people's choice

The Best Water Shoes on Amazon, According to Hyperenthusiastic Reviewers

Photo: Lyn Alweis/Denver Post via Getty Images

As temperatures climb and we enter the season of exposed feet, we’re here to help, with all the best tricks for keeping your feet presentable, as well as comfortable. While this week happens to be the start of Fleet Week, we’re doing our own take as summer begins. Welcome to Feet Week on the Strategist.

Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy (like pillows), but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed (that’s four-to-five-star reviews and lots of ‘em) products and single out the most convincing. Here, we present the best water shoes for wherever your summer travels may take you (only one pair of Crocs included). Note that reviews have been edited for length and clarity.


Mesh with laces

Aleader Women’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes

“These shoes are so comfortable! Perfect for the rocks in the bottom of the river. They stay on well and don’t slip, even while running or jumping off of higher cliffs! Highly recommend! I got so many compliments.”

Mesh without laces

Aleader Women’s Mesh Slip On Water Shoes

“We wore these every day on Big Island, Hawaii. We traversed lava tubes, lava fields, and waterfalls; explored beaches; snorkeled; and walked miles on sidewalks in towns and had not one single problem with these shoes. They dried sitting out in our condo and were completely ready the next morning, even though my husband’s and son’s Body Glove shoes were not. After ten days of vacationing, they still look brand-new. I washed and dried them in our washer and dryer, and they came out perfectly.”

Almost toe shoes

Fila Women’s Skeletoes

“Well, let me just say that I was somewhat skeptical about ordering these in the first place, but what was the determining fact for me is that a co-worker of mine, who is a huge kayaker and her wife has these shoes, convinced me to get these. I need some good water shoes and shoes for an upcoming white-water-rafting trip in October in the Western North Carolina Mountains on the Nantahala River, which is COLD. Plus, truth be known, I fell in love with these. You can’t go wrong with these.”

For long hikes

Northside Women’s Burke II Sandal

“I love these! Insanely comfortable and high-quality material. I was shocked. I wore these on a 75-mile backpacking trip through sand, gravel, and forest. They kept my feet protected without overheating and were so comfy. I would warn against purchasing if you have very flat feet or very high arches, as there is essentially no arch support in them, but I had no issues. They ran true to size and are an absolute steal for their cost!”

Looks like a sneaker

Adidas Outdoor Women’s Terrex Climacool Boat Sleek Water Shoe

“I love, love, love these water shoes! They’re so much cuter than most typical water shoes. I now have a second pair in another color. Both pairs fit perfectly and are true to size — super cute and comfy. The laces come untied sometimes, but not more than other shoes, in my experience. They stayed on well in the rivers and waterfalls I was playing in.”

Looks like a sock

CIOR Quick-Dry Water Shoes Lightweight Aqua Socks

“These shoes are fantastic! We swim in an Olympic-size pool with a cement bottom, with rows of tile eight feet apart. When I first started doing deep-water aerobics there, I tore the bottom of my foot while jogging. I had to wait for it to heal, so I searched online and found these water shoes. I could not be happier, they work just great. They are very comfortable, and the colors are varied, so there are many choices. Highly recommend these water shoes.”


Mesh with laces

Mohem Men’s Poseidon Mesh Walking Shoes

“Now I have shoes to wear with shorts. Comfortable and breathable, and since I live in hot Las Vegas, this works great for me. My co-workers liked it and ordered their own. Will be buying more in various colors.”

Mesh without laces

Aleader Men’s Mesh Slip On Water Shoes

“I usually wear Crocs around the house or on my boat, but that’s changed since I bought these. I usually wear a 11.5 or 12, but I got the 11 and they fit perfectly.”

For canoeing

Crocs Men’s Swiftwater Sandal

“An excellent shoe for canoe-tripping to the Boundary Waters. No need to bring a paddling shoe and a camp shoe, this one fits both needs. Very comfortable to wear. Some people who are new to Crocs complain about the texture on the inside of the shoe, but you will get used to it quickly and find that it is actually a positive feature of the shoe.”

For long hikes

Speedo Men’s Hybrid Watercross Water Shoe

“These shoes are awesome. They are stylish enough to wear out and about and look just the right amount of cool in the water. I wear mine kayak fishing and visit a lot of beaches and oyster beds. I have fallen many times wearing flops to the boat launch and have yet to slip in these. I actually dread the day they don’t make these anymore and may have to stock my closet with a couple pairs.”

Looks like a sneaker

Columbia Men’s Drainmaker III Water Shoe

“Comfortable, sturdy, lightweight, and have awesome ventilation, so they dry fast. They also make my big feet, size 13, look smaller. I love these for water shoes and everyday wear.”

Looks like a sock

Speedo Men’s Surfwalker 3.0 Water Shoe

“Sturdy sole and very comfortable. Like wearing socks.”


Mesh with strap

DADAWEN Baby’s Boy’s Girl’s Mesh Light Weight Sneakers

“I am so happy that I bought these shoes! They fit my son perfectly, worked great for playing at the beach, and he can wear them in our yard as well. They do end up with some sand in them, but honestly what do you expect from a 1-year-old. I am excited to keep these shoes and use them for my next little one!”

Mesh without laces

CIOR Kids Aqua Shoes Breathable Slip-on Sneakers

“Beautiful water shoes with very soft material! My kid wears it on the beach, pool, and the water park in our community center. He got a lot of compliments. I’m going to purchase another pair.”

Almost toe shoes

Fresko Toddler and Little Kids Water Shoes for Boys and Girls

“I ordered these for my 2-year-old grandson. Since we spend a lot of time at the beach and water park, I wanted a shoe that would be comfy while protecting his feet. I’d have to say they’re comfy. Once on, he didn’t want to take them off,. The Velcro side flap is a big plus. It allows you to put the shoes on easier. It’s also useful for keeping out unwanted shells, pebbles, and sand. Now, I must go to find my husband a pair. He’s jealous!”

For long hikes

Merrell Hydro Water Sandal

“My 6-year-old loves her new hiking sandals. We didn’t have to break it in. As expected, Merrell shoes didn’t give my kids blisters. We hiked for five hours, including water and snack breaks. Took the Devils Postpile and Rainbow Falls rocky and uphill trails of Mammoth Lakes. My kids played in the icy cold river, too. They have their ever-reliable Timberland hiking boots, but I figured to have them wear these hiking sandals, as these were made for water. These shoes dry easily. I am very happy with my purchase.”

Looks like a sneaker

Stride Rite Made 2 Play Phibian Sneaker Sandal Water Shoe

“My daughter loves these!!! She wore them to the lake and into the lake and back home … some sand did get inside the holes, but once she sprayed water on them (still on her foot) the sand came out. I love that she (well, me) doesn’t have to put on and take off shoes for wet and dry! We get a lot of compliments on the colors, too!”

Looks like a sock

L-RUN Kids Swim Water Shoes Barefoot Aqua Socks

“I loved this, and everyone that saw it on my son wished they had it for their child! It fits snug, but not uncomfortably. I bought a size up for my son, but the extra room did not cause my son to slip or trip. The sole has great grip on multiple surfaces (cement, pool tiles, marble flooring, carpet, just to name a few). Does not keep sand from getting in, but does anything ever keep sand out? Great buy!”

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The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best women’s jeans, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, ultra-flattering pants, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

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The Best Water Shoes on Amazon