Best Kayak for Beginners

What is the Best Kayak for Beginners – My Test (2022)

 

The best kayaks for beginners do not have to be the most expensive or the cheapest on the market. The recreational sport has become one of the favorites of water-loving people.

Recreational kayaking cannot be complete with the best kayaks for beginners. Inuit people developed kayaking for transportation and fishing.

 

Best Kayak for Beginners
Best Kayak for Beginners

 

The water activity is similar to canoeing, but allows you to have an intimate moment on the water.  The growing interest in the sport has made it possible for many people to show interest.

Table of Contents

Best sea kayak for beginners- Our Top Pick

 

Wilderness Systems Pungo 120 Kayak - 2019 Borealis Green
  • A best-selling sit-inside Recreation kayak for small to medium sized paddlers
  • Best-in-class speed makes the Pungo the easiest to Paddle and most efficient kayak in its class
  • The renowned hull offers reassuring stability without sacrificing performance
  • Phase 3 air Pro seat is fully adjustable and offers ergonomic support for your lower back; The mesh covered honeycomb-vented foam allows for greater airflow to keep you cool
  • Adjustable foot rests accommodate paddlers of different sizes and thigh pads provide a more comfortable fit

If you are intending to use your kayak at the sea, the above one is my favorite, especially if you are into playing with the waves or catching some real sea salty water with it.

Top kayaks for beginners – My Opinion

 

Beginner paddlers can consider some of the following best kayaks for beginners. That can help them have an easy and smooth ride on the water.

Here is a chart I managed to draw from my several kayaks purchased not long time ago when I was just a beginner.

 

 

 

The kayak comes with a comfortable seat.

The model is easy to climb in and out of.

 

You can make a smooth turn and maneuver in tight corners. It can be used for different water activities. It comes with great features

 

 

 

The kayak is lightweight and durable.

It has a paddle.

The model offers a great balance of tracking and super maneuverability.

It has a high-volume bow that cuts through choppy water.

It comes with a comfortable seat and cockpit.

 

 

 

The K1 is affordable.

 

You can easily pack it down into an included duffel bag.

 

It has a pump and a paddle.

 

You can steer and track easily.

 

It comes with an adjustable and removable seat.

 

 

 

 

The kayak is durable. It can accommodate a capacity of 550 lbs.

The kayak can be used as a single boat or a tandem. It can track well.

The kayak can handle speed effortlessly.

 

It offers ample storage space.

 

 

 

It has comfortable seats.

The kayak offers waterproof gear storage with a hatch.

It has accessories and rod mounts to personalize the kayak. It has the new kick-up/retractable fins.

The price is great.

 

 

The kayak is lightweight.

It offers you a high-quality 1,000-denier outer material.

It has excellent tracking with its 9-inch fin attached. The kayak is easy to set up and pack down.

 

 

 

 

The kayak is super light. The kayak is easy to set up and fold down.

You can carry the kayak with a simple shoulder strap after folding.

It comes with a padded seat. It has an open cockpit for entering and exiting.

The kayak is beginner-friendly

 

 

 

 

It has good value. The kayak is a durable piece of molded plastic

The progression is focused. You can easily transport it because it weighs light.

 

Types of best kayaks for beginners

 

There are so many types of kayak nowadays this can get confusing sometimes. To name a few there is the famous sea kayak, sit on top kayak, whitewater kayak and a variety of stable kayaks for beginners.

As a kayaking sea addict myself, I decided to list them all right here so to bring you my 2 cents honest opinion, as I once was a beginner just like you.

I tested myself a few of these beginner kayaks and here you will find my opinion.

 

 

The Wilderness systems tarpon 105 is ideal for the sit-on-top kayak with impressive versatility. This model performs great during camping, fishing, surfing waves, bird watching, or exploring.

If you want an adaptable and beginner-friendly kayak, the Wilderness Systems Tarpon 105 is a model to consider. Its updated model comes with advanced features.

Whether you want to ride on rivers, flowing creeks, or flatwater, you have fun kayaking. This model is stable, sporty, and downright fun.

If you want to go fishing, the Wilderness systems tarpon is great. It is compatible with GPS units, fishing pole holders, and fishfinder screens.

The Tarpon 105 measures 10.5 feet long, making it stubbier and shorter than most sit-on-top kayaks. However, this model is not fast but great for stable cruising.

Some of the features of the Tarpon 105 include a magnetic water bottle strap system, huge , large waterproof storage wells, rigid carry handles, a built-in paddle holder, and others.

Pros:

The best kayaks for beginners lie this model comes with a comfortable seat.

The model is easy to climb in and out of.

You can make a smooth turn and maneuver in tight corners.

It can be used for different water activities.

It comes with great features

Cons:

The kayak can glide slowly.

The kayak is more expensive than other options.

 

Best whitewater kayak for beginners
Best whitewater kayak for beginners

 

The Perception Pescador is among the best kayaks for beginners. The kayak is ideal for season paddlers and beginners alike.

While Necky Kayaks initially designed it, it has become a part of the famous Old Town brand. The kayak is great on most water bodies like bays, creeks, rivers, and lakes.

It comes with a 26.5-inch hull that offers it incredible stability. The Manitou Sport has plenty of speed and responds to sharp turns in tight areas.

However, it does not come with excess storage space for your night trips but has spacious space for your day gears.

The kayak has reliable waterproof storage, and great bow and stern deck rigging. It has adjustable foot pedals for users and a cool comfortable seating system.

The Old Town Manitou Sport comes with a large cockpit and has toggle handles for two-person carrying the gadget. The model is among the best kayaks for beginners.

Pros:

The best kayaks for beginners is lightweight and durable.

It has a paddle.

The model offers a great balance of tracking and super maneuverability.

It has a high-volume bow that cuts through choppy water.

It comes with a comfortable seat and cockpit.

It has great value.

Cons:

The model is not great for a whitewater or open ocean.

The kayak is not very practical for fishing.

 

Best Kayak for Beginners

 

 

Intex Challenger K1 Kayak with Paddles and Pump Design for Easy Paddling Cockpit Design for Best...
  • Sporty graphics for high visibilityLow-profile for lakes and mild rivers
  • Streamlined design for easy paddling Cockpit designed for comfort and space
  • Ruged vinyl construction Grab line on both ends
  • Cargo net for extra storage Adjustable inflatable seat with backrest
  • Inflatable I-beam floor for comfort and rigidity Removable skeg for directional stability

 

When it comes to best budget kayak, you can think of Intex challenger k1. The kayak is affordable and offers an excellent value with loads o features.

The Challenger K1 rides low, making it less vulnerable to wind and stay stable in water. The K1 has a long skeg that is great in a straight line.

It measures 9 feet long and 2.5 feet wide, and comes with a short, stubby profile for excellent steering and turning.

However, the kayak offers high likelihood of taking on water and does not have a scupper hole. That means it can drain any excess water.

It has a decently comfortable inflatable seat, which is adjustable and removable. However, it has no enough space for your camping gear.

The K1 offers an 84-inch aluminium oar, a repair patch, a carrying duffel, and an inflation pump.

Pros:

The K1 is affordable.

You can easily pack it down into an included duffel bag.

It has a pump and a paddle.

You can steer and track easily.

It comes with an adjustable and removable seat.

Cons:

It does not come with a drain plug.

The kayak is not the most durable.

The pump inflates slowly

 

Sale
ADVANCED ELEMENTS AE1007-R AdvancedFrame Convertible Inflatable Kayak, 15', Red
  • Built-in aluminum ribs define the bow and stern and improves tracking
  • Three layers of material for extreme puncture resistance.Folded size 35 X 21 X 12 inches. Max Weight-550 pounds. Weight-52 pounds
  • Pre-assembled at the factory; simply unfold, inflate, and attach the seats
  • High support, adjustable padded seats provide comfort for hours of paddling
  • Three seat locations allow for paddling solo or tandem

 

When it comes to tandem kayaks, the advanced elements advanced frame convertible is one of the best kayaks for beginners. It comes as a high-performance inflatable kayak and among the best kayaks for beginners.

One or two people can comfortably paddle it. The inflatable version is more expensive than the normal version. The kayak comes with practical features, durable, and comfortable to use.

You can use it as a single or tandem kayak, depending on how the seats are set up. It can accommodate up 550 pound plus additional gear.

Bungees, integrated pockets, and tiedown points offer users enough storage for their gear. You can easily use it for your overnight trips when configured for a single paddler.

It measures 15 feet long with a relatively narrow 32-inch hull that offers users amazing tracking. The kayak’s small skef and numerous tracking fins help maintain a speedy, smooth ride.

The tandem version comes with enough space for paddlers to move their arms in each other’s way. It comes with high seatbacks for comfortable back support.

You can set up the AE Convertible tandem with ease, thanks to its set of instructions. However, you need the practice to get it set up within a short time.

The model comes with six air chambers with three designed for structural integrity.

Pros:

The kayak is durable.

It can accommodate a capacity of 550 lbs.

The kayak can be used as a single boat or a tandem

It can track well.

The kayak can handle speed effortlessly.

It offers ample storage space.

Cons:

This kayak is heavy.

The kayak is more expensive than other options.

The setup of the kayak can be difficult for one person.

 

Stable kayak for beginners
Stable kayak for beginners

 

Stable kayak for beginners

 

Perception Pescador Pro 12 | Sit on Top Fishing Kayak with Adjustable Lawn Chair Seat | Large Front...
  • Your perfect first fishing kayak - Made in USA
  • Lawn chair style mesh seat with 2-level seat adjustment and breathable mesh for ultimate all-day comfort and no pain
  • Seat can be lowered for relaxed paddling or raised for optimum casting
  • Leak-proof one-piece construction with built-in buoyancy for added safety
  • Large front and rear open storage for cooler tackle and other gear

Perception Pescador Pro is among the best pedal kayak you can get on the market. This pedal kayak comes with lots of benefits for users.

It has space for storing gear and more accessory features. When it comes to paddling hands-free, Hobie Mirage is an exceptional kayak.

You can use it in any application or activity. It provides excellent tracking while on water. Its Mirage Glide technology simply refers to pedal, rubber, and fins components.

Hobie Mirage has a stowable rudder with the support of steering control. It comes a bit wider than standard kayaks to accommodate the seat and steering control.

Pros:

It has comfortable seat.

The kayak offers waterproof gear storage with hatch

It has accessories and rod mounts to personalize the kayak.

It has the new kick-up/retractable fins.

The price is great.

Cons:

It offers more components.

The kayak is heavier than most other kayaks.

Best sit on top kayak for beginners

 

Sit on top kayak are really fun, as you can enjoy your view much more, especially if you have kids or pets, the sit on top kayak has a much better sense of stability and in my opinion more enjoyable.

Ocean Kayak Malibu Two Tandem Sit-On-Top Recreational Kayak, Envy, 12 Feet
  • Enjoy sun and surf with a friend or a furry companion with the kayak's three seating positions, which support solo, tandem, or tandem paddling with a child or pet.
  • A pair of Comfort Plus seats provide four-way adjustability, generating a custom fit and greater slip prevention over molded seats.
  • Patented overlapping foot wells allow center-seated paddlers to settle in and brace their feet comfortably. Hatches - None
  • The open, sit-on-top hull makes it easy to get on and off the kayak and includes a pair of molded-in handles and skid plate.
  • Maximum capacity of 425 pounds; measures 12 feet long and 34 inches wide. Lifetime warranty on the hull.

 

Ocean Kayak Malibu comes as one of the best inflatable kayaks on the market. The kayak is easy to set up, lightweight, and portable. The model is perfect for paddlers searching for a high-quality and simple boat.

The transition of the kayak from fully deflated to water-ready takes fewer minutes than you can imagine. The deflation process is fast, allowing you to move on to other things after use.

You fold the kayak into its river bag and transport it to your desired location. It has a 1,000-denier reinforced PVC drop-stitch floor, which is fully rigid after pumping.

The EVA seat is comfortable to sit in and comes in a low profile. With its removable 9-inch tracking fin it tracks smoothly.

The entire kayak is just 10 feet long, and this short length results in high-performance maneuverability.

Pros:

The kayak is lightweight.

It offers you a high-quality 1,000-denier outer material.

It has excellent tracking with its 9-inch fin attached.

The kayak is easy to set up and pack down.

Cons:

The kayak is expensive and doesn’t include a paddle.

It does not have enough cargo space.

 

Best sit on top kayak for beginners
Best sit on top kayak for beginners

Best whitewater kayak for beginners

When it comes to whitewater I do have several recommendations in here for your first kayak.

Oru Kayak Foldable Kayak Inlet | Stable, Durable, Lightweight - Lake and River Kayaks - Beginner,...
  • PORTABLE FOLDING KAYAK: Get out on the wide open water quickly and easily. Your innovative Inlet boat by Oru Kayak is made for casual kayaking on calm waters, such as lakes, rivers, and bays, so...
  • FROM BOX TO BOAT IN MINUTES: Construct your kayak in under 5 minutes! Oru pioneered the Inlet’s origami-inspired, foldable structure, so you won’t spend forever setting up or waste time lugging...
  • SLEEK, DURABLE, & RELIABLE: Oru Kayaks undergo extensive strength and durability testing. Created from 5 mm double-layered, custom-extruded polypropylene, Oru Kayaks are incredibly puncture, abrasion...
  • NO ROOF RACK REQUIRED: Fits into the trunk of a small car or our Oru Inlet Pack carrying case [sold separately] for easy transport when hiking, bicycling, and using public transportation. Your Intel...
  • SPECS & MEASUREMENTS: At 20 Lbs, this origami kayak weighs half of a traditional kayak. 9'8"x 31" kayak that folds down to an unbelievably compact box - 42" x 10" x 18". Cockpit size:23" x 44"....

 

Oru inlet is a great folding kayak for people who reside in tight spaces. You do not need enough storage space for it.

The folding feature is an ability option for users, making it one of the best kayaks for beginners. You can slug the kayak over your shoulder for transportation because it weighs barely 20 pounds.

The kayak hull’s 30-inch width offers stability for beginner paddlers. It has enough space to store fishing gear and a small dry bag, but not enough to carry your overnight gear.

Pros:

The kayak is super light.

The kayak is easy to set up and fold down.

You can carry the kayak with a simple shoulder strap after folding.

It comes with a padded seat.

It has an open cockpit for entering and exiting.

The kayak is beginner-friendly.

Cons:

It has a maximum weight capacity of 275 lbs.

The kayak is expensive.

The kayak does not track well.

 
Lifetime Manta Tandem Sit on Top Kayak with Paddles and Backrests, 10 Feet, Yellow (90118)
  • Versatile Design Allows for Solo or Tandem Paddling | 500 lb. Capacity
  • Self-Bailing Scupper Holes Drain Cockpit Area of Water
  • Molded Front Carry Handle | 10-Foot Compact Length for Easy Transport and Storage
  • Hull Design Provides Ultra Stability and Great Tracking
  • UV-Protected Linear Low-Density Polyethylene (LLDPE) Rotational Molded Construction

 

Perception hi five is for kids. The kayak is designed for fun and flexibility. It can accommodate a child weighing 120 pounds and measures 6 feet long and 2 feet wide.

The portability of the kayak ensures that you can fit it into roof racks and hatchbacks. It has a unique design and weighs only 24 pounds.

It has a flat swim-up deck that allows for swimmers to climb aboard. It has a paddle rest, a large standing surface, and ergonomic grab handles.

Pros:

It has good value.

The kayak is a durable piece of molded plastic

The progression is focused.

You can easily transport it because it weighs light.

Cons:

Not the most comfortable seat

These 8 best kayak for beginners are designed to offer you fun and water activities. You can buy online of offline, depending on the best option available to you.

Do not forget to check your budget alongside the kayak features.

See also  Wilderness Systems Pungo 125 vs Old Town Loon 126