For over 300 years, Meindl has been handcrafting some of the finest hiking boots in Europe. Founded in 1683 Kirchanschöring, Germany, Meindl draws on centuries of shoemaking tradition to produce hiking boots known for their durability, comfort and performance.
From trekking the foothills of the Alps to climbing Everest, Meindl boots have earned a reputation for quality and reliability. Meindl uses only the finest leathers for their uppers, paying close attention to anatomically designed lasts to ensure a perfect fit and all-day comfort. Every pair of Meindl boots combines old-world craftsmanship with cutting-edge technology to keep your feet comfortable on the trails.
In this comprehensive guide, we will cover everything you need to know to find the perfect pair of Meindl hiking boots, including:
· Meindl’s handcrafted construction
· Types of Meindl hiking boots
· Key technologies like Gore-Tex waterproofing
· Sizing and fit
· Activity-specific uses
· Reviews and ratings
· Prices and value
Handcrafted in Germany
All Meindl boots are handcrafted in their factory in Kirchanschöring using time-honoured techniques and attention to detail passed down through generations. Did you know each pair takes over 200 individual steps to complete?
The shoe uppers are cut from full-grain nubuck or suede leather, softened and weatherproofed using natural oils and waxes. The outsoles are moulded and hand-lasted from dual-density polyurethane with extra-grippy Vibram rubber that Meindl especially shapes to follow your right and left foot anatomy. Once assembled, every pair of boots gets inspected by hand before being packaged and sent, ensuring the highest quality and consistency.
Types of Meindl Hiking Boots
Meindl offers hiking boots designed for every adventure - from day hikes to extended backpacking trips. Their boots span a spectrum of weights and features, all to accommodate different types of hiking:
Lightweight Hiking Boots
Meindl lightweight hiking boots offer nimble performance for day hikes and short backpacking trips, ideal for moving quickly on trails up to a few days in duration.
· Uppers made of suede or nubuck leather
· Lightweight minimum seams
· Lightly padded ankle collar and tongue
· Shock-absorbing midsoles with moderate flexibility
· Vibram outsoles with rugged lugs
Midweight Hiking Boots
The core of the Meindl line, midweight hiking boots strike a balance of comfort, support and weight. These are boots designed for multi-day backpacking trips with moderate loads.
· Ankle-high nubuck or suede leather uppers
· Padded ankle collar and tongue
· Gore-Tex waterproof membranes
· Semi-rigid midsoles for stability
· Vibram outsoles
Heavy-Duty Trekking Boots
Meindl heavy-duty trekking boots like the Meindl Bhutan provide maximum stability and load-bearing performance for extended trips with heavy packs off-trail.
· Full-grain leather uppers reinforced with rubber rands
· Heavily padded ankle collar and gusseted tongue
· Mid-height or tall uppers for ankle stability
· Semi-rigid midsoles with torsional flexibility
· Extra thick Vibram outsoles
Meindl incorporates several advanced technologies into their hiking boots to enhance comfort, weather protection and durability:
· Gore-Tex Waterproof Membranes: This high-tech membrane keeps your feet dry by preventing external moisture from getting in while allowing internal perspiration vapour to escape.
· Gore-Tex Linings: Provide guaranteed waterproofing that won't degrade over time and all-weather versatility for hiking wet trails.
· Vibram Outsoles: All Meindl outsoles are made of dual-density PU for cushioning underfoot with a bottom contact layer of hardy Vibram rubber for traction. Vibram outsoles grip well on rock, roots and other slippery terrain with deep lugs that provide uphill and downhill braking power. Meindl precision moulds each outsole to match the lasts for anatomical support you can trust.
· Perforated EVA Midsoles: EVA (ethyl vinyl acetate) foam midsoles provide lightweight cushioning underfoot. Some Meindl models feature open-cell perforations for breathability and moisture evaporation inside the boot. Combined with a shock-absorbing nylon shank, it smooths out impacts on rough terrain.
· Anti-Bacterial Footbeds: Many Meindl boots come with an anatomically contoured footbed lined with anti-bacterial suede to wick away moisture, fight unwanted odour, and prevent bacteria from collecting inside the boot. Some footbeds such as the Air-Active series feature open-cell foam bases that circulate air underfoot for a cooler, drier hiking experience.
Sizing and Fit
Meindl boots are precision fit for a comfortable, all-performance feel. You can expect a snug heel and midfoot fit with a wide toe box for toe splay and a performance lacing system for reliable stability. Meindl boots run true to size however trying them on yourself is always recommended. As a European brand, Meindl uses EU sizing for their boots, so we've created a guide on how the sizing converts to US and UK sizes:
EU 36 = US Men’s 5/UK 3
EU 37 = US Men’s 6/UK 4
EU 38 = US Men’s 7/UK 5
EU 39 = US Men’s 7.5/UK 5.5
EU 40 = US Men’s 8/UK 6
EU 41 = US Men’s 9/UK 7
EU 42 = US Men’s 10/UK 8
EU 43 = US Men’s 10.5/UK 9
EU 44 = US Men’s 11/UK 9.5
EU 45 = US Men’s 12/UK 10
EU 46 = US Men’s 13/UK 11
EU 47 = US Men’s 14/UK 12
There are separate lasts for men's and women's models, so to better match foot anatomy, women should start with 1.5 sizes down from the men's equivalent.
Meindl designs hiking boots tailored for specific activities and conditions:
· Day Hiking: For shorter day hikes on groomed trails, a lightweight Meindl boot provides ample support without tiring feet - ideal for moving fast while carrying light packs.
· Backpacking: On multi-day backpacking trips, look for a midweight Meindl hiking boot optimised for carrying medium packs over mixed terrain by balancing lightweight stability, weather protection, and comfort.
· Off-Trail Hiking: Bushwhacking off-trail demands a burly trekking boot like the Meindl Bhutan. The tall nubuck leather upper, full-shank, and Vibram outsole provide stability and traction on uneven ground when carrying large, heavy packs.
· Mountaineering: For technical mountaineering where crampon compatibility is key, choose a stiff trekking boot. A reinforced heel welt will accept hybrid or step-in crampon binding for climbing on ice and snow.
· Hunting: Hunters need stealthy footwear and toe protection from scrambling through the brush. Certain Meindl boots feature a silent suede upper with a wraparound PU toe rand for enhanced durability.
Men's Hiking Boots
Meindl offers an extensive selection of hiking boots built for male feet. The flagship Meindl trekking boot, the Bhutan MFS provides heavyweight durability for expeditions. It features a tough, mid-height nubuck leather upper, full-length stiffening shank and Vibram rubber outsole. The perforated foam midsole ensures all-day cushioning and moisture evacuation.
Women's Hiking Boots
Meindl designs several models specifically shaped for women's feet. The hardy women’s version of the Meindl Bhutan, the Meindl Bhutan Lady, has a taller, mid-calf cut for extra ankle support with heavy loads. It provides excellent stability and traction for long expeditions in rough conditions.
Reviews and Ratings
Across the range, Meindl hiking boots consistently earn high marks for quality construction, long-term durability, stability and out-of-the-box comfort. Most Meindls achieve average customer ratings of around 4 out of 5 stars. Professional boot testers praise their precise anatomical fit and grippy traction even in poor conditions.
Negative feedback is rare for Meindl but focuses on sizing running small or tight toe boxes before the break-in. Because of this, trying them on at your local Cotswold Outdoor store or booking one of our boot fitting appointments is highly recommended.
Among the many glowing reviews, some highlights include:
· "Bombproof build quality with endless break-in comfort"
· "Secure grip in mud, snow and scree"
· “Snug heel hold with no blisters"
· “Stable enough for 40 lb pack+ off-trail"
· “Light enough for all-day hikes"
· “Worth the premium price”
Prices and Value
Meindl boots sit at the upper end of the market with their prices. Though expensive, devotees say the years of durability justify the cost. Because of this, you should consider a pair of Meindl boots as an investment in your hiking enjoyment and safety. With proper care, a quality pair of Meindls should last over a decade of hard use on the trails and are well worth the splurge on craftsmanship for hardcore enthusiasts who log hundreds of miles each year.
Finding the Perfect Meindl Hiking Boots
We hope we have given you all the tools to find your perfect pair of Meindl boots. If in doubt about the right boots for you, it's best to keep these key points in mind:
· Select the appropriate boot height, weight and features for your intended hiking
· Try them on in-store whenever possible to dial in your fit
· Size up to accommodate thicker hiking socks if needed
· Break them in before longer hikes to soften the leather
· Take good care of them with cleaning, conditioning and proper storage
We wish you and your brand new pair of Meindl’s happy trails and hope these boots will lead you to many spectacular destinations. Be happier outside with Cotswold Outdoor and Meindl.