Women's Water Hiking Shoes Buying Guide
Weekend glamping. Family reunions at the beach. Wine tastings that turn into trekking across the whole vineyard (and getting kind of lost). When you have an action-packed summer planned, you need shoes that can take you there. And because all summer roads lead to water (ideally), those shoes best dry out fast.
Lots of KEEN shoes are approved for aquatic adventures. But which aqua shoe is the best match for your style of fun? To figure it out, choose the sentence that describes you best.
“I’m looking for sturdy outdoor shoes for hiking, fishing, kayaking, stuff like that.”
The Newport H2 sandal is our most supportive, most rugged water shoe. It’s well-ventilated and airy-feeling (like a sandal should be), but it still protects your foot as you’re sliding down a gully or crawling through the underbrush. The heavy tread outsole keeps you from slipping on terrain that’s wet or muddy. And, most importantly, it’s fast-drying and fully compatible with taking a spontaneous running leap into a body of water.
“I wear these KEEN water shoes every day to do my delivery work during the rainy season in Florida!! They are very comfortable and fit so well.” - BJ in Florida
Pro tip: If a Newport (or any KEEN shoe) has “H2” in the product name, that means it’s good to go in the water (H2 as in H2O!).
“I want something more casual that I can wear in the water or as an everyday shoe.”
Check out our Whisper sandal for ladies. More streamlined than the Newport, they’re very lightweight and easy to wear, which makes them popular as a having-all-the-fun-and-doing-all-the-things summer shoe.
“I use these shoes for so many things. I originally bought them because I wanted to wear sandals at work, but needed a close toed shoe. Since then I have used them for everything from running errands to river rafting.” - Harmony950 in Pennsylvania
Also, never underestimate a flip-flop. The Kona’s minimal design dries fast when you’re hanging out by the pool or at the beach. And unlike most (pancake-flat) flip-flops for ladies, the Kona has a contoured footbed with plenty of arch support, so you can walk all the way up the boardwalk (and then down again).
Pro tip: Arch support doesn’t just distribute pressure so your feet feel less tired - it can also make a big difference in your level of balance.
The UNEEK sandal also works as a “light” water shoe - we don’t recommend wearing them for hours of swimming at the river, but you can walk through a stream in them, no problem.
“I think my feet might be too narrow for KEEN shoes. Which sandals will fit well?”
In general, the KEEN fit is a bit on the roomy side (for that comfy wiggle-your-toes feel). If you have a narrower foot, you might do best with the Whisper - it has a more contoured shape, and it also has an elastic bungee that can be tightened up for a snug fit. The UNEEK collection also has a closer, more contoured fit (the flexible cord upper helps it to adapt to many different kinds of feet).