Out of all the water racing sports out there, kayaking is one of the most exciting. Not only does it help improve our upper body strength, but it also has wonderful benefits for our core muscles, heart health, and overall endurance. And since it’s an outdoor activity, it also allows us to bask in much-needed Vitamin D. Whether you’re kayaking to compete or for fun, the key to fully enjoying it is to stay comfortable. And when it comes to comfort, the best water shoes for kayaking will surely take the experience to a whole new level. To help you find the perfect water shoes for your next kayaking trip, simply read on to know more.
Benefits of Water Shoes
When you go kayaking, there’s no doubt that you need water shoes. Bear in mind that water shoes are specially designed for use in wet environments, so you’re assured that it will greatly improve the experience. So to be more specific, here are the benefits of wearing water shoes for kayaking:
- Water shoes come with superior insulation to keep your feet warm. This reduces the risk for foot cramps and allows you to move freely.
- Water shoes have soles that easily grip on wet and slippery surfaces to prevent accidents.
- The mesh material helps improve breathability and water flow. This guarantees comfort and maximum movement.
- Water shoes are often made with durable fabric that protects your feet from cuts and abrasions. Even if you step on rocks or rough surfaces, you don’t have to worry about hurting your feet at all.
- Since they are designed for wet environments, they also dry faster than regular sports shoes. This proves that they are the hygienic choice when it comes to watersports use.
Types of Water Shoes
Before we proceed with our reviews, we believe it’s best to introduce the different types of water shoes first.
Simply stated, a water shoe is a footwear that is worn in wet environments. It is usually made of a rubber outsole and a mesh top to leave you feeling comfortable even if you have to submerge your feet underwater
Because of its protective yet comfortable design, it is the perfect footwear for water sports like kayaking and rowing. You can also use it when you’re hiking in areas where you have to cross streams or rivers.
On the other hand, water socks are perfect for activities that require you to walk barefoot. Otherwise known as aqua socks, this footwear prevents your feet from chaffing or from developing blisters. It serves as a protective layer for your feet against rough rocks and unpredictable underwater terrain.
Because of how flexible it feels, water socks are perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving. In fact, water socks are often worn before you put on snorkeling fins to make sure your feet are protected and comfortable.
And finally, we have water sandals – which can be considered as the most popular of these three types. You can easily spot a water sandal because of its more open design, whereas water shoes have a design that covers the entire feet.
Nevertheless, water sandals are also made for use in wet environments. Because the design is more open, water flow is undoubtedly increased, so you can easily wash away the sand or debris that might come inside the footwear. This makes it perfect for beach trips and fishing trips.
But because of its versatile design, water sandals will also look great with whatever you wear, and whatever water activity you plan to do.
Best Water Shoes for kayaking |Our Top Picks and Reviews
Now that you know more about water shoes, it’s now time to introduce you to our top picks. To get you excited, here is an overview of the best water shoes for kayaking.
- Overall Best Shoes for Kayaking: Kokatat Men’s Scout Boot. If you’re looking for unparalleled style, superior warmth, breathability, and premium construction, this water shoe has all you need and more.
- Best Budget: ALEADER Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes. With its versatility and superior design, it’s quite amazing how affordable this pair of shoes are.
- Best Value for Money: Crocs Men’s Swiftwater Mesh Deck Sandal Sport. No other water shoe offers comfort and flexibility like Crocs – and we’re happy to report that the Swiftwear exceeded our expectations.
01. Kokatat Men’s Scout Boot
First on our list is the Kokatat Men’s Scout Boot. With a stylish exterior and supreme features, there’s no doubt that it deserves to be recognized as one of the best water shoes for kayaking.
This stylish pair of water shoes is made of neoprene material that’s known for its durability and premium comfort. We love that it has a dark charcoal color so it always looks great regardless of what you’re wearing.
Thanks to its neoprene material, the Kokatat Men’s Scout Boot is incredibly soft and lightweight. You don’t have to worry about your feet feeling limited with this water shoe!
But despite being lightweight, this water shoe can also give your feet the best protection. The toe cap and heel counter not only covers your whole feet but also provides you with excellent traction. With this water shoe, slipping is the least of your concerns.
Also, the Kokatat Men’s Scout Boot has a vulcanized rubber outsole that serves as an extra protective layer against rough surfaces while providing the shoe with extra durability.
Because of its zipperless design, we were quite worried about whether it was easy to wear and take off. Fortunately, it was. Wearing it was surprisingly a breeze, and the hook and loop adjustment strap guarantees a snug fit every time. You don’t have to worry about it coming loose while kayaking.
Its construction is also quite impressive. The Kokatat Men’s Scout Boot uses a glued blind stitch construction that holds everything in place without fail. This assures you that his water shoe is built to last for years – and that promises great value for the money.
All things considered, there’s no doubt that the Kokatat Men’s Scout Boot is the best in the market. Not only does it have a solid and durable construction, but it also has protective features that will still keep your feet feeling comfortable. And that can truly improve your kayaking experience.
- Kokatat Men’s scout boot It is stylish.
- It is lightweight and offers superior flexibility for the feet.
- It is easy to wear and take out.
- The vulcanized rubber outsole offers excellent traction.
- This boot is made of premium and durable materials.
- It’s offers excellent value for the money.
- Its sizes may be inaccurate.
02. ALEADER Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes
The ALEADER Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes is another pair of stylish water shoes. But despite its superior style and design, we were quite impressed by how affordable it is.
The mesh upper on this pair of water shoes helps improve airflow to help your feet feel cool and dry. This material also allows water to freely flow in and out of the shoe, and this improves your mobility. So even if both feet are submerged underwater, you don’t have to struggle with every step.
The mesh material on the ALEADER Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes also has quick-drying properties. You don’t have to wait for a long time for it to dry down, which allows for easier storage once you get home. This also doubles as a hygienic feature, so you know it won’t smell bad.
We also love the Solyte Midsole and the ComforDry sock liner on this water shoe. Not only do these features make the shoe lightweight, but they also offer improved cushioning for your feet. Even if you have to hike to your kayaking spot, you’re assured that your feet are properly protected.
The ALEADER Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes has a rubber sole that keeps your feet safe from rocks and rough areas. It also has strategically-placed rubber pods in certain areas for added traction. You don’t have to worry about slips and similar accidents if you’re wearing this shoe!
Also, we love that it has a simple slip-on design that makes it easy to wear and take off. But even with this design, it still hugs your feet nicely, so it doesn’t fall off in the middle of your adventure.
And with around 16 interesting colors and designs to choose from, you’ll surely find the perfect ALEADER Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes for you.
- Users can choose between 16 interesting styles.
- The mesh upper offers improved breathability.
- The material dries quickly.
- It has convenient drainage ports to keep water out of the shoe.
- The slip-on design makes it easy to wear.
- It offers excellent traction.
- Aqua water shoes are very affordable.
- It is not very durable.
- Small debris can easily get inside the shoe.
03. Stohlquist Men’s Tideline Boots
Another frontrunner for the best water shoes for kayaking is the Stohlquist Men’s Tideline Boots. If you prefer boots over low-rise water shoes, this pair of boots will surely keep your feet comfortable and warm throughout your kayaking adventure.
This water shoe has a thick 5-millimeter neoprene upper material that’s also soft and flexible. Even with its high-rise boot design, your feet still enjoy maximum flexibility so you wouldn’t feel cramped and restricted. Neoprene is also known for its durability, so you know that this pair won’t wear out even if you frequently take it with you to your favorite kayaking spots.
But what we love most about the Stohlquist Men’s Tideline Boots is how it helps maintain the warmth of the boot. While neoprene is partially responsible for it, a big part of keeping the boot warm must be attributed to its ergonomically-shaped footbed.
Since the footbed follows the natural contour of your feet, it reduces the chance for water pockets to build up. And this is highly effective at keeping your feet warm and comfortable. With this feature, you don’t have to worry about cramps because of the icy water.
Speaking of water pockets, the Stohlquist Men’s Tideline Boots has gusseted zippers to keep the water out of the boot. You’re assured that not only will your feet remain dry, but it will also keep the debris out for maximum comfort.
With premium materials, a well-thought-of design, and superior warmth-maintenance, there’s no doubt that the Stohlquist Men’s Tideline Boots deserves a spot on this list.
- Tideline boots are very comfortable.
- Very useful to maintain your feet’s warmth.
- It has an ergonomic shape for maximum comfort and movement.
- Made by premium and durable materials.
- The toe and heel areas have extra rubber caps for superior protection.
- It offers excellent traction.
- This boot offers good value for the money.
- The sizes run small.
04. Sea to Summit Ultra Flex Booties
If water shoe flexibility is what you love above all, then you’ll surely love the Sea to Summit Ultra Flex Booties. With its low-profile design and ultra-flexible construction, the activities you can do are seemingly boundless.
It has a stylish low-profile design that makes it extremely versatile. If you’re an overall water sports enthusiast, investing in this pair will surely be worth the money. Whether it’s kayaking, waterboarding, water skiing, or whatever activity you want to try, the Sea to Summit Ultra Flex Booties will be your best companion.
This pair of water shoes are specially designed to give your feet the utmost flexibility in terms of movement. As a result, you get better balance and control with every step so you can fully enjoy the adventure.
It has a slip-on design that makes it easy to wear, but the added Velcro straps can be adjusted to ensure the perfect fit. This guarantees that you’ll still be feeling comfortable yet still fully-protected.
Despite its impressive flexibility, the Sea to Summit Ultra Flex Booties still has a rubber laminated sole that keeps your feet safe from rough surfaces. You don’t have to be worried about accidentally stepping on rocks and sharp edges because you’re fully covered.
We also love the textured design on the sole of this shoe. This provides you with decent traction on slippery surfaces, so accidents and injuries will be reduced. And that will surely give you peace of mind.
But admittedly, this is one of the pricier items on this list. But if you consider the comfort and versatility it offers, you’ll know that it would be wise to invest in this durable pair.
- It has a flexible design that makes it comfortable.
- The Velcro closure system makes it easy to wear and remove.
- It has superior construction.
- The low-profile design allows for improved foot movement.
- It has excellent traction.
- It does not drain water easily.
- Some users report that the sole feels too thin when walking on rocks or rough surfaces.
05. KEEN Men’s Aphlex Waterproof Sneaker
Another top contender for the best water shoes for kayaking is the KEEN Men’s Aphlex Waterproof Sneaker. If you’re looking for a heavy-duty shoe for all your outdoor adventures, then this will put an end to your long search.
Thanks to its 100% textile and synthetic construction, you can only expect superior construction from this pair. But despite its heavy-duty design, we were quite impressed by how lightweight and comfortable it is.
The KEEN Men’s Aphlex Waterproof Sneaker has a mesh and synthetic upper that’s lightweight and incredibly breathable. This keeps your feet cool and dry, so you won’t feel cramped at all. And since it’s lightweight, your movement won’t be restricted, either.
Aside from its breathability, this water shoe also has a natural odor-control feature. So even if you use it and get soaked for hours, you don’t have to worry about it developing a nasty smell. This feature makes it one of the most hygienic shoes on our list.
For added comfort, the KEEN Men’s Aphlex Waterproof Sneaker also has a dual-density compression-molded midsole that gives superior cushioning for your feet. Even if you have to hike to your favorite spot, this feature will surely keep your feet comfortable. The EVA material is also known for its shock-absorbent properties, so you won’t feel much vibration with every step.
Thanks to its molded TPU heel and toe caps, bumping into rocks and other hard surfaces won’t be a problem. You’re assured that your whole feet are thoroughly protected with this water shoe!
We also love how the KEEN Men’s Aphlex Waterproof Sneaker was designed with a rubber outsole with multi-directional lugs. This provides the shoe with an excellent grip over any surface – whether it’s a rough patch of land or a slippery rock. This gives you peace of mind, knowing that slips and accidents are less likely to happen.
And finally, the stability shank on this water shoe will provide you with unparalleled stability with every step. No other water shoe can give you such heavy-duty support while still leaving your feet feeling exceptionally comfortable.
- It is lightweight and comfortable.
- The mesh and synthetic upper offers superior breathability.
- The outsoles offer excellent traction.
- Aphlex waterproof sneaker retains a great amount of heat.
- This sneaker made by premium and durable materials.
- It offers excellent value for the money.
- As of writing, there are no negative reviews of this item.
06. NeoSport Wetsuits Paddle Low Top Boots
The NeoSport Wetsuits Paddle Low Top Boots is another stylish yet affordable pair that deserves recognition. With its superior traction and versatility, there’s no doubt that this is one of the best water shoes for kayaking in the market.
Thanks to its black neoprene upper material, this water shoe proves to be one of the most stylish on this list. But aside from its undeniable aesthetics, we were also impressed by how soft and protective this shoe is – qualities that you want in a pair of kayaking shoes.
Neoprene is known for its soft feel on this skin, so you know that your feet will feel cushioned and comfortable. This 3-millimeter thick neoprene material also promotes flexibility without sacrificing durability, so you know that you will use it for a long time. That guarantees that you’ll get the best value for what you pay for.
We must also note that the seams on the NeoSport Wetsuits Paddle Low Top Boots are glued and sewn for maximum durability and comfort. You don’t have to worry about chafing because of how it has been precisely bonded into place.
We also want to talk about how the sole is constructed. It is made from a thermoplastic rubber material that promotes flexibility without feeling too stiff. This greatly improves your mobility for activities that require fast action.
Additionally, the sole also has a hardened insert integrated into its construction to provide added puncture resistance. This guarantees that even if you step on a sharp rock, your feet are fully protected.
And for added stability, the NeoSport Wetsuits Paddle Low Top Boots have aggressive textures and patterns at the sole for superior traction and stability. This guarantees fun and safe kayaking every time.
- NeoSport wesuits paddle low top boots are easy to adjust.
- Its flexibility is impressive.
- This boot is lightweight.
- Made of soft and comfortable materials.
- It helps retain warmth.
- It has excellent puncture resistance.
- The sizes are not accurate.
- It is not very durable.
07. SUOKENI Women’s Quick Drying Slip-On Water Shoes
If design versatility is what you’re after, you won’t regret getting the SUOKENI Women’s Quick Drying Slip On Water Shoes. With over 20 colors to choose from, you can surely find the one that best suits your taste.
But aside from its stylish exterior, this pair of water shoes also has impressive features that exceeded our expectations.
Thanks to its open mesh upper, the SUOKENI Women’s Quick Drying Slip On Water Shoes provides your feet with sufficient airflow to keep them feeling comfortable. You don’t have to worry about your feet being all hot and sweaty, so you can focus on having fun at the moment.
Aside from breathability, this material also promotes water flow, so draining the water off won’t be a problem. Since the material is made of 90% fabric, drying it off won’t take too long. And the faster a water shoe dries off, the less likely it is to harbor odor-causing bacteria – so you know this is the hygienic choice.
For added drainage, the SUOKENI Women’s Quick Drying Slip On Water Shoes has impressive drainage systems across the sole, so you know that water won’t be trapped anywhere. It allows water to freely pass in and out of the shoe, so you don’t have to feel restricted when you have to move your feet underwater.
We also love that it comes with an anti-slip outsole that provides you with excellent traction even on slippery terrain.
All things considered, we believe the SUOKENI Women’s Quick Drying Slip On Water Shoes is one of the best water shoes for kayaking because of its superior breathability, style versatility, and impressive durability.
- It is quite stylish.
- It allows users to choose from 20 colors.
- The sizes are specifically made for women.
- It offers excellent traction.
- The material is breathable and comfortable.
- This is very affordable.
- The design feels stiff and restricting.
- It does not drain the water well.
08. Crocs Men’s Swiftwater Mesh Deck Sandal Sport
For those who prefer sandal-type water shoes for kayaking, we believe the Crocs Men’s Swiftwater Mesh Deck Sandal Sport will work best for you. Coming from a big name like Crocs, we had so much to expect from this water shoe. And thankfully, we were not disappointed.
If there is anything Crocs is known for, it’s comfortable footwear. That’s why it came as no surprise when we found out that this pair of water shoes were made with Croslite material. This provides your feet with superior cushioning and flexibility for maximum comfort.
At first glance, you might think the Crocs Men’s Swiftwater Mesh Deck Sandal Sport is heavy and stiff – but that could be farther from the truth. Since it was designed for swift movement across the water, we were quite surprised by how lightweight it is. It doesn’t feel stiff, either, so you can freely move your feet for increased underwater movement and navigation.
The mesh upper and side holes have two functions: to increase breathability and facilitate drainage. The improved airflow will keep your feet clean and dry, while the side holes will get rid of excess water. Whether you’re kayaking, water skiing, or hiking on wet terrain, this footwear will surely keep your feet clean and well-protected.
And speaking of protection, the Crocs Men’s Swiftwater Mesh Deck Sandal Sport has a closed-toe design to prevent your toes from getting accidentally stubbed on hard and rough surfaces. The outsole also has flex grooves to provide you with decent traction over smooth surfaces.
Overall, the Crocs Men’s Swiftwater Mesh Deck Sandal Sport is one of the water shoes you might want to invest in. If you prefer the superior versatility of water sandals coupled with the added comfort and quality that only Crocs can provide, you won’t regret getting this pair for your next kayaking trips.
- This sandal very comfortable.
- Made of premium and durable materials.
- Very lightweight and flexible.
- It has a versatile style for various activities.
- Easy to wear and take off.
- It offers good value for the money.
- Some users report having issues with the sizing.
- It is quite pricey.
09. Aleader Men’s Mesh Slip On Water Shoes
Another stylish pair that’s a top contender for the best water shoes for kayaking is the Aleader Men’s Mesh Slip On Water Shoes. If you’re looking for comfort and convenience, this is the perfect water shoe for you.
Thanks to its slip-on design, wearing and taking them off would be a breeze. While you can choose between the lace-up and non-laced variants, both allow you to wear them immediately while still promising a snug fit. This allows you to move with no worries since you know that your shoe won’t accidentally fall off.
The Aleader Men’s Mesh Slip On Water Shoes has a mesh upper that allows for superior airflow. This allows your feet to breathe to prevent it from sweating. This not only keeps the odor away but also helps your feet stay comfortable throughout the trip.
While we’re on the subject of comfort, we also want to add that this water shoe has a ComforDry sock liner that cushions your feet. This gives it maximum comfort while also absorbing vibrations for improved mobility and stability.
The Solyte midsoles on the Aleader Men’s Mesh Slip On Water Shoes give it exceptional bounce-back movement, allowing you to feel confident with every stride. It is also lightweight, so you know that it will do well even if you have to move your feet underwater.
As for the soles, this water shoe boasts superior drainage systems to keep the water away from its interior. Not only does this help regulate warmth, but it also helps the shoe dry faster for easier storage.
- Users have 13 color schemes to choose from.
- The material is breathable and comfortable.
- Very Lightweight and flexible.
- It offers decent traction.
- It offers superior cushioning.
- This shoes are very affordable.
- It is hard to clean.
- Some users report that it does not dry quickly.
10. Zhuanglin Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes
With around 21 colorful designs to choose from, there’s no doubt that the Zhuanglin Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes offer the widest selection for us to choose from. But aside from its impressive selection, it also boasts unparalleled comfort and value for the money. And that’s why we believe it’s one of the best water shoes for kayaking.
This water shoe offers superior breathability, thanks to its air mesh upper. This allows the cool air to pass through and the warm air to exit, leaving you feeling comfortable for hours. This also allows the water to flow freely, so there won’t be any resistance when you have to submerge your feet underwater.
Despite its soft mesh upper, the Zhuanglin Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes is made of 90% fabric, making it more durable than most water shoes in the market. Even if it gets snagged on some jagged rocks, you don’t have to worry about it falling apart easily.
We also love how soft its interior is. Thanks to its ComforDry sock liner, this water shoe offers excellent cushioning for your feet. This largely dampens the impact in case you step on uneven and rough terrain. This feature is paired with the Solyte midsole that offers stability with every step. With this water shoe, you will surely be confident in your next kayaking trip.
The Zhuanglin Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes also have a Water Grip Outsole that provides your feet with superior traction, even on slippery and wet surfaces. And since it’s made of rubber, you know that it can last you for a long time.
All things considered, we are quite impressed with the design of the Zhuanglin Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes. And if we look into all its features, it’s so hard to imagine how affordable it is.
- It is lightweight and comfortable.
- Users can choose between 21 colorful designs.
- This shoes dries easily.
- It has well-placed drainage holes.
- It has decent cushioning.
- This shoes are very affordable.
- It is not very durable.
- Some users report issues with the sizing.
You may also want to visit our another reviews on best kayak fish finder.
Factors to Consider Before Purchasing: Buying Guide
At this point, you may already have a few shoes in mind. If you still need further guidance, perhaps this buying guide will help you make an informed decision.
First, consider the material used in its construction. Identifying the material used will help you determine how durable and functional the shoe will be.
When it comes to water shoes, it’s best to have an upper that’s made of mesh material, so the water will freely pass through the shoe. This material also helps it dry faster, keeping your shoe hygienic and clean.
Alternatively, neoprene is a great material for those who are looking for flexibility and heat retention. This is the material you need if you love kayaking when it’s a little chilly outside.
As for the sole, rubber is the way to go. Aside from its durability, rubber also provides you with the extra traction you need to conquer wet and slippery surfaces.
Water shoes come in different styles – some come with a low-profile slip-on design while others come in boot form. Some manufacturers even produce water sandals that work great for kayaking.
In determining the right water shoe style for you, we believe that a large part of it lies in how convenient it is for you.
Some users prefer the ease of wearing them that only slip-ons can offer, while others prefer the larger protection offered by water boots. They do not mind the extra zippers or Velcro tapes to keep it closed.
So before you buy a water shoe, we strongly suggest assessing what you want and need in the shoe first.
Comfort is another factor you have to consider. When it comes to kayaking, you want to focus your attention on navigating your kayak through the body of water. With that said, you don’t want your painful feet to keep you distracted from your goals.
As much as possible, go for a water shoe that offers superior ventilation and breathability. Even if you’re kayaking during the hot summer months, this feature will surely keep your feet feeling cool and fresh.
Some manufacturers also add cushioning on the midsoles and sock liner for added comfort.
Speaking of comfort, some users prefer to go on kayaking trips when the water is a lot cooler. In these situations, it’s best to go with a shoe that comes with the added insulation to keep your feet warm. This will prevent your feet from cramping, especially if it’s been exposed to cold water.
Do you need water shoes for kayaking?
Yes. It is best to wear water shoes when you go kayaking. Water shoes are specially designed to keep your feet comfortable and safe during activities like kayaking, surfing, waterboarding, and similar sports. Also, regular shoes won’t provide you with the same breathability and sole traction as water shoes.
Can you wear sneakers for kayaking?
No. It is not recommended to wear regular sneakers for kayaking.
Since kayaking is a watersports activity, there is a high chance that your feet will get wet. Not only are regular sneakers not designed for use in wet conditions, but they also prevent water from flowing freely. This can make kayaking uncomfortable and less fun. It can also be unhygienic, and your feet will surely suffer the consequences.
Are water shoes worth it?
Yes. Water shoes are specially designed and constructed for use in wet environments. This gives them the edge over regular shoes when exposed to the extra moisture of these environments, so you know that they’ll last longer. While some of them are more expensive than regular shoes, their durability and longevity make them well worth the price.
Are water shoes comfortable?
Yes. First of all, water shoes are often made with mesh material that allows superior breathability. This material also helps the shoe to dry faster than regular shoes for superior comfort.
Water shoes are often made with premium insulation to keep your feet warm. Even if you have to use it in cold weather, you don’t have to worry about cramps and other similar injuries.
What are the best water shoes for kayaking?
While it’s hard to name just one shoe, we believe the Kokatat Men’s Scout Boot is the overall best water shoe for kayaking. This is because of its superior construction, design, and comfort. And if you’re looking for a more affordable alternative, the ALEADER Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes offer the same comfort and flexibility without breaking the bank.
We all know how uncomfortable it can be when your shoe gets wet and soggy. It’s also unhygienic if it dries too slow, which is why we need special shoes designed for use in these wet conditions.
But as long as you’re wearing the best water shoes for kayaking, the experience will be truly memorable. After all, a good pair of shoes for the right activity will always be an investment.