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Which kids hiking shoes are best?

Hiking shoes or hiking boots can inspire kids to explore nature in a time when many children choose to spend a lot of hours playing video games or watching TV. 

The great outdoors is an essential place for kids. Being in the forest or up in the mountains wondering at nature’s spectacles can help improve mood, develop fitness and strength and learn about the natural world. A great pair of kids’ hiking shoes to help achieve these things is the trendy yet durable Adidas: Outdoor AX2 Hiking Shoe.

What to know before you buy kids hiking shoes

Girls’ and boys’ hiking shoes and unisex hiking shoes for children are available in many different styles. They offer different levels of support and protection, and choosing a pair can be confusing for many. 

Trail Difficulty

When choosing a shoe for your child, it is advisable to consider the difficulty of any trail that they will hike. Your child may encounter wintry and harsh conditions doing high-altitude trekking, or climbing may be tough on ankles, so more support is required. Trekking boots may be the preferable option instead.


Children are often more concerned about how they look than many adults. They may even put fashion before comfort when it comes to hiking shoes. It could be down to the parents to find the right balance. Making sure both comfort and style are served well will go a long way to achieving satisfaction.

Everyday use

A cool-looking trendy hiking shoe may also be suitable for everyday use. Most quality hiking shoes are light and water-resistant enough to be used as a shoe anywhere. Finding the right shoe for your kid can be economically advantageous if they use it for more than just hiking.

What to look for in quality kids hiking shoes


A quality kids’ hiking shoe should have good support in the arch and the toe. However, you should consider good ankle support seriously if your child often slips or goes over on their ankles. If this is the case, a quality boot should be considered instead.


This is essential for peace of mind regarding kids when trekking and hiking. Children really do love to run ahead, climb up rocks, jump on logs and so on. Good traction on the shoe is key to your peace of mind when hiking as it is vital that a child feels they have the freedom to do what they like when they are in nature. 

Waterproofing or water-resistance

If you are hiking in very wet or wintry conditions, it is better to have a pair of waterproof boots instead of shoes. The boot should be high at the ankles to prevent any snow or water from getting in, and a good waterproof membrane should protect it. If the conditions are not so wet, water-resistant shoes may be adequate. These are not entirely waterproof. Crossing through shallow streams or getting caught in a heavy downpour will not be a dry experience. However, water-resistant shoes will keep your child’s feet dry in light showers and will be more breathable. Waterproof shoes are also available should they be preferred.

How much you can expect to spend on kids hiking shoes

The price of a hiking shoe depends on the size of the shoe. Quality shoes for tiny feet can be found for as little as $20, while premium brands can hit $140 for big-footed kids.

Kids hiking shoes FAQ

Are economical hiking shoes suitable for strenuous hiking?

A. Always read reviews online for your shoe before purchasing. Some budget-friendly shoes may not be as sturdy as hoped for and may not last for too many treks. It is probably better to pay more for a pair which will last longer.

What are some other valuable items a child can have for hiking?

A. Most hiking shoes usually serve three out of four seasons, with winter being the one that may require something more appropriate. With this in mind, children can complete their hiking outfits for those three seasons with lightweight pants and a water-resistant windbreaker if the weather is inclement. You can choose base layers when weather conditions are known, with cotton shorts and T-shirts perfect on sunny days.

What are the best kids hiking shoes to buy?

Top kids hiking shoes

Adidas: Outdoor AX2 Hiking Shoe

Adidas: Outdoor AX2 Hiking Shoe

What you need to know: This is an eye-catching choice for fashion-conscious kids from ages 4-12.

What you’ll love: These beautiful cyan and yellow shoes also come in black for kids who prefer less noticeable footwear. These low-cut shoes have a rubber sole and a breathable mesh collar lining. The velcro closure strap gives an excellent snug fit.

What you should consider: There are reports that they run a little narrow and may be unsuitable for children with wider feet.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top kids hiking shoes for the money

Northside: Cheyenne: Jr Hiking Boot

Northside: Cheyenne: Jr Hiking Boot

What you need to know: This is an excellent budget option for light hiking that doesn’t sacrifice any quality in the process.

What you’ll love: These shoes are a lightweight budget option made from leather and breathable mesh. They offer a water-resistant level of protection and feature comfortable padding for worry-free hiking. They have decent arch support and come in two nice colors.

What you should consider: Some online reviewers complained the sizes run a bit small.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

Worth checking out

Columbia: Redmond: Unisex Child’s Waterproof Hiking Shoe

Columbia Redmond Unisex Child’s Waterproof Hiking Shoe

What you need to know: With sizes available for kids from 4-12 years old, this shoe offers protection and comfort in most conditions,

What you’ll love: This waterproof hiking shoe is usable in every season outside winter. It is a robust and durable shoe available in many attractive colors to suit all tastes. The lightweight midsole offers excellent padding, while the traction is impressive in many kinds of terrain.

What you should consider: The leather and synthetic materials won’t be as breathable and could lead to odors during summertime trekking.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Backcountry


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Barry Peacock writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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