I’ve been using ECCO shoes for many years off and on, and I can surely say that what makes the Yucatan model special is the adjustable velcro straps and the 3-point adjustable heel strap system.
While I wore these sandals two weeks ago in Samaria Gorge in Crete, it quickly became clear to me that they were designed for the long run.
Although not as protective as a set of hiking boots, Yucatan sandals have been my top pick for light hiking, walking around town, or even a casual night stroll.
The sole is deep and grippy, and the cushioning was just perfect for those terrains. Besides, this sandal was extremely light and comfortable for my feet with its comfy footbed and neoprene lining for a great barefoot feel.
Also, compared to other shoes I tried, these were the only sandals that didn’t interfere with or move around my feet, no matter how hard the path was.
If you want to learn more about them, please read the full Ecco Yucatan review below.
- Direct-inject polyurethane midsoles
- Microfiber-covered EVA footbeds
- AgION™ treatment
Things We Tested When We Reviewed ECCO Yucatan
The Yucatan features a rubber outsole with a unique tread pattern, providing good traction on a variety of surfaces.
During my hikes, I found that the sandals performed well on both wet and dry terrain. The design of the sole effectively dispersed mud and debris, preventing any slippage.
Unfortunately, on extremely wet surfaces, the traction was slightly compromised but nothing I couldn’t handle with a little more care.
After wearing it for a few months, this ECCO Yucatan sandal has held up very well. The construction is good, and all components, such as the velcro straps and rubber outsole, have stayed intact.
The upper part of the sandals, constructed with high-quality nubuck leather and synthetic materials, demonstrated resilience against abrasions and tears. Additionally, the stitching and overall craftsmanship were impressive, ensuring long-lasting use.
Although there are some minor wear signs on the outsole, this is perfectly normal for any sandal or even a pair of superior hiking boots that are put through rough conditions.
With a cushioned footbed and supportive midsole, these walking sandals offer excellent shock absorption, allowing for a comfortable stride.
They felt almost like a pair of comfy shoes that hugged my feet snugly without causing any discomfort or blisters, even during extended hikes.
The microfiber-covered EVA footbed is comfortable, and the cushioned sole held up well both on cobblestone streets and mountain roads.
With moderate arch support, they manage to stay some of the most comfortable sandals I have ever tried, but they aren’t truly designed for high arches, so hikers experiencing this problem may need extra support.
The blend of nubuck leather and textile upper ensured good airflow, keeping my feet cool and minimizing perspiration. This aspect is especially advantageous in hot and humid climates.
However, I observed that the sandals held onto some moisture during heavy rainfall or when crossing water. Although they dry relatively fast, this might be a concern for those seeking optimal breathability in damp conditions.
Still, under normal circumstances, the breathability of these comfortable shoes meets expectations.
The Yucatan is surprisingly light for a walking sandal making it easy to pack if needed.
They weigh approximately 1 lb. 9 oz. per pair, which is quite reasonable for a shoe like this one that is designed to provide arch and ankle support during long walks.
They do tend to become heavier if you come across wet road portions – the bare-foot feel sort of disappears in these conditions – but in dry weather, most hikers enjoy wearing this extremely comfortable shoe.
One area where the Yucatans sort of fall short is in terms of waterproofing. These sandals are not fully waterproof and can become saturated when exposed to heavy rainfall or deep water crossings.
Although the upper mesh material dries relatively quickly, the leather will take quite a lot before it feels good on your skin again. ECCO does offer other models in their lineup that provide better waterproofing capabilities.
However, for dry climates and light splashes, these sandals perform adequately.
The sandals provided good support for my feet when I tested them out.
The anatomically shaped midsole offered great arch support and helped keep my foot firmly in place while I was walking or running on rough terrain.
The customizable straps on the upper also helped to keep the fit snug and secure throughout my hikes.
Woefully, as I have already mentioned, this model doesn’t strike me as one of the best shoes for flat feet, and I felt that more support would be necessary in this case.
8. Fit and Sizing
The Yucatan only comes in regular width, which makes it more difficult for users with narrow heels or wider feet to find the right pair.
However, the brand offers half sizes, and I found them true to size, although it can take some time to adjust the forefoot strap and the ankle strap if you are looking for a snug fit.
Like many sandals or hiking shoes, they require a break-in period, but since there’s no toe strap or a closed-toe box, it is easier to go through it.
How Does it Compare with Similar Products?
Ecco Yucatan Plus
The ECCO Yucatan Plus is an upgraded version of the Yucatan model, featuring enhanced cushioning and a more durable outsole.
While both models share similar features like the neoprene lining and customizable straps, the Yucatan Plus utilizes ECCO’s FLUIDFORM™ technology for improved comfort .
The Yucatan Plus also boasts a more robust rubber outsole for better longevity. However, this upgrade comes at a higher price point of $145.
If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly option without sacrificing too much performance, the original ECCO Yucatan Sandals are still a solid choice.
Keen Newport H2
Retailing at $125, the Keen Newport H2 is another popular sandal known for its excellent traction and support.
While both the ECCO Yucatan Sandals and the Newport H2 feature high-quality rubber outsoles, the Newport H2 has a closed-toe design that offers extra big-toe protection on rough terrain.
However, this design can feel restrictive for some users, and it impacts the breathability compared to the open design of the ECCO Yucatan Sandals.
In terms of comfort, the Yucatan Sandals have a slight edge due to their cushioned footbed and adjustable straps for a more customized fit.
Teva Terra Fi 5 Universal
The Teva Terra Fi 5 Universal is a top contender for the best hiking sandal, offering exceptional traction and support for $110 per pair.
Both the ECCO Yucatan Sandals and the Terra Fi 5 Universal feature a comfortable footbed, but the Terra Fi 5 Universal stands out with its Shoc Pad™ technology in the heel for better shock absorption.
Moreover, it boasts a more robust arch support system, making it a better choice for those with severe plantar fasciitis. While the ECCO Yucatan Sandals provide adequate support and comfort for most users, the Teva Terra Fi 5 Universal excels in addressing specific foot issues.
Where ECCO Yucatan Performs Better?
The Youcatan is a great choice for those searching for an aesthetically pleasing and comfortable sandal. I used them on outdoor terrains, such as trails and paths, and found that they handle such terrain quite well.
The sandals have a comfortable cushioning system that makes them incredibly comfortable for walking and trekking over rough and rocky surfaces. They also have a strong grip on the foot that provides good support when you are on uneven surfaces.
Where ECCO Yucatan Falls Short in Performance?
While wearing a new pair of Youcatans is always a great experience, they do have a few downsides the brand may need to address in the future. One issue I encountered was the limited waterproofing capability.
Although the sandals handle light splashes and damp conditions well, they are not ideal for activities involving extensive exposure to water or heavy rainfall. Additionally, some users with narrow feet may find that the fit is not as snug as they would prefer, even with the customizable straps.
However, this can often be resolved by wearing thicker socks or using additional insoles for a more customized fit.
Do We Recommend It?
Based on my positive experience using the ECCO Yucatan Sandals on various terrains, I can confidently recommend them for regular hiking and casual outdoor activities.
We also like that they fit on various hiking boots and footwear, giving everyone the confidence they need to walk outdoors in icy areas securely.
When I tried on my first pair, I couldn’t help but notice that they felt more like flip flops, but some sturdy ones that were both stylish and super comfortable.
For me, the Yucatan proved to be the most comfortable sandal for walking around town and exploring forest paths. It is durable and has good traction and stability.
While it is not the best choice for stream crossings, it feels smooth and airy on the foot, and at $140, I am already thinking of investing in a second pair when this one wears out.