As full-time global travellers, one of the biggest issues we have always faced is finding the ideal travel shoes.
Especially as the majority of our traveling is done with just one backpack, so space-saving is important.
We can’t afford to take 3 or 4 pairs of shoes each.
Having just one pair of shoes each to do everything is the ideal scenario for us!
That’s why, when the guys at Tropicfeel reached out to us asking if we’d like to trial their shoes; we were more than happy to give them a go!
And over the last 18 months we have reviewed Tropicfeel shoes in all environments. Including water, sand, cities and even in the snow; in order to see just how well they hold up.
Below I’ll take you through everything we’ve discovered; including my overall Tropicfeel shoes review and whether or not I think they’re worth buying and including in your travel packing list.
Full disclosure: These shoes were provided to us for free so that we could trial them and consider letting our audience know about them. However, do note that all views below are 100% our own and we were not paid to write this article or promote the shoes.
Currently, the best place to buy Tropicfeel shoes is directly from their website.
You can choose from 5 different currencies and they ship internationally to dozens of countries.
We had ours shipped to the UK and they arrived all the way from America in less than a week; which I was very happy with.
As a quick side note: I also really liked the packaging; and they arrived in perfect condition despite having travelled thousands of miles to reach us.
Here’s the links to the three pairs of Tropicfeel shoes we review below:
In order to stand out these days, you need to be doing something different.
Well, Tropicfeel are indeed a bit different and they’ve had a massive go at creating a diverse, yet durable travel shoe.
In fact, one of the most recent Tropicfeel trainers, the Canyon, raised more than €2 million in funding from Kickstarter!
So it’s fair to say there’s been a lot of hype about them amongst the travel community!
If you read up on the story behind Tropicfeel, you’ll soon realise that they are committed to creating an ethical and sustainable shoe.
They carefully check out suppliers to ensure they follow eco-friendly practices.
Each pair of shoes can be made from up to 7 recycled recycled plastic bottles. It just depends on which shoe you opt for.
They also give back 1% of sales to organisations working to protect wildlife.
Sure, they’re not going to change the planet overnight, but it’s great knowing you’re buying from a company is fully aware of the impact we are having; and doing their small part to help.
One thing that immediately stands out on all Tropicfeel shoes is the unique lace design.
These are called "sprint laces".
Instead of the typical need to tie your shoelaces, instead, the Tropicfeel approach means all you need to do is slip the shoes on and fasten the small rubber band up the lace.
To me, the principle behind it is pretty simple …
Instead of the laces being responsible for holding your shoe on, it is instead the natural fit of the shoe that does this.
So long as you buy the correct size of shoe, then the laces don’t make the world of difference; instead they are there just to provide a little extra tightness.
The benefit of this so that they can then be slipped on and off a lot more quickly than a typical trainer.
This is a feature that both Cazzy and I love.
Another thing you quickly realise is that the shoes are really well made.
Despite being a company founded by two guys raising money on Kickstarter, they have clearly done their homework and work with some top quality suppliers.
At the same time, the shoes weigh only 200 grams; meaning they are incredibly lightweight; and they are also pretty small meaning it’s easy to pack them away.
Combined, Tropicfeel shoes are both lightweight and durable!
For me; the final key feature of these shoes is the fact that they are multi-terrain.
What does this mean?
Well, they are suitable in a massive range of environments; including both dry and wet locations.
They are fast drying, so if you're out for the day in Asia exploring waterfalls, then you don’t even need to worry about taking them off!
They even incorporate drainage holes which allow water to leave the shoes, but not enter.
As of writing, we have used the Canyon and Monsoon range in 3 different countries.
In Morocco we used them to explore the city of Marrakech; as well as all day to day use for 3 weeks; and even for our desert buggy tour!
Back in England we’ve used them at the gym and when playing racket sports.
In the south of France; I used them on my week-long ski holiday in the Alps.
They have held up incredibly well for everything we’ve done; except for 1 terrain … snow. They are simply not built to handle the snow very well; which is pretty understandable.
They are built to be quick drying and lightweight, meaning they easily get damp in snow and don’t do very much to stop your feet getting cold.
***2021 update - For both of us, Sunset is our number shoe recommendation. We wear them for 95% of our travels. Whether we are in our campervan driving round the world, eating out, or walking all day in a city. They have proved the comfiest and most stylish evening shoe. In our opinion, these are the ultimate travel shoe.
I opted for the Chocolate Red Sunset shoes, and was immediately very impressed when they turned up!
To me, the Sunset is the best-looking shoe Tropicfeel have so far released. It's got great grip and has the same waterproof properties as the Canyon & Monsoon.
But it's also the smartest looking, the sort of shoe I'd be happy to wear out and about, for example when going for meals with friends.
In terms of comfort, so long as you select the correct size, then it really is a very cosy shoe.
It's also super convenient not needing to untie and re-tie laces every time you take them on and off.
What they've also done well is having the rear of the shoe more naturally foldable than on the Canyon and Monsoon; meaning I think it will hold up better over time after endless slipping on and off.
As you will read below, I really am a fan of the Canyon, but after trying the Sunset, I don't think I would go back.
It's like the design team picked up on some of the more minor flaws with the Canyon and Monsoon and did a fantastic job of creating something unique with the Sunset.
The only real issue I have so far picked up on is with the strip of white that goes around the base of the shoe.
Because it's so white it picks up any dirt really quickly and very soon looks messy.
I's a shame as the Sunset is the sort of shoe you would feel comfortable wearing out and about in the evening, but if you've also used it in the day time in wet or muddy environments, then it's going to need a good scrub to look the part.
As so, you almost have to decide where you realistically want to wear the Sunset, and commit to one area of your life.
I opted for the Sage Green Canyon trainer, as I thought they looked smart enough to wear in almost all day-to-day use.
Well, I’d say that’s true as in Marrakech I was happy to wear them all day, whether we were out exploring cities; in a cafe working from our laptops or at a restaurant enjoying an evening meal.
They look relatively smart and really have been a perfect all round travel trainer.
The one thing I was a little wary of was selecting the right shoe size over the internet.
I can be a little fussy sometimes; as my ideal size can sometimes range all the way from a 7 to a 8 (UK size).
I used their fit finder guide and opted for the UK mens 7.5; fortunately enough they fitted perfectly from the get-go.
As mentioned, they weren’t particularly good on my ski holiday, both because they struggle with gripping the snow and also at keeping out the cold.
So if you are heading somewhere where it gets cold in the evenings; then you may want to consider taking another pair of warmer shoes with you.
One thing that I have heard a lot of people say to me when wearing them is “your shoe laces aren’t tied”.
When they look down they soon realize the laces are a bit different; but it does seem to be everyone’s first thought!
So, as long as you’re happy with that, then you’re fine.
Cazzy opted for the Choco Red Monsoon shoes.
She thought they looked pretty stylish and the colour could go well with almost everything she wears.
This was actually one of the highlights of the shoe for her.
She wears a range of clothes when travelling, including dresses, skirts, trousers and shorts, and the Tropicfeel shoes go with practically everything.
This means there’s no need to pack another pair of shoes, these work in almost all cases.
She also loves how lightweight and breathable they’ve been.
Cazzy actually has type 1 diabetes, so having a high quality shoe that looks after her feet is really important when travelling; and she would say the Monsoon did a great job of allowing her feet to breathe in the hot weather which is great!
She also loves that they can be used in water since they are quick drying.
When in The Philippines, she would have switched her water shoes to “normal shoes”, when she got back on land, but it would have been great to keep wearing the Tropicfeel shoes since they’re fast drying!
She definitely intends to test them next time we get to go snorkelling.
Cazzy sometimes felt like the shoe weren’t as secure as she’d like them to be, and sometimes she was worried it would rip at the front.
The design of her shoe is a little different to mine, and due to this she felt that after hours of sightseeing, her feet began to get sore.
She prefers them for day-to-day use, rather than long days of sightseeing in different terrains.
Need more proof that Tropicfeel is a brand that is here to stay? Well, they are currently developing yet ANOTHER line of shoes!
Jungle is the latest edition to the range.
It is currently in it's crowdfunding stage, where you can now pre-order a pair of the shoes and benefit from some hefty savings over the final cost.
They are also offering a few discounted packs, allowing you to pick up a pair of Jungle shoes, as well as a backpack or water bottle.
We haven't yet had chance to review the Tropicfeel Jungle shoe ourselves, but cannot wait! I think they look awesome, and develop on a number of the features of both Monsoon and Canyon.
But perhaps look a bit more sturdy; which would be perfect for those who like to be more active when travelling and need more heel support.
Another big update is something they are calling "slip sock", which is the ability to more easily open up the shoe and slip it on; just as easily as you would slip on a sock. Their video does a better job of demonstrating this!
After speaking to the team, here are a few quick things to know ...
The estimated shipping date in some time in August 2021. Tropicfeel have been pretty good in the past at keeping to these deadlines, so I wouldn't imagine there will be much in the way of delays. They have already shown that even Covid couldn't slow them down in releasing the Sunset in 2020.
Jungle will come in 4 colours:
£89 in the UK and $123 in the USA. They do ship to a number of other countries, you can find local prices via the currency adjuster on the bottom left of their site.
If you pick up a pair of Jungle shoes now, you can save up to 40% off.
I am SOOOOOO excited to give this backpack a try!
So many new backpacks on entering the market that claim to be different, end up doing the same old thing.
Well, Shell looks like a game changer, especially for fellow backpackers constantly switching between hostels and hotels.
One of the most frustrating things is the need to unpack half your backpack just to get to that final pair of socks buried right at the bottom of your bag.
With it's clamshell opening and optional wardrobe packing, it means you can fit a lot more clothes into a smaller space. And at the same time, keep everything perfectly compartmentalised.
Then, when you arrive at a new hostel or hotel, simply take out your mini wardrobe and hang it up for use.
Another cool feature is that the bag itself can be adapted to become bigger or smaller, depending on your needs.
So it's an all-in-one bag that is great for smaller trips, all the way to 6 month long round-the-world backpacking adventures!
Here's some answers to common FAQ about Shell. For more info check out my in-depth Tropicfeel Shell backpack review.
It is currently on pre-order for £194 (USD$270). That includes the backpack and wardrobe system. There are a range of other packages on offer; just check out the sales page here for more info.
They are due to be shipped some time in May or June 2021.
The guys at Tropicfeel were kind enough to send me a Cruiser backpack to review, and we have now used it extensively when hiking across both Scotland and Ireland.
Based on my experience, I'd say that the Cruiser backpack is an incredibly lightweight bag, designed to be packed away and pulled out when you are out exploring for the day.
It folds down into a tiny pouch that can easily be stuffed away inside of a larger backpack, or tucked away into a cupboard in your camper (which is how we now travel!)
It's perfectly big enough to hold a drone, food, water and spare waterproofs.
It also feels very well made, so I wouldn't be worried about it tearing or ripping any time soon, I guess so long as you don't overload it with stuff.
Comfort-wise, it's been great for hikes up to 3 hours that we have used it for.
If I was going to be a multi-day trip, for many dozens of miles, then this certainly isn't the right bag.
It just simply doesn't have the suitable waist support, but at the end of the day that's not what this bag was designed for.
Based on our travel experiences, I would say this backpack is ideally suited to backpackers heading off for a few months (or years) around Asia.
You'll find yourself doing tonnes of shorter day trips, for which this bag is perfect!
And when not in use for a week or more, it's so small that it can be tucked away and stuffed at the bottom of your main rucksack.
Since I first published this review, popularity for Tropicfeel seems to have exploded!
The company have expanded into a range of other travel products, so I wanted to give them a quick mention here. This includes ...
Quick answer: yes!
Based on our joint experience with Sunset, Monsoon, and Canyon range, I can say I would wholeheartedly recommend these to other travellers like ourselves.
They hold up incredibly well across all kinds of environments and really are an awesome all round travel shoe.
That being said, there are circumstances where they are slightly lacking; specifically in the snow and also for if your travel plans include any heavy hiking where you need something with more ankle support.
Also, Cazzy didn’t feel they were as comfy when worn for hours of sightseeing; though this wasn’t an issue I faced.
For any upcoming backpacking trips; my plan is to take my Tropicfeel Sunset shoes and my Reef Fanning Flip Flops.
For any hiking or more heavy duty walking, I will opt for proper hiking boots.
If in the coming months I experience any issues; I will add some updates to this post; but as of now I can’t see any major problems.
Here’s the links to the three Tropicfeel shoes we reviewed above:
Well, that’s about it!
If you have any other questions about Tropicfeel shoes or would like a review on any other aspect of them, then just drop me a comment below and I will help where I can.