*UPDATED MAY 2022: A NEW MONSOON UPDATE CAME, FIXING MOST OF THE ORIGINAL PROBLEMS*
After a long and very successful Kickstarter campaign, finally, I got the opportunity to test the first pair of shoes that has been conceived and designed by travellers for travellers: The TropicFeel Shoes. Launched in 2017 on Kickstarter the project of TropicFeel has been one of the most discussed and popular on the traveller community. For the first time, a brand tried to design a build a pair of shoes that had to be versatile, light and ready to adapt in different situations. The pair of shoes all the travellers have been waiting to carry as the only pair of shoes for hiking, beach or city trips. I have been testing those shoes for the last months and on my last trips and here you can find the Tropicfeel Monsoon Review:
The TropicFeel Monsoon Review
With more than 2.5 million dollars raised in Kickstarter Tropicfeel managed to get a lot of hype for their new shoes that promised different features to the consumers: lightweight; quick dry materials and, most important, comfort. This has been the most funded shoe campaign on Kickstarter, reaching the funding goal in only one hour. The concept was simple, but at the same time really challenging because it is not easy to design and produce a pair of shoes that are good looking, resistant and functional at the same time.
For this reason, I have been really curious to try this new product, and finally, after the campaign, Tropicfeel started shipping last December. But as we are talking about summer shoes, the first opportunity to give them a try was on a trip for my Adventure Desert Tour in Israel and Palestine, last February. Some hiking, a bit of chilling by the beach, but also some city exploration, the perfect trip to test the versatility of the shoes.
I must say that the Tropicfeel Monsoon are one of the lightest pair of shoes I’ve ever had the opportunity to test and wear on a trip. Usually, I am taking only one pair of shoes, because I don’t see the point of carrying with me extra weight, but in this case, I don’t think that the Monsoon will have a huge impact on the final weight of the backpack. The reduced weight impacts also on everyday use, in fact, at some point you will even forget to have a pair of shoes at your feet and this will make long wears really comfortable. I have been wearing them for more than 12 hours consecutive days and I never felt any kind of problem. I felt a bit uncomfortable only at the first wear for just a couple of hours. For the rest of the trip, I have been walking on average 17 km per day for four days on different surfaces such as rocks, streets and sand without any problem. Of course, during hiking, the grip is not like professional hiking shoes, as they are slightly slippery, but it is a reasonable compromise.
The materials used for the construction of the Tropicfeel Monsoon are not “premium”. That means that the shoes are mainly built of plastic and lightweight fabric, but they proved to be really hard and resistant. As the shoes are made mainly of plastic I am a little concerned about the sustainability of the materials and their respect for the environment, but I believe they will solve this with the future models. They did indeed pass on the field test and, as I said, the materials have a pretty solid feel. Also, after different kinds of mechanical stress, they proved to be really resistant. Moreover, I did take a shower with the shoes on and I must say that the advertised quick-drying features are not only true but it is one of the best features for these shoes, especially in the optic of spring/summer trips.
Build Construction 3.5/5
As we are talking of first edition shoes, I will be really short in this paragraph because I do believe there is still something that could be improved, but I am pretty sure Tropicfeel is aware of this and it will become better in the time. I noticed some glue excesses and some esthetical imperfection on my pair of shoes. But, as said in the materials section, I never had the feeling that the shoes were going to break or to get loose, even in hard treks or during the caving I have been doing in the middle of the desert.
The best aspect of the Tropicfeel Monsoon? The price. Yes, if you look for a professional or technical pair of shoes prices may get really high, but in this case, Tropicfeel did manage to design and build a solid product with a lot of interesting features keeping the price low. The retail price of the Tropicfeel Monsoon are now on sale for 99€.
A good mix of comfort, light materials and resistance. The Tropicfeel Monsoon are indeed a highly versatile model of shoes and it is also evident that they have been designed by travellers that are aware of the needs of backpackers, in order to become the ultimate travel shoes. Even if they did not reach that level yet, but they are my favourite travel shoes so far, and I believe I will personally carry them with me for my next spring/summer trips. Even if there are still some aspects to improve I believe they will be solved in the next models. You can buy the shoes at this link on the official website of Tropicfeel: *10% OFF for all The Sustainable Tour Readears! Code: TST10*
Read the review of the new Tropicfeel Canyon here
Check the other Travel Gears review