Tevas but no closed toed shoes?

In the past I have always traveled to Europe with a good closed toed hiking shoe/boot. I am considering leaving out those shoes and just wearing my super comfortable tevas when I am walking all day. So I can add in a pair of heels... really wished I had one pair last trip. We are traveling to Florence, a week at a Tuscan Agriturismo, Cinque Terre, and Lake Maggiore. We will primarily be traveling by car with only 2 train days. We are traveling in July.

That would mean I have tevas, sandals, and a pair of heels (platform so I can manage the cobblestones). Is this a bad plan? Will I regret only having Tevas for long walking days.

Posted by Kristen
Chicago
490 posts

I have taken trips in the summer where I have only worn walking sandals without difficulty. But only for the normal tourist type walking (on streets, urban areas) and maybe for a very light hike, no inclines. And it did not rain. If you are going to be doing any hiking in the Cinque Terre, you will need a heavier hiking shoe. And in rain, my feet stick to sandals and start to rub uncomfortably. I also think most closed toe shoes have better traction when they are wet.

If you decide to bring the Tevas, do a test run for a day and see what it feels like when they are wet. Ultimately it is up to you- figure out how often you wore your closed toe shoes on your previous trips and compare that with how many times you wish you had your heels. Is there a reason you can't wear the hiking shoe and pack the heel and a sandal that is a compromise between a Teva and something dressier?

Posted by tpunch42
10 posts

Last time I went to the Cinque Terre I hiked in my tevas. With so many of the easier trails closed and the fact that we will have our children (10 and 14) with us, I am guessing we won't be doing any serious hiking but I do imagine we will spend time in the water, jumping rocks etc. and a good pair of tevas is great for wet/dry situations. I also want them for the trek into the woods in Tuscany to visit hot springs. Again dry to wet to dry again.... tevas rock in that situation. Plus they are adjustable and I can share them with the 14 year old. I could give up the sandals. but I wore sandals a lot my last trip. It was so hot when we were there in July last time... I only wore my hiking shoes a couple of days.

Posted by Jean
Mill Creek, WA, USA
434 posts

I always wear a pair of Keens (somewhat similar to Tevas) 90% of the time I'm in Europe and just change to a nicer pair of sandals for dinner. Sounds like you'll be fine. I will add that I love my Keens and like that they have the added toe guard over the front of the shoe to protect toes from the uneven pavement.

Enjoy your trip to Italy!

Posted by Elaine
Columbia, SC
794 posts

"to protect toes from the uneven pavement". I second that. On the third day of my trip, I missed a slight curb rise and jammed and broke my second toe. Same toe that had hammer-toe surgery in January. OUCH......and am probably facing a do-over on the surgery as three weeks later, toe appears to be healed, but sticks up at an angle and toe doesn't make contact with the ground. Am also expecting a stern lecture from the orthopod on the importance of wearing a shoe with toe protection. Maybe if I wasn't such a klutz......

Posted by christa
alameda, ca, usa
223 posts

I am not a fan of open-toed sandals at all, but for my trip to Austria and Hungary this summer I'll be taking some Dansko mary janes sandals with closed toe and open heel with strap. They are cute but more importantly, comfy and sturdy. I also do lots of walking on my trips and realize that it's best to have 2 pairs of walking shoes/sandals to alternate.

Posted by Andrea
Sacramento, CA
5542 posts

I've always brought a pair of open toed sandals for warm weather travel. After reading this I'm rethinking that. Shoes are always such a dilemma for me!

Posted by Jean
Mill Creek, WA, USA
434 posts

You may also want to check out a posting I listed under the category "Best Walking Shoes for Travel" with my title "Women's Travel Shoes". There's 36 replies in it, so it's valuable to review comments about women's shoes. I'm certainly not trying to sell a specific brand, but here's what I shared in that posting:

My favorite shoes for past European trips were Keens. I tried on numerous shoes last summer because I wanted something that would be all right with dresses since I mainly wear dresses now when I travel. The only pair that were truly comfortable were Keen's Women's Rose Sandal that I purchased from Amazon. They were great to protect my toes more than a sandal, the bottom of the shoe is great for uneven pavement, and they also passed as an acceptable sandal with dresses.

Posted by tpunch42
10 posts

Ok... so breaking my toe is not how I want to spend a trip... I will continue to rethink this... Like the keen's you recommend but not sure they are good for all the wet/dry occasions on this trip. Are they waterproof?

Posted by Kathi
Portland,Oregon
55 posts

My 18 yr old daughter and I lived in our Keen Newport H2 sandals. Uglier than sin, but SO comfortable,cushy and waterproof. Again, the toe protection was nice, but loved that they were breathable in 100 degree Rome! Looked fine with shorts and capris, not so much with a skirt, but whatever!

Posted by dmae
62 posts

Hi there,
I travel with an earlier model of these sandals. I wear them on the plane as they take up too much room in the suitcase. I have worn them hiking, believe it or not. They handle cobble stone streets well.

My only other pair of shoes are flip flops. I travel extremely light and am willing to make that sacrifice.

Posted by Jean
Mill Creek, WA, USA
434 posts

I wore the Keen H2O sandals on trips several years ago and switched over to the Keen Rose sandals when I also wanted to wear dresses. I agree that the H20 would look really bad with a dress! : ) All of those Keen's are waterproof, meaning that they aren't affected by water. I wore the H20 sandals into the water when I was in Italy and didn't want to cut my foot.

Posted by Cindy
Chalfont, PA, USA
38 posts

Traveling in Europe or anywhere, I just wear a pair of birkenstock sandals 90% of the time and bring a pair of black flats that I change to for dinner. The flats are a bit more presentable if I am doing to a concert or nicer place for dinner and give my feet a welcome change.

Posted by dmae
62 posts

I was practicing wearing my Teva sandals this week as I am back at work. Wore them teaching all day. Wore them out to the playground and entered the dreaded pea gravel playground to ask a child to stop throwing that pea gravel (the other teachers out there were amazed). Wore them today in a torrential downpour while collecting students from the busses. Wore them, wet, while teaching until they dried out. Wore them home, again in the torrential downpour, and took them off. I felt shorter (they are wedges) but my feet and legs are feeling fine. I do like these Teva sandals!