A trip to Disney World always means a TON of walking. That’s why it’s so important to find a great pair of shoes your trip. The wrong choice can easily leave you with aching, tired feet for days on end.
Years of Disney World experience has helped me learn what works best for keeping your feet happy in the parks and resorts. I put together this guide to help others find the perfect shoes to stay comfortable during their vacation.
The Best Men’s Shoes for Disney World
- Brooks Men’s Ghost 10 (Click to check current price on Amazon): The Ghost 10 is a very high-quality, lightweight running and walking shoe. The cushioning on this shoe is excellent and the upper mesh is extremely breathable. It will handle anything Disney World can throw at you.
- Adidas Men’s Ultraboost (Click to check current price on Amazon): The Adidas Ultraboost isn’t the cheapest option, but they are some of the most ridiculously comfortable shoes on the market. These shoes make concrete feel like clouds. They work very many different foot shapes, including flat feet. They also look great and come in a lot of colors.
- Tevas Men’s Hurricane XLT (Click to check current price on Amazon): If you’re looking for the perfect men’s sandal for Disney World, look no further than a pair of Tevas. The sandals are extremely comfortable and extremely versatile. Perfect for walking around the parks during the hottest or rainiest days. They’re borderline indestructible and will last for years, even with heavy wear.
The Best Women’s Shoes for Disney World
- Brooks Women’s Ghost 10 (Click to check current price on Amazon): You really can’t beat the quality and comfort of the Brooks Ghost 10. Just like the men’s version, the women’s Ghost 10 is a high-quality shoe that has awesome padding and great breathability. The available colors and designs are very stylish too.
- Nike Women’s Air Zoom Pegasus (Click to check current price on Amazon): The Nike Pegasus is a bestselling running shoe with a lot of fans. And for good reason. They’re awesome for many different foot shapes and walking styles. Nike’s Flymesh upper construction does a great job of supporting your foot and letting it breathe at the same time. And, of course, these shoes feature Nike’s trademark style and colors.
- Grasshopper Windham Slip-On (Click to check current price on Amazon): These shoes are cute, affordable, and very versatile. They are also very well-made for the price. The insoles are soft, but also removable, making it easy to swap in other inserts. They work just about anywhere at Disney World and go with just about any wardrobe.
- Fitflops Surfa Flip-Flop (Click to check current price on Amazon): Fitflops are one of the top-rated women’s shoes for comfort and stability. They are so good that they are commonly recommended by orthopedic specialists. If you want a pair of flip-flops that will allow you to comfortably walk all over the Disney World property, the Fitflops should be your go-to choice.
The Best Children’s Shoes for Disney World
- Keen Kids’ Newport H2 (Click to check current price on Amazon): The Keen Newports are the perfect Disney World shoe for kids. They are a hybrid closed-toe sandal/shoe that gives you the best of both worlds. These shoes are safe, comfortable, durable, and very easy to clean. They come in a HUGE variety of colors, making it really easy to find something your kids will like.
Things to consider when choosing shoes for your Disney World trip
Buying a pair of shoes doesn’t have to be rocket science. Here’s a quick breakdown of the most important features to look for when deciding on the right pair.
#1. Choose a shoe with quality construction
Making the decision to buy a quality shoe is a great investment for a Disney World vacation. There is a big difference between overpaying for a designer name and wisely investing in a quality shoe. A good high-quality shoe may not be the cheapest option but it will be well equipped to keep you comfortable and injury-free.
A good pair of walking shoes will be a little stiffer than running shoes while maintaining good shock absorption. The heels are often slightly angled to help your foot move smoothly from heel to toe. The midsoles or also a little thinner than typical running shoes which helps your foot move properly as you move more slowly.
Don’t underestimate the amount of walking that you will be doing over the course of your trip. You may not notice the consequences of wearing the wrong shoe on the first day of your trip, but I promise that you’ll notice after several days of heavy walking.
#2. A proper fit
A snug fit that isn’t too tight is the most important feature of a good pair of shoes. You want your heel to be secure without being too tight. You want to be able to move your toes just a little bit while keeping your heel firmly in place. Too much compression will cause you a lot of pain in a short amount of time. Your shoe shouldn’t compress your foot from side to side or from front to back.
#3. Keep temperature/climate in mind
If you’ve ever been to Disney World it’s very likely that you’re familiar with the Florida heat. It’s common for summer temperatures to range around 95 degrees. Spring and fall are also very warm, with average daytime temperatures in the mid-80’s. Winter is the only time you’ll see average highs drop into the mid-70’s.
It’s very easy to overheat if you wear a shoe that is too thick or too bulky. It may not be noticeable at first, but it won’t take long for your feet to become tired and sweaty. Choosing a shoe that helps your feet breathe will keep you comfortable for longer and allow you to walk further over the course of your vacation.
#4. Consider the terrain you’ll be walking on
Almost all of the terrain that you will be walking on a Disney World is concrete. Walking on such a hard surface for long periods of time but puts a lot of extra stress on your feet, knees, and back. This makes it even more important to pick a shoe that has enough support and a soft sole. You want your arch properly supported so that you avoid pain and you’ll want the shoe sole to be soft enough to absorb impact.
#5. Lightweight is the way to go
It’s important to choose a shoe that is lightweight. I have a shoe will cause you to expend more energy over time. You may not notice the extra fatigue during the first day of walking but over time you will absolutely draining more energy in a heavy shoe. Technology has come along way in creating footwear that is durable and supportive without being too cumbersome.
#6. Find the right style
Even though it may be easy to say that you should always choose comfort and utility over style, it’s important to consider personal preferences when buying shoes. Different shoes work well in different settings. Walking around in the parks is one thing, but spending an evening having dinner at a resort is another.
If you plan on only bringing one pair of shoes to Disney World pick something that is comfortable enough to walk miles without discomfort but fashionable enough that you’d be comfortable wearing it to a nice dinner.
If you don’t mind packing more than one pair of shoes it’s a good idea to bring one pair for comfort and utility in the parks and at least one slightly dressier pair for wearing during evenings out.
Rainy weather is something that almost all Disney World guests encounter at some point. Many shoes do a very poor job of handling wet weather. You don’t necessarily need a shoe that is completely waterproof but it’s important to have a shoe that you don’t mind getting wet.
Most walking or running shoes are made out of materials that dry fairly quickly, but shoes made out of leather or other bulky materials are definitely not ideal for getting soaked.