Shoes, shoes, shoes

The pair of shoes you choose to wear while traveling can determine if your trip will be pleasant or miserable.  Believe it or not, on my first trip to Italy I chose to wear moccasins (also known as fancy house slippers) on a sightseeing day in Rome.  We walked all over the city from sun up to sun down.  Needless to say, my feet were bleeding from blisters and sore from lack of support.  Yes, I did cry at the end of the day.  As embarrassing as that story is, I am telling it to you so you don’t make the same mistake I did.   Bring good shoes!
I do research on shoes for weeks.  I read reviews on Amazon, I check out other travel blogs to see what others are saying about the best pair of walking shoes.  This area of fashion is subjective.  We all have different types of feet and we’re all different sizes which mean everyone will find different shoes more comfortable than others.

The other problem I’ve run into is most of the walking and hiking shoes are very outdoorsy.  They have velcro straps and lots of colors, which can look tacky and touristy, like a pair of Keens.  Not that those aren’t good shoes, but I don’t want to wear those to an art museum.
I want a good pair of stylish shoes that are comfortable and provide support.

Here are some that I have purchased and loved:

The Teva Ballerina Mush shoes have been one of my favorite travel shoes.  They are so comfortable and breathable.  Unfortunately, they don’t make these anymore.  They do have a hot pink version on Amazon but it looks like it’s out of stock.  The only reason I’m putting this on here is because if Teva sells anything with this “mush” material, it is fantastic.  They make these sandals out of the same material, which you still can get:
 
I bring these Teva Olowahus everywhere.  Even if I’m going somewhere cold, I bring them to wear around my hotel or if I am running down to breakfast.  They are so comfortable.  If you’re going some place warm, these will provide you with great support.  And these you can purchase.
 
These are the most comfortable boots I’ve ever purchased: BORN Trisha Boot.  I wore these on my last trip overseas, and I basically wore them every day and my feet didn’t hurt once.  They look great with a dress and with jeans.  I wore them to hike up a rocky mountain and I wore them into the British Museum.  They are a perfect travel shoe.  They look modern, but they’re comfortable and functional.
 
Flats are the most difficult shoe to shop for when it comes to travel.  Flats are lightweight, they look great with jeans and skirts, but it’s hard to find a pair that you can wear for long periods of time without aches and pains.  I have tried all kinds of flats, and these Easy Spirit Gessica flats are some of the most comfortable.  Your feet will still be sore at the end of a long sightseeing day, but I’ve had much worse.  These also make your feet stinky… so bring some baby powder.
 
Finding good travel shoes is an ongoing process, but I will give you a couple tips to help you find the best pair.
  1. Read reviews online, but take them with a grain of salt.  Everyone has different feet so the type of shoe you need may be just what someone else hated.  Make sure the reviews are decent, but make up your own mind about them.
  2. Purchase them way ahead of time.  You need plenty of time for your feet to adjust to the shoes and for you to make sure you will have minimal blisters.  You want a good, well-broken in pair of shoes before you go.  Plus, you want to make sure your outfits match them.
  3. Always bring at least two pairs.  Even Olympic runners have two pairs of shoes that they rotate daily.  You need to give your feet a break.  Switching between two pairs of shoes can ensure that your feet aren’t rubbing against the exact same part over and over.
  4. Bring band-aids.  Even with the best shoes in the world, you still will get blisters.  Keep band-aids with you and the moment you notice a blister starting to form, put a band-aid on right away.  You’ll thank me for this tip.
  5. Make sure at least one pair is water-proof.  Either you have to bring a pair of large, heavy rain boots, or one of the pairs you bring needs to be leather.  A nice pair of leather boots are really a good investment for a trip.  They’re sturdy, comfy, stylish, and “all-weather.”
  6. Aim for a solid color.  Multi-colored or brightly colored shoes limit your outfit choices.  If you bring a pair of Keens, you’re going to look silly in a skirt and tights.
What are your favorite travel shoes?
 
 
 
 

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