Best Hiking Hat – 12 we love for year round walks

Hiking hats for all weathers and walks - find the best sunhats, beanies, tubular buffs and evening hunting hats right here

Best Hiking Hat – 12 we love for year round walks

You have heard the phrase ‘Get ahead, Get a hat’ havent you? well for hiking in comfort and all weathers I think a hiking hat should be on your essentials list.  

The best hiking hat is one that fits with the nature of your walk and the weather you are expecting.  So we always carry beanies and sun hats in our Hiking Rucksacks because of our unpredictable Scottish weather.  

When we are skiing or hiking in snow we use balaclavas like the Montana Punk Balaclavas to keep the weather out.  Hubby gets all Indiana Jones with his fav hiking hat, wearing the Tilley Endurables Walkers Hat, its sun and rain proof so perfect for year round walkers!

Personally I am all about warmth in my Hiking Headgear and I love my Trailheads Fleece Cap.  On those colder or windy hikes I can pull down the ear flaps to stay toasty.  It also has a ponytail hole…brilliant for keeping my hair in one place!

My star buy hat for kids Hiking has to be the Decentron Kids Sunproof Hiking Hat.  This is waterproof, wicks away sweat and is super sunsafe with its UPF factor and neck cover/visor look.  

See all our best hiking hats below with shopping links if you are ready to get that hat and get outdoors.  Full reviews of each and a Buyers guide to hiking hats is further on in this article.

Tilley Women's Ltm6 Airflo Hat, Olive, 7
2,083 Reviews
Tilley Women's Ltm6 Airflo Hat, Olive, 7
  • 100% Supplex nylon
  • Certified UPF 50+, 98% blockage of harmful UVA/UVB radiation
TrailHeads Fleece Ponytail Cap with Drop Down Ear Warmer | The Trailblazer...
1,970 Reviews
TrailHeads Fleece Ponytail Cap with Drop Down Ear Warmer | The Trailblazer...
  • INNOVATIVE AND VERSATILE -This winter hat features a drop down fleece design for protecting your ears and neck from the cold and wind. As your body warms up, simply flip the ear wamer up to help regulate body temperature.
  • PONYTAIL HAT - The subtle ponytail opening accommodates most ponytails or braids and features reflective stitching for enhanced visibility in low light situations.
Decentron Child Kids UPF 50+ UV Sun Protection Hat Large Brim Bucket Sun...
31 Reviews
Decentron Child Kids UPF 50+ UV Sun Protection Hat Large Brim Bucket Sun...
  • Soft and breathable polyester hat
  • 53cm-56cm/20.9"-22.0" head circumference fits most children ages 4-10
Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero
382 Reviews
Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero
  • Fabric Performance: Waterproof, Fully Seam-Taped, Breathable, Wicking, Tricot Lined Crown, UPF 50+
Sunday Afternoons Adventure Hat, Cream/Sand, Medium
1,015 Reviews
Sunday Afternoons Adventure Hat, Cream/Sand, Medium
  • UPF 50+ Resistant
  • Floatable Foam Core
Decentron UPF 50+ Kids Sun Hat Boys Bucket Hat with Neck Flap Sun...
70 Reviews
Decentron UPF 50+ Kids Sun Hat Boys Bucket Hat with Neck Flap Sun...
  • Kids sun hat for boys and girls: UPF 50+ protection blocks 98% of UV Rays
  • Featured wide brim and mesh vents for cooling airflow through the crown and back flap
Sale
Buff Unisex Solid Original Protective Outdoor Tubular Bandana Scarf - Black
600 Reviews
Buff Unisex Solid Original Protective Outdoor Tubular Bandana Scarf - Black
  • Wide range of wearing styles and possibilities. Enjoy versatility and freedom in one product.
  • UltraStretch technology: highly stretchable product designed for top comfort and performance.
Montane Punk Balaclava Face Covering
75 Reviews
Montane Punk Balaclava Face Covering
  • Face cover and protection, enhanced nose ventilation.
  • Stretch fleece fabric, comfortable to wear, snug.
Sale
DANISH ENDURANCE Polar Fleece Merino Beanie One Size Grey1-pack
31 Reviews
DANISH ENDURANCE Polar Fleece Merino Beanie One Size Grey1-pack
  • WARM, SOFT & COMFY: Our thermal kids beanies feature a super soft winter fleece to keep your little ones extra warm and cozy. With a delicate blend of Merino Wool and recycled materials, this beanie will feel soft against the skin without itching
SealSkinz Waterproof Cap, Black/Grey, One Size
1,141 Reviews
SealSkinz Waterproof Cap, Black/Grey, One Size
  • KEY FEATURES – 100% waterproof, breathable and windproof. Inner and outer layers are made from 100% polyester
  • TECHNOLOGY – Using a unique three layer construction with the middle layer being a laminated waterproof membrane, our waterproof hats can withstand any amount of rain or snow while also keeping you cosy and warm
Fancet Mens Winter Cap Waterproof Faux Leather Aviator Pilot Deerstalker...
1,492 Reviews
Fancet Mens Winter Cap Waterproof Faux Leather Aviator Pilot Deerstalker...
  • 4 SIZES:①Small-best fit 55-56CM; ②Mediuml-best fit 56-58CM;③Large-best fit 58-60CM;④X-Large-best fit 60-62CM.With adjustable chin strap to find the perfect fit.
  • Waterproof & Windproof & Durable - Perfect for snowy and windy area. It keeps head and ears warm without placing pressure on glasses.
Sale
Walker & Hawkes - Uni-Sex Derby Tweed Flat Cap Hunting Shooting Countrywear...
61 Reviews

Get straight to our reviews on walking poles by clicking here

Types of Hiking Hats

Wide-brimmed sun hats: These sun hats typically have a wide brim that goes around the entire head. These hiking hats are ideal if you need shade on your neck, top of your head, and part of your face. You should choose a sun hat that doesn’t obstruct your vision though. Since their wide brim tends to get caught in the wind, buying a sun hat with an elastic and adjustable drawstring closure would be good. 

When buying these hiking caps, you should ensure they’re comfy, breathable, and water-resistant. Since the British weather is unpredictable and it can rain without any notice, buying a waterproof sun hat would be wise. If you’re looking for the best men’s sun hat, I recommend our best buy – the Outdoor Research Men’s Seattle Sombrero.

Baseball caps: Though these hiking hats offer you the least sun protection on their own, they’re the most versatile ones. These baseball-style caps have a large brim on the front side, not around the hat like sun hats. Most hikers prefer mesh-backed baseball caps as they provide good ventilation. You could combine these trekking hats with a bandana or buff to have a DIY neck cape or wear it with a sun hoodie for optimum sun protection.

Caped hats: You can call them ball caps, which have an additional piece of large fabric attached to the back that drops down to cover your neck. Consequently, these caps provide optimum sun protection because the cape prevents the sun rays from hitting your neck and even the ears.

Beanies: These insulated hiking caps are ideal for protecting your head and ears from the cold weather. They could be made from merino wool, spandex, acrylic, or a blend of these materials.

Balaclavas: When you go hiking or trekking in winter, these hiking caps will offer protection and warmth to your head and face while leaving your eyes, mouth, and sometimes, the nose exposed. If you buy a balaclava with a full-face opening, you could roll this hiker’s hat up to just cover the top of your head or fold it down to use it as a collar around your neck. If you’re looking for the best balaclava, I recommend the Montane Punk Balaclava.

Waterproof Gore-Tex hats: If you need a hat that’s entirely waterproof, you can buy a Gore-Tex hat. But such hats usually produce extra heat because they don’t ventilate much. This could make them uncomfy to wear, especially when the temperature soars.

Tubular buffs: These trekking hats are shaped like long tubes of material and come in varying lengths. They’re usually used in cold weather and can be worn in different ways. You can use them as neck gaiters, half/full face mask, balaclava, and so much more (even headbands in summer!).

Guide to Buying the Best Hiking Hat

A hiking hat may not seem as important as your hiking boots, hiking jackets, or hiking poles. But in reality, it’s a crucial part of your hiking gear. Before hitting the trail, you need to get yourself a good hiking hat that will offer adequate protection against the elements and make you feel comfy in different conditions. Ready to buy one a hiking hat? Here are the vital factors you need to consider when buying a hiking hat:

Cost

A decent hiking hat won’t cost the earth so thats great news!. You can get functional hiking caps that look good for anywhere from £20 to £55. This large price range will mostly depend on your hiking hat’s uses and the brand, size, and style you choose. 

For instance, you can get waterproof hats for walking, like our best buy – the SEALSKINZ Waterproof All Weather Cap One Size, for  only £20. But if you need specialty hats that can offer protection in sub-zero temperatures, you’ll have to pay much more than £55. However, most hikers will do well with a decent sun hat for warm weather and a good beanie when it’s cold.

Size

You should consider the size of your head when buying a hiking hat. This is especially true for unique hiking caps like sun hats. Though you may need a medium-sized beanie, you should go up a size and get a large sun hat for proper fit. However, for flexible hikers’ hats like beanies and buffs, getting a generic size range (large, medium, or small) would do.  

Material

Depending on your requirements and style, you should choose your hiking hat. For instance, if you need a beanie for warmth and rain protection, a blend of acrylic and wool might do the trick. Again, for sun hats, breathability matters. This makes it crucial to choose one made of nylon or other synthetic materials having a good UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) rating for sun protection, along with wicking properties.

Comfort

Your chosen hiking hat should fit your crown comfily and securely. It shouldn’t make you sweat or itch. Also, it should play its supposed role. So, if your beanie needs to keep your crown warm, it should do its job well. Your chosen hiking caps should also be able to take a fair bit of battering and not fall apart.  I have found to get my hats to fit perfectly and never rub in colder weather i wear a Tubular Buff under the hat too!

Quickly before we go into our in depth reviews of our best hiking hats, here are quick links to our other picnic and hiking essentials on the site.  If you have all these, you are sure of the perfect time when you go outdoors!

Can you think of another essential outdoor or picnic item I need to include? If so, drop me a line in the comments.

Best Hiking Hat – 12 we love for year round walks

In-depth Reviews of Hiking Hats

Best Men’s Hiking Hat

Tilley Women's Ltm6 Airflo Hat, Olive, 7
2,083 Reviews
Tilley Women's Ltm6 Airflo Hat, Olive, 7
OVERALL BEST Men’s Hiking Hat - This hiking hat is made from an extremely tough fabric called Supplex nylon that’s both water-repellent and sun-proof (UPF 50+). Its wide brim protects your neck and face from 98% of the sun’s UVA and UVB rays, while its mesh strip around the top delivers extra ventilation.

Pros

Cons

Best Women’s Hiking Hat

TrailHeads Fleece Ponytail Cap with Drop Down Ear Warmer | The Trailblazer Adventure Hat for Women - black
1,970 Reviews
TrailHeads Fleece Ponytail Cap with Drop Down Ear Warmer | The Trailblazer Adventure Hat for Women - black
OVERALL BEST Women’s Hiking Hat - This is a lovely and warm hiking hat for women. It stays on when you run, offers a comfy fit, and has a ponytail hole. Its ridged peak keeps the rains off, and the flap at the back offers your neck adequate protection.

Pros

Cons

Best Kid’s Hiking Hat

Decentron Child Kids UPF 50+ UV Sun Protection Hat Large Brim Bucket Sun Hats with Neck Flap Cover Dark Grey
31 Reviews
Decentron Child Kids UPF 50+ UV Sun Protection Hat Large Brim Bucket Sun Hats with Neck Flap Cover Dark Grey
OVERALL BEST Kid’s Hiking Hat - If you’re looking for a kid’s hiking hat that has a wide brim and offers adequate sun protection to your little one’s face, neck, and ears, this is what you need. It features a drawcord to help your kid tighten the hat for a good fit.

Pros

Cons

Best Sun Hat For Men

Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero
382 Reviews
Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero
OVERALL BEST Sun Hat For Men - If you need waterproof hats for walking and hiking, this is it. It has a wide brim and adjustable headboard. To give you an optimised fit, it has an elastic band that you can close at the back of your head with a Velcro fastener.

Pros

Cons

Best Sun Hat For Women

Sunday Afternoons Adventure Hat, Cream/Sand, Medium
1,015 Reviews
Sunday Afternoons Adventure Hat, Cream/Sand, Medium
OVERALL BEST Sun Hat For Women - This hiking hat fits well, looks stylish, and protects your face, eyes, and neck from the sunlight. It offers brilliant UV protection. It also features a chin strap for a secure fit in high winds.

Pros

Cons

Best Sun Hat For Kids

Decentron UPF 50+ Kids Sun Hat Boys Bucket Hat with Neck Flap Sun Protection Hats Fishing Hat Navy Blue
70 Reviews
Decentron UPF 50+ Kids Sun Hat Boys Bucket Hat with Neck Flap Sun Protection Hats Fishing Hat Navy Blue
OVERALL BEST Sun Hat For Kids - This sun hat is lightweight and offers good value for money. It has a wide brim and a removable flap at the back to create a 360-degree shade.

Pros

Cons

Best Multifunctional Tubular

Sale
Buff Unisex Solid Original Protective Outdoor Tubular Bandana Scarf - Black
600 Reviews
Buff Unisex Solid Original Protective Outdoor Tubular Bandana Scarf - Black
OVERALL BEST Multifunctional Tubular - This multifunctional tubular walking hat is good for hiking and cycling. It's made of breathable and soft recycled materials and works well.

Pros

Cons

Best Balaclava

Montane Punk Balaclava Face Covering
75 Reviews
Montane Punk Balaclava Face Covering
OVERALL BEST Balaclava - This warm and comfy hiker's hat is breathable and offers good protection against cold. Its performance is brilliant, even after several hours of panting and puffing.

Pros

Cons

Best Beanie Hat

Sale
DANISH ENDURANCE Polar Fleece Merino Beanie One Size Grey1-pack
31 Reviews
DANISH ENDURANCE Polar Fleece Merino Beanie One Size Grey1-pack
OVERALL BEST Beanie Hat - If you're looking for a comfy and warm beanie, this is where your search ends. Great value merino wool hat, it delivers a good fit.

Pros

Cons

Best Walking Cap

SealSkinz Waterproof Cap, Black/Grey, One Size
1,141 Reviews
SealSkinz Waterproof Cap, Black/Grey, One Size
OVERALL BEST Walking Cap - Deep, soft, and comfy waterproof hats for walking aren't easy to come by. But this hat delivers just what you need. Made of great quality materials, it features clean stitching and perfect finish, and fits well.

Pros

Cons

Best Trapper Hat

Fancet Mens Winter Cap Waterproof Faux Leather Aviator Pilot Deerstalker Cap Women Fur Earflap Hunting Trapper Bomber Hat...
1,492 Reviews
Fancet Mens Winter Cap Waterproof Faux Leather Aviator Pilot Deerstalker Cap Women Fur Earflap Hunting Trapper Bomber Hat...
OVERALL BEST Trapper Hat - This hiking hat is extremely comfy to wear all day and fits nicely. It's waterproof, warm, and its sides don’t flap even when the wind blows.

Pros

Cons

Best Flat Cap

Sale
Walker & Hawkes - Uni-Sex Derby Tweed Flat Cap Hunting Shooting Countrywear Hat - Red Stripe - X-Large (60cm)
61 Reviews
Walker & Hawkes - Uni-Sex Derby Tweed Flat Cap Hunting Shooting Countrywear Hat - Red Stripe - X-Large (60cm)
OVERALL BEST Flat Cap- This hiking hat looks classy and is designed to keep you warm and dry. It's very well-made and gives you an excellent fit.

Pros

Cons

Walking gear you need

Extras for Hiking

To make your hike all the more enjoyable, you need to pack some additional items in your rucksack apart from your hiking hat.

To begin with, you should have a headband that keeps your hair away from your face and makes you feel comfy when you’re hot and sweaty. Ponytail wearers can get this TrailHeads Women’s Ponytail Headband. For men, I recommend this French Fitness Revolution Headband for Men though this versatile product would suit women too.

If your hike is starting out in the dark (think early winter mornings) or might end after sunset then head torches are not only useful but a SAFTEY MUST!  A good budget head torch is the Victoper Head torch with five led lights and six settings, its waterproof and fits well enough to run in too.  

For the more discerning head torch wearer I recommend a Blackdiamond Headlamp – functional, hardwearing and a warranty all matter!  And lets not forget the kids as ours love their head torches on walks but also for bedtime reading too!  We have the owl head lamp for our little lady and the Trex headlamp for our wee lad (and it roars lol).

Also always pack sunscreen – honestly we lived in Ireland for a while way back when and even though it was overcast you burnt alot (and the skin cancer rates there were high too!).  I always carry a sun lipbalm (stops lip chaff in cold too) and SOS SPF 50 Suncream (its small and easy to apply and none greasy!)

You also need to pack sturdy, weatherproof, and comfy walking boots that offer good grip on different terrains. Waterproof walking jackets for protection against the unpredictable British weather and sturdy and spacious walking rucksacks are other hiking must-haves.

Organising a picnic on your hike is a good way to create special memories and sit and enjoy nature for a bit. For this you can either carry a special picnic rucksacks or just add in a picnic set. You shouldn’t forget to carry thermos flasks (if you are like me and love a nice cuppa on a walk!). 

And of course it goes without saying carry a water bottles either or else, your body will get dehydrated.  Personally for walking we always carry Hydro Flasks – they are hardwearing, insulated and make drinking on the go easy with its clever spout.

Frequently Asked Questions About Hiking Hats

Most frequent questions and answers

What should I look for when buying a hiking hat?

You should look for a good fit; rain, wind, and sun protection; and breathability, functionality, and adjustability when buying a hiking hat. Here are our best buys that you can consider:

What hiking hats are good for me?

When looking for the best hiking hats I recommend brands like Tilley, Trailblazer, Decentron, Walker & Hawkes, Outdoor Research, Sunday Afternoons, Fancet, Buff, and SealSkinz offer high-quality hiking hats.

Do I really need a hiking hat?

Yes. A good hiking hat protects you from harmful UV radiation (bad sunshine rays), in addition to wicking moisture (sweat) away from your head to keep you comfy and cool or warm (depending on the weather). Waterproof and windproof hikers’ hats also protect you against rain, snow, and winds.

Why do hiking hats have a UPF rating?

By considering a hiking hat’s UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor), you can find the level of sun protection it offers. For example, if your sun hat has a rating of 50 UPF, it’s good to wear as it can block almost 98% of the sun’s harmful UV rays. If you need a sun hat with UPF 50+, I recommend the Tilley Endurables LTM6 Airflo Hat, which is our overall best men’s hiking hat.

Can I do without a waterproof hiking hat?

A waterproof hat can offer good protection against the unpredictable British weather where it rains without notice. However, on a super hot day, you may give such hats a miss because a waterproof hiking hat often tends to be less breathable. If you need a good waterproof hiking hat, I suggest getting the SEALSKINZ Waterproof All Weather Cap One Size.

Have you used any of these hiking hats or walking hats? Then please leave your review in the comments box below. Is your favourite hiking hat not on the list? Be sure to let me know in the comments below so I can review it.

Last update on 2021-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API