Last Updated on February 22, 2020 by Greg Head
Best Water Shoes: Whether I am heading to the beach, the lake, or to a kayak trip down the river, choosing the right footwear can be a make or break decision.
There are a variety of shoes made specifically for enjoying water-based activities, some are made to meet the needs of a specific activity while others can handle most any wet and wild adventure you are planning.
Best Water Shoes
To help you decide which are right for you, we put together the following list which highlights some of the best options in each category.
If you’re interested in travel shoes, check out Best Travel Shoes: Walking Sandals.
Best Hiking Water Shoes
These are the shoes that will take you from a hike in the forest to fording a stream to boogey boarding at the beach.
The Mackenzie by Keen and the Churn by Teva are both great for women who spend all their spare time enjoying the best nature has to offer.
For men, check out the men’s version of the Churn and the Boulder by ECCO.
These shoes will take you anywhere you want to go and keep your feet safe along the way.
Best Water Sandals
For some of us, it just isn’t summer if we aren’t wearing sandals.
Even better than sandals in the summer, sandals on a sunny beach while it is the middle of winter!
Keep your feet protected from sharp rocks or shards of shell with a pair of stylish water sandals.
Keen makes several of the best-selling options for women including the Venice H2 and the Whisper.
Other popular options by Teva like the Hurricane and the Tirra have a different look and fit, but all the same function.
Keen and Teva also offer some the best-selling sandals for men like the Hurricane and the Newport.
You might also like the fit or styling of the Cambiran Stretch from Merrell or the TechSun 2 from Columbia Sportswear.
Best Traditional Water Shoes
For many people, when we think of water shoes, we don’t think sandals or multi-purpose, we think old-school water shoes like the ones we had when we were kids.
The ones with the rubber bottom and the mesh top.
These are still essentials for people who love to spend their time water skiing on the lake, jet skiing in an ocean bay, or chasing children along the beach.
Speedo provides super-stylish options for both sexes, the Beach Runner for women and the Cruiser for men.
The unisex Aqua from Aquatik combines the traditional look with a more adjustable fit.
Best Running Water Shoe
A dear friend of mine can’t say enough great things about her FiveFingers Trek outdoor shoes by Vibram [easyazon_link keywords=”FiveFingers Trek outdoor shoes by Vibram” locale=”US” tag=”gogreentravel-20″]Check Prices Here[/easyazon_link].
Although they have an unconventional look, think shoe-shaped toe socks, are made to protect your feet while offering your body the benefits of walking barefoot like strengthening muscles and improving posture problems that can be caused by wearing shoes all the time.
Perfect for land and sea adventures or just a day-trip to your favorite amusement park, these non-traditional shoes might be just what you need for all your outdoor fun.
Vibram makes several options for women and men including the Trek, the Sprint, and the Bikila.
Fila offers the same concept with different styling in their Skele-toes brand which are less expensive than Vibram’s options.
Customer reviews indicate that this may be a case of you get what you pay for, Vibram costs more but often fits better and lasts longer.
Best Lightweight Slip On Shoes Patagonia Advocate
Patagonia has a new line of shoes out – and one of them is by and far the best lightweight travel shoe I’ve ever come across.
The Patagonia Women’s Advocate MJ is a slip on shoe (that has a elastic strap so it doesn’t slip off), and thanks to Patagonia I’ve been testing a pair out for the last month.
Here’s what I like about the shoes:
Patagonia Advocate are Super Lightweight Shoes and Exceptionally Comfortable
The Women’s Advocate MJ is definitely the lightest shoe I’ve ever owned.
The shoe is made of microfiber which not only makes it comfortable and breathable, but unbelievably lightweight.
It almost feels as though I’m not wearing any shoes at all.
But, they aren’t so thin that they are uncomfortable.
There is built in arch-support.
These aren’t just your typical flat shoes.
Instead they are well constructed.
There is both padding and support.
I’m not sure how they are so lightweight given how supportive they are.
The Advocate MJ shoes are great for throwing in your suitcase as they won’t add any extra weight.
Patagonia Advocate Slip On – but don’t Slip Off
I have very narrow heels, and most slip-on shoes slip off my feet and I can’t wear them.
However, the Advocate MJ has an elastic strap across the top that holds your foot comfortably in place.
I’ve tried a lot of slip-on shoes and these are the first I can say won’t slip off if I’m walking fast or jogging to get somewhere in a hurry.
They just stay on my feet.
Plus, because they don’t tie or require any extra work to strap on, you can slip on the shoes without bending down.
Perfect for when I’m carrying a bag or my son in my arms.
The MJ is made from Recyclable Materials
Patagonia is a sustainable company – and their shoes are no exception.
The various components of the shoe are made from recycled material (from 15-50% recycled depending the on the part.)
They are vegan shoes.
Finally, the shoes are part of 1% for the Planet, which means that 1% of sales go to environmental programs around the world.
They are Cute
I got a pair of the shoes in black as I tend to use a black color scheme when packing.
Choosing a color scheme is one my favorite tips for packing less.
They are quite cute and look great with jeans, khakis, and shorts.
Patagonia Advocate are Perfect Travel Shoes
Because the shoes are lightweight, supportive, and have great traction, I wouldn’t hesitate to pack them for any trip where I need a casual shoes for walking around all day or light hiking.
Downsides of the Patagonia
Honestly, I love these shoes.
The only downside that I can think of is that they are a little pricey.
That said, because they are so versatile, comfortable, and well constructed, I’m even considering buying them in another color.
Patagonia Advocate MJ
The Patagonia Advocate MJ is an awesome shoe.
It’s lightweight, comfortable, cute, and easy to put on. I would highly recommend them.
If you’re wondering about size, I wear a size 9 in most shoes (9.5 in Nike and Asics running shoes for comparison) and a size 9 of the Advocate MJs fit me perfectly.