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Water Shoes

Top Picks

How we choose: The best water shoes highlighted here were selected based on 136 reviews of 72 products. Our top picks are those that are readily-available in the United States and have received the highest overall ratings from reviewers.

How we test: Trailspace is powered entirely by our community of readers. The reviews posted here reflect the real-world experiences of outdoor enthusiasts just like you.

If you've used a water shoe that you think should be listed here, please share your experience.

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Top Barefoot / Minimal Shoe / Trail Shoe / Trail Running Shoe / Water Shoe

Vibram FiveFingers KSO

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (18 reviews)

As a children how many of us did not need any shoes and were happy running around barefoot even if it meant to get some blisters here and there? Later on, when we had to put shoes on and go to school and then work and so on, things changed and it would be considered inappropriate to one day show up without any shoes on. I wonder how many of us feel happy with what they are wearing on day to day basis on their feet and how many of us is actually comfortable?The Vibram soles is revolutionary innovation as far as comfortable shoes can be, which is based on the age old methodology that being barefoot helps your balance and will make you feel aware of the nature around and ground beneath your feet.

Read more: Vibram FiveFingers KSO reviews (18)

Teva Omnium

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (4 reviews)

The Omnium is a new synthetic sport sandal from Teva designed to challenge the likes of other high performance sport sandals. This might lead some readers to ask, how does a company whose reputation is built on casual sandals compare to the industry leaders in performance. The answer is simple. They compare very well. Teva seems to have pulled out all the stops for this sport sandal. The Omnium is available in both leather and synthetic. The model I wore was synthetic. The first thing I notice is that the Omnium is styled much like a cycling shoe.

Read more: Teva Omnium reviews (4)

Under Armour Micro G Kilchis Fishing Shoes

user rating: 4 of 5 (1 review)

For a water shoe, I couldn't really expect a better shoe. They are lightweight, soles are comfortable, and they fit great.

Reasons to Buy

  • Lightweight
  • Drains well

Reasons to Avoid

  • Mesh is thin and may not last very long. Time will tell.

These are comfortable and light. Most people would not wear socks with them in the water, but you could probably wear socks with them (dry) and they would be even more comfortable as a casual daily shoe. I personally just wear them with no socks, and bring them in my bag when I'm going fishing. I switch out my hiking shoes / tennis shoes for these when I get there, and put my shoes and socks back on before hiking back.

Read more: Under Armour Micro G Kilchis Fishing Shoes review (1)

Astral Brewer

user rating: 5 of 5 (2 reviews)

This is the first pair of lace-up, shoe style water shoes I have owned, and I admit, had I not won these, I probably would still be using slip-on neoprene cheapie-type water shoes. But these are great! I have used them for many canoe outings and canoe camping trips, and I can say that I cannot imagine a better pair of shoes for my paddling needs.

Reasons to Buy

  • Lightweight
  • Drain and dry well
  • Good traction
  • Comfortable

Reasons to Avoid

  • Sizes only go up to 13
  • Sizes run small

In deciding which size to order for this model shoes, I did some research, which indicated they may tend to run a bit small; I ordered a half size up from my normal size, and that seems just right. They are very comfortable to wear, and are amazingly lightweight. I often wear a pair of sacrificial old bike socks, which makes them a bit more snug to my feet, especially when they are wet. There seemed to be no need for a break-in period, and I have had no discomfort from the shoes, during any of the varied applications.

Read more: Astral Brewer reviews (2)

Teva Churn

user rating: 5 of 5 (2 reviews)

Excellent shoe.

Reasons to Buy

  • Lightweight
  • VERY comfortable

Reasons to Avoid

  • None

Excellent shoes, period. Not just water shoes, but everyday walking shoes. In fact I have been wearing almost nothing but these Teva Churns for about five years now. Almost have worn out one pair and set them aside for work shoes like digging in the garden or whatever dirty work. Wearing a pair now that is about 1.5 to 2 years old and have two more pairs still brand new in the box waiting on deck for when my daily pair wears out. I have yet in 5 years even worn them in the water once LOL. They are lightweight, have great breathability.

Read more: Teva Churn reviews (2)

Barefoot / Minimal Shoe / Trail Running Shoe / Water Shoe

Vibram FiveFingers Sprint

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (4 reviews)

Eye-catching minimalist shoes which can be used for free running, pose running, as sail shoes or even for yoga. Not recommended for daily use (build up to it) but for those certain events that can use these shoes.

Reasons to Buy

  • Minimalist
  • Many uses
  • Unique appearance

Reasons to Avoid

  • Waterlogged easily...heavy
  • Can irritate upper foot

I've had my Fivefingers since spring of 2008. There were only three designs and these were the ones for me.  I preferred the Sprint style over the Classic as the upper foot would be supported by a rubber and velcro strap. They will be snug and difficult to get on at first, you'll have to do it one toe at a time, but eventually it is easy to slip them on and off. I used them for indoor rock climbing, yoga class, and whenever I didn't want to wear shoes or sandals. It has a thick sole, so walking in creek beds or on rocky surfaces are a breeze.

Read more: Vibram FiveFingers Sprint reviews (4)

Keen Hydro Guide

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

this is my favorite Keen water shoe by a pretty wide margin. it represents a fairly significant departure from existing Keen water shoes in a number of ways that make it better-suited for...the water. Like all Keen water shoes I have worn or seen, this one retains the toe cover/bumper that provides such good protection from unexpected impacts. the toe bumper on this keen is perforated with a number of holes that allow water in and out more freely than the solid toe bumper. in addition, the front and rear sole have a series of small openings to allow water to drain from under your feet.

Read more: Keen Hydro Guide review (1)

L.L.Bean Discovery Sandals, Closed-Toe

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

Very good sandal to use when canoeing, kayaking, or just being in and around the water. Reasonably priced and very comfortable. Meets a need for a paddler with larger feet, who cannot access some other paddle shoe brands.

Reasons to Buy

  • Comfortable
  • Dries quickly
  • Don’t smell
  • Available up to size 14

Reasons to Avoid

  • Heel seems set a bit low

My husband recently purchased a pair of L.L. Bean’s Discovery Sandal to use when canoeing, kayaking, or just being in and around the water. He knows I really like my Brewer water shoes, (see our review on Trailspace).  For canoeing, he has been using an inexpensive pair of neoprene shoes which work well enough in the water, but are uncomfortable when out of the water (they give him a hot spot on a couple of toes).   Unfortunately, the Brewer only goes up to size 13, way too small for him.  We looked online and found the L.L.

Read more: L.L.Bean Discovery Sandals, Closed-Toe review (1)

Five Ten Canyoneer

user rating: 4 of 5 (3 reviews)

These shoes by far have the best sole of any canyoneering shoe on the market.

Reasons to Buy

  • Stealth Rubber
  • Comfortable
  • Lite
  • Water drains well

Reasons to Avoid

  • Too many sand traps
  • Glued on sole, peels off around toe and heel.

This shoe undeniably has the best traction of any shoe designed for canyoneering or river walking. That is attributed to the Stealth Rubber used on the sole. For those of you who are unaware of Stealth Rubber let me break it down for you. 5.10 is a rock climbing Shoe Company first and foremost. They do dabble in all sorts of other shoes, but their specialized stealth rubber is in my opinion the best option for sticking to walls of any geological making. It is this rubber that makes the shoe great.

Read more: Five Ten Canyoneer reviews (3)

Astral Porter

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

Comfortable, lightweight water shoe.

Reasons to Buy

  • Comfortable
  • Lightweight
  • Good quality
  • Dry fast

My wife and I had Astral V-Eight PFDs. We like the design and quality of them so I bought a pair of Astral Porter Watershoes at Delaware Paddle Sports. From what I've heard the Astral Brewers are good also, but I like the non marking soles of the Porters. I wore them paddling twice without socks with no chaffing but, I wear them with low Smartwool socks just because I don't like to go sockless. After a paddle if I have soaking wet feet I'll sometimes switch on dry socks to head to a local watering hole for a good craft beer.

Read more: Astral Porter review (1)

More Reviews of Water Shoes

Trailspace reviewers have shared 136 reviews of 72 different water shoes.

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