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You’re a traveler who doesn’t like taking the easy route — especially if it means hopping in a taxi. You’re up for the walk. Often the long walk. But long walks bring wear and tear to your shoes and you need the footwear that can keep up with you and match your “take the long way” mentality.
When choosing a pair of long-distance walking shoes, you have to know what to look for. Stability, sole support, and durability are three critical requirements for long distance walking shoes. On the personal side, you need to know your feet. Are they wider or more narrow? Do you need extra support in the arch? What brands have worked for your feet in the past? Answer these questions before you pull the trigger on a new pair.
With that in mind, let’s get to it. So what are the best long-distance walking shoes? We’ve found a few that are consistent winners with those who put their shoes to the test.
Nike Air Zoom Terra Kiger 3 (Men & Women’s)
A trail running shoe, the Terra is built for speed but can take the wear and tear of the trail. They do pretty well as far as style points go as well.
Adidas Alphabounce (Men & Women’s)
More of a street shoe, the Alphabounce is light enough to take out for a run but offers the support needed for a long hike. These can be worn with long pants and take the crown for all-around functionality and style.
Salomon X Ultra 2 (Men & Women’s)
Tough like a hiking boot, but light like a trail runner, these hybrids bring the best of both worlds and are perfect for those taking the long trail. If your long walk is looking a little tougher than just a stroll on a well-worn path, these are your pick.
Asics Gel Contend
Asics consistently test at the top of polls of athletes and casual shoe wearers as being one of, if not the best shoes for performance and comfort. While their name may not be as big as Addidas or Nike, once people try Asics they often stay loyal for many years after that. Reasonably priced, most versions of the Gel Contend retail for somewhere betwen $55 and $65.
A shoe from one of the very few all women’s sports company, the Ryka Sky is designed specifically as a walking shoe. With memory foam cushioning your foot and a mesh design adding breathability, this is easily one of the best shoes for long walks while traveling. They also make a great gift for all the lady adventure travelers in your life.
Asics Gel Tech Walker Neo 4
Asics’s Gel Tech is designed to add an extra amount of cushion to help with comfort. They are also widely believed to be one of the best shoes on the market for anyone with plantar fasciitis. Coming in both men’s and women’s styles any Asics shoe with their gel technology promises to be comfortable.
Skechers Go Walk 4 Walking Shoe
Bring them back! We should have known that Skechers would one day return to claim their abandoned 90s glory. Listen it may be a while until the Skechers name makes a comeback but in the meantime, these black slip-ons are comfy and not totally gaudy. They might just be fashionable enough for a tour through Paris.
New Balance Ralaxa
Are we the only ones who read “Ralaxa” and picture someone with a Jamaican accent telling us to relax? Maybe, but anyone wearing these kicks can be sure that their feet will be feeling very ralaxa. Featuring a sleek design with colors that don’t make people shield their eyes, the Ralaxas look good on your feet also.
Reebok Cloudride DMX 3.0
Definitely the winner of the coolest name award. Tell people on your free walking tour that you’re rocking the latest Cloudride DMX 3.0’s and people are going to start looking at you differently. Bask in the respect people, you’re welcome.
Oofos Women’s OOMG Low Shoe
Dare we say the OOMGs will make people say OMG because of their comfort? Yes, we do dare say that. With four-way stretch material, these shoes are guaranteed to provide comfort all day long. And if we were coming up with a marketing campaign for them we’d go with the slogan “Don’t Be a Doofus, Wear Oofos”.
QANSI Men’s Mesh Ultra Lightweight Breathable Athletic Shoes
Probably the only time it is ok for men to wear mesh is with these bad boys. QANSI produces versions in an assortment of colors but personally, we like the classic black. The lightweight part of the name does ring true though. These shoes weigh next to nothing making them an easy item to pack for a backpacking trip.