Best Shoes for Beach Walking

As the temperature heats up and spring turns to summer, you’re probably starting to think about a warm-weather wardrobe. Whether you live near the ocean or have a seaside vacation on the calendar, the right footwear is essential.

On that note, relaxing on the sand and splashing in the tide is one thing, but if you have plans to do some walking, you can’t just go barefoot—you’ll need a proper pair of shoes. Vionic was founded by renowned podiatrist and surf-and-sand enthusiast Phillip Vasyli, so it’s safe to say we know a thing or two about walking on the beach comfortably. From beach sandals to sneakers, here’s our breakdown on the best shoes for beach walking.


What Are the Best Shoes for Walking on the Beach?

Walking on the beach is an excellent form of exercise [3]—not to mention the unbeatable view and calming sound of waves crashing. But since the terrain is distinctly different from a sidewalk, trail, or treadmill, you’ll need suitable shoes. If you’ve got plans to hit the beach and rack up your step count, footwear should not be overlooked.

So, what are the best shoes for walking on the beach? While there are a few routes you can go, the most important thing is to get properly fitting shoes that are supportive and comfortable [2]. Also, instead of water shoes, which are better for wading through creeks and swimming in the ocean, opt for a pair that provides traction in the sand.

Toe-Post Sandals

Toe-post sandals are a cousin of flip flops. Both feature Y-shaped straps (AKA thongs), but toe-post sandals tend to be less, well…floppy. In general, this type of shoe has relatively thick straps and a sturdy, contoured footbed.

Similar to flip flops, not all toe-post sandals are created equal. As an industry leader in orthotic footwear, Vionic’s cutting-edge toe-post sandals are ideal for walking on the beach. Our designs are solid yet lightweight and always flattering on the feet.

Toe-post sandals from Vionic come in a range of styles and materials, with features including:

  • Wide, supportive uppers
  • Cushioned footbeds
  • Durable TPR-rubber outsoles
  • Flexible EVA-rubber midsoles
  • Varying heel heights
  • Adjustable strap buckles

Our post-toe beach shoes are also available in numerous colors, as well as options with embellishments and fun prints. While some styles are more sporty than others, every pair is comfortable and supportive enough to wear while walking on the sand.

Proven Pain Relief

Like all of Vionic’s men’s and women’s shoes, the rubber outsole of our toe-post sandal style has patterned tread, which helps you gain traction as you walk on sand, rocks, and any other oceanside terrain. Additionally, the shock-absorbing midsoles are designed to minimize stress on your feet, calves, and ankles. At the same time, the Vio-Motion Support contouring hugs your arches.

In a peer-reviewed study, Vionic contoured sandals were better at relieving moderate heel pain than standard, flat-soled flip flops. So, if you love walking on the beach and think you can’t wear a classic toe-post style, think again. Not only are our sandals proven to alleviate heel pain, but the study also shows that they’re just as therapeutic as our top-selling arch support inserts.

Arch-Support Sandals


Another option for beach walking is a more traditional sandal style, such as slip-ons with wide straps and toe loops, ankle-strap sandals, or slides. That said, finding a comfortable pair with adequate arch support is crucial if you’ll be doing a lot of walking.

Vionic specializes in men’s and women’s arch-support sandals. Besides flip flops and toe-post designs, we have a substantial selection of arch-support sandals in both timeless and trendy styles.

What makes our arch-support sandals ideal for long walks on the beach? Several of Vionic’s beach-ready designs have an APMA (American Podiatric Medical Association) Seal of Acceptance, which certifies that these podiatrist recommended shoes are both supportive and beneficial for foot health.

Our orthotic sandals are:

  • Lightweight
  • Flexible
  • Adjustable
  • Flattering
  • Comfortable
  • Versatile

Choose from sporty slides, chic leather strappy styles, contoured hook-and-loop designs, or platform sandals with ankle straps like our espadrilles. As long as you have comfortable footwear with proper arch support, you’ll be ready for any oceanside adventure.

Low-Top Sneakers


While all of the walking sandals from Vionic have an active design and plenty of arch support, some people prefer regular shoes. The additional material offers sun protection and keeps your feet cleaner than sandals. Plus, regular shoes can protect your feet from abrasive rocks, small shards of glass, or any tiny creatures lurking in the sand [2]. If you’re partial to closed-toe shoes on the beach, we suggest a pair of low-top sneakers.

Most closed-toe athletic shoes are designed to be worn with socks, but when you’re kicking around in the sand and saltwater, it’s best to go without. Although you won’t be able to altogether avoid getting your shoes wet and sandy [2], simple sneakers that are easy to get on and off are a practical choice.

The low-top casual sneakers from Vionic have super-soft uppers made of either canvas or cotton for light, breathable wear. Every pair features a TPR-rubber outsole and a removable, twill-covered orthotic footbed. Our slip-on shoes are classically simple and effortlessly cool, while our low-top lace-ups have stretchy laces and contrasting metal eyelets.

Best of all? They’re the best shoes to wear without socks because they were made to be worn without them! Yet, with soft comfort, you’ll almost feel like you’re only wearing a sock.

Each pair of beach sneakers has a convenient pull tab on the heel, which makes getting them on and off a breeze. The flexible yet sturdy rubber soles are made for walking outdoors—on the beach, boardwalk, or nearby trails.


Tips for Walking on the Beach

If you love a seaside stroll, you’re in good company. The beach-loving team at Vionic is all about walking on the sand, hitting the surf, playing beach volleyball, and participating in pretty much all water sports and oceanside activities. But if you’re not used to walking on the shore, there are a few things to keep in mind. These are our best tips for beach walking.

  1. Warm up. Before making your way to the sand, warm up on the sidewalk, grass, or otherwise level ground nearby. Dry sand is often much more challenging to walk in than flat land, and warming up will help you avoid pulling a muscle [1].
  2. Start slow. Since your feet sink into dry sand as you walk, it can be a pretty strenuous form of exercise, almost like walking up a steep hill [3]. The other thing to consider is the weather and the slope of the beach. Heavy winds and an uphill slope can turn a casual stroll into a vigorous workout. If you’re not used to it, we recommend starting with short strolls and building your way up to longer walks [1].
  3. Stretch. Before and after walking on the beach, stretching is vital. It’ll reduce muscle soreness over the next few days and help you avoid injuries[1].


Supportive Beach Shoes from Vionic

At Vionic, we believe shoes should never be the cause of discomfort, pain, or any other foot condition. If you plan to get lots of seaside walks in this summer, you won’t regret investing in a pair of comfortable stylish shoes.

Many people associate orthotic footwear with unflattering styles. However, with Vionic, this is not the case. Our designs are stylish, trendy, and just as flattering as regular shoes but with unmatched comfort, cushioning, and arch support. Think of Vionic beach shoes as an unbelievably comfy, podiatrist-approved version of the summer styles you already love.

From versatile closed-toe shoes, stretchy slip-ons, and quick drying unisex slides to contoured flip flops, supportive platforms, and sturdy toe-post sandals, we have it all. Vionic summer styles are more than just the best shoes for beach walking. Our men’s and women’s walking shoes can be worn on sand, pavement, dirt paths, gravel, grass, and any other turf you find yourself on this season.

Browse our beach sandals and sneakers today!





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