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Packing for Italy

The best kids’ travel shoes for your Italian vacation

Kids’ travel shoes for Italy. Our selection of great travel shoes for kids perfect for walking in Italy. Great kids’ travel shoes for cobbled streets, time on the beach and sightseeing in Italy.

In Italy, you and your kids will walk. A lot!

No matter where in Italy you go, you will find yourself strolling around pretty villages, cities, museums, the countryside and often the beach. Therefore, having good travel shoes for everyone in the family is an absolute must.

We are great walkers. We avoid the car as much as possible and, having grown up in Rome, I am more than used to cobbles, what shoes can take them and what cannot. I am from Rome and Rome does cobbles really well!

This is my guide to the best travel shoes for kids to pack for your Italian vacation.

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Best kids shoes for Italy travel: buying chart

Name of shoeTypeSeasonType of trip
Keen Seacamp II CNXClosed toe walking sandals for toddlers/Little Kid/Big KidSummerAll
Teva Kids Unisex Hurricane XLT2 Alp Open toe walking sandals for toddlers/Little Kids/Big KidsSummerAll
Crocs several modelsWater shoeSummerBeach/Resort/City
Sketchers Unisex Litebeams, several modelsSummer sneakerSummer/Mid-seasonCity trips
Merrell Jungle Moc FrostySlip on Winter sneaker for boysWinterCity trips
Merrel Unisex Trail chaser sneakerHiking shoes for kidsAllHiking and outdoor holidays/City trips in winter
Lined winter ankle boot for kidsLined Ankle boot WinterSki trips
Mishansa Hiking boots for boys and girlsToddler hiking shoes/Kids hiking shoesMid-season/winterHiking/all

Best kids’ travel shoes for summer in Italy

Summers are hot in Italy and, unless you are heading for the Dolomites or another hiking destination, the best kids’ shoes for summer in Italy are sandals.

Open-toe sandals for kids

Open-toe sandals are our go-to choice as kids’ footwear for summer in Italy. They are the perfect model to keep feel breathing and they can be excellent for walking. If you keep open-toe sandals with a good walking sole, they can be the only pair of shoes they need for the whole trip!

The only time when I do not recommend open toe sandals is when you are hiking. While some have decent soles in terms of grip, I believe for hiking you need closed toe as they will give much more, much better protection, even on easy trails.

When choosing open toe sandals, the best ones are water resistant and have soft straps. These will be the most versatile and the least likely to cause blisters.

Top tip: like with all shoes, it is best for kids to try on their sandals and break them in before their trip as sometimes the top straps can take some getting used to.

Closed toe sandals for kids

Closed-toe sandals are a good choice for light summer hiking and city trips.

The cage around the toes make them safer if you are on a path with pebbles or uneven terrain and they can be worn with or without socks, for extra versatility.

Compared with open-toe sandals, they tend to have a sporty-er look so you may not want to have them as your only shoe if you have occasions for dressing up however, some have colors that are subdued and pretty enough to make them very versatile, especially for girls.

The only issue with closed toe sandals is that they may let debris in so you may have to remove them occasionally to get the dirt out. Opt for those with easy to open and close straps for the least stress.

Water shoes and beach shoes

If you are planning time on the beach or at the pool, then i recommend you also pack water shoes aka aquashoes.

Water shoes for kids come in several types, from flip flops to water socks to crocs.

Flip flops are our least favorite type of kid shoes: while they are small to pack and ok on the beach, they will not keep your kids safe on rocks, they can slip off and they cannot run properly in them (ok, they can, but is an acquires skill and they don’t offer the right type of support). 

Water socks are perfect for being in the water and the beach and crocs are the all-around winner for us. Both my kids adore them and they can walk hours in them, go on the sand with them or on rocks – perfect for the rocky stretched of Tuscany or those pebble beaches on Lake Garda!

They are also excellent shoes for the hotel! Many in Italy have beautiful yet cold tiled floors and crocs are perfect to offer some protection.

Kids’ summer sneakers

My children live in their sneakers and summer makes no exception. 

Breathable sneakers are maybe the most versatile type of kid travel shoe possible and they are perfect for city walks, country trails and most sport activities.

Those I like the most have either Velcro or bungee laces, which eliminate the issues of laces coming undone.

Hiking shoes for kids 

If you plan on hiking in Italy, then you need to equip your kids with proper hiking shoes.

The Alps and many parts of the Apennines have serious trails and you need shoes with good grip and, depending on the level of difficulty of the trail, possibly also ankle-high boots.

When picking the right hiking boots for kids, it is paramount to get them big enough to have some room for the toes (especially going downhill, the the foot will slip forward), a sole that it thick enough to offer protection but not so hard it doesn’t bend and a material that can take some water.

Best kids’ travel shoes for Italy in winter

Winter sneakers for kids

My children love their sneakers and they are a good pair of shoes on our winter trips to Italy, especially if we go to Rome where we do not expect snow.

If you choose them in the right materials, winter sneakers will keep your kids’ feet warm enough while allowing them to walk and run freely and in some cases can also take light rain, although they are unlikely to survive a full soak.

If you are heading to very cold destinations and snowy conditions, then you may want to invest in good kids’ winter boots too. 

In some cases, a good pair of winter hiking shoes can be versatile enough to work in the city as winter shoewear.

However, if you are heading to the Dolomites or mountain destinations in winter, you need to upgrade to full-on boots that can take the snow and proper ski gear.

Best kids’ travel shoes for Italy in spring and autumn

Spring and autumn in Italy are mild seasons and the best type of shoe for this time is a sneaker or I should say: two pairs of sneakers!

Rain is common in Italy in the shoulder season and when it rains in Italy, it pours so your shoes are unlikely to get dry quickly.

For rainy seasons in Italy, the best thing is to have a second pair of shoes at your accommodation, so that you can get the soaked pair dry under the radiator without this stopping you in tour tracks!

I hope you fond this quick overview of our favorite kids’ travel shoes for Italy useful. Happy packing!

You can find here >>> our list of fun and awesome things to do in Italy with kids

Best kids’ travel shoes for Italy: pin this!

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Marta Correale is an Italian mama of two. Born and raised in Rome, Marta has a passion for travel and especially enjoys showing off Italy to her kids, who are growing up to love it as much as she does! A classics graduate, teacher of Italian as a second language and family travel blogger, Marta launched Mama Loves Italy as a way to inspire, support and help curious visitors to make the most of a trip to Italy and learn about Italian culture on the way.