Alaskan cruise shoe dilemma

Welcome to Cruise Critic! If you'd like to participate on our forums by joining in the conversation, please Register Now! Be sure to visit our FAMOUS Roll Call forums, where you can meet other cruisers sailing with you and share a tour or shore excursion and SAVE MONEY!

** Please post your recommendations ONLY in response to not start a new thread. Thanks!
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts
BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
All times are GMT -4.
The time now is 01:45 PM.
2 Posts
Joined May 2013
My wife and I are going on our first cruise together in August. We are taking the Star to Alaska out of Seattle. I've taken a solo Alaskan cruise on the Golden so I have a good idea of how I will pack, but not sure of what my wife should bring. From reading this forum I've picked up the clothing part (layers). Her particular question is about shoes. A good pair of water proof hiking shoes is a must, but what about shoes to wear on the ship, both inside and out. For me it's hiking shoes during the day or dress shoes at night. I'm not sure what to tell her. Can any of the ladies out there give us some ideas? Thanks in advance for any advice.
Houston, TX
481 Posts
Joined Oct 2011
I chose dinner outfits for casual elegant nights that used the same pair of shoes, then had a pair of dressier shoes for the formal nights. I had a pair of Tevas (rubber sandals) for going to the pool (never used them, by the way) and a pair of athletic shoes to wear during the day. I didn't have waterproof hiking shoes, but if they aren't too bulky, they would probably substitute for the athletic ones. All that being said, I am FAR from a fashion maven. I go strictly utilitarian. Hope this helps.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
05-26-2012 Diamond Princess

695 Posts
Joined Apr 2013
On the ship & on shore -- comfortable, sturdy & w/socks -- layers for the feet too.

High heels in the evenings, at dinner, may not be a good idea; lower heels are safer.

San Diego
4,698 Posts
Joined Sep 2007
Originally posted by DoulaAnn
I chose dinner outfits for casual elegant nights that used the same pair of shoes, then had a pair of dressier shoes for the formal nights. I had a pair of Tevas (rubber sandals) for going to the pool (never used them, by the way) and a pair of athletic shoes to wear during the day. I didn't have waterproof hiking shoes, but if they aren't too bulky, they would probably substitute for the athletic ones. All that being said, I am FAR from a fashion maven. I go strictly utilitarian. Hope this helps.
This is exactly what I do. I think I bring 3-4 pair of shoes.

Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
NCL Star 2x
PCL Grand, Star, Ruby, Crown, Golden 2x, Sapphire 2x, Sea
CCL Inspiration, Paradise, Splendor, Spirit, Elation 2x
RCI Jewel, Radiance 2x
HAL Zaandam, Statendam 2x, Ryndam 2x

Tampa, Florida area
12,057 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
Unless you are going hiking out in "the boonies", hiking boots are not needed for an Alaska cruise. A comfortable but sturdy pair of sneaker type shoes are fine for most tours and for walking around in the towns. That's what my adult daughter wore and we were fine.
One thing we did do was to buy a can of Camp Dry spray at Walmart, in the shoe dept., and sprayed a couple of coats of waterproofing on our sneakers, in case of rain while onshore. Our cruise was in September, and we had rain in every port, but we had dry shoes, socks, and feet, thanks to that product.

Saved us the cost of hiking boots that we were likely to never need again, as well as the hassle of having to pack something that bulky.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature

Completed cruises: (377 days on Princess ... so far!)
2004 Coral Princess (Panama Canal & W. Caribbean)
2005 Sun Princess (Eastern Caribbean)
2006 Island Princess (Hawai'i)
2007 Sea Princess (Southern Caribbean)
2007 Golden Princess (Mexican Riviera)
2008 Diamond Princess (Hawai'i)
2008 Tahitian Princess (Tahiti & FP)
2009 Star Princess (Alaska Inside Passage)
2010 Golden Princess (Hawai'i)
2011 Emerald Princess (Eastern Caribbean)
2011 Sapphire Princess (Alaska Inside Passage)
2011 Sapphire Princess (28 day r/t LA-HI-Samoa-French Polynesia-LA)
2011 Saphire Princess (Mexican Riviera), done as B2B with the 28 day above
2012 Star Princess (r/t SF-Hawaii)
2012 Ruby Princess (19 day T/A Venice to FLL)
2013 Emerald Princess (Southern Caribbean)
2013 Pacific Princess (12 day Venice to Athens)
2013 Crown Princess (26 day B2B Southampton to the Canaries, and T/A)
2014 Crown Princess Andes & So America (16 days Valpariso to LA)
2014 Carnival Paradise - First ever non-Princess cruise - just a quickie with family!
2014 Caribbean Princess (9 day B2B with friends)
2015 Ruby Princess So America (32 days FLL to Valpariso)
2015 Emerald Princess (T/A Barcelona to FLL)
2016 Caribbean Princess (30 day EB T/A including British Isles itinerary)
2016 Pacific Princess (17 day T/A Rome to FLL)

2017 Pacific Princess (23 days Dover to Venic77


United States
8 Posts
Joined Apr 2013
One of the things we learned on our cruise to Alaska is how much walking you will do. Both on board and off ship. Also consider that The lido and sun deck might be soaking wet most of the time. My wife wore shoes with a thin sole and her feet ended up cold and wet. So much so that we ended up making a trip to Wal-mart in Juneau just so she could by sneakers. This also helped when walking around in port as well.
Littleton, Colorado
496 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
A low rise or mid rise boot is a good choice for ports and on board. More waterproof than a sneaker or running shoe. Many Alaska excursions require you to wear closed toe sturdy shoes. I wore my boots on our flights to save space in the luggage.

Shoes I brought:
--Keen boots
--Running shoes (for workouts only)
--Black pumps
--Black sparkle flats

The slippers are a wool clog type with a hard sole, so I could wear them as a shoe with casual slacks in a pinch.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
  • Caribbean Princess; March 2014; Western Caribbean
  • Caribbean Princess; January 2013; Southern Caribbean
  • Island Princess; May 2012; Anniversary Cruise; Alaska--Voyage of the Glaciers, Northbound
  • Sapphire Princess; September 2010; Alaska Inside Passage
Coastal GA USA
21,507 Posts
Joined Nov 2007
I will be leaving for Alaska in a little over a week. I am taking four pairs of shoes: Sneakers, dressy sandals for evenings, crocs sandals (A-Leigh mini wedge) for inside around the ship, and another pair of different crocs (Patricia wedge) for sightseeing if it is warm/dry. Note that these are not the shoes you think of when you hear crocs. EM
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
Booked: Carnival Fascination 10/8/17; Carnival Elation 12/11/17;Carnival Splendor 1/14/18
Carnival Magic 8/26/17 8 nites
Carnival Pride B2B 21 nites 2/19/17 Caribbean
Carnival Glory 8/27/16
MSC Divina 5/7/16
Carnival Fascination 22 Feb 2016 Bahamas
MSC Divina 11/20-23/2013 Bahamas
Coral Princess 17 July 2013 Alaska
Celebrity Silhouette 22 May 2013 Adriatic & Italy
Queen Elizabeth 15 May 2013 4 nights
Celebrity Infinity 16 April 2013 B2B San Diego to Harwich
Nieuw Amsterdam Mediterranean 4/30 - 5/24/2012
Millennium B2B2B 2/6-20/2012 Caribbean
Caribbean Princess 10/29/2011 Caribbean Islander NY to FLL
Celebrity Solstice 5/1/2011 FLL to Barcelona
Carnival Fascination 2/28/11 Bahamas
QM 2 12/8/2010 Caribbean Delights
Celebrity Summit 10/24/10 B2B NY to San Juan
Emerald Princess 8/29/10 Western Caribbean
Diamond Princess 5/29/10 B2B Alaska
Westerdam 2/7/10 Eastern & Southern Caribbean
Carnival Dream 10/27/09 Transatlantic
Carnival Sensation 6/18/09 Bahamas
Carnival Splendor 5/17/09 B2B Mexi-not to Canada
Oosterdam 2/28/09 San Diego to Rome 32 nights
Carnival Fascination 12/13/08 Bahamas
QE 2 7/31/08 Lands of Fire and Ice
Celebration 3/27/08 Bahamas
Celebration 1/26/08 Bahamas
Norwegian Spirit 10/20/07 CTN
Elation 4/23/07 B2B Bahamas
Zenith 8/2006 Bermuda
Calypso 7/2005 Greek Isles
Star Princess Inaugural 2/2002 Pacific Rim Singapore to LA 26 nights
Millennium 8/2000 Baltic
Fantasy 6/1999 Bahamas
Royal Princess 1/1999 Buenos Aires to Manaus
Home Lines Oceanic x 2 1973 NYC to Nassau 7 nights
Homes Lines Homeric x2 Eastern Caribbean 1972 10 nights
LaFayette, GA
80 Posts
Joined Oct 2012
On our June Alaska cruise I took what I call "universal" shoes. Black heeled sandals that matched all my evening wear, a pair of silvery rhinestone sandals for casual wear, my running shoes for walking around in ports, and a pair of el cheapo rubber/plastic flip flops to wear around the cabin and pool areas. Worked out perfect!
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature

3,752 Posts
Joined Aug 2006
I basically do the same. One exception, I don't bring any heels, my black sandels are basically flat-easier to walk around the ship. I used to bring some with a heel and never wore them. Just me but being on a ship I think it is a little safer.
420 Posts
Joined Mar 2004
I also vote for tennis/athletic shoes for ports and around the ship. I had 1 pair of black slides for evenings - and only wore them 1 evening. I also had basic ordinary Old Navy $1 flip flops for going to the spa, hitting the buffet for breakfast (bring food back to cabin), and around the cabin.

If you are doing serious hiking or a glacier landing I would have hiking boots. Otherwise, you'll be fine in tennis shoes or other comfortable walking shoes. No need to go fancy either. Alaska is a very laid back cruise.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
NCL Sun - Alaska Southbound
NCL Jewel - Western Caribbean
NCL Pearl - Alaska
NCL Star -Hawaii
NCL Wind - Alaska
94 Posts
Joined Sep 2008
We went in June. I got a pair of Merrill goretex sneakers at DSW. I figured if it really rained, I needed to be prepared. I wore them on the plain and I wore them on excursions as well as on Glacier bay day. I had a non clunky pair of white gym shoes(already had them) that I wore around the ship otherwise, and I wore capri length yoga pants with them. In the evening, I had a pair of black Lindsay Phillips ballet flats, and the snap went with my dinner outfits(casual or dressy) I also threw in a pair of Lindsay Phillips gold jelly sandals. I already had the Lindsay Phillips. My clothes and shoes(including rainwear) I packed in a carry on. The shoes took up very little room, and my dresses also took up no room.
I commented to my DH that I have never seen so many brand new shoes on peoples' feet!
Have fun!
160 Posts
Joined Apr 2012
I mostly lived in my sneakers on the ship and on shore. I brought a pair of very low heels which I used for both casual dinner outfits and the formal nights. Also brought a pair of flip flops which I figured I'd use if I went in the pool (which I didn't), but ended up wearing them around the room.
10,013 Posts
Joined Apr 2009
For our cruise/tour I brought, low cut hiking boots (mostly for the tour portion), 2 pairs of walking shoes, and one pair of dress shoes (low heeled). It really doesn't matter if you wear the same dress shoes on different nights, no one really is going to notice. Around the ship I switched off on the walking shoes, depending on what went with what I was wearing that day (I had one white pair, and one black pair).
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
DCLHAL CarnivalPrincess Vantage
19 Cruises, 11 ships, 194 nights

New Zealand
209 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
We head out this week (yay!)

I have packed a pair of heels for formal nights, wedge flip-flops for short jaunts around the ship, low-heeled dress boots that I wear with leggings and jeans, and a pair of athletic trainers to wear to the gym, running and for hiking.

I have lived in the pacific NW before and never required water proofing my trainers, despite doing most of my exercise outdoors and year round. I'll post pics when I get back and let you.know how it went.
114 Posts
Joined Jan 2012
Both trips I've packed two pairs of sneakers (in case one gets wet and doesn't dry overnight), a pair or two of dress shoes for dinner, flip flops for swimming, and either ballet flats or boat shoes for days on the ship.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
"I feel together today..."
1,911 Posts
Joined Mar 2013
I opted for:

- 2 pairs of heels (one shorter, one taller) -> for formal & non formal dinners
- 1 pair of sneakers (around the ship or at port)
- 1 pair of ballet flats (around the ship)
- 1 pair of flip flops (for walking around the room or swimming)

And that was good enough for me.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature

Disney Wonder - Alaska - August 2014 "Live From" Trip Report
Cunard Queen Elizabeth - Greek Isles - November 2013 "Live From" Trip Report Review
Holland America Volendam - Alaska - May 2013 "Live From" Trip Report Review
Disney Wonder - Alaska - August 2011 Review
Celebrity Mercury - Alaska - August 2010
Diamond Princess - Repositioning Vancouver to San Francisco - May 2006
Radiance of the Seas - Pacific Northwest - September 2002
Carnival Fantasy - Bahamas - Nov 1997
Carnival Jubilee - Mexican Riviera - Sept 1997

Follow me on instagram @lovely_cruise_food

Visit my travel picture blog HERE
Visit my trip report blog [Sarah Travels] HERE
Visit my food blog HERE
Wheaton, IL USA
2,184 Posts
Joined May 2000
We had snow in May and I wore my Reeboks, which kept my feet dry, for everything except formal night. Do bring a few pair of thick socks just in case for colder weather. You just never know what the weather will be.

Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
Zenith '93-Western Caribbean, Horizon '94-Southern Caribbean, Century '98-Western Caribbean, Grandeur of the Seas '00-Southern Caribbean, Summit '02-Hawaii to Vancouver, Mercury '03-Alaska, Summit '06-LA to Hawaii RT, Coral Princess '07-Panama Canal, Grand Princess '08-Western Caribbean, Grand Princess '12-Eastern Caribbean, Island Princess '13-Alaska, Silhouette '14-Western Caribbean, Vision of the Seas '15-Mediterranean.