There is no wonder why the summer is the most popular season out of all. People go on vacation and there is so much to do and the summer is so short. Over the past few years, we have seen an increased interest in traveling, diving, and other relaxing activities. Still, there is very little talk about kayak and canoe exploration trips. Nature is vast and there is so much to see. Kayaking can be a great way to see more of what nature has to offer. It is also a great, thrilling experience.
Kayaking is not the kind of sport that anyone can just pickup. There needs to be a genuine interest in it and it should not be done alone. It is the kind of sport that a beginner cannot experience on its own since it is a bit dangerous. Usually, people rent a kayak since it is cheaper for a single ride. The ones that are looking to practice this sport as a hobby, they might want to think about buying one. A decent kayak for a beginner is not that expensive. Prices do tend to go up a bit depending on the manufacturer and the quality of the model. Still, it is not a very expensive sport and the rest of the accessories needed are also quite affordable.
Best Sea & Touring Kayaks in 2023
Today we will have a quick browsing of 10 different kayaks that are worth spending money on. With no further ado here are the top 10 best sea & touring kayaks in 2023.
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10. Old Town Canoes & Kayaks Vapor 10XT Recreational Kayak
Old Town Canoes & Kayaks 10XT recreational kayak is a good pick for enthusiasts and the ones that are interested in the sport. It is a premium model with an adjustable padded seat, molded cockpit, and a few extra features. The model also has a protected storage compartment with a lid and a cup holder. It was designed to be comfortable and it is quite lightweight. The model is available in 4 different colors. It is worth mentioning that the storage compartments are sealed and completely waterproof.
- Adjustable padded seat
- Storage area with a sealed lid
- Adjustable support foot braces
The kayak from Old Town is anything but affordable. It is safe to say that they build professional models. A beginner might want to explore other models as well but the ones that can afford the 10XT recreational kayak will not be disappointed. It is a great pick for enthusiasts and professionals.
9. Riot Kayaks Edge 14.5 LV Flatwater Day Touring Kayak
Riot Kayaks makes several high-quality products. They mostly target enthusiasts and professionals but beginners would also benefit from getting their 14.5 LV flatwater kayak. It is an advanced model with a slim desk line and a slender bow. The seat of the kayak is padded and adjustable while the front and back host small storage areas. It is a large kayak but surprisingly it is quite lightweight.
- Adjustable padded seat
- Premium construction
- Slim deck line
For someone that is just starting out, paying this much on a kayak may not be such a great idea. It is still well worth the money as it is a well-built kayak. Beginners might want to go for something smaller since the Edge 14.5 LV is a rather large model.
8. Old Town Canoes & Kayaks Twin Heron Kayak
The OLD Town Twin Heron kayak is one of the few models with two seats that managed to get into our list. It has a reasonable price tag and it is quite comfortable. The model can have the front seat removed for solo paddling and it has adjustable foot braces. As with other kayaks, the model has special storage compartments that are sealed and waterproof. According to the specifications, the kayak can sustain a maximum load of 500 pounds which is enough for two people.
- Good price tag
- Removable front seat
- Plenty of storage space
- Not very comfortable for two people
Even if it was designed to allow for two people in it, the kayak is not very comfortable. It would have been much better if it was longer to allow for more space for the passenger in the back. There is not much room there and the person in the front has plenty of space to sit comfortably.
7. Sun Dolphin Aruba SS 12-Foot Sit-in Kayak
Sun Dolphin Aruba SS is one of the most popular models for beginners. It offers great value for the money as it is inexpensive and has a decent build quality. This one-person kayak features a soft padded seat, retractable carrying handles, and plenty of storage. It is made out of high-quality polycarbonate which makes it lightweight as well. The model is available in one size and three different colors to choose from.
- Low price tag
- Plenty of storage space
- Retractable handles, soft and comfortable seat
- Not recommended for experienced users
The kayak was designed mostly for fishing or just paddling over short distances. It will not survive the intense usage of an advanced user that might use it to push his limits. It is simply not sturdy or durable enough for extreme sports but for casual kayaking, it is more than enough.
6. Brooklyn Kayak Company Tandem Fishing Kayak
Brooklyn Kayak Company makes a great recreational kayak for the ones passionate about fishing. Their tandem fishing kayak is a good option as it offers great quality and excellent functionality. The kayak has two seats and multiple storage areas that are very easy to reach. It has 7 fishing rod holders and carrying handles. Both seats have plenty of space for the feet in front of them and paddling is very easy and comfortable.
- Plenty of room for two people
- 7 fishing rod holders
- Easy-to-reach storage areas
- Poor quality control
Some users noticed some inconsistencies in terms of quality control. What most will see when they get the kayak is that the screws are loose. They need to tighten up before taking the kayak out for a ride. It is important to check all of them in order to avoid the unpleasant accident.
5. Advanced Elements Lagoon2 Kayak
Advanced Elements Lagoon 2 kayak is a great pick for beginners. Unlike other kayaks on our list, the model is inflatable. This means that it is much more lightweight and easy to carry. Surprisingly it can support a maximum weight of 350 pounds and can hold 2 people. The kayak also has built-in rigid panels and rubber handles to make it easy to transport. As expected it also has storage areas that are easy to access and that are completely waterproof.
- Lightweight and easy to transport
- Can hold two people up to 350 pounds
- Not very durable
Because it is an inflatable kayak means that it is not very durable. It is recommended to use the kayak for fishing or paddling over calm waters and short distances in order to avoid accidents. If it gets punctured the kayak suddenly because unusable and it can be dangerous.
4. Sun Dolphin Aruba SS 10-Foot Sit-in Kayak
Sun Dolphin Aruba SS is a great one-person kayak that comes with a very attractive price tag. It is a simple model measuring just 10 feet but with enough room for one person to sit comfortably. It has carrying handles, a storage area, and a bottle holder. The foot braces of the kayak are adjustable while the seat is soft and comfortable. Last but not least the kayak is available in 5 different colors and in either a standard or a square stern version.
- Modest price tag
- Durable construction
- Open cockpit, adjustable seat
- Inconsistent quality control
While there are no reports of anyone receiving a damaged or defective Sun Dolphin Aruba kayak, there are some inconsistent quality problems. Some reported that the kayak came with plastic shavings while others noticed sharp edges that were not polished properly. These are not major issues but they are certainly unexpected.
3. Sun Dolphin Bali SS 10-Foot Sit-on top Kayak
Sun Dolphin Bali SS is yet another popular and inexpensive kayak. The model is smaller than regular kayaks but it is just as functional. It is not recommended for extreme sports but for paddling over calm waters it works just fine. The model has an open cockpit for easy entry and a storage area in the back. For easy transportation, the kayak has been fitted with handles and it was made to be lightweight.
- Easy to transport
- Lightweight and compact
- Only recommended to beginners
The kayak is made mostly out of polycarbonate and it is quite small. It is not suitable for runs over a river but it can be a good pick for a beginner. The kayak will not survive intense usage. Still, for the money, it is difficult to find a better deal.
2. Intex Challenger K1 Kayak
Intex Challanger K1 kayak is by far the most affordable model on our list. It is not as impressive as some of the other models but it surely is inexpensive. The kayak is an inflatable one and can fit one person. It includes a paddle and a net that gets installed on the front side. Since it is an inflatable kayak, it is mostly recommended for beginners and casual activities as it is quite easy to get it punctured. Usually, such kayaks are used to paddle over lakes.
- Very cheap
- Easy to transport
- Includes a manual pump, paddle, and repair patch kit
- Not very durable
Because it is an inflatable model it means that it is not very durable. The kayak can get punctured if it is not used carefully. Still, for the price, it will prove to be a great pick for beginners that want to save some money before investing in a more serious kayak model.
1. Intex Explorer K2 Kayak
The Intex Explorer K2 kayak is yet another inflatable model that made it to our list. The reason why it has been selling so well is the low price tag and how big it is. It is actually a two-person model that comes as a kit consisting of the kayak, two paddles, a manual pump, and repair patches. The kayak does not have any kind of storage area but it is large enough to comfortably fit two people. Last but not least, because it is inflatable, the kayak is very convenient to transport and use but it is not recommended for advanced users.
- Can be used by two people
- Includes paddles, manual pump, and repair patches
- Not very durable
As mentioned before, inflatable kayaks are not very durable. Because of their low price, they are still good picks, especially for the ones that are just getting into this sport. Inflatable kayaks can get punctured easily which makes them pretty much worthless at that point but they can be repaired. The Intex should be used for paddling over short distances over lakes.
Which Kayak Is Worth Spending Money On?
There are a lot of different kayaks to choose from. Their pricing can vary a lot depending on how they are made and who they are made from. Professional or premium kayaks are significantly more expensive but they are rarely overpriced. Here are some important things to look out for when searching for a kayak:
- Inflatable or not? Inflatable kayaks are not very durable nor are they recommended for use on anything other than lakes. On the other hand, they are very cheap and beginners should start with an inflatable kayak.
- One or two seats? Usually, the vast majority of kayaks are made for just one person. Still, there are some that have two seats thus they can carry two people.
- Which kind to get is a matter of personal preference.
- Open or closed cockpit. Usually, a kayak with an open cockpit is designed for beginners. The ones that have a closed cockpit offer better protection against water infiltration and they are more stable.