Best Hiking Boots for Beginners (Top 4 Picks & Buying Guide)

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There’s nothing more exhilarating than heading out into the great outdoors and going for a hike.

Perhaps you’re a seasoned walker or new to the hobby.

Either way, the time has come for you to ditch the sneakers and don a pair of hiking boots that are more suitable for your escapades.

Read on to find out about the best hiking boots for beginners.

The Best Hiking Boots for Beginners

Best for Women

Columbia Newton Ridge

Best Premium

Kenetrek Hardscrabble

Best for Men

Newton Ridge Plus

You might not know where to start when it comes to deciding which hiking boots to buy.

Thankfully, we’ve all the latest best buys right here for you to peruse.

We’ve done the leg work so that you can, err, do the real leg work!

1. Columbia Newton Ridge – Best Women’s Hiking Boots for Beginners

 Women – never fear! Whilst many of you will absolutely be able to wear all of the styles of boots in our best hiking boots for beginners list, some of you may prefer a style designed specifically for women.

These Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge Lightweight Waterproof Hiking Boots are awash with positive features. They’re made with advanced technology with an omni grip but in a feminine style.

If these boots take your fancy, check out the latest availability and price here.

Let’s take a look at their features in more detail:


  • Available in lots of color combinations
  • Adjustable, lace-up closures for a secure fit
  • Waterproof with soft mesh fabric exterior.
  • Multi-terrain grip
  • Rubber overlays on the heels for added protection
  • Breathable fabric that keeps feet comfortable and dry no matter the weather
  • 4.6/5-star reviews on Amazon based on over 26,000 ratings


  • Better when worn with higher ankle socks; shorter socks may cause an issue with rubbing at the heel

2. CC-Los for Men- Best Cheap Hiking Boots for Beginners

If you’re on a tight budget or you’re still not sure if you’ll keep up your new hiking hobby, you might want to opt for a cheaper boot.

Sometimes people say, “buy cheap, buy twice,” but with our recommendations we really don’t think you’ll need to do that. Our best cheap hiking boots for beginners come rated at 4.1/5 stars on Amazon. If cheap is all your budget can stretch to, take a look at the latest availability of these great hiking boots here.

These boots are by CC-LOS and are waterproof and lightweight, providing you with a comfortable fit. What’s more, they’re made from eco-friendly materials. Let’s take a closer look:


  • Affordable
  • Slip-resistant sole
  • Mid-top height
  • Reinforced heel and toe for safety and protection on hikes
  • Eco-friendly synthetic suede, rubber sole and breathable mesh with at least 50% recycled plastic
  • Soft, padded lining and collar


  • Designed for D-width fitting. Wider feet will need to size up
  • The fit is on the small side

3. Kenetrek Men’s Hardscrabble – Best Premium Hiking Boots for Beginners

If you’ve got a bit of dough to spare and are wanting to splash the cash, our premium choice may be just what you’re looking for.

Kentrek’s Hardscrabble Hiker Boots are rated 4.7/5 stars on Amazon and are packed with amazing features. When it comes to shelling out, you can’t go wrong with these awesome hiking boots. Check out their availability here.

They’re 100% leather with 7” tall uppers that are made from 2.8mm full grain leather with triple stitching throughout for added durability.

They also have a custom K-Talon Outsole that offers a solid group for extra stability and support. What else can we say about these great boots? Let’s look at the pros and cons!


  • 100% leather
  • 4.7/5 stars on Amazon based on 161 ratings
  • 7” high leather uppers
  • Leather is 2.8 mm full grain featuring double and triple stitching for extra durability
  • Custom K-Talon Outsole for exceptional traction and grip
  • 7 mm Nylon insole
  • Forged hardware with corrosion resistance that swivels rather than breaks
  • Abrasion-resistant reinforced rubber sole.


  • The most expensive boots on our list
  • Can be hard on the back of the ankle when walking on steep slopes, despite breaking in

4. Columbia Men’s Newton Ridge Plus – Best Men’s Hiking Boots for Beginners

If you’ve really got the bug and you’re wanting the very best hiking boots from the outset, these Columbia Men’s Newton Ridge Suede Waterproof hiking boots are just the ticket. These boots are made from suede leather with a thick rubber sole.

Not only are they waterproof, but they also have durable, lightweight soles that are designed for long-lasting comfort thanks to superior cushioning. The sole is also advanced thanks to its traction rubber for slip-free movement when you’re on uneven terrain.

For great value and great boots, these Columbia boots are an ideal choice for beginner hikers. Have a look at their availability here.


  • Available in lots of color combinations to suit any style
  • Lace-up closure for a secure and adjustable fit
  • Waterproof and breathable
  • Advanced traction sole for slip-free hiking
  • Dual-zone winter tread pattern for hiking on ice and snow
  • Responsive, supportive cushioning with extra grip to help on all terrains
  • 4.6/5-star reviews on Amazon based on over 45,000 purchases


  • Can feel hot on overly warm days when it’s about 90°F
  • You need to care for the leather to ensure durability

Buyer Guide on How to Choose The Best Hiking Boots for Beginners

Choosing hiking boots when you’re new to hiking can be a minefield of questions: what type of hiking boots do I need? What features should my hiking boots have?

Beginner's Hiking Boots

Whilst many people just buy the first pair they try on, it’s important to get it right.

Your boots might just make or break your hiking experience and the wrong pair of boots might put you off for life – not to mention give you wet feet and blisters!

Here are some key factors to consider when choosing the best hiking boots.


Even if you’re a fair-weather hiker, you really should consider having boots that are waterproof. Why?

Because on mountains and hilly terrain, you never know when a rain shower may hit, or you may find you have to cross a stream or two.


Whilst you may be a beginner hiker, you need to think realistically about how much hiking you expect to do and over what terrain.

It’s pointless choosing a boot that’s cheap and cheerful but won’t stand up well in the icy climbs and climes!

hiking boots beginners

Choose a boot that meets your needs in terms of how often you’ll use them and the terrain you’ll be hiking.


For many people, breathability is paramount when it comes to boots.

Sure, your boots may be waterproof, but if your feet get so hot and sweaty, they’ll be wet with sweat regardless and cause you no end of problems.

Choose breathable boots if you can, especially if you’re going to be hiking somewhere in extreme temperatures.

Final Thoughts on the Best Hiking Boots for Beginners

I always say that the hardest part of any hike is getting yourself out of the front door. Sometimes, if you’re a beginner, you may feel like you’re not quite ready to take on the big hills and the wilderness.

However, if you’re equipped with a decent pair of hiking boots, you’re on your way to having as many adventures as you can. It’s important to choose wisely whilst keeping in mind your budget. If you’re not sure which to choose, our best hiking boots for beginners (for women and men) are a great choice to get you on your way.

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