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Top 6 Best Hiking Shoes For Beginners!

Get ready for an unforgettable hiking adventure with the best shoes for beginners! Whether you're just starting out or looking to enhance your outdoor experience, these top-rated hiking shoes will provide you with comfort, support, and durability.

Best Hiking Shoes For Beginners

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Are you ready to go on your first hiking adventure? Exploring nature is the perfect way to relax, exercise, and enjoy stunning views.

Before you hit the trails, ensuring you have the right hiking gear is important. One key item? A good pair of hiking shoes. But with so many brands and styles, how do you know which is best for beginner hikers like yourself?

In this blog post, we'll discuss what features beginners should look for when shopping for their first pair of hiking shoes, as well as review our five favorite pairs on the market today—so keep reading!

How We Choose the Best Hiking Shoes For Beginners

Embarking on a hiking journey but don't know where to start with your shoe selection? We strive to make product selection easy for shoppers. To determine which hiking shoes are the best for beginners, our team of experts considers various factors based on their extensive knowledge and experience with outdoor gear.

Don't worry, we've done the research for you! After sifting through a massive amount of feedback on Amazon, we've identified the top five hiking shoes that are perfect for beginners. So, lace up your boots and hit the trails confidently, knowing you've made a great choice.

For example, when choosing the best hiking shoes for beginners, we consider the materials used in the construction of the shoes, their level of comfort and support for different activities, and features like breathability and grip. We also compare prices so that you can find an option that won’t break your budget.

When selecting each pair, we consider customer feedback from people who have purchased the product and used it in real hiking environments. This allows us to ensure that all the shoes we recommend are high-quality and dependable.

Now that you know how we evaluate the best hiking shoes for beginners, let’s look at a guide and our top five picks!

A Guide To The Best Hiking Shoes For Beginners

Shopping for the right hiking shoes can be daunting, especially for beginners. Here are some tips to find the perfect pair of hiking shoes:

Look for a supportive fit - Make sure your hiking shoes have enough arch support and cushioning in the midsole to protect your feet while walking on uneven terrain.

Choose waterproof material - A waterproof upper will keep your feet dry, even if you end up walking through puddles or wet grass.

Consider traction - Look for a sole with good traction that won't slip on rocks, dirt and other surfaces you might encounter on your hikes.

Get ample toe protection - Toe caps are a great way to protect against dirt and rocks that could otherwise cause pain and discomfort.

Don’t forget comfort - Make sure you try on several pairs before settling on one; they should feel comfortable and secure when you walk around in them!

With detailed and rigorous research, we provide our readers with the finest recommendations. Our recommendations are our opinions. Our cause is backed by reader support- for every click made through one of our affiliates links, a commission may be earned at no extra expense to you! As an Amazon Associate, Reviewsopedia may earn a commission from qualifying purchases. Thank you and enjoy!

Merrell Women's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot

Why It Made Our List

When finding the right pair of hiking shoes, comfort is key—and the Merrell Women's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot does not disappoint. These boots are constructed with a 100% leather and mesh upper for durability and feature a waterproof membrane that seals out water and helps keep your feet dry.

A protective toe cap helps keep your feet safe from bumps and hits. The mesh lining helps your feet stay cool and comfortable. The Kinetic Fit ADVANCED removable contoured insole and reinforced heel cushioning give you plenty of medium support to brave even the toughest terrain.

Everything You Need To Know

Merrell Women's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot is one of the best beginner hiking boots and shoes. With a metal hook, traditional lace closure and breathable mesh lining, these boots keep your feet comfortable and dry on those longer hikes.

The Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot is a great choice for beginner hikers and offers protection from debris. The boot also has a moulded nylon arch shank that provides extra support when walking on different terrains.

The traditional lace closure ensures a secure fit that won’t loosen up during your hike. With its combination of comfort and protection, the Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot is perfect for beginner hikers.

KEEN Women's Targhee 3 Mid-Height Waterproof Hiking Boots

Why It Made Our List

The Targhee 3 Mid-Height Waterproof Hiking Boots from KEEN are the perfect option for beginner hikers. The waterproof construction ensures your feet stay dry and comfortable all day, while the external support shank and contoured heel provide extra stability and balance on uneven surfaces.

The mid-cut height adds ankle support and provides a comfortable fit. Best of all, the non-marking rubber outsoles leave no trace or imprints when walking indoors. All these features make the Targhee 3 Mid-Height Waterproof Hiking Boots a must-have for beginner hikers!

Everything You Need To Know

When choosing the best women's hiking boots and shoes, KEEN Women’s Targhee 3 Mid-Height Waterproof Hiking Boots stand out for their durability and comfort. These boots are made with a 100% fabric upper that is waterproof, keeping your feet dry and comfortable no matter the conditions.

These boots are made with a special heel that helps keep you stable. They have a footbed that supports your arch and fits your feet. You can also choose from lots of colors and sizes. You will find the perfect pair for you!

KEEN Women’s Targhee 3 Mid-Height Waterproof Hiking Boots are great for beginner hikers, and they will also last through multiple seasons of outdoor adventures. Their rugged design offers superior protection from the elements, so you can easily traverse rough and rocky terrain.

Oboz Sawtooth II Low B-Dry Hiking Shoe

Why It Made Our List

The Oboz Sawtooth II Low B-Dry Hiking Shoe is designed with a combination of durability, comfort, and waterproofness to provide the perfect hiking footwear experience. It features an O FIT Insole that provides superior fit and feels, plus a dual-density EVA midsole for cushioning and stability.

The upper is made from durable waterproof nubuck leather and highly abrasion-resistant textile, which stands up to whatever you throw. Its rubber heel counter helps maintain a snug, comfortable heel hold.

If you're looking for a shoe designed specifically for beginning hikers, this one should be at the top of your list.

Everything You Need To Know

The Oboz Sawtooth II Low B-Dry Hiking Shoe is great for all hikers, whether you are a beginner or an expert. It will keep your feet comfortable and safe while you hike. The collar is asymmetrical which helps it fit better and the heel has rubber on it which makes it more secure.

The Sawtooth midsole offers superior cushioning and stability while still being lightweight enough not to weigh you down during long hikes. Its dual-density EVA midsole provides comfortable cushioning and support, while the nylon shank gives extra stability when needed.

The Sawtooth outsole is built for versatility, flexibility and support. The map moulded on the bottom of the outsole features the Sawtooth mountain range near Sun Valley, Idaho—perfect for any adventure enthusiast.

You don’t need to worry about waterlogging—this pair comes with Oboz's proprietary waterproofing system called B-DRY. It keeps moisture from your feet while allowing sweat to escape, so your feet stay dry and comfortable even in wet conditions.

Oboz Sawtooth II Low B-Dry Hiking Shoe - Men's best women's hiking shoes are a great choice for beginner hikers who want a comfortable, supportive shoe without breaking the bank. Its combination of quality, comfort and affordability makes it a great pick for any adventurous beginner hiker.

Columbia Women's Newton Ridge

Why They Made Our List

If you’re ready to take your hiking ventures to the next level, then the Columbia Women's Newton Ridge is the perfect companion. This lightweight shoe features a cushioning midsole and durable outsole made with proprietary non-marking traction that ensures maximum traction on any surface. The combination of waterproof full-grain leather and suede materials provide breathability and comfort while keeping your feet dry in any outdoor conditions. The padded tongue and collar offers added ankle support while the soft, foam footbed deliver all-day comfort during any length hike. With these shoes, you can be sure that your feet are secured and protected from everyday wear and tear, allowing you to enjoy nature without worrying about your feet! Take the plunge this season with the safe, supportive, and 100% waterproof Columbia Women's Newton Ridge shoes, perfect for any beginner hiker.

Everything You Need To Know

Outfit yourself with the best hiking shoes for beginners and take on your next adventure worry free with Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge. These hiking shoes are designed for all-day comfort and protection, featuring waterproof leather and a seam-sealed construction to keep your feet safe and dry. In addition, their ultra-lightweight design works together with a Techlite midsole to provide maximum cushioning along with excellent energy return - perfect for those long treks. Finally, a high-traction Omni grip outsole provides full ground contact and stability - so that you can feel secure wherever you choose to explore. Get ready for your next journey in the best hiking shoes for beginners; Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge.

Merrell Men's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot

Why It Made Our List

The Merrell Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot is a great and good beginner hiking boots or shoes because it offers a rugged design and durable construction. The waterproof upper helps dry your feet in wet conditions, while the cushioned midsole provides stable comfort throughout your hike plus its GTX so its lined with Gor-Tex making it waterproof and breathable.

The Vibram® TC5+ outsole delivers high-performance durability, making it perfect for a first-time hiking experience. The Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot is a great option for any beginner hiker looking for a reliable shoe that won't break the bank.

Everything You Need To Know

Merrell Men's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot is perfect for beginner hikers. This lightweight hiking shoe and boot offer superior support and cushioning, making it ideal for those new to trail trekking.

The M Select™ DRY technology allows you to stay comfortable in all weather conditions by keeping your feet dry while allowing moisture to escape. With its mid-cut height, you get additional ankle support to protect your feet and ankles from any surprises on the trail.

The hardy suede leather and mesh upper provide a tough exterior that is still breathable enough for comfort in all terrain. The bellows tongue helps remove debris, while the rubber toe cap adds extra protection.

The lace-up closure provides a comfortable yet snug fit for a secure fit. The padded tongue and collar ensure your feet stay comfortable all day, while the breathable mesh lining ensures your feet feel cool and dry.

The blended EVA footbed provides arch and heel support to keep your feet in place throughout the day. The heel's EVA midsole and Merrell air cushioning absorb impacting shock for a more comfortable experience.

With all these features and benefits, the Merrell Men's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot is perfect for beginners looking to venture out into the wild. If you prefer complete waterproof then opt for the GTX version

Salomon Men's X Ultra 3 Mid Gore-tex Hiking Boots

Why It Made Our List

The Salomon Men's X Ultra 3 Mid Gore-tex Hiking Boots are lightweight and durable, making them a great choice for beginner hikers. They feature waterproof construction to keep your feet dry in wet conditions.

These shoes offer maximum traction on all terrains, so you can feel secure no matter where your journey takes you. They come in various sizes and styles, so you can find the right pair that fits your needs.

Everything You Need To Know

Salomon's X Ultra 3 Mid Gore-tex Hiking Boots are the perfect choice for any beginner hiker. This shoe is designed to provide maximum traction on all terrains and features Descent Control Technology, making it ideal for tackling technical hikes and tough descents in wet conditions.

The waterproof upper and rubber outsole offers durable protection against mud, water, and slippery surfaces. The mid-rise design and comfortable EVA foam midsole cushion your feet while trekking through rough terrain and ensure you remain protected while hiking in any season.

The breathable mesh ensures your feet stay cool even when temperatures soar.The Quicklace system helps lock laces into place without having to tie them up again after every use of trail running shoes. This makes them the perfect choice for those who don't have time to fiddle with their laces while on the trail.

Salomon's X Ultra 3 Mid Gore-tex Hiking Boots are an excellent choice for beginner hikers looking for reliable, comfortable footwear that can handle all terrain.


How do I care for my hiking shoes?

Caring for your hiking shoes correctly ensures they last a long time. After each outdoor activity, clean off dirt or mud on the shoe with a damp cloth. Use a brush and mild soap if there are tough stains or odours.

Allow the shoes to air dry before storing them in a cool, dry place away from sunlight—as direct sunlight can damage them over time.

Are there any special considerations I should consider if I have wide feet?

Yes. If you have wide feet, look for a pair of shoes made with an anatomical last—this means the shoe is contoured to fit your foot shape and provide optimal comfort. Many brands design their shoes to offer extra width in the wide toe box area — so be sure to read reviews and check out sizes before making a purchase.

How do I know if hiking shoes will fit me well?

The best way to know if the women's hiking boots or shoes you’re looking at will fit correctly is to try them on. Look for a snug but not a tight fit, and ensure there's some space in the toe box, so your toes aren't cramped.

High-quality brands often provide sizing charts or online tools to help you pick the right size.

What are some of the best resources for beginner hikers?

There are plenty of great resources for beginner hikers. Websites provide helpful advice on gear selection and trail information. Social media groups and hiking forums offer a wealth of knowledge for seasoned hikers.

Finally, outdoor magazines are excellent sources for finding local hikes near you.

Is it OK to wear running shoes for hiking?

Although running shoes are designed to provide cushion and support, they are not built for the same kind of terrain that hiking requires. Hiking shoes have a more sturdy sole with added grip and better ankle support, essential for tackling uneven surfaces.

So, if you plan on going on long hikes, investing in a good pair of hiking shoes is best.

What are some common problems with hiking shoes?

The most common problems with hiking shoes or lightweight hiking boots include insufficient grip, lack of padding and waterproofing, difficulty finding the right size and fit, narrow feet, and narrow toe boxes.

To avoid these issues, look for shoes made with high-quality materials like Goretex or Vibram soles that provide reliable support and protection.

Where can I buy hiking shoes?

You can purchase the best women's boots and shoes from outdoor speciality stores, sporting goods stores, and online retailers. Shopping in person is ideal—not only will it help you find the perfect fit for your feet, but it also allows you to try different styles and ask questions about features before purchasing.

However, if that's not an option, many reliable online stores offer a wide selection of hiking shoes. Be sure to read reviews and check out the size charts before buying.

How do I break in my new hiking shoes?

Breaking in your new hiking shoes correctly is essential for optimal comfort and performance. Start by wearing your shoes around the house or on short walks to loosen them up before taking them out on a longer hike. You can also try taping areas that rub against the skin and lacing the shoe more loosely to reduce pressure points.

Finally, wearing good socks is important—they will help prevent blisters and give your feet extra cushioning and support.

What common mistakes do beginner hikers make when choosing their shoes?

One of the most common mistakes beginner hikers make when choosing beginner hiking shoes is buying a pair that's too small. If your toes are cramped or rubbing against the side of trail shoes, it can cause blisters and discomfort on the trail.

Many people don’t consider the terrain they will be traversing and buy shoes that lack proper grip for the surface or don’t offer enough cushion for longer hikes. Finally, some hikers forget to waterproof their shoes before entering wet conditions, which can lead to long-term damage from water seeping into the material.

Where should Place Hiking shoes when not in use?

Store your hiking shoes in a cool and dry place when you're not using them. Avoid direct sunlight or heat sources, which can cause the material to break down faster. Make sure to also ensure that your shoes are completely dry before storage, as excess moisture can lead to mould and mildew growth which can damage the shoes.

Stuffing the shoes with newspaper or wadded-up paper towels is a good idea to keep their shape and not get squished in storage.


We suggested five pairs of the very best hiking boots and shoes for you to consider, provided a quick guide for you and listed the best shoes; Merrell Women’s Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot, KEEN Women’s Targhee 3 Mid-Height Waterproof Hiking Boots, Oboz Sawtooth II Low B-Dry Hiking Shoe - Men's, Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot and Salomon Men’s X Ultra 3 Mid Gore-tex Hiking Boots. All these models comprise great features ensuring your feet' comfort and allowing you to challenge yourself in terrains free from danger.

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