Page Updated: Sept 2020
The choice of women's safari shoes or boots depends on the type of activities you want to do in Africa. If you intend to hunt or do any serious bush walking you will need comfortable and durable boots that are up to the job. If you are going to be mostly sitting in a vehicle, game viewing or staying around a camp or bush lodge, your choice of footwear is not that critical. However, if you are staying in a vehicle, a sensible pair of shoes is to be recommended, rather than flip-flops or sandals, just in case you need to get out to go behind a bush or if the vehicle breaks down.
Sandals or other casual shoes for relaxing in camp or game lodge still need to fairly robust. Often the walkways between your tent or chalet to the dining area, for example, are not paved but are sand or gravel. So strappy white sling-backs with high heels are not ideal.
In the evenings when the mosquitoes are most active, you may want to put on shoes that cover your feet unless you slather your feet in insect repellent while wearing sandals. Remembering, of course, that DEET-based repellents tend to destroy synthetic materials.
It is important to not go around barefoot outside in the African bush during the day or night - thorns, scorpions, jiggers and stinging ants are just a few hazards besides just stubbing your toe. So slip-on sandals or clogs are the most convenient footwear for camp life.
If you are going hunting or walking in the bush your footwear is extremely important and the points below are specifically for these activities. Buy the best quality possible rather than a cheaper option.
Getting the right size and fit of your safari boot or shoe is essential. As with all footwear, size and fit may vary with different boots or shoes plus you will have accommodate any foot irregularities you may have like bunions, hammer-toes etc.
Make sure the boots are well-fitting and well worn-in. Don't arrive with brand new unworn boots. This is particularly important if your boots are made completely or partially of full-grain leather or Nubuck. Boot or shoe uppers made of synthetic material do need wearing-in but not as much.
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These safari shoes or boots are ideal for hunting and walking in the African bush.
These Merrell light hiking shoes are built specifically to fit a woman's foot. They feel like a sneaker yet grip terrain like a boot, due to Merrell's rubber soles with a 5mm lug depth. Breathable mesh uppers help prevent your feet from overheating, while a removable contoured insole and EVA foam midsole cushion every step. Merrell Air Cushion in the heel absorbs shock and lends stability. The attached tongue keeps small pieces of debris out, while a comfort collar reduces hot spots. Buy Now
***NEW*** These Merrell hikers are designed specifically to fit a woman's foot. They offer greater stability and traction on tough terrain. Mesh uppers let feet breathe and the bellows tongue prevents small rocks or sticks from getting into your shoe. Removable and contoured cushioned insole combines with a molded nylon shank to support the arches, while the dual-density foam midsole absorbs shock and helps keep your foot in proper alignment. The Vibram rubber lug soles offer safe footing on both wet and dry ground. Buy Now
Merrell women's All Out Blaze hiking shoe has a waterproof upper, cushioning midsole, odour prevention and sticky Vibram sole. Buy Now
These cool and breathable hikers by Merrell are engineered to fit a woman's foot, offering better support, alignment and stability. The dual-density foam midsole combines with the air cushion heel to absorb shock and lend stability on the trail, while the rubber soles offer sure-footed traction on both wet and dry terrain. Bellows tongue keeps pebbles, twigs and debris out. Buy Now
The Merrell Women's Moab Ventilator hiking shoe is made of leather and fabric with a Vibram sole, breathable mesh panels and plush cushioning at tongue and collar and Ortholite footbed. Buy Now
These Danner women's hunting boots have an oiled nubuck leather upper with lightweight, foam-backed 900 denier nylon and rubber soles. They are designed for women with a narrower heel and more streamlined forefoot for a comfortable, secure fit. Buy Now
Merrell's women's Azura waterproof hiking shoe delivers athletic responsiveness and control with a lighter outsole, integrated butterfly-shaped arch support and foam footbed - breathable cushioning that molds specifically to your foot. Waterproof nubuck, suede and mesh upper and M-Select Grip provides durable traction when and where you need it. Buy Now
These light and comfy sandals and shoes are ideal for relaxing in around a hunting camp or easily slipping on if you need to get up in the night. They are not suitable for serious bush walking.
These slides by Merrell have neoprene uppers with a decorative band and the cushioned insole feel soft against bare feet. Merrell's Air Cushion in the heels absorbs shock and lends stability while M-Select rubber soles offer sure-footed traction. Buy Now
***NEW*** These comfortable slip-on sneakers are ideal for wearing around camp. The vulcanized rubber construction ensures the uppers will not pull away from the rubber soles. Memory foam insole cushions your step while offering arch support. They come with rawhide laces with rustproof grommets and non-marking non-slip rubber soles. Buy Now
These exceptionally lightweight and comfortable sneakers have canvas uppers with ventilating mesh. The flexible rubber outsoles drain water and sand from the strategically placed holes in the toe and heel. Buy Now
This Merrell Whisper sandal is made of leather with a breathable mesh lining, integrated footbed, molded nylon arch shank and air cushion in the heel to absorb shock and add stability. Buy Now
These comfortable slip-on Gridway Mocs by Merrell are knit from 100% recycled yarn, the EVA-cushioned midsole is recycled EVA and polyurethane and the Vibram rubber outsole is made with 30% recycled plastic bottles. Buy Now
Merrell's Barrado slip-on has a mesh upper with leather trim. Smooth mesh linings provide enhanced breathability to keep your feet dry. Compression molded EVA wedge features Merrell Air Cushion for all-day comfort. The rubber outsole provides slick-surface grip. Buy Now
These Encore Breeze slip-on shoes by Merrell are incredibly soft and comfortable with breathable mesh uppers and lining. They support, align and stabilize your feet. Removable contoured footbed supports your arches while the dual density midsole cushions your every step and helps center your heel. Slip-resistant soles keep you on your feet in both wet and dry conditions. Buy Now