as to brand and also sizing. Do I need to go 1/2 size larger than my usual?
San Diego, CA USA Mon 03/12/2007
Best Walking Shoes
I swear by my Merrill's I cant wait for the weekend to come around so I can put them on! I discovered them only 3 months ago and now I have them in 3 colors, the Barrado is mine!
scottsdale, AZ USA Sun 03/11/2007
Havana Joes and Chacos
Havana Joes are amazing shoes. These shoes are comfortable, water proof, and well made. They are made in Spain and served me well when traveling to Madrid to watch David Beckham in action! For warmer weather, Chacos (purchased at REI) are fantastic...well crafted...classic styling to boot! Enjoy!
Seattle, WA USA Tue 03/06/2007
I think it would be hard to beat a pair of Rockport World Tour Classics.
I've strutted around Europe in them and use them all the time on the home front.
Extremely comfortable and durable.
Maybe not the best for hot climes, but even then OK with shorts and a good pair of socks, if the situation warrants it.
For warmer days, I've found that some of the Sperry sandals work great. Feel good and look good.
Anyway, try the Rockport shoe and see if it's best for you. It was for me.
MI USA Tue 03/06/2007
ECCO!I walked and walked and walked and my Eccos kept me stable and comfortable for two trips to Europe.
Carlsbad, CA USA Mon 03/05/2007
Best Walking Shoes
Walked almost two weeks through Tuscany and then did the same in Vietnam. I only took two pair of shoes: Merrel slip ons and Land's End rubber thongs (which have a formed footbed). I'm in my 60's and never needed anything else.
Ellensburg, WA USA Mon 03/05/2007
Not the cheapest, but....
For anyone who has big bucks to spend (around $150), check out the Cole Haan Nike Air collection of sandals. They're not just comfy, they have a very trendy look to them. They could go with capris, or with a very fancy dress for a nice restaurant. I got a pair for Christmas (quite the splurge), but love them.
Philadelphia, PA USA Mon 03/05/2007
Great comfortable walking shoes at a great price!
I search every year for the most comfortable walking shoes for my trips to Europe. All those cobblestones are murder on my feet and ankles. I used to buy Ecco sandles (I also like Mephisto, but way too expensive for me), but last year I found these at Rack Room Shoes for $39.99, and I wore them for 17 days with no foot pain. They are so cushy that they provide a lot of shock absorption, the rubber soles are tough, and the upper part actually provides some cushioning between the shoe and the top of my foot, so I never got any blisters. And not too hideous
Atlanta, GA USA Mon 03/05/2007
Shoes and travel clothes
I suggest SierraTradingPost.com for shoes of all sizes at great prices. They're an outlet for brands such as Keen, Ecco, Merrell, etc. Includes small sizes. Of course, they have clothes, too. I purchased several Orvis wrinkle-free shirts for a trip at a significant discount.
FL USA Mon 03/05/2007
Mephisto All Rounders Women's Walking Shoes
I recently took a two-week trip to Japan and was looking for ONE pair of shoes I could take which were easy on/off (in Japan you are constantly taking your shoes off!) I also needed for them to be very comfortable, as I would be doing a lot of walking. These were my choice, and they were perfect travel shoes. I wore them with a pair of black pants for my dressy outfit, and with jeans and comfy pants for everyday. I got caught in a major downpour and my feet got soaked, but the shoes dried easily with my hairdryer. My orthotics fit easily, so I had extra support. I'll be wearing these in Europe next month. I found them at a web site called Most-Comfortable-Shoes.com on their women's walking shoes page.
Nashville, TN USA Mon 03/05/2007
If you mated a Keen and a Croc...
it would look something like the new Teva style. The footbed is wide like both styles, for those of us with bunion and other issues, but the three openings that make up the top are a little more stylish than the Crocs. There is an antimicrobial lining. In short, it still has some of the funky look of both, but not in as noticeable a way. I'm still going to wear my Keens on the plane and for hiking this summer in Germany, but am going to take the comfy new Tevas for walking in the city days. The only thing I don't like is the very obvious "Teva" name right on the top!
USA Sun 03/04/2007
Re: Comfortable shoes
The BEST advise we can offer is -- go to your BEST local shoe store where they specialize in fitting...not just selling shoes.
Don't buy in a department store from a 16 year old kid if you have big foot issues.
Going blindly on the recommendation from readers on this board will also not help you. Just because one of us loves a certain brand, doesnt' make it right for you!
There are so many great, comfortable, well made shoes out there, but only your foot knows which one is right for you.
If you need orthotics....you need a shoe that will accomodate that, so that limits the brands you can buy.
Expect to pay a bit more when buying footwear in a specialty shop, but the time the shoe fitter spends with you for a good fit, is well worth the extra $$.
Try some of the newer shops that have opened...like: Foot Solutions or others. They are chains, but they do have people that are trained to fit footwear, not just sell shoes.
you are so right to realize that comfortable, well fit footwear can make or break your well deserved holiday in Europe! Do yourself a favor and take the time to do your research, try on several styles/brands. Test them out in your house, and/or see if the store will give store credit if you purchase and weartest outside but they just don't work for you.
Also, expect that being on your feet and walking all day...there just might NOT be the end/all shoe for you. Just about everyone will have some foot discomfort if you are on your feet and or walking all day!
Peoria, IL USA Sat 03/03/2007
Best Walking Shoes
We traveled in France and Italy in July 2005 and i bought a pair of black SoftWalk Mary Janes for the trip. They have a soft foam "egg carton" insole that made walking incredibly comfortable. I still wear them, but plan to buy a new pair before our next trip this summer! They were a little pricier than $50 -- maybe close to $80. But they have been well worth the money. I also took a pair of Ecco sandals to wear just walking around town, but whenever we were trekking to the train station with our luggage or walking longer distances, I wore the SoftWalk shoes. I believe they can be ordered on-line.
Helena, MT USA Fri 03/02/2007
Affordable but comfortable walking shoes
I'll be heading out to Europe in about a month and don't have a good pair of walking shoes. I see that Keens is highly recommended, but I'm trying to find something more affordable, around $50. I also need it to match dressy black pants as well as match jeans as I'm hoping to only wear one pair of shoes the entire trip. Thanks so much in advance!
San Diego, CA USA Fri 03/02/2007
Advice for hard to find sizes
Many walking/hiking shoes are made wider to accomodate a thicker sock, as well as the change in your foot (swelling) by the end of the day. I would suggest going to a "full service" shoe store. Here in Minneapolis we have Schuler shoes. Their shoes are expensive, but last forever. They measure your foot and recommend according to your own bone structure, width and walking gait. For those of you with smaller feet, you may also want to try a child's size from some place like REI. Many of the same brands for adults are in the children's section and come in similar colors.
MN USA Fri 03/02/2007
smaller size shoes
My daughter has had good luck with the Teva brand, and is your foot size, too. You might see what they carry on Zappos from that company. Good luck!
USA Wed 02/28/2007
small size walking shoes for women?
i have tried on many pairs of walking shoes and cannot find any in 5 1/2 B in the stores. I can order some from zappos, but all the brands I hear rave reviews about are HUGELY WIDE in the toe area...so even if I order my size,they will be too wide. any suggestions??? thanks!
Greensboro, NC USA Wed 02/28/2007
Mephistos Phoebus are very comfortable walking shoes. They fit like a glove and can double as a dress shoe. In the past I have used Ecco, and Rockport, and Allen Edmunds and there really is no comparison. The downside is Mephisto is pretty pricey. The only consolation is they last a long time.
USA Wed 02/28/2007
If you are trying to "break in" a pair of shoes...then they are wrong for you.
Shoes today should feel comfortable out of the box, there should be no need for moleskin, etc.
You must either have the wrong size, or wrong shoe for your foot.
Spending over $100 for a pair of shoes doesnt' mean they will be better than a less expensive pair. Just because they are "cute" doesn't make them right for your foot. FIT is the most important factor.
Take those shoes back to the store where you bought them today and get someone who knows how to fit shoes to work with you! Or get the store to take them back...they sold you the wrong pair for your foot!
USA Sun 02/25/2007
Many years ago I had surgery on both of my feet and the first shoes I could wear were a brand called "Willys". I wore them for many years at home and in Europe. I can'f find them anywhere and they finally wore completely out. Does anyone know where I can buy another pair?
Mesquite, TX USA Sat 02/24/2007
Love my Teva sandals!
I bought my first pair of Teva's last summer before our trip to France and Italy. I had seen many people wearing them on previous summer trips to Europe but had never owned a pair.
I purchased a black, waterproof leather pair at Cabella's. They were perfect--comfortable, cool and looked very nice with the full-wrap skorts and skirts I love to wear in Europe.
We did lots of walking, but no major hiking. They will be in my bag on my next trip!
Maple Grove, MN USA Sat 02/24/2007
Walking shoes for PF
My podiatrist recommended Brooks Addiction several years ago,and that's about all I wear. They come in black, and are not pretty. Also had the New Balance 925 recommended, but haven't tried them.
OR USA Mon 02/19/2007
I just bought a pair of Soft Walk clogs with a strap from Magellans. There is egg crate-like cushion inside so they are very comfortable and would look fashionable with jeans or slacks. For more regular walking I only wear Solomon light hiking boots. They look like a sneaker, but are very comfortable and have good traction for cement or dirt.
NP, CA USA Thu 02/15/2007
I'm going to France and Spain in mid-April for 2 weeks, and besides my Teva's I'm considering a pair of Rieker Women's Celia 65 Mary Janes. Has anyone had any experience with these, or with Rieker in general?
USA Thu 02/15/2007
Shoe for Paris in March
I've worn Clark's clogs the past 4 yr. - 3 times in Paris and once in Italy. Have been there when it snowed -not deep, in rain, mild weather and very warm weather. No blisters or any problems. Just almost lost one boarding a train though. Good luck.
USA Thu 02/15/2007
How about HAVAIANAS flip-flops/sandals??
USA Mon 02/12/2007
Great shoes for bad ankles/feet - Seibel
I have a pair of Josef Seibel shoes and I love them. Very supportive but sort of soft, too. I have ruptured ligaments in my ankles and twist them very easily; also some plantar faciitis, and these shoes are terrific. I also love Keens, but the Seibels are better overall. Earth shoes are great for ankle stability, but you must condition yourself to them long before your trip as they take some effort to walk in. You'll NEVER twist an ankle in them, though!
Seattle, WA USA Fri 02/09/2007
The Ultimate Sensible Urban Shoe
P.W. Minor. They make extra-deep/ extra-wide shoes that fit those of us, ummm, different-footed people. Mine are the Duchess model, even though they are women's shoes, because they were the best fit. I found these perform better on pavement than the New Balance 900 I used in Europe (and in my everyday job). Minor has a broad and diverse product line. My shoes don't have stylish pointy toes, but I don't have pointy feet. Around $200, worth it.
Lilburn, GA USA Thu 02/08/2007
I think we walk differently when we travel- throw in hiking and climbing all those stairs and cobblestones...I was really surprised to get a painful blister hiking in my five-year-old never fail me favorites in the Cinque Terre, despite all their use hiking at home. I've learned that no matter what brand our personal favorite might be, take a back-up- for me, since I can only travel in summer, it is easier because I can take a pair of flip flops that double for hotel room use. They were a lifesaver for a couple of days while the blister healed.
USA Thu 02/01/2007
Scott..Oh, did I mention that the ECCO Track IV Gortex (boot or oxford) is also lt. weight, and actually screams "common sense". They go well with jeans, dockers,khakis, even shorts when its warmer..anything casual. So, whether you travel heavy, medium, or light,via backpacking, or with a tour group, or solo, you'll never have to worry about being called a "mountaineer"..but maybe just a "smart traveler"! Bottom line, in the end, its what wurx 4 U...happy travels!...jack
Chesapke, Va USA Tue 01/30/2007
For a traveler who isn't going to be doing heavy-duty hiking, but will be on his/her feet many hours a day in town or country and would like shoes which are waterproof and sturdy but don't scream "Mountaineer!" L.L. Bean makes very comfortable waterproof oxford-type shoes, in black or dark brown, which come in widths.
San Francisco, CA USA Mon 01/29/2007
Arcopedico is a great brand--at least for women. The Scala is a Mary Jane style that comes in loads of colors. I have walked for days and days in these shoes and never had discomfort of any kind. The style seems to span the generations, as my college-age daughter loves them, too.
San Luis Obispo, CA USA Fri 01/19/2007
Shoes Shoes Shoes!
There are waaaaayyyyy too many choices out there for this chick. I'm going to Europe for the first time in June (mid June to early July) and will be in Germany / Italy including the Dolomites. I just scratch my head over all the shoe choices. That being said, my feet get cold VERY easily, especially inside and I don't think sandals would work well for me. Something that covers a bit more but is still breathable would be good. Any suggestions would be appreciated. I may wander over to the 'shoe' board and leave the same message. Thanks
Arnold, Mo USA Fri 01/19/2007
wonderful winter boots
I took the wrong boots to Germany over New Year's, and my generous husband bought me a fantastic pair of fashionable looking, fuzzy lined, non slip goretex boots in Garmisch. He didn't let me see the price, so I know they were expensive, but after wearing them for almost everything, including a 7 kilometer hike around the Eibsee in freezing, frosty weather, I think they were worth it. The brand is Hogl, and I think they are available on the some websites. They don't really look like comfy shoes, which is a plus. They could actually be worn to dinner without anyone staring. I am usually a cheap shoe person, but these are definitely worth any price! I did see similar ones with the Goretex label in a local upscale shoe store. Sometimes you have to spend, I guess.
pacific grove, CA USA Thu 01/18/2007
I too have used Smartwool socks when traveling Europe but, the best socks I've found so far are Patagonia Capilene's. You can wear them all day, wash them at night and they'll be dry in the morning. They cost the same as Smartwool's.
USA Mon 01/15/2007
Keens are the best. I have the full shoe, not sandle. It is even waterproof. Very comfortable!
Evanston, IL USA Mon 01/15/2007
Smartwool hiking socks are great! Cushioned and warm, with a padded heel to prevent friction. They wash and dry well in automatic machines. Too thick to hand wash. Expensive but long wearing.
Philadelphia, PA USA Sun 01/14/2007
Z-CoiL's top the list
Z-CoiL's have to be the best shoes out there for walking any kind of distance or being on your feet! They absorb all of the shock that your body normally takes when you are walking. I have bad knees and I used to be limited to the amount of distance I could walk, but not anymore! I love mine and won't be without them. They are great on cobblestones in Europe also, keeping you level when you hit an uneven rock.
Santa Cruz, CA USA Mon 01/08/2007
The albatros around my neck
I statred my lo0ng trip wearing sturdy mailman style leather walking shoes my dogs were tired . then thought i would wear not so atractive Keenes i felt like a Gisselle. never weared sturdy shoes again for 4 weeks but carried them!
USA Mon 01/08/2007
Dansko clogs with smartwool socks. Why would you second guess nurses and chefs who are running around in Dansko clogs for 12 hour shifts?
USA Thu 01/04/2007