Best Hiking Sandals

Hiking is a fantastic activity that not only offers spectacular locations with amazing views, but is also a great way to improve your fitness, enjoy the great outdoors in the fresh air, get in touch with nature, and spend time with family and friends.

To get the most out of your hiking adventures, using quality equipment is essential, such as a good backpack, water bottle and sun hat, and a comfortable pair of well-made hiking boots or sandals. Hiking sandals are an alternative option to hiking boots and are ideal for hiking in warmer climates or wet environments.

Sandals for hiking are designed like regular sandals with open heels and toes, allowing the feet to breathe and dry quickly if they get wet. They are built to withstand the rigors of outdoor terrain like rugged trails, rocks, and rivers, and are available in a variety of designs and styles to suit every need.


Hiking sandals are an alternative option to hiking boots and are ideal for hiking in warmer climates or wet environments. 

What to Look For in Hiking Sandals

Hiking sandals are extremely durable sandals that are designed to withstand the tough outdoor conditions that you may encounter while hiking in the wilderness. They need to be durable and tough to protect your feet, while at the same time being comfortable enough to hike long distances.

Hiking or outdoor sandals are very different from traditional sandals in that they are made from thick leather or long-lasting synthetic materials that are as tough as those found on hiking boots. This makes them resistant to puncturing, tearing, and breaking in all types of terrain.

The traction on hiking sandals is far better than regular sandals as they are designed to help you keep your balance on slippery or rocky terrain. They have a thicker sole than other sandals, making them very comfortable to walk long distances in all kinds of environments while protecting your feet.

Hiking sandals can be used for a variety of outdoor activities, including:

  • Hiking
  • Boating
  • Beachcombing
  • Fishing
  • Rowing
  • Scrambling (ravine exploration)


Hiking sandals can be used for a variety of outdoor activities. 

Here are a few simple tips for features to look out for when shopping for a pair of hiking sandals:

1. Traction

The traction on hiking sandals is very important as you want to protect yourself from any possible injury when you encounter surfaces from rocky and rough to slippery and wet when hiking. Look for hiking sandals with a thick rubber or synthetic sole or tread that will provide good grip in muddy or wet conditions and protect the underside of your feet on rocky paths.

2. Adjustable Straps

Hiking sandals with adjustable straps are a must as they allow you to change the fit of your sandals if your feet are feeling tender or swollen. They also allow you to wear socks if the weather gets cold or to add an extra layer of protection in rough terrain.

3. Water Resistance

It’s a good idea to get a pair of hiking sandals made from hydrophobic or water-resistant materials as you will undoubtedly come across muddy or wet conditions and these will dry faster, keep you more comfortable, and last longer.

4. Shock Resistance

Having a pair of hiking sandals with good shock resistance helps to cushion and protect your feet from the impact of rough terrain and hike further without being uncomfortable. Look for a pair of hiking sandals with a midsole made from ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) or foam as this will cushion your feet on every step. You can also find hiking sandals with gel padding systems for ultra cushioning.

5. Durability

Go for a pair of hiking sandals that are made from high-quality materials that will survive the rough and tough surfaces of hiking terrain. Look for materials such as leather, rubber, or ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) as these tend to have the longest lifespans. Cheaper hiking sandals made from other synthetic materials may not last very long.

6. Gender-Specific

It’s important to choose a pair of hiking sandals designed for your gender as they will fit better. There are significant differences between the design and size for male and female shoes – women tend to have narrower heels and wider forefeet than men, so would need a pair of hiking sandals that are made to fit their foot shape. Most reputable companies make gender-specific hiking sandals so be sure to get the right fit and size to ensure absolute comfort while hiking. 

7. Toe Protection

If you hike in rough and rugged environments it might be a good idea to get hiking sandals with toe protection. While they are slightly heavier than other hiking sandals, they will provide better protection for your toes and toenails when hiking.


It’s important to choose a pair of hiking sandals designed for your gender as they will fit better. Hiking sandals by
GrejGuide.dk / Flickr / CC BY-NC 2.0.

Best Hiking Sandals

We hit the great outdoors and tried and tested a range of hiking sandals and came up with a list of the best hiking sandals on the market for both men and women.

Best Hiking Sandals for Men

Best Overall Hiking Sandals for Men: CAMEL CROWN Men’s Waterproof Hiking Sandals

CAMEL CROWN Men’s Waterproof Hiking Sandals are our top pick for best-hiking sandals for men. This is a great men’s fit sandal for hiking that has a double anti-slip feature – the insole has a unique non-slip massage texture that prevents slippage in the water, and the sole of the sandal is made with superior grip and anti-slip material.

The sandals are made with non-slip and waterproof rubber material for wearing in muddy and wet conditions, and they have an open-toe design for breathability and ventilation for the feet. Three adjustable straps allow for easy adjustment for all foot sizes and a personalized fit.

CAMEL CROWN Men’s Waterproof Hiking Sandals have high-quality rubber soles that offer good protection for your feet and leather and webbing uppers that provide a soft and comfortable fit.

Pros

  •         Double anti-slip feature
  •         Superior grip
  •         Open-toe design – breathability and ventilation
  •         Adjustable straps for a personalized fit
  •         High-quality rubber soles

Cons

  •         Sizing runs large – size down according to the size chart

Best Hiking Sandals for Water: KEEN Men’s Newport H2 Sandal

The KEEN Men’s Newport H2 Sandal came out tops as the best hiking sandals for wet conditions. Made from 100% polyester with a thick rubber sole, these performance sport sandals have a bungee lacing system and rear pull-on loop to ensure a secure fit. They have a washable polyester webbing upper that boasts an odor-reducing Aegis Microbe Shield®.

The sandals have metatarsal ridge support, a thermoplastic polyurethane stability shank, and a supportive contoured arch which makes them very comfortable and durable. They have excellent toe protection and a razor-siped sole with 3mm lugs provides excellent traction. They are machine washable so will maintain a new look for years.

Pros

  •         Excellent for slippery and wet conditions
  •         A secure bungee lacing system
  •         Odor-reducing Aegis Microbe Shield®
  •         Razor-siped sole provides excellent traction
  •         Machine washable

 Cons

  •         Sizing runs small – order 1/2 size larger than your usual size

Best for Durability: KEEN Men’s Arroyo II Sandal

KEEN Men’s Arroyo II Sandal is a tough and sturdy sandal that is formidable in all types of terrain. Made from 100% leather, the sandals have leather uppers that protect and prevent the leather from drying out and improves longevity.

Formerly known as the Taos, the Arroyo II has a thick rubber sole that provides the ultimate protection for the underside of your feet and minimizes impact when walking on rocky surfaces. Rubber outsoles are non-marking so you leave no trace and a heavy-duty toe bumper offers the maximum amount of protection for your digits. A removable, metatomical EVA footbed with dual-density for long-lasting comfort.

Multi-directional lugs in the outer sole help provide superior grip on muddy, slippery, and wet terrain and open vents provide breathability. An outer stability shank helps to improve balance and mobility on uneven surfaces.

Pros

  •         Made from 100% leather and leather uppers
  •         Non-marking outsoles leave no footprints
  •         Heavy-duty toe protection
  •         Removable, metatomical EVA footbed for comfort
  •         Open vents for ventilation

 Cons

  •         Sizing runs large – size down according to the size chart

Best for Grip: NORTIV 8 Men’s Sports Sandals

The NORTIV 8 Men’s Sports Sandals are a multifunctional sandal with three adjustable straps with an easy hook-and-loop closure for a comfortable fit, a thick rubber sole, and an open-toe design for breathability and ventilation.  

These sandals have a dynamic sole system with a cushioned EVA midsole that provides shock absorption and a built-in arch for extra support while standing. A durable outsole offers excellent grip, durability, and stability.

Pros

  •         Multifunctional
  •         Adjustable straps
  •         Dynamic sole system
  •         EVA midsole for comfort and shock absorption

 Cons

  •         The grip is not as good as other models

Best Hiking Sandals for Women

Best Overall Hiking Sandals for Women: CAMEL CROWN Women’s Waterproof Hiking Sandals

CAMEL CROWN Women’s Waterproof Hiking Sandals are our top pick for best-hiking sandals for women. These are fantastic multifunctional sandals with an ergonomic design with superior arch support that provides a natural position for the foot. 

The sandals have multiple adjustable straps with soft textile lining and stylish jacquard ribbon detailing. Hook-and-loop closures provide a snug personal fit that ensures the sandals stay securely in place in all types of terrain.

The thick outer sole of the sandals has lugs that distribute dirt and water and improve grip, skid resistance, and wear-and-tear. They also protect your feet from rocks and stones and are a good option for people with plantar fasciitis.

The midsole is made from shock-absorbing MD that effectively allays any impact from the ground and the footbed has dense anti-slip triangle patterns to prevent slipping. The sandals are also very quick-drying and promise comfort in all environments.

Pros

  •         Ergonomic design
  •         Superior grip from rubber sole
  •         Adjustable straps for a personalized fit
  •         Hook and loop closures – snug fit
  •         Anti-slip triangle patterns prevent slipping

Cons

  •         Sizing runs large – size down according to the size chart

Best Hiking Sandals for Water: KEEN Women’s Newport Retro-w Sport Sandal

The KEEN Women’s Newport Retro-w Sport Sandal came out tops as the best women’s hiking sandals for wet conditions. Made from 100% polyester with a thick rubber sole, these performance sport sandals have a bungee lacing system and rear pull-on loop to ensure a secure fit. They have a washable polyester webbing upper that boasts an odor-reducing Aegis Microbe Shield®.

The sandals have metatarsal ridge support, a thermoplastic polyurethane stability shank, and a supportive contoured arch which makes them very comfortable and durable. They have excellent toe protection and a razor-siped sole with multi-directional lugs provides excellent traction. They are machine washable so will maintain a new look for years.

Pros

  •         Excellent for slippery and wet conditions
  •         A secure bungee lacing system
  •         Odor-reducing Aegis Microbe Shield®
  •         Razor-siped sole provides excellent traction
  •         Machine washable

Cons

  •         Sizing runs small – order 1/2 size larger than your usual size

Best for Flexibility and Durability: MEGNYA Hiking Sandals for Women

The MEGNYA Hiking Sandals for Women are hiking sandals with a stylish design that features hand woven nylon straps, solid arch support, and a rubber sole. The sandals have hook and loop straps that can be adjusted to all foot sizes and widths, and these sandals can be used for a variety of activities from hiking to beachcombing.

Pros

  •         Stylish design
  •         Handwoven nylon straps
  •         Solid arch support
  •         Rubber sole
  •         Hook and loop straps

Best for Grip: Merrell Women’s Sandspur Rose Leather Sandal

Merrell Women’s Sandspur Rose Leather Sandals are hiking sandals with excellent grip and traction. The sandals are made from 100% synthetic materials, have full-grain leather uppers, and a decorative D-ring with a leather strap.

The sandals have an M Select Grip rubber outsole for grip and traction on a variety of terrain, an EVA midsole, and a leather-wrapped COMFORTBASE Active contoured footbed with Lycra® neoprene lining for superior comfort. The heel of the sandals has a Merrell air cushion that helps absorb shock and provide stability.

Pros

  •         M Select Grip rubber outsole for excellent grip and traction
  •         COMFORTBASE Active contoured footbed
  •         Lycra® neoprene lining
  •         Merrell air cushion in the heel for cushioning

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the health benefits of hiking?

  •         Improves cardiovascular fitness, strength, and stamina
  •         Lower stress levels
  •         Improves mood
  •         Enhances mental wellbeing
  •         Reduces the risk for heart disease
  •         Lowers blood pressure
  •         Lowers cholesterol levels
  •         Helps with weight loss and maintenance
  •         Improves bone density
  •         Improves osteoarthritis outcomes
  •         Increases coordination and flexibility
  •         Enhances relationships with friends and family

Q: What other gear do you need for hiking?

  •  A good backpack – consider one that has back and strap pads for comfort, a rain cover for bad weather, and a quick access pocket for important items like a torch or knife.

          Sunscreen and a hat

          Water bottle and plenty of water

          A torch or headlamp if night hiking

          A knife/penknife

A weatherproof or waterproof jacket

Q: How do I choose the correct hiking sandals?  

There are certain criteria you should consider when shopping for hiking sandals, including:

  •         What activity are you going to use the sandals for?
  •         When will you do this activity?
  •         What’s your foot size and your foot shape?
  •         Will you be wearing socks? If so, what type?
  •         Do you need arch support?

Q: How do hiking sandals differ from regular sandals?

  •         Thicker soles for shock absorption
  •         Arch support
  •         Lightweight
  • Waterproof/weather resistant
  •         Quick-drying
  •         Toe protection

Q: Is it possible to wear socks with hiking sandals?

Yes, you can wear socks with hiking sandals to protect your feet and keep them warm.

Happy hiking!