Best ladies walking shoes for Europe

Jan 5th, 2018, 03:04 AM
Original Poster
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Best ladies walking shoes for Europe

We will be traveling to Europe and Ireland in late Summer-Fall and I need recommendations for
comfortable shoes to wear during long days of sightseeing. We would like something that would
help me blend in, not looking like a obvious tourist. I do have a decent pair of sneakers but I would like something else like a ballet flat or slip on shoes. Any recommendation would be greatly appreciated.
floridapugmom is offline  
Jan 5th, 2018, 06:25 AM
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Ballet flats are fine for evening but NOT for "long days of sightseeing". You need something with good underfoot padding and support, WELL BROKEN IN!

I take over-the-ankle light hiking boots, but I need the ankle support. A good pair of sneakers, or something from an outfit like Ecco or Rockford should work.

You will look and sound like a tourist regardless of your footwear, don't worry about it.
thursdaysd is offline  
Jan 5th, 2018, 06:26 AM
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>>would help me blend in, not looking like a obvious tourist<<

First of all, almost everything about you will say 'tourist' so what's on your feet will have no impact.

2nd -- the same sorts of footwear is worn all over the world.

Everyone's feet are different so you need to find a brand that fits your feet. IMO you definitely need more support than what a ballet flat provides. There are so many styles of shoes that have decent soles and arch support but aren't big trainers. Go try some one . . .
janisj is online now  
Jan 5th, 2018, 06:27 AM
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we were posting at the same time
janisj is online now  
Jan 5th, 2018, 08:47 AM
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Wear whatever you would wear at home for a day out and about on your feet.

Take the sneakers (everyone knows you are a tourist and no one cares what's on your feet).

Merrell, Aerosoles, Clark, Naot, Geox, all have sturdy comfortable options in loafers or slip-ons.

Ballet flats are fine as a back up (bedroom slippers, on the plane, out to dinner close by) but not good for any kind of significant walking.
suze is offline  
Jan 5th, 2018, 07:59 PM
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I have had very good luck with Clarks, especially the Mary Jane style. They are as supportive and comfortable as sneakers but look nice. I spent two months in London, wore them every day, for walking and dressing up, and they were perfect! Enjoy!
tac456 is offline  
Jan 6th, 2018, 06:15 AM
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Wear your most comfortable, well worn-in shoes.

Everyone wears sneakers, from my kids to my mother who's in her 80s. Bring the ballet flats to wear for dinner if you like. You are more likely to 'blend in' wearing Nikes than wearing Merrell or something like that. I don't know anyone who wears those.
Tulips is offline  
Jan 6th, 2018, 02:41 PM
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A number of sneaker manufacturers carry ballet flats in unusual fun colors, some with 1-2 inch platform rubber-soled heels. I have successfully worn FitFlops strolling indoors or in downtown areas, they also make 2-3" heeled thong sandals in metallics with rhinestones which I have worn comfortably in less crowded areas where I don't run the risk of anyone stepping on my feet(I never sacrifice comfort over style unless I am driving door-to-door). I have had luck with broken in Aquatalia and I love my worn out Stuart Weitzman low heel boots for fall trips, I can walk 4-5 hours in NYC in them.
vipsha is offline  
Jan 6th, 2018, 06:34 PM
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When traveling, I see many people wearing Merrells, Clarks, Aerosoles, Seibels, etc.

But that's irrelevant, IMO -- the most important thing is to make sure that your feet are comfortable, and that means well broken-in shoes that you know, for a fact, can be worn on even difficult surfaces for long periods of times and long distances.

Honestly, the single worst experience I've ever had when traveling was when I developed blisters from the way my shoes rubbed my feet early in my trip. I spent hours in pain every day. Not fun.
kja is offline  
Jan 7th, 2018, 09:27 AM
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I agree for me sneakers (running shoes) are the best "walking shoe" for traveling. That's what I would wear if I knew I'd be walking for miles and hours on any given day touring a city.

But I'd want a second pair of something to back them up. These Merrell are slip ons and look comfy but sturdy:

Plus the ballet flats.
suze is offline  
Jan 7th, 2018, 09:41 AM
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unfortunately the most comfortable shoe for long walks are sneakers!
Also many brand do sneaker like shoes but they look more of a semi formal style.
bussa17 is offline  
Jan 7th, 2018, 10:41 PM
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Why 'unfortunately'? Just wear them if that's what you're comfortable in. I assure you women where I live (Belgium and London) wear sneakers all the time.
I had another look at Merrell shoes online. I don't doubt that they are comfortable, perhaps they're good for hiking, but I don't know anyone who would wear that in the city.
Tulips is offline  
Jan 8th, 2018, 01:51 AM
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A brand isn't that important. All brands I see in a store have a fairly wide range of styles.
What's relevant is functionality .. what you want to do when you say 'walking around'. Walking/hiking shoes are graded for the variety of activity they are best suited for.
When it comes to 'smart' .. not sure what you mean. For walking shoes that I use mainly for towns and casual countryside strolls, I have a pair that can pass as normal shoes rather than obviously 'sporty’.
kathy12 is offline  
Jan 8th, 2018, 03:02 AM
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Thanks for all the comments and suggestions. I have been looking at Sketchers since they have some comfortable and cute styles, as well as Aerosoles. I will definitely plan
on bringing a pair of ballet flats for evening wear.

Has anyone worn Born ballet flats walking around for several hours and if so how did they do?
floridapugmom is offline  
Jan 8th, 2018, 03:40 AM
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It doesn't matter how anyone else did wearing ballet flats. We are all different. My feet would not be happy walking for several hours in ballet flats because they offer no support.
schmerl is offline  
Jan 8th, 2018, 04:57 AM
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Floridapugmom, I did not do well in ballet flats at all, I non't wear shoes that are so flat. Recently when I was in Lake Como I bought these loafers/ballet flats from a store called Quelli della Pelle and I can walk in those for hours, they are as comfortable as walking barefoot. I have worm fitflop gold loafers comfortably for hours and they are like sneakers.
The good thing is you have several months to try out before you leave - you can try out one of the pairs you say you like and carry them if they meet your requirements.
vipsha is offline  
Jan 8th, 2018, 05:07 AM
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It is easy enough to find out whether ballet flats will work for you - I certainly wouldn't wear them for sightseeing.

I see that you live in Florida. Spend a day (or two) in St. Augustine, sightseeing. Visit the house museums, the lighthouse, the shops, etc. If you have some way of measuring distance you should walk eight miles or so, if not, time it for six to eight hours. If your feet are still happy after that, fine, take ballet flats. If not, perhaps you will value comfort and support over appearance.
thursdaysd is offline  
Jan 9th, 2018, 10:04 AM
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FWIW, and with many of the caveats above about not bringing new shoes on a walking trip and making sure they fit YOU, etc...

I am looking at these, because an old pair of Cole Haan/Nike ballerina flats finally fell apart:

They are available on Zappos and Amazon with free returns.

I do see the value of a comfortable pair of not-sneakers. This is easy to do with boots or booties, less so in warm temperatures.

Of course people wear sneakers all over the world, but a tourist faces the dilemma of walking all day but wanting to look a bit smart at dinner, perhaps, a situation in which a local would do a wardrobe change but a tourist often can't.
NewbE is offline  
Jan 9th, 2018, 03:07 PM
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Those are cute, how did I forget ecco.
vipsha is offline  
Jan 9th, 2018, 04:03 PM
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"how did I forget ecco"

By not reading all the posts. I mentioned Ecco in the very first reply.
thursdaysd is offline  

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