The best men’s walking shoes 2018: stay sure-footed in any weather and on all trails

Maximise your comfort each step of the way with our roundup of the best men’s walking shoes for taking on peaks, parks, beaches and countryside pathways

TODO alt text

Dedicated walking shoes not only boost your comfort outdoors, they'll decrease the amount of muscle fatigue you feel after a day's rambling by cradling your feet with ample cushioning. 

The best men's walking shoes are far less restrictive than boots, and offer more grip and durability than regular trainers. Many of the models featured in our buyer's guide also incorporate a waterproof membrane to keep the rain out, which is especially welcome at this time of year.

If you're looking to save a bit of money on a new pair of walking shoes, now is a good time to shop as retailers tend to discount towards the end of the year as new ranges will be launching in the spring. We check retail prices every day, so if any of the shoes below get a winter discount (or a price cut in the Boxing Day sales) it'll be shown on this page.

Finding the best men's walking shoes for you

While you’d be best off with the extra support of boots for the really rough stuff, proper walking shoes are ideal for lighter hikes, short approaches and summer rambles, as well as faster and lighter mountain expeditions. 

Some have made their lightness and flexibility around the ankle more of a benefit by incorporating sticky rubber and protective high rands to deliver a hybrid approach/scrambling shoe that can cope with pretty much anything in the hills. 

The key is to pick a comfortable fit and the correct sizing, as well as considering the terrain you'll be covering. Some of our favourite walking shoes offer a ‘mid’ option, providing some support akin to a boot but with more ankle movement. 

More aggressive tread patterns are ideal for muddy conditions, but handle rocky smearing poorly, while stickier rubber will wear out faster and can be slippy in muddy conditions.

Ready to find the best men's walking shoes for you? Then read on for our top picks...

The best men's walking shoes to buy

The best men's walking shoes 2018

1. Columbia Terrebonne Mid OutDRY Extreme

For walks where you need more boot-level support

Specifications
Best for: Support
Material: Full grain leather and mesh
Waterproof: OutDry Extreme
Reasons to buy
+Very sturdy+Fully waterproof
Reasons to avoid
-Not as lightweight as others

This hybrid walking shoe meets boot is called a Mid, and we love Columbia's take on it because it's durable, sturdy and surprisingly stylish. The Terrebonne OutDry Extreme is a classic lightweight walking shoe with a mid-height ankle delivering enhanced support. 

The combination of full grain leather and mesh upper is waterproofed with Columbia's tried and tested OutDry Extreme membrane, keeping your feet dry even if you're walking in lashing rain. 

The high traction Vibram Outsole, there to keep you stable and upright, is another reason why the Terrebonne tops our best men's walking shoes buyer's guide. Lacing up the shoes is easy, too, so you can achieve a more custom fit within seconds of putting them on.

The best men's walking shoes: Keen Targhee EXP

2. Keen Targhee EXP Walking Shoes

Boost your comfort underfoot on low-level rambles

Specifications
Best for: Traction
Material: PU-coated Leather
Waterproof: KEEN.Dry
Reasons to buy
+Solid build+Reasonably priced+Three season performance
Reasons to avoid
-Chunky styling

When comfort is the order of the day on a ramble, Keen’s updated Targee range is an excellent first stop. Available in shoe, medium and high versions for increasing levels of support, the redesign brings improved traction (thanks to a revamped sole) and a rugged feel. 

With a high rand to protect the genuine leather upper, and a bespoke lacing system to keep your heel locked into the snug rear pocket, these are the ultimate three season, low-level walking shoes for men. 

Final neat touches include a proper footbed insert, and a built-in membrane liner to keep rain out, as well as to enable sweat to evaporate. 

The best men's walking shoes

3. Mammut Alnasca Low GTX

The best men’s walking shoes for climbing and scrambling too

Specifications
Best for: Grip
Material: Leather
Waterproof: Gore-Tex
Reasons to buy
+Lightweight yet robust+Impressive grip+Super-sturdy
Reasons to avoid
-Expensive compared to some

The Alnasca’s solid toe rand and extended lacing betray the approach heritage of this shoe, intended for light but fast approaches and general mountain scrambling. 

‘To-the-toe’ lacing clamps the foot for technical scrambling work, while a Michelin Rock Tech sole provides stickiness on rock. Aggressive tread for walking on mud and damp vegetation is another reason why they feature highly in our best men’s walking shoes buyer’s guide.

There’s an industry-standard Gore membrane liner to keep the wet where you want it (outside), as well as memo foam in instep, shin and ankle for a comfortable fit. Finally, and perhaps most importantly for autumn and winter walking, the new 2018 colurway is a highly-visible bright orange.

The best men's walking shoes: Salomon Evasion GTX

4. Salomon Evasion GTX

Walk, stomp and run all over rocks and debris

Specifications
Best for: Comfort
Material: Suede Leather
Waterproof: Gore-Tex
Reasons to buy
+Breathable+Waterproof
Reasons to avoid
-Not a looker

If you regularly go on hikes, the Salomon Evasion GTX is one of the best men’s walking shoes for handling uneven terrain. The shoes feature waterproof Gore-Tex tech, foam heels and a gusseted tongue, making them ideal for traipsing over rocks.

They are resistant to debris, so they won’t get ruined after one walk, and they'll keep your feet warm and dry in wetter, harsher conditions. 

Like our current top pick from Columbia, these shoes deliver hiking boot-level support and are comfortable enough to wear daily without any rubbing.

The best men's walking shoes: Danner Men’s South Rim 600

5. Danner Men’s South Rim 600

The best men's walking shoes for city to country style

Specifications
Best for: Style
Material: Suede and nylon
Waterproof: None
Reasons to buy
+Cool and lightweight+Stylish retro looks
Reasons to avoid
-Not waterproof

Lightweight, breathable and comfortable, the South Rim 600 is a real go-anywhere walking shoe, designed for city style and trail-happy performance. 

Built on the super-cushioned Vibram SPE platform from the popular Mountain 600 hiking boot, the South Rim adds Air Mesh for ventilation in hotter climes, but will let in rain in more temperate ones.

Self-adapting lugs and a Megagrip compound ensure superb grip on wet and dry surfaces, making these walking shoes perfect for rainy days and crisp autumn walks.

Arc’teryx Konseal FL Shoe

6. Arc’teryx Konseal FL Walking Shoes

A good choice for uncompromising speed and agility

Specifications
Best for: Speed
Material: Synthetic
Waterproof: None
Reasons to buy
+Fast and light+Streamlined clean design
Reasons to avoid
-Not waterproof

A solid option from Canadian outdoor designers Arc'teryx, the Konseal FL is aimed squarely at delivering speed and agility across technical terrain. How? By borrowing design cues, fit and ethos from trail running shoes. 

The streamlined design and attention to detail across the shoe means you won't regret sporting a pair of these, whether you're on an alpine adventure or heading to the pub after a day spent exploring outdoors.

Five Ten 5.10 Guide Tennie

7. Five Ten Guide Tennie

The best men's walking shoes for handling rocky ground

Specifications
Best for: Stealth
Material: Reinforced nubuck leather
Waterproof: None
Reasons to buy
+Comfortable+Relatively stylish
Reasons to avoid
-Not waterproof

The Five Ten Guide Tennie is a stone-cold classic in approach shoes. While a comfy and durable walking shoe to the untrained eye, the addition of an incredibly sticky Stealth rubber sole makes this a proper climbing shoe in disguise. 

For summer scrambling, it’s perhaps the best men's walking shoe on the market and has stood the test of time, with minimal changes, since 1995. 

We love the ankle to toe lacing, for achieving a custom fit and adjustment, and the internal rocker for increased walking action efficiency. 

The best men's walking shoes: AKU Tenga Low GTX

8. AKU Tengu Low GTX

A great technical walking shoe for all types of weather

Specifications
Best for: Technical performance
Material: Full Grain Leather
Waterproof: Gore-Tex
Reasons to buy
+Brilliant quality+Reliable choice for all situations
Reasons to avoid
-Expensive-Unlikely to impress in the pub

If you’re looking for build quality and technical ability, AKU’s boots and shoes are always worth stepping into. The Tengu Low is a shortened version of the company’s award-winning Tengu GTX boot, and as such it retains much of that winning formula. 

Of particular note is the enormous protective rand, as well as a super-stiff 4-2mm nylon and die cut EVA last. The upper is a mix of suede and ‘air 8000’, for ace breathability, while a Gore-Tex elastic sock takes care of water ingress and egress.

The best men's walking shoes: Jack Wolfskin Vojo

9. Jack Wolfskin Vojo Hike Texapore Shoes

A warm yet breathable shoe for serious and casual walking

Specifications
Best for: Versatility
Material: Suede Leather
Waterproof: Texapore
Reasons to buy
+Lightweight+Good grip
Reasons to avoid
-Not ideal for wet weather

These men’s walking shoes are ideal for those who do a lot of casual walking with the occasional serious trail thrown in. The Vojo Hike feature Texapore lining and are wonderfully lightweight and breathable. 

The suede outer helps these shoes to look more casual than perhaps a more classic walking and hiking shoe, and the grey colourway is easy to team up with with most walking apparel, although the grey is a lot darker in the flesh. 

More importantly, the soles of these walking shoes boasts superior grip, so if you often find yourself trekking up slippery hills, these are a winner.

The best men's walking shoes: Adidas Terrex Voyager

10. Adidas Terrex Voyager

The best men’s walking shoes for wet weather conditions

Specifications
Best for: Wet weather
Material: Synthetic
Waterproof: Climaproof
Reasons to buy
+Stealthy design+Impressive grip
Reasons to avoid
-Fit comes up small

Adidas' shoe-based answer to an amphibious landing craft, the Voyager is designed for extremely wet conditions, such as gorge walking or coasteering. The big sell is a quick-drying Climacool upper and a built-in drainage system through the sidewalls to shift serious levels of water. 

There are other reasons to put these on your shopping list... Including the Stealth rubber outsole, widely used in performance climbing shoes for its stickiness.

That paired with a massive tread should give you solid grip on pretty much everything you'll come across outdoors. A baked-in Polygiene treatment on the liners should keep end-of-day pong to a minimum, too.