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What To Look For In Summer Sandals For Kids

It’s warming up, the sun is out and the kids are hanging to get outside and play or go to the beach. Cue the sudden thought that you have to buy new summer sandals for the kids.

In  most parts of Australia, summer can get quite hot and for the most part the kids end up in bare feet or sandals. Sandal shopping for kids can have its challenges. There are so many styles, which pair do you choose and why?

Let’s break it down so you get the right pair of summer shoes first up.

Buy for the activities.

What does this mean exactly? We recommend buying a pair of sandals that will fit the activity your child will be doing most in them. If you are a beach loving family, then we recommend a pair of sandals that are made for water and sand. Leather sandals for example aren’t water friendly, so you would need to steer clear of these in this instance. If you’re a city loving family spending days at the local park then leather sandals are perfect as they are durable and will breath being a natural fibre.

Top tipOur Activ kids shoes make great all day activity and beach sandals and come in snazzy boys and girls designs.

Open Toe or Closed Toe Sandals

This can come down to personal preference, but for smaller kids we do tend to recommend closed toe shoes. They protect their little toes better and also help to keep their foot more secure. Closed toe sandals also provide a little more sun protection although we do suggest sunscreen on any exposed feet.

Open toe sandals can be beneficial for really hot tropical climates as they allow for more airflow. They are also good for older kids who are confident in their walking. Open toe shoes can sometimes be a trip hazard for kids who are still learning to coordinate their walking. So keep this in mind when selecting the style of sandal for your child.

Open Back or Closed Back

Again, this can come down to personal preference. But, like with the closed toe sandals, closed backs also provide more stability for younger kids and newer walkers. An enclosed heeled shoe gives extra support to the heel and ankle and helps retain a better posture for younger kids. Open back or sling back shoes can be good for older kids or children who are confident in their walking and coordination. Like open toe shoes, they give good airflow and are great for the beach or tropical climates.


This is really important because you want your kids shoes to last. Buying quality shoes may seem a big expense at first compared to local department stores. But you will find you get what you pay for and the shoes will last longer. With summer being 4-5 months in most parts of Australia, you can genuinely get by with one to two pairs of sandals.

When it comes to stocking your kids wardrobes for summer, I have found two pair of sandals to be a good start. I usually purchase a pair of pool/beach sandals that I know can handle the wet and sand. I then follow up with a pair of leather sandals for general day to day wear.