I bet I am making my Mom, the queen of functional footwear, so proud right now!
During our last Europe trip, Adam and I both made the grave mistake of wearing shoes that, while appropriate for short distances, made our feet feel like they were in a meat grinder by the time we got to Budapest. Within hours of arriving in Budapest, we were in a shoe store buying a pair of overpriced Nikes to get us through the remainder of our trip.
My tip to you is this, take the time to research and invest in a good pair of shoes prior to your trip. I believe in taking exactly two pairs of shoes on a city vacation, one pair of sneakers and one pair of sandals. With sufficient planning and research, you don’t need to sacrifice style for comfortable feet.
For our upcoming trip, I opted for a pair of Adidas that go with anything and can transition from day to night easily. Plus, they are leather coated, so they can easily be cleaned and will provide some level of protection if rain strikes.
Though it may seem important to have the perfect pair of ankle boots or heels to match your outfit, wearing uncomfortable shoes completely detracts from the experience of traveling. You should be able to trek six miles through Budapest at midnight because your phone died and you can’t find your hotel (✓), bar hop through Prague in the rain (✓), or hang out in a coffee shop in Amsterdam (✓) without ever worrying about being in pain.