Disney theme parks include magical experiences, unique entertainment and long days with a lot of walking. The last thing you want is to choose the wrong shoes and suffer through the day with sore feet! The best shoes for Disney allow you to walk long distances in all day comfort. These are the top picks of good shoes for happy feet at the Happiest Place on Earth.
This article was originally published January 14th, 2015 and has been updated and republished with a new date. In full disclosure, I have received complimentary samples of several styles of shoes that were reviewed in this article. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Best Shoes for Disney
Feet can really take a beating while touring in the Disney Parks all day! Guests are standing in queue, walking countless miles, standing for fireworks and possibly getting wet.
I have reviewed several different women’s styles that I personally own and wear when I go on a theme park vacation. This list of the best shoes can help you narrow down the packing list to find the perfect shoes for a Disney trip!
This article shares a list of the top shoes choices from the most comfortable sandals to the best walking shoes. Keep reading to find a good pair for Disneyland and great shoes for Walt Disney World!
I spent a lot of time walking in amusement parks and have tested a number of styles over the years. I have also included a few top choices when searching for the perfect pair for children and men.
Some of the best shoes for Disney are sandals! Open-toed sandals are appropriate in California and Florida for about 9 months out of the year.
All that pavement stomping can cause feet to puff up and even just the tiniest bit of swelling can be uncomfortable. Sandals allow for feet swelling.
Sandals are cool and lightweight. If you’re schlepping through rain in Disney World, you’ll find that sandals that dry quickly are so much better than soggy shoes and socks!
They also look cute! Sandals are flattering when wearing shorts or capri pants. They also showcase pretty Disney-style pedicures so nicely!
Things to Consider when Choosing an Open-toed Style:
- Are these going to be appropriate for concrete walking? Flat beach-type cheap plastic flip-flops aren’t going to offer the support you need for walking on concrete all day.
- Does the sandal have adjustable straps that allow you to accommodate for swelling?
- What is the support they offer? I highly recommend shoes with cushioning and a bit of a lift in the back for a comfortable shoe that you can wear all day.
- Does the shoe have traction on the bottom? Especially when walking around puddled areas near water rides or after a Floridian downpour, you’d hate to slip and fall. Choose a shoe with decent traction.
Best Woman’s Sandals for Disney
KURU Tread Multi-Sport Sandal – The KURU website allows shoppers to narrow down the choices to fit their needs. Use the tabs to find shoes for specific foot pain including plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendon pain.
The arch-support on this sturdy sandal is incomparable. Adjustable straps are comfortable against bare skin. The waterproof materials and traction is ideal for wet weather. At the end of a long day walking through the theme parks, my feet were completely pain-free!
Hi-Tec Women’s Athletic Sport Sandal – This was my go-to shoe for many few summers. They are flexible and feature a cushioned footbed and sculpted EVA midsole that absorbs impact. I appreciate the adjustable hook-and-loop straps so I can accommodate for any foot swelling at the end of the day.
The straps on these shoes have a soft lining that wicks away moisture and never rubbed or caused blisters. These shoes are also extremely light weight!
SOUL Naturalizer Women’s Sing-2 Sandal – For a “dressier shoe” these are seriously a very comfortable walking shoe! I wore them every day on my last Disney World trip without any discomfort.
They have a hook and loop closure on the side so you can adjust and the shoe doesn’t slip off even on roller coasters. I have the SOUL Naturalizer in blue and mauve but I’m buying several more pairs in other colors to have them for my next trip!
Other Open-Toed Shoe Options
- Vionic Womens Rest Amber Strappy Open Toe Sandal
- Naturalizer Women’s Cassie Gladiator Sandal
- Teva Sandals – Women’s Verra
- BZees Call Me Sandal
Close-Toed Shoes for Disney Travel
Certainly during cooler months, sandals aren’t the best option. You may also prefer the additional support that an athletic shoe or running shoe provides. Some supportive shoes aren’t the most stylish shoe (ie: Nursing shoes with a wide toe box come to mind).
If you have a foot condition, you might believe these practical shoes to be the best choice for you. However I don’t think you have to sacrifice style over comfort when choosing the best Disney shoes.
There are plenty of options for both cute comfortable shoes. These are suggestions for the best women’s walking shoes that offer great support while still being cute shoes!
Things to Consider when Choosing an Closed-Toe Style:
- Are these a new pair of shoes? Do you have enough time before your trip to properly break them in?
- Is the style of shoe conducive to long hours on your feet? Take a close look at the rubber outsole to ensure it’s a great option for extended periods of standing.
- What is the shoe made of? Do you prefer the ease of care with synthetic materials like nylon or acrylic?
- Will the closed toed shoes be appropriate for the time of year you’ll be vacationing? Check the weather forecast to determine if you’ll be better off with sandals versus sneakers.
Best Women’s Walking Shoes
KURU Roam Classic Court Sneaker – My version is made of eco-friendly leather that’s easy to clean. Yes, KURU are a little bit pricier than other brands.
In return for the price tag, you’ll receive a high quality shoe that fits the exact needs of those who suffer from foot pain. The bonus is a stylish shoe that’s comfortable in a next-level kind of way!
Keds Center II Sneaker – These basic sneakers have been my go-to for Disney travel! Paired with short socks, this classic tennis shoe style is cute with dresses, shorts or jeans.
BZees Women’s Glee Sneaker – If you prefer a slip-on style, these are the best thing for all day walking. The memory foam insole is like walking on a cloud, seriously.
Converse Chuck Taylor All-Star – Ideal for the whole family, Converse are affordable shoes that come in both high top and low top versions. The different colors can be fun to coordinate with outfits, though we’re fans of the classic black and white.
Converse don’t offer as much cushioning as other shoes but if you don’t suffer from foot pain, they are a great choice.
Additional Walking Shoe Options
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Are Flip Flops a Good Choice for Disney?
Flip flops or thongs might be the best sandals for the beach, but should you wear them on Disney trips? Before you decide to wear flip flops at a theme park for the whole day, ensure that your feet will be able to handle it. If you’re already accustomed to wearing thongs for a long time, you may be fine.
A good option could be to bring flip-flops to wear on water rides or when the weather is rainy. And for sure, bring flip flops for your time at the pool or water park!
Best Women’s Flip-Flops
FitFlop Women’s Surfa Flip Flop – I’ve had a pair of FitFlops for several years and they are a summer staple. The material is soft and comfortable for all-day walking.
You need to get your body used to FitFlop’s “Microwobbleboard midsole” before trying to walk in them all day. If you don’t build up by wearing them daily ahead of vacation, your thighs will be screaming by the afternoon!
COACH Zoe Flip-Flop Sandal – On our last Disney World trip, it POURED several days of our trip. In my suitcase? Only sneakers and socks!
Fortunately my mother-in-law had brought several pairs of her Coach sandals and I wore a pair each day it rained. I loved how quickly they dried out and that the bottoms were non-slip. These shoes were extremely comfortable, even after hours of walking in them while wet.
Nike Women’s Ultra Comfort Thong Flip Flops – Like walking on a cloud! I’ve had two pairs of the Nike Comfort flip-flops in multiple colors. They have a soft memory foam foot bed that simply hugs and comforts your feet while you walk.
Crocs Women’s Capri V Sporty Flip Flops – The classic Crocs clogs have had a resurgence of late. If you’re not a fan of the clog, no fear. Crocs has so many other comfortable shoes to choose from!
They feature Croslite™ material footbed to cushion your steps. The slight wedge gives a little lift in the heel which makes being on my feet more comfortable.
More Flip-Flop Options
- Skechers Performance Go Walk Move Solstice Flip Flop
- LightFeet Arch Support Flip Flops – Similar to the popular Archies Footwear brand, there’s a natural comparison of the two Australian designs. The lightweight shoe offers excellent arch support and various colors in a unisex style for both men and women.
What to Know About Water Resistant Shoes
If you’re planning on doing water rides on a Disney vacation, you might wonder if waterproof shoes are a necessity. For guests planning a Disney World vacation during the rainy season, it’s especially important to choose shoes that can get wet.
Look for breathable mesh or water resistant pairs of shoes that will dry quickly. If you really cannot stand having wet shoes after water attractions, packing in a second pair is a great choice. Look for breathable mesh or water resistant pairs of shoes that will dry quickly.
Best Water Resistant Shoes for Disney
BZees Womens Cabana Sandal – Not the greatest traction but basic enough for walking poolside. Stretchy upper to accommodate wide feet. (Image shown in section above).
Skechers Women’s Reggae Slim Simply Stretch Sandal – Super comfy, especially if you have issues with swelling feet! These sandals slip on without any adjustments needed stay in place with the stretchy elastic straps. No pinching or discomfort whatsoever. The traction allows for them to be worn in slippery, wet areas.
Are Water Shoes Necessary?
Hot days = hot concrete. Should you pack water shoes to protect feet when walking around at the hotel swimming pools or Walt Disney World water parks?
This is actually a personal preference. Most locations won’t allow guests to wear waterproof shoes in the water or on water slides. However it’s a good idea to wear them when walking on the pathways.
When unshaded, the ground can get extremely warm. Sensitive feet may feel uncomfortable walking on hot asphalt.
If anything, consider adding water shoes to the packing list for babies. Toddlers not only need the foot protection but could benefit from the extra traction in wet and slippery areas.
Best Men’s Walking Shoes
When I wanted to add men’s shoes to this article, I went straight to my husband’s side of the closet and polled him about the best shoes for Disney. These are his favorite pairs to pack.
OluKai Lae’ahi Men’s Slip On Sneakers – No complaints from my very picky husband about these comfortable and light weight slip-on shoes, even after a full day of walking. My husband also has the OluKai Ohana Men’s Quick-Dry Flip-Flop, which he wears on alternating theme park days.
NOBULL Black Gum Mesh Runner – My husband decided to purchase these shoes online after seeing the sheer number of guests wearing them at Disneyland, no joke! They’ve upheld to the hype as his go-to shoe, worn with or without socks.
New Balance Men’s 515 V3 Sneaker – A low cost option around $50, these trainers have a classic 80’s look. Tons of trendy color combinations so he can DisneyBound in style!
Top Kids Shoes for Disney
From the Crocs classic clog to fancier princess style shoes, what are the best shoes for Disney that kids can wear? They’ll have to be comfortable, of course. But also stylish and kid-approved!
I’ll be working on a separate article that outlines kids best shoes for Disney. Until then, read my suggestions for footwear this post about best Disney outfits for kids.
Important Disney Parks Shoe Tips
“Break” your new shoes in first. Wear them several times at home before wearing them in the amusement parks.
Wear socks with your athletic sneakers. When choosing a pair of low-cut socks ensure they won’t slip down into your shoe, which could cause rubbing at the heel.
Beware of sandals with multiple straps that may pinch skin. Watch for an ankle strap or straps near the pinky toe that may potentially rub feet the wrong way.
Bring an alternate pair of shoes and keep them in a backpack or rental locker. If your shoes are irritating you for any reason, you’ll have a pair to switch into.
Pack extra pairs of socks. When your socks get soaked on water rides you’ll have a replacement!
Tips for Avoiding Foot Pain
Bring along items in your travel First Aid kit that can ease any foot issues. In addition to band-aids and antibiotic ointment, I bring New-Skin Liquid Bandage. The liquid can be painted onto the skin. When it dries, it leaves a waterproof “bandage” that eases friction.
Consider wearing orthotics inside your shoes. Read more about how orthotics can help relieve back pain.
Read these ideas on how to have pain-free feet on vacation, using compression socks and inserts.
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Pack for your vacation in style and comfort using the ideas in this article about the cute clothes to wear at Disney.
This post on Traveling Mom talks about the Most Comfortable Walking Shoes for Theme Park Travel, including tennis shoes.