Every single year Walking Sandals are becoming more popular with outdoor enthusiasts and with good reason. Rather than the stereotypical designs that have stigma attached to them these outdoor Sandals are expertly created to offer all of the function and performance of a technical hiking shoe but have the features and overall looks of open footwear. You can walk confidently in them with the added bonus of a cooling airflow and water resistance.
Much like any other pair of premium outdoor footwear, Walking Sandals are given the latest technical features, fabrics and constructions to meet the demands of not just the individual but the terrain and environment they will be trekking in so can be relied upon. There are also varying types and models from premium footwear brands that are intended for different kinds of terrain and conditions. If you are new to regularly using hikes and trails it can be tricky finding sandals that are suitable for you personally or if you just want more information on which of the past year’s crop are must-have then our 2015 Walking Sandals review guide should better inform you to the right decision.
We have looked at everything from price, to looks, features and all-round performance so that everyone can see a wide mix of the best to choose from.
Merrell Kahuna III Sandals
These are extremely popular across the board with people from all walks of life and it’s easy to tell why immediately after putting them on, plus they are available in gender specific models as well. Visually they obviously are not your typical sandal as the pig suede upper has been cleverly made to incorporate the hook and loop closure system and exterior TPU heel stability arm into a fashionable design. You do find plenty of comfort with the Merrell Kahuna III Sandals as a Lycra neoprene liner provides padding with Aegis solution and anatomically contoured sole that includes a Merrell Air Cushion in the heel. These elements ensure stability, support and help to prevent rubbing in the areas covered by the uppers to remove the issue of blisters. The outsole is a Vibram Chameleon Sport sole made from TC5+ rubber so there is always plenty of grip you can rely on. MORE INFO
Keen Whisper Womens Sandals
If you want a pair of sandals made to be put on quickly so you can go trekking in wet weather then the Keen Whisper Womens Sandals are ideal. They are fairly light weight compared to most other sandals but still manage to have a lot of features that give them plenty of performance. Once on they can be simply secured with a quick draw lacing system and you’re away. The Polyester webbing upper is washable, plus they have a Hydrophobic mesh liner to prevent moisture being trapped between the skin and fabric while a ladies specific anatomical EVA footbed cradles the feet and supports the arch area very well especially considering it is combined with a TPU stability shank. As these are meant for moisture laden conditions they have a non-marking rubber outsole so not only are they grippy but work to prevent the build-up of mud and debris in the lugs. MORE INFO
Teva Tanza Leather Sandals
Like all of their footwear the Teva Tanza Leather Sandals are built for walks, especially in wet environments thanks to their own tried and tested technologies like the Teva Spider Original rubber outsole that retains high traction and grip even when wet. The upper is completely waterproof and has a number of adjustment points so you really get a secure and comfortable fit. The Tanza walking sandals may look fairly minimalistic but the mid and topsoles are packed with support and comfort features such as a nylon shank, Shoc Pad in the heel, a Mush infusion and microfibre moisture wicking footbed. Overall this pair of walking sandals will easily tackle light treks and trails, water or not reliably every time. MORE INFO
Columbia Sunrise Vent Womens Sandals
This stylish pair of ladies walking sandals are meant for being active come rain or shine and uses technical features extremely effectively. The Columbia Sunrise Vent Womens Sandals have a toe ring design and a simple yet secure fit which is made from fast drying synthetic leather with a Hydrophobic lining attached to a Techlite midsole which in turn has a lot of cushioning and ensures plenty of push off power but quite cleverly has ports that allow for a cooling flow of air and water drainage which all create for a really comfy walking experience. Like all good footwear these Columbia Sandals have a lot of traction due to Non-Marking Omni-Grip rubber outsoles that prevent the build-up of dirt and mud leaving the lugs free to hold onto the ground. MORE INFO
Salomon RX Break Sandals
The Salomon RX Break Sandals are a little different from the rest of our Top 5 as they have been designed to function as recovery footwear rather than active. This means that after a hike or run these sandals provide the perfect way of letting your feet and leg muscles recover while letting you be mobile as well, plus even has APMA acceptance. Each pair is made to look like a flip-flop but has similar technical features to the other sandals in our best of guide so they are comfortable and reliable wherever you tread. A number of EVA technologies keep the feet well supported as they have an anatomical fit while an OS Muscle and Tendon construction allows for easier rolling and rebound motion. Non-Marking Contagrip soles work to keep you steady wherever you decide to relax. MORE INFO
If you plan to explore what the wilderness has to offer in warmer wetter weather at a calmer pace then these Top 5 Walking Sandals will enable you to do that and help you wind down afterwards too. We have also nominated three of these sandals for particular awards in case you still aren’t sure but also because we know factors like overall function and value for money are important to everyone as well.
Best Value – Columbia Sunrise Vent Womens Sandals
By far the cheapest of the bunch, but that is no means the reason why we have chosen the Columbia Sunrise Vent Womens Sandals for the best overall value of our Top Five. These have similar features for comfort, support and grip to the others, along with a waterproof upper plus feature venting and drainage so have great overall performance for much less. The only drawback really is that the design isn’t quite as eye catching as the others, but if you like a minimalist style this is perfect.
Best Performance – Merrell Kahuna III Sandals
Performance wise it was tricky choosing the better sandals as each one works very well but the Merrell Kahuna III Sandals had the edge over the rest. They are ideal for everyday wear and off-road trails as the construction is similar to a hiking shoe and the technical fabrics and features ensure lasting comfort and support. They give traction and grip just about anywhere which adds a great deal to their stability and also have little extras like being treated with an anti-microbial solution to keep them and your feet much fresher throughout their use.
Best Looks – Keen Whisper Walking Sandals
We quite liked the design of the Keen Whisper Walking Sandals as rather than go for a more typical or stylised version of a traditional look these are the same shape and construction you expect from a technical shoe but made to look almost skeletal with exposed areas. This design means that you instantly have the comfort and fit of a shoe but the air flow and drainage of a sandal plus the advantage of a toe cap for extra protection as well. Style and function have truly been merged for mutual benefit with these Keen Sandals.