Top-Rated Inflatable Kayaks

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Whether you're just starting out in the world of kayaking or you're a seasoned expert, finding the right inflatable kayak can be challenging. As with their rigid counterparts, there are many brands, styles and options of inflatable kayaks on the market. From solo, tandem or convertible kayaks to those designed for the sea or whitewater; from expensive competitive models to budget-friendly choices, the options are endless. No matter what model fits your needs, keep an eye out for kayaks that use the heaviest material.

Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Convertible Inflatable Kayak

With its built-in aluminum ribs and ability to switch from solo to tandem boat, this kayak is a great choice for paddling on the ocean, rivers and lakes. It measures 15 feet in length, 32 inches in width and weighs approximately 56 pounds. While it is a little on the heavy side, reviewers noted that it's still extremely fast. Boasting three layers of puncture-resistant material, adjustable padded seats and stability and trackability in the water, this is one of the best inflatable kayaks on the market at the time of publication.

Sunny Inflatable Kayak by Innova Review

A recreational boat that can be used solo or in tandem, the Sunny is both comfortable and easy to maneuver. Weighing 33 pounds, this inflatable kayak requires minimal set-up efforts and packs compactly into a drybag. According to Innova Kayak, it is made out of heavy-duty rubber Nitrylon, which makes it an extremely durable boat designed to last for years. A good option for camping or fishing trips, the Sunny is double-ended and enables a solo user to sit in the middle of the boat.

Airis Sport

The Airis brand got a facelift in 2012 and came up with a whole new, sleekly designed, featherlight inflatable boat. Weighing only 20 pounds, it boasts a rigid design and large tracking fin. The Sport is suited to paddling on calm rivers, seas and lakes. A good option for those new to the sport, in this model you sit up a little higher than in others, making it easier to paddle.

Aire Lynx 1

This boat is a good fit for those looking for whitewater adventure or all-day river trips. Weighing 32 pounds and stretching just over 10 feet, the Aire Lynx may cost a little bit more than other whitewater models, but it's stable, easy to maneuver, compact and appropriate for all skill levels. One of the most popular boats of its type, its closed-cell floor allows for dependability and ease of portability.


About the Author

Allie Wall is a writer and journalist based in Colorado. She has contributed to "Fort Collins Magazine," "303 Magazine" and Colorado Public Radio. Wall holds a B.A. in English literature.

Photo Credits

  • Karl Weatherly/Photodisc/Getty Images