Do you remember your first day of college or your first day on the job? Going from class to class or task to task? Do you remember those lucky sneakers that barely had any sole left or those great heels that looked fabulous with your new outfit? Chances are you also remember the painful blisters and aching feet that gave a whole new meaning to the phrase “killer shoes.”

Well, you don’t want to re-create that blistering experience when trekking past the Pyramids of Gizaor to let sore feet keep you from going the extra mile along the Oregon Trail. Like all serious travelers, you know you’re going to be doing a lot of walking. And you really do get what you pay for when it comes to footwear. So whether you are hiking in the Alps or wandering through museums, you won’t regret investing in some good shoes.

We’ve done the research so you can jump into your travels with both feet and not have to worry about sacrificing style—or coming home with scars as souvenirs.

The Summer Sightseer

Teva® Monsone (Retail: $50)

  • Water resistant with a durable, non-slip outsole—great traction on wet and dry surfaces
  • Anti-microbial technology keeps them clean no matter what you take them through

Naturalizer® Monte Cristo (Retail: $45)

  • Pebbled leather straps, cork midsole, and padded insole
  • Rubber grip outsole and adjustable strap for a safe, comfortable fit

The Casual Traveler

Sanuk® Vagabond (Retail: $55)

  • Breathable hybrid of a shoe and a sandal for ultimate comfort and style
  • Great for traveling—easily slip on and off and are made of flexible, lightweight canvas

Keen® Coronado (Retail: $60)

  • Patented toe protection and cork insole with arch support
  • Natural canvas with an old-school feel so you can take your style on the road

The Business Trip

Bass® Albany (Retail: $60)

  • Versatile style—looks great with jeans, slacks, and suits
  • Soft leather upper and cushioned insole for comfort; textured rubber sole for traction

Eurostep® Jillie (Retail: $60)

  • Easy slip-on Mary Jane style
  • Lightweight yet durable full-grain leather and rubber outsole

All of these shoes receive great wearer reviews for comfort and durability. But remember, whenever you get new shoes it’s a good idea to break them in. Camille Flanders, a 19-year-old student from Broomfield, Colorado, didn’t break in her new sneakers before touring Washington DC in them. She has always regretted having to pass up the opportunity to see the Jefferson Memorial because her sore feet wouldn’t allow her to walk the distance from the National Mall: “I felt like I had blisters the size of the Capitol dome,” she said, “and I’m still sad they kept me from seeing all the sights.”

Rebekah Atkin