Best Travel Shoes For This Summer: The Ultimate Guide to Casual European Chic

Best Travel Shoes For This Summer: The Ultimate Guide to Casual European Chic

Plus, Five Must-Visit Summer Destinations for 2024

Summer is here, and the allure of Europe beckons. Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or embarking on your first European adventure, there’s something magical about the continent’s blend of history, culture, and effortless style. In this lifestyle article, we’ll explore the most popular European travel destinations. We'll look at the ones that epitomize casual European chic. The ones that scream effortless style and casual comfort. We’ll also take a look at which shoes are best for travelling in Europe. And what better way to step into these fashionable locales than in a pair of Viscata’s best-selling espadrilles for 2024?

 

Espadrilles collection for summer. Handmade in Spain


Barcelona, Spain: The Home of the America’s Cup

 

Why Barcelona?

Barcelona is our home town and one of the most popular and sought after city break destinations in the world. Blessed with stunningly unique architecture, it has played host to some of the world’s greatest artists including Salvador Dali, Joan Miro and Pablo Picasso. It is also home to some of the world’s most glorious and imaginative architecture the world has ever seen. The streets bear witness to the glorious legacy of the great Antoni Gaudi. 

And this year, Barcelona will be the host city for the 2024 America’s Cup. This will be the first time it has been hosted in this beautiful city with its beaches, superyachts and cool bars. Barcelona is a feast for the senses and this year, its traditional offerings are going to be upstaged by all the excitement of the world’s oldest international sporting rivalry. Almost one billion people are expected to tune in to TV coverage around the world. And hundreds of thousands more are expected to line the Barcelona beachfront to cheer on their teams from specially constructed fan zones and entertainment areas with giant screens to follow all the offshore action in close-up detail. Zones will be set up all around the city with special events, entertainment and concerts. 

And when the racing is done, there’s still time to explore the rest of this Mediterranean jewel. Wander the beautiful streets, sip cava in one of the elegant terrazas that are such a feature of this city. Snack on plates of seafood and tapas that will make your mouth water and that you’ll be talking about forever.

We think our leather Menorquina sandals in Sahara Brown are the perfect shoes to step out in style in search of your summer adventure. Much more stylish than traditional sandals and more comfortable than flip flops, these are a great way of creating a smart-casual vibe that is perfect for the terrazas of Barcelona.



 

Sahara brown leather avarca sandals. Handmade in Spain
1
2
3

Santorini, Greece: Where Blue Meets White

 

Why Santorini?


The stunningly beautiful Greek island of Santorini is famed for its iconic blue-domed churches, dramatically set against the whitewashed buildings that hang precariously to its steep edges. This simple contrast creates a picturesque scene that’s straight out of a postcard. As you stroll along the narrow cobblestone streets of Santorini, savoring fresh seafood and local wine along the way, you’ll feel like you’re living a fantasy dream worthy of your own, self-titled Abba movie. This island has a unique, casually chic vibe that has attracted visitors forever. 

From its earliest days, it has drawn people from around the world, attracted by crystalline blue waters, cute unspoiled beaches and its casual party vibe. Find a spot for yourself on top of the dramatic cliffs at Oia watching the sun explode into a ball of orange fire as it disappears beyond the horizon in a blaze of dramatic color celebrating nature in all its splendor. Wander the narrow, white terraces and get a glimpse of the blue caldera view below. Catch stunning scenes, through little breaks in the gaps in the cobbled streets unveiling a vista that is famous the world over. 

Take the cable car up from the sea and enjoy the sophisticated nightlife in the dozens of bars and restaurants that line the top of the cliffs and survey the cruise ships waiting in the sea below, reduced to the size of toys as you gaze at them from these great heights.

We think you’ll set this place ablaze if you set out in our Culip canvas espadrilles with their unique waves pattern and their woven jute soles echoing the rustic charm of Santorini. Stand tall in their 3.5” wedge heel and feel comfortable in their 100% GOTS certified organic canvas, soft leather inners and generous V-cut design. These gorgeous wave patterns are the style of the summer and they’ll be perfect for those hot, sultry nights watching the sun go down on the glistening sea below.



 

Ocean waves lace-up espadrille wedges. Handcrafted in Spain
1
2
3

Positano, Italy: La Dolce Vita by the Sea


Why Positano?


We’ve all seen the view. It’s appeared on websites, travel shows and even on the walls of Italian restaurants the world over. Positano, Italy must be one of the most recognised stretches of coastline anywhere in the world. Famous for its cliffside villas, precariously perched above the Amalfi coast, on the edge of the most perfect Mediterranean sea, you’ll be dazzled by the bright yellow lemon groves that line the hills, and the stunningly beautiful azure waters glittering in the dappled sunlight of the bay below. 

This is the land of Pompeii, Vesuvius and Limoncello. A part of the world where life is celebrated with passion and optimism. Where the most beautiful things are good food, sunshine and natural views. Positano positively embodies the Italian dream. The locals are at ease in a place like this. It’s perfect for their natural style and it suits their summer sophistication. 

In fact, this is the perfect spot to take in the view before setting off to explore the vibrant, lush landscapes and world famous seascapes in true Italian style.

 So, pull up a chair at your favorite restaurant and sip on an ice cold, locally made limoncello cocktail as you gaze down at the beautiful Viscata shoes that make you look as blissfully beautiful as the vista that you’re about to step out in. We think our Gava canvas espadrilles in beige are the perfect way to share your Italian style this summer. These gorgeous summer espadrilles are handmade in Spain by local artisans whose skills have been passed from generation to generation. A luscious blend of elegance, style and romance combine in these handmade Spanish espadrilles available in a range of colors and packed with soft, lace-up femininity.

 

 

 

Beige lace-up espadrille canvas wedges. Handmade in Spain

 

 

Cinque Terre, Italy: Pastel Paradise

 

Why Cinque Terre?

Cinque Terre, literally translated as “Five Lands' ' is a cluster of five colorful villages clinging dramatically to the edge of rugged cliffs, connected by scenic hiking trails. This area remains relatively undeveloped due to the special status of this region and it comprises five very special villages: Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore, all part of the Cinque Terre National Park, which is now a world famous UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

And amongst those, Vernazza is considered the most beautiful with its stunning vistas of the Mediterranean Sea. Settled since the 11th century, even now access to the Cinque Terre by car is limited. In fact, you’ll run out of road entirely as you approach Vernazza and you’ll have to finish the rest of the journey by foot. Follow the Sentiero Azzurro (“Azur Trail”) which connects the five villages in an old-fashioned network of trails and paths. The region's steep slopes and mountainous terrain are heavily terraced and are now filled with beautiful plump olives and sweet, sun-ripened grapes. 

The area's also home to one of Italy's most famous gifts to the world, pesto sauce, a Ligurian specialty that combines basil leaves, garlic, salt, olive oil, pine nuts and the local specialty, Pecorino cheese. If you’re looking for somewhere off the beaten path (literally) then Cinque Terres might be the perfect place for your next holiday. But you'll need comfortable shoes to fit in like a native, so we recommend stepping out in a pair of our Aiguafreda canvas espadrilles in alluring red. For a look that will make you stand out from the crowd and have the locals staring at you in envy, slip into these handmade Spanish wedge espadrilles, packed with Mediterranean style.




 

 

Red canvas espadrille sandal wedges. Handcrafted in Spain
1
2
3

Mykonos, Greece: Beach Glamour

 

Why Mykonos?

Another popular spot this year is likely to be a rather famous and easily recognizable Greek island. Welcome to Mykonos. With its white-washed buildings, turquoise waters, and vibrant beach clubs that pulse with life—Mykonos is the ultimate summer escape. It’s a very different vibe here than nearby Santorini, although the colors and streets may look familiar. But, be in no doubt, this is a party island. The crowd here is younger, more diverse and stays out later. The bars play their music louder and longer. 

Unsurprisingly, Mykonos is one of the most popular islands in the Cyclades chain and is sometimes referred to as the”Island of the Winds” which blow briskly across the islands at certain times of year. Mykonos has had an interesting island past. It has been a part of the Roman empire and the Byzantine empire, it has been sacked and pillaged by the Catalans and raided by the Ottomans. It has made it through attacks by the British and the French and even played a pivotal part in the Greek Revolution. And then, with the advent of the hippy trail of the 60s and the advance of mass tourism in the 70s, it became a place increasingly known for its hedonistic lifestyle and in recent years, it has become a gay Mecca and a unique party destination unlike any other. So if you’re interested in getting tongues wagging this summer, then you’ll need the shoes to get you in the mood.

We think our Candell canvas espadrilles in black are the perfect party shoes for dancing on the table and smashing plates in true Greek style. And they’re so comfortable, you’ll be dancing all night long. These comfortable flat espadrilles with their soft ankle strap, minimal heel and closed rounded toe will help to keep the party going. Lace-up espadrilles like these are always in style and are perfect for the party lifestyle of Mykonos.



 

Black canvas espadrille flats. Handcrafted in Spain
1
2
3

Nice, France: French Riviera Chic

Why Nice?

If it's the glitz and the glamor of the Cote D'Azur that you're after, then Nice is the place for you. Follow in the footsteps of Princess Grace, Marilyn Monroe and Brad Pitt and take a stroll down its elegant Promenade des Anglais and imagine yourself in the company of the world's most glamorous people. Pop into the world famous Negresco Hotel for one of their eponymous cocktails. Treat yourself to a Royal Negreso, created by the hotel's legendary bartender, M Sapata, who has made a magical, Mediterranean marvel out of Kirsch, raspberry syrup, orange peel, champagne and gold flakes (of course, darling!). 

Drink in the Belle Époque architecture, enjoy the sun-kissed beaches that surround you as you take in your Mediterranean view. Stroll into the centre ville to spend time at the flower market getting lost in the twisted alleyways of the old town on your way. Nice is a city that sets the standards for old world style and celebrity glamor.

 And if you’re going to be strolling around one of the most sophisticated spots on the Mediterranean, then make sure you keep the Hollywood vibe going in Viscata’s Roses canvas espadrilles in bright white. These stunning handmade Spanish espadrilles are the perfect shoes for a casually elegant evening in France’s playground as you gaze out at the superyachts and wonder which one you should have dinner on this evening. With a 3” wedge espadrille heel, 100% organic GOTS certified canvas, these handmade slip-on espadrilles even have a leather-lined insole for extra luxury.

 

 

White canvas espadrille mules. Handmade in Spain

 

 

Are espadrilles comfortable?

Espadrilles are amongst the most comfortable travel shoes you could want. There’s no doubt that these perennially stylish and comfortable Spanish shoes are amongst the best women’s walking shoes for travel in Europe. And they come in so many different styles that they’re not only the best travel shoes for women, but we have some style classics that make them amongst the most comfortable travel shoes for men as well. So if walking on clouds is your thing, then check out our comfort collection here, with beautiful shoes that will make you feel good every time you slip them on.

 

 

Espadrilles collection for summer traveling. Handmade in Spain
1

How to pack shoes for travel?

Now that we’ve established that espadrilles are amongst the best shoes for travel, the next question is how easy are these shoes to pack if you have limited space and maximum plans. If you’re looking for women’s espadrilles, then our selection includes some of the most comfortable shoes out there. You can choose from espadrille sandals, sandal wedges, low wedge espadrilles or even espadrille flats. And if you’re looking for handmade, Spanish jute espadrilles, Viscata is the place for you. Here are a few ways in which you can make your packing experience just a little easier. First of all, remember you can save space by packing things inside the center of your shoes - underwear, socks and soft things work really well here. It’s also a good place to stow your jewellery. You should also place your shoes in the bag heel to toe, with the soles facing outwards. This maximizes the space available in your suitcase. And finally, you might want to keep your footwear separated from your clothing by packing them in discrete bags. You could use special shoe bags or simply bag them up in a grocery bag if you prefere. Either way, it’s a great method for stopping your shoes from contaminating your clothes with dirt. And it’s so easy.

And if you want the ultimate in convenience, we even have a pair of folding espadrilles that you can flip in half and slip into your handbag for a spare pair of shoes you can access any time, any place, anywhere. Introducing our Garvet Suede Women’s Espadrille Flats, available in black and camel. Convenient shoes that are comfortable, cool and compact. Pack them up, slip them on and enjoy the view.

In conclusion, these European destinations blend history, fashion, and a laid-back vibe. As you explore, let Viscata’s espadrilles be your stylish companions—they’re not just shoes; they’re a passport to casual European chic.



Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.