Best Fishing Shoes in 2017 – Guide & Reviews
When out on the water, you want to make sure that you have the best gear. Whether sailing or fishing, the right equipment and clothing can not only keep you dry and comfortable but help you succeed.
One of the most important part of your outfit when out at sea is your footwear. Slippery surfaces and wet conditions mean that you need shoes with adequate traction that will keep you in place, as well as help keep your feet dry.
To that end, many companies make shoes that are meant to be worn on a pontoon boat and out at sea. These are called boat shoes, water shoes, or fishing shoes, but the defining theme to all of them is the fact that they are made specifically to wear in wet environments.
Today I’ll be talking about how to find the best fishing shoes and show you some of the best models out there.
10 Best Fishing Shoes - Comparison
I have spent hours of time research on these best kayak shoes / best boat shoes & preparing the side by side comparison and in-depth review.
Open Mesh & Synthetic
Leather & Synthetic
Leather & Synthetic
Leather & Synthetic
Leather, Synthetic & Textile
How to Choose the Best Fishing Shoes
Since fishing shoes are meant to get wet, there are only a few materials that will work in such an environment. All fishing shoes have thick rubber soles to keep you steady, but the three top materials these shoes are made of are:
- Leather: Treated to stay dry and will help keep your feet dry
- Canvas: Designed to provide comfort and protection from the elements
- Synthetic Mesh: This material is best for allowing water to escape and keep your feet dry
Since fishing shoes are specialty items, the cost for this type of footwear can be more expensive than going to a regular shoe store. Some models can cost a couple hundred, but others may be less than fifty.
When looking at the best fishing shoes, keep in mind how often you will use them and how long they should last. Additionally, accidents happen out on the water and you may lose a shoe or two, so be prepared to replace your set every so often.
Although fishing shoes are perfect while boating or fishing (they are known as best kayak shoes as well), they are not necessarily good for walking around. Some models have arch support and extra padding to allow you to walk, run or hike in them, but most are not built to withstand extended use on hard surfaces.
If you want a shoe that is more versatile, choose a model that has extra padding and support. Otherwise, you can get away with a flatter, more simplistic style of fishing shoe.
For some people, it’s not the clothes that make the man; it’s the shoes. Boating shoes especially are made to look good, but water or fishing shoes are usually built to be more rugged than flashy.
Also, when choosing a style, keep in mind that there are two types of shoes: lace-tied and slip-on. Lace shoes are snugger and will not fall off by accident, but require you to tie them.
Slip on are more convenient, but they may slip off if you’re not careful. Choose a style and look that fits your needs.
Recommended Fishing Shoes
First on our list is the Columbia Men’s Drainmaker II. Columbia is consistently one of the top brands for outdoor clothing and gear, and the Drainmaker is no exception. It’s a bit on the higher end of the price scale, but it is a durable, high-quality shoe.
The Drainmaker is made of synthetic mesh that will expel water superbly even if submerged. This black and red shoe is lace-tied and comes with a solid rubber sole. The midsole is also drainable, allowing for less water to be retained.
The Drainmakeris sturdy enough to be a decent walking shoe, however I would not recommend it for hiking or anything too strenuous.
- Synthetic and open-cell sandwich mesh upper
- Rubber sole
- Translucent TPU toe cap
- Drainable Midsole
- Drainage ports in heel and forefoot
- Drainmaker II drains water 33% faster than original Drainmaker
Next on our list is another winner from Columbia, the Men’s Bahama Vent PFG Boat Shoes. If you want to look stylish with a rugged and dependable boat shoe, the Bahama PFG is the way to go.
The PFG is a slip on shoe that is made of canvas and rubber. It has a stylish white and gray design that is not only functional but fashionable as well. You can also get this particular model in a variety of colors to match your outfit.
The Techlite rubber sole will keep you in place even in the wettest conditions. The Bahama PFG also has a cushioned midsole which provides extra comfort while walking and working. This model is good for light walking in and around the water.
- Rubber sole
- Ideal for activities around the water
- High-traction rubber outsole is razor siped
- Techlite midsole provides cushioning and support
- Combination of canvas and leather
- Air-flow midsole ports
- Water drainable
If you want high-class boating gear, one brand that you should always look for is Sperry. When it comes to clothes and accessories, Sperry Top-Sider Boating Shoe knows how to keep you both looking sharp and staying dry. is a perfect showcase for Sperry’s commitment to excellence.
The Voyager is a synthetic mesh shoe with a rubber sole that will keep you grounded in all conditions. This shoe is lace-tied and comes in a modest blue and gray color scheme. The Voyager is also completely waterproof as your fishing gloves, to help keep your feet dry while on the water.
Like many Sperry products, the Voyager is made in the USA, although some models may be imported. This shoe is ideal for boating but not so much for heavy walking.
- Synthetic sole
- 30% shock absorption
- Excellent sole traction
- Made in USA or Imported
Moving along, we have the Rugged Shark Men’s Tidal Wave Boat Shoe. If you want a boat shoe that works well on the water and off, the Tidal Wave is one of your best options. Rugged Shark Tidal Wave Boat Shoe has a whole line of top-quality gear, and the Tidal Wave is the perfect example.
This shoe is a composite model, made with leather, synthetic mesh, and rubber. The leather provides durability and rugged dependability, the mesh helps drain water that gets in, and the rubber will maintain traction in the slipperiest conditions.
Rugged Shark has developed a proprietary traction system called Hexagrip which provides superior support and handling while walking.
The Tidal Wave also has arch support and extra padding making this a perfect shoe on the water and off. However, I would not recommend it for hiking or strenuous activity.
- Full grain leather upper
- EVA insole
- Mesh inserts
- Compression molded EVA midsole
- 3-eyed front lace enclosure
- Hexagrip(TM) slip-resistant non-marking rubber traction outsole
- 360 degree nautical lacing details for a firm fit
Another model from Sperry’s Top-Sider line, the Men’s A/O Boat Shoe is both classic and stylish. Looking more like a men’s loafer than a boat shoe, the A/O is perfect for lounging around on the deck or walking around the marina.
The Sperry Top-Sider Men's A/O is a leather slip-on shoe with a rubber sole. Although it can slip on easily, the A/O also has laces to provide extra snug fitting should you need it.
This shoe comes in brown, but you can get it in a variety of colors to match your style and outfit. The A/O also has a heel cup that provides shock absorption for extra comfort on the high seas.
- Rubber sole
- Leather boat shoe featuring moccasin-stitched toe
- Rust-resistant eyelets
- Slotted collar
- Non-marking outsole
- Excellent wet/dry sole traction
- Shock-absorbing EVA heel cup
Like the A/O, the Sebago Men’s Docksides Boat Shoe looks more like a loafer than a boating shoe. With the Sebago, you can take on the town or work on the deck and still look good no matter what.
This shoe is a leather-made slip-on shoe. Laces are also provided to give you extra support and keep the shoe on in rough conditions.
The Sebago Men's Docksides Boat Shoe also comes in brown, but you can get it in a broad range of styles and colors to meet your fashion needs. Also, this model has a soft foam insole to help keep you comfortable while walking around town.
- Rubber sole
- Boat shoe featuring moc-toe stitchin
- Molded EVA foam insole
- Around the collar rawhide lacing
- Non-slip soles
- Non-marking soles
- Comes in all widths
- Full leather upper
- Non-slip, non-marking rubber outsole
The Teva men's shoe is designed for the outdoor lovers who like adventure. The shoe allows you to enjoy a good athletic lifestyle as it remains focused on innovation in outdoor performance. For general knowledge, the word teva in the title of the shoe is a Hebrew word meaning nature. This shoe is the ultimate connection between the user's feet and the adventure.
The Teva Men's M Evo Water Shoe is built from lightweight foam thus making it comfortable and very light on the user's feet. To also serve the purpose in its title of being a water shoe it was specifically designed with a cool wearing mesh upper which gets wet without a worry.
It is a shoe that copes well with water and does not react negatively to water surroundings. The Teva Men's M Evo Water Shoe is built with a breathable textile lining featuring logo accented contrast overlays and lace-up closure.
The dimensions of the teva water shoe are 13 by nine by 5 inches, and it weighs 8 ounces. By using the projected dimensions, we can tell that the shoe is pretty much fitting and quite comfortable.
- For the protection of the user, the Teva Men's M Evo Water Shoe is fitted with a molded IMEVA midsole that is to act as a shock absorber. Well, at least the user is guaranteed of some precaution and protection of their feet as they wear the shoe.
- This shoe has earned its worldwide reputation for being durable and lasting longer due to the non-marking spider rubber outsole which ensures there is optimal wet and dry traction.
- Comfort is essential when we are talking about feet. The Teva Men's M Evo Water Shoe has a molded IMEVA midsole which seeks to ensure comfortability and also provide support.
- The evo water shoe's composition is made up of different textures such that 12% is leather, 41% is synthetic, and 47% is textile.
Nearing the end of our list, we have the Aleader Men’s Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes. If you want style and function, these Aqua Water Shoes are the perfect blend of fashion and dependability.
The Aqua Water Shoes are made of synthetic mesh. The mesh design is wider than other models, and it is incorporated not only on the top but in the rubber sole as well. The futuristic style of this shoe makes a bold statement while helping keep your feet dry and protected.
Because the rubber sole is also mesh-designed, the Aqua Water Shoe is super lightweight, making it seem like you’re wearing nothing at all.
The Aqua Water Shoes are perfect for on the water or walking around, as they have cushioned insoles to keep your feet comfortable in all conditions. These shoes are also lace-tied.
- Rubber sole
- Breathable and durable air mesh
- excellent bounce-back and durability
When it comes to stylish and affordable clothes, Dockers is one of the best brands around. A perfect example of this is the Castaway Boat Shoe, which, like other models on this list, looks more like a loafer than anything else.
The Castaway Boat Shoe is made of rubber and leather, with a moccasin-style toe stitch. This shoe is perfect as a slip-on, but laces are provided to give you extra grip to keep them on in rough conditions.
This shoe comes in either brown or stylish red to meet your fashion needs.
- Rubber sole
- Heel measures approximately 0.75"
- Mocc-toe loafer featuring two-eyelet lacing and slotted collar
Finally, we come to the Tommy Hilfiger Men’s Bowman Boat Shoe. Like the Docker’s Castaway or the Sperry A/O, this shoe is a loafer style model that is both at home on the town or working on the deck.
The Tommy Hilfiger Bowman is made of leather, with a sleek rubber sole and rawhide laces. Even though it is lace-tied, you can easily adapt the Bowman to be a slip-on shoe as needed.
This shoe comes in your choice of five colors, including brown, gray, and navy.
- Rubber sole
- Heel measures approximately 0.5"
- Shaft measures approximately 3" from arch
- 360-degree lacing
- Rawhide laces
Whenever I’m boating, I like to have just as much style as I do comfort. If I am hiking or backpacking, I prefer a more rugged shoe, but if I’m strictly going to be on the water, I prefer something with class to go with my boating outfit. That being said, I love the Columbia Bahama or the Rugged Shark Tidal Wave.
I’ve never been a big fan of loafers, but if you like that look, any of the loafer-inspired boating shoes will be more than sufficient for your needs.
If you want something more rugged, then I highly recommend the Teva Churn Performance Water Shoe, as it is perfect for rough terrain and the water, making it one of the toughest and most versatile shoes around.