Footwear & Shoes, Macs Adventure, Walking

Classic Tuscany – Shoes or Boots?

19 Jul , 2016  

There are so many footwear options at our disposal now it can be quite difficult to choose the right shoe for your walking holiday, you also have to consider the terrain on your chosen walking holiday. I am recently back from our fabulous new Classic Tuscany walking holiday and as this trip has very varied terrain we definitely had to pause for thought before throwing the trusty old walking boots into the suitcase.

Tuscany as a region is very cultivated with miles and miles of vineyards, strada bianchi and paved country roads. Add in a walk through a woodland nature reserve, grassy footpaths along the Via Francigena and paths through loamy crop fields and it’s a very mixed bag.

Walking in Castelvecchio Nature Reserve

Walking in Castelvecchio Nature Reserve

I took my old reliable Lowe walking boots with me which have always suited me in the past. They performed excellently in the Dolomites and other similarly mountainous hikes but when I was walking on the strada bianchi and paved country roads, I noticed my legs getting tired much quicker than they normally would on a mountain track or trail.

Country Road to San Gimignano

Country Road to San Gimignano

My Dad, who joined me on the trip, had chucked out his uncomfy cheap walking boots after a couple of days on the trip and had resorted to his trainers.  He found these very comfortable and easy for the strada bianchi and paved sections, but struggled when it came to the grassy paths and loamy crop fields as they could quite often be muddy and after rain, clay will stick to your shoes making them very heavy! As a side note, I would highly recommend taking a walking pole or two on this trip to help navigate over the muddy sections!

Typical grassy path along the Via Francigena sections

Typical grassy path along the Via Francigena sections

We both felt by the end of the trip that the ideal footwear for the Tuscany area is a walking shoe as opposed to a walking boot or trainers. Walking shoes are lighter and make for easier going on the paved sections yet still offer the grip and sturdy sole for the muddy sections.

Whatever you choose to wear in the end, you should wear what you are most comfortable in, and always ensure you have broken them in and are used to them before embarking on any kind of walking holiday.

I hope this offers some advice if you are planning your very own Classic Tuscany trip. The area is the epitome of ‘La Dolce Vita’ and this trip is ideal for those who love good food and wine and charming Tuscan towns, but like a good long walk to build up an appetite first! You can browse all of our Tuscany trips here.

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Sarah Stone By
I have been a member of the Macs team since December 2013 and loving it! My passion for travel and the outdoors grew while I was living abroad as part of my university language studies. My favourite thing in the world is to discover new places and cultures and if I can combine this with adventures in the great outdoors then even better!