Places to Avoid Walking Barefoot on One Day Without Shoes Day

A public service for all who go barefoot.

Every May 21, TOMS Shoes delivers on one of the greatest examples of corporate social responsibility by encouraging the public to go barefoot for a whole day. The One Day Without Shoes campaign allows people to see what it's like to go without one of the simple things we take for granted — shoes. This year TOMS will donate a pair of shoes (up to one million) to a child in need when you post a photo of your shoeless self on Instagram with the hashtag #withoutshoes.

However, walking around a whole day without shoes can make one squeamish. Think of all the places you trek throughout the day! Here is a list of places you should probably avoid if you are going sans shoes. 

01
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The Hottest Place on Earth

Indrik Myneur via Creative Commons

There are places in the world that are hotter at given times, but Dallol is the hottest at 94°F, when you average daily temperatures for a whole year.

Dallol also has extremely high daily humidity (around 60%) and the steam rising out of its sulfur pools keeps the area warm at night, unlike most desert terrain. Dallol has an average low temperature of 87°F, which is hotter than many places on Earth ever get.

So basically, you probably wouldn't want to even think about standing barefoot on the ground here.

02
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The Coldest Place on Earth

Bruno Morandi/ Photolibrary/ Getty Images

In contrast, you also wouldn't want your little piggly wigglies to experience the other extreme in — coldness. Frozen, hard, icy ground is no place for a delicate sole.

So you probably should refrain from walking barefoot anywhere in Mongolia. The average temperatures in most of the country are below freezing from November through March and are at freezing in April and October. That's a lot of freezing.

January and February average a frigid -20°C with winter nights of -40°C. And you probably couldn't even walk barefoot in summer, where extremes highs reach reach as high as 38° C in the south.

03
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Glass Beach

Keri Oberly/Aurora Open/Getty Images

Walking on broken glass? That pain pretty much speaks for itself. 

While Glass Beach in Fort Bragg, California is beautiful, it's still a pretty rugged beach with cliffs, crashing waves, and a minute amount of sand. 

This beach used to be home to the city dump, hence all the glass. The dump closed in the 1960s, but the remains washed up over the years, all polished from the natural rock tumbler, the ocean.

04
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Dog Parks

Holly Hildreth/Moment Open/Getty Images

From walking with beautiful shining glass underneath your feet to...well...you can only imagine what you'll find on the ground at a dog park.

Dog parks are awesome for pets that live in a small apartment or even for extra run-around space to get some exercise. They are also great for the little guys and gals to find buddies. However, this also includes marking their territory, which should probably not be in your barefooted plan.

05
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Public Bathrooms

Alan George/Moment/Getty Images

Remember when Britney Spears emerged from a gas station bathroom barefoot? Don't do that.

You do not even want to think about what is on the floor of a public bathroom. Think about how many people walk in and out of a public restroom everyday, and what is on their shoes. 

And obviously, well, the actions that go on in a restroom do not mix well with bare feet. Unfortunately, there is no foot sink or antibacterial foot gel in there.

06
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Plastic Beach

Robert Schrader

When you think of the beach, you think of a nice place with soft sand to watch the crashing waves and find peace.

Not at Banyuwangi Beach in East Java, Indonesia. Due to a lack of funding, this natural resource has been all but forgotten. The beach is literally covered in plastics of all kinds including diapers, bottles, and medical supplies. 

So much for that leisurely stroll...

07
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Kilauea Volcano

John Fischer, licensed to About.com

There are over 1500 active volcanoes across the Earth. Many of them sit in Hawaii, where the islands were formed by volcanic lava and ash many, many years ago. 

Some people walk on hot coals for fun. Walking on hot lava could possibly injure you for life. 

Since 1983 the Kilauea Volcano on Hawaii Island has been in a constant state of eruption. In the past few years the lava finally started to flow into the ocean.

As pretty as it is to look at, it's probably best to keep those beach feet away.