If you buy through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission. Read more

Top 10 Best Hiking Shoes & Boots in 2021

OwlRatings’ experts have picked the ten best shoes & Boots for hiking from various brands based on comfort, ease of use, durability, value for money, and overall goodness for a good hiking experience.

Reasons to look for good hiking shoes & boots

In times like today, exercise and physical activity has become even more necessary. Be it working out, running, hiking, or even walking. Physical movement keeps you not only physically fit, but also plays a huge role in your mental stability.

To enjoy your leisure exercise time to the fullest, comfort is the first and foremost prerequisite. A hiking or running experience is only fruitful and enjoyable if your body is in comfort, especially your feet. This makes a good hiking shoes’ choice very important. A wrong kind of pair can be four times more painful for your feet than a backache. Foot sores, blisters, cramps are common complaints by people after physical activity. The biggest factor is uncomfortable shoes.

Choosing a durable, breathable, and comfortable pair not only increases your will to bring it into use. It also makes the whole experience a whole lot more fun and motivating.

A lot of companies and brands have a wide range of hiking boots with varying features. Some are waterproof, some are shock-proof while some are heavy on the feet or not enough breathable for an easy and comfortable walking experience. Hence, in this article, we have picked the top 10 hiking shoes based on the value, material, weight, and comfort that they offer.

Best overall for men

Salomon X Ultra 3 Gore-Tex Men’s hiking shoes

Recommended
100 %

Salomon X Ultra 3 Gore-Tex Men’s hiking shoes

Best hiking shoes for men for the price

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

These ankle boots are made of 100% leather and strong rubber soles. The construction has very stable curves for the perfect fit for your feet. These come at a very reasonable price, being water and rustproof this one pair can last you a good couple of months. The adjustability and seam-sealed construction make it a smart choice.

Breathability is slightly an issue with these, the outer is completely leather and seam-sealed, so the interior isn’t very well ventilated. On a hot day, these can turn out to be suffocating on the feet. Other than this one issue, these are pocket-friendly, water, and rustproof with a strong and lightweight sole. The insulation and warmth are impeccable for cold regions which is a plus.

If you are a beginner looking for something pocket-friendly, long-lasting, and stable, these Timberland boots are a wise investment. These are lighter in mass than most leather boots. The base is comfortably wide and soft on the skin, so the overall package is well-balanced.

Best for wide feet

Timberland Men’s White Ledge Mid Waterproof hiking boots

Timberland Men’s White Ledge Mid Waterproof hiking boots

Best hiking boots for wide feet

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

Salomon’s shoes have been known for their modern technology, trendiness, and heavy-duty quality. Their exterior is lined with suede leather and mesh for breeziness. Shock diminution design makes it a very safe and secure option.

This pair comes with a waterproof exterior, a rare but extremely smart factor in good hiking shoes. These have relatively longer shafts and thick, protective mudguards around the base. This product specifically has a shock attenuation design, going down a trail may get very burdensome and painful, but the shockproof design makes sure you are good to go even on steep hikes.

The laces provide a safe and customizable fit to your feet without any sort of suffocation. The additional membrane keeps the feet dry and safe from humidity that often results in allergies. The product is good to go choice keeping comfort and skincare in mind. Conversely, the steep structure is painful for people with wider feet and that is something missing in the design priced at this rate. Other than that, this one offers you great support and shock prevention.

Best grip

Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Waterproof hiking shoes

Recommended
100 %

Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Waterproof hiking shoes

Best grippy hiking shoes to avoid slipping

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

Just like most Merrell Moab hiking shoes, this one comes with remarkable features and perfectly balanced construction. The outer is completely suede leather and mesh while the sole is a synthetic rubber TC5+ sole for a strong and durable grip.

The pair has a good water-proof design alongside a breathable mesh, both the properties keeping your feet completely aerated and dry. The in-soles have additional rubber toe caps for protection from any kind of harm and your feet remain well-supported and properly cushioned, the walk is comfortable and relaxing in these ones.

The two turn-offs for this pair would be the heavyweight and the discomfort that comes with it. The solid grip works great for tough hikes, but the thick soles surely make the shoes a bit heavy. Other than that, the pair is a safe bet by every means. The insoles are well cushioned and padded with heel and ankle support, so your workout routine remains soft on the foot soles.

Best lightweight

KEEN Men’s Targhee II Mid hiking boots

KEEN Men’s Targhee II Mid hiking boots

Best lightweight hiking boots

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

These hiking boots are made in 100% leather with rubber soles. Its high shafts and water-resistant exterior make it completely water-proof and warm. The highlight of this product would be its contemporary and fashionable construction. The high ankle ends, and thick soles make the appearance very appealing.

For cold, snowy weather, this might be the best choice to go for. High ankles keep even deep snow far from your feet and leather outers keep the feet warm and cozy, but the structure might turn out very uneasy if worn on a hot day, especially for longer use.

The product is surely a bit over-priced. If you are looking for durability and trendiness in a hiking shoe pair, this one might be the one for you. Hiking shoes usually have bulky appearances but these ones from KEEN have an attractive look to them. As a one-time investment, this can be your go-to product for its good grip and stability.

Best premium

Salomon Men’s X Ultra 3 MID GTX hiking boots

Salomon Men’s X Ultra 3 MID GTX hiking boots

Best premium hiking shoes if price doesn’t matter

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

This one comes with a completely mesh-based outer serving great ventilation. The shaft lengths are low, so your feet remain at ease without a constricting feel. This one is also very stable and waterproof.

The best thing about this pair would be its descent-control technology, something which is not taken into consideration a lot but has a great effect on your physical health. Generally, downward hikes throw a great amount of pressure on your knees and ankles, but with the soft insoles and descent control of these boots, that will not be a problem at all.

For summers, we would say this one is the most comfortable and usable. The low shafts might be an issue for rainy and snowy regions as water can get in easily. Apart from that, it is the perfect pair for daily wear, sports, and light walks.

Best for beginners

Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Vent hiking shoes

Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Vent hiking shoes

Best hiking shoes for hiking beginners

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

The product is overall great value for money. Its construction and material quality are proven to be very easy to use and safe for long hours. Hiking can be challenging, especially going up trails. This pair is designed to maximize your hiking experience by giving a TC5+ synthetic sole and an airy mesh upper lining.

The closed-cell foam base keeps debris at bay and provides safety for your skin from all kinds of bacterial or fungal infections that usually amass after a long hike. It also comes with protective rubber toe coats against all types of pointy and challenging hills and treks.

Foot comfort is the most indispensable factor for your overall posture. A good pair of shoes with a moderately tight grip makes sure your feet are movable, improving muscle movement and blood circulation. This specific pair makes sure you take maximum benefit out of your hikes and walks.

Best adjustability

Columbia Men’s Newton Ridge Plus Ii Suede hiking boots

Columbia Men’s Newton Ridge Plus Ii Suede hiking boots

Best hiking boots that can be adjusted to fit any feet

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

This pair again is made up of 100% suede leather and synthetic rubber soles. It has a metal hardware base for extra strength and grip. The one stand-out feature for this one would be the dual-zone pattern that is designed for stability and support for steep hikes.

The product comes in a range of different shades and color combinations, plus the narrowed boat end shape makes it super classy. If you are looking for something easy to use and wide-based, this will not suffice your requirements much, and your feet might feel restricted after a while. The appearance and adjustability of lace-ups are perfect for small feet.

Even with a think leather exterior, the product is surprisingly lightweight. This one does not come with a breathable material but the shaft heights are moderate so air can easily get through, hence breathability will not be a problem.

The price is reasonable. It is a one-time kind of expenditure as the grip and exterior look very promising. The trendy, unique shape and design is a rare thing in hiking boots but this one has got you covered with that too.

Best features

Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Vent Mid hiking boots

Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Vent Mid hiking boots

Best hiking boots with advanced features

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

This one is another pair from Merrell Moab and it comes with similar features like debris control, foamed midsoles, and rubber toe caps for protection. The soles are thick and well-mudded with properly balanced cushioning, high at ankles and heel but low at the center so the shape perfectly fits.

The material used is the best one so far in hiking boots, which is a proportionate mix of suede leather and patches of mesh for good ventilation throughout. The best part about these boots is the wide end base, a quality missing in most designs these days.  It is the first condition for a comfortable hiking pair for people with wide feet. Easy mobility while a long walk is very necessary.

Unlike most shoes from this range, this one does not have a water-proof design. The price, albeit, is towards the high end, and most shoes at this price have water resilient designs. It has the tendency to make your feet tired over a long trek too. Yet, as someone who needs a good pair for walks and sports, preferably in dry climates, this pair is a good option as the inner is well-ventilated and wide enough for comfortable movement.

Best for women & plantar fasciitis

Merrell Women’s Moab 2 Vent hiking shoes

Merrell Women’s Moab 2 Vent hiking shoes

Best hiking shoes for plantar fasciitis

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

These Merrell Moab shoes for women remain unparalleled when it comes to comfort. The construction material is wearable, well-aerated, and trendy. This one too has a leather and mesh exterior, and the insoles are well-cushioned, which is great for heel and ankle support.

The debris is restrained out of the shoe, so you stay safe from humidity and skin reactions of any kind. Toe protection and EVA foamed midsoles make the interior very soft yet firm and durable. One common feature left out in this pair would be again waterproofing, making it inappropriate for humid areas.

Light-weight products are one of the biggest requirements for women, this one makes sure your feet are at ease. This pair is very light and airy. The shaft lengths are also very well-balanced. High at the ankle and toe area and low at the middle region, offering good support to the foot soles. The product is priced at a very moderate amount, easy on the pocket, and comfy on the feet.

Best affordable

Columbia Men’s Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof hiking boots

Columbia Men’s Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof hiking boots

Best affordable & waterproof hiking boots

  • Weight:
  • Material:
  • Comfort:
  • Value for money:

These hiking shoes come with a leather and mesh exterior providing sturdiness and good ventilation. The insoles are soft and cushioned, but the heel area doesn’t have enough padding, so the hikes may turn out tiring and painful on the heels for a while. Contrarily, short walks and work-out with this pair are very comfortable and well-gripped.

 They are one of the most affordable options, many of the boots at this price lack waterproofing and high ankle shafts, but this one has humidity and water-proof design, along with high ankles that leave no room for water or snow to enter in.

Rather than trekking and hiking, these will serve you way better for a simple workout or a short run. The design is comfy and durable enough for such purposes. The overall design, however, lacks good heel support. Overall, the shoes are lightweight and well-gripped. The look is also very classy and eye-catching for such a price.

What to look for in good hiking shoes

A good pair of hiking boots come in a long-lasting and breathable construction, with compulsory features like waterproofing and a well-gripped sole. In addition to these basic requirements, a good pair has well-balanced shaft lengths that do not feel constricting on the feet yet keep the feet in a good grip.

Overall, the best hiking shoes are waterproof, breathable, durable, and stable on the heels. If the walk feels comfortable with easy movement of your feet, the pair is good to go for you. Keeping in mind the incentives offered and the price demanded is also very important. Mid-ranged shoes are usually well-equipped and comfortable, so it is often best to look out for the best features at reasonable rates.

Material

The material is perfect if it is breathable and firm. However, it is also greatly dependent on the weather type. Cold areas usually require a higher leather percentage and high shafts. For hotter regions, these two are a big no. You would want to look for something with low shaft heights and good aeration.

Generally, a suede leather and mesh combination is common and also the most durable and heavy-duty. The soles must be tightly gripped and synthetic. Rubber soles last the longest and are very easily cleanable, so that’s a plus.

Weight

The weight of your footwear is very important. If it is too light, the product will lack stability and if it’s too heavy, the walk would become tiring. A moderate weighing pair lasts a good time. Also, it keeps the feet firm on the ground yet taking steps remains easy. Boots in between 1lbs to 2.2lbs are a wise choice.

Comfort

The one most important prerequisite of a good hiking pair is the comfort it offers. Well-padded insoles and heel support are what you should be looking for. Features like debris control and shock prevention would make the hiking experience more comfortable and entertaining. The base should not be too narrow or too wide and mid-length shafts keep your mobility easy and intact. Keeping these in mind, a lightweight, foamed, water and shock-proof product will be good to go.

FAQ

How to choose hiking shoes?

From the large variety of shoes being offered, choosing the right one can be a task. The best fit for you would be something according to the shape of your feet and the place you live. Other than that, a thick sole with a breathable upper and water-proof design is a great fit.

What is the best material for hiking shoes?

The best material is a breathable lining on a sturdy basic shape, for example, a mesh lining over suede leather. Synthetic rubber soles and leather outers are the most durable.

Can you wear hiking shoes for running?

Yes, hiking boots are great for running. For a dual purpose, you should look for low-shafts and a strong grip.

Should hiking shoes be waterproof?

Yes, the best hiking boots are waterproof. Hikes and hills can be messy at times and keeping your feet dry and airy are very important. A water-proof pair makes sure you are at ease and relaxed throughout the hike.

Final verdict

Conclusively, your best fit will be the one best suited according to your needs. We have lined up the top 10 products for you to choose from. The purpose, weather conditions, and the shape of your feet are the decisive factors for your perfect pair. Good features, strong structure, and durability at a good price are the necessary elements you can look out for.

Become a member

Become a member of our large community for free. Our newsletter grant access to exlusive content, premium reviews, giveaway contests and much more.

By continuing, you accept the privacy policy.
Absolutely no spam. Unsubscribe any time!