The video below shows some of the types of jungle boots/shoes that I’ve tried in the jungle and what to look for in the footwear you choose.

There is no clear winner amongst the boots/shoes I’ve tried so far and I tend to switch between boots and rubber shoes depending on where I’m going.

If there is an existing trail I’ll use the local rubber shoes (that are staggeringly good value at 1 GBP per pair!) – these are the equivalent of mocassins for the jungle and have the same sort of advantages/disadvantages that wearing leather mocassins have in, say, the wilderness in America.  They certainly give you the feeling of being in contact with the jungle (sometimes more than you might want!) and they have excellent grip and are very light.  However they neither support nor protect your ankles and they wear out fast.

However, if I’m going off-trail in unfamiliar, scrubby, secondary jungle I prefer to wear boots for the extra protection they give.

For a longer trip I’d take both: the rubber shoes are light enough to pack and nice to change into in the evening… and remember, rubber shoes burn well so if you need a firelighter you can just cut a piece from the tongue of the shoe and burn it!

The two commercial jungle boots that I’ve tried are the Altama and Altberg jungle boots.  The Altama boots originally came with a Panama sole (which you can see in the photos below) but, after heavy use, the leather split and I had to resole them.  This original Panana sole had reasonably good grip (certainly better than that on the Altberg boots).  However ankle support is poor on the Altama boots.

The Alt-berg boots give better ankle support, required no walking in and are surprisingly light… but, for a jungle boot, the sole is a let-down.

I can understand why they used a hard Vibram sole (a soft rubber sole would wear out fast if used on hard road type surfaces and people would complain), but why they chose that tread pattern is a mystery.

So, Alt-berg or Altama?   As it stands today I’d go for the Altama boot (purely because of the better gripping, Panama sole), however, if Alt-berg improved the grip on their sole (with a more aggressive tread and softer material) I’d choose them.