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Many kayakers, both new and experienced, enjoy recreational kayaks. These kayaks are best suited for calmer waters, such as slow rivers and streams or small, inland lakes. Some kayakers enjoy the thrill of adventurous paddling, while others prefer to take a more hands-off, relaxed approach to the water sports experience. Recreational kayaks are so versatile that we can guarantee there is a recreational kayak for you out there.
The two types of kayaks
There are two types of recreational kayaks. Sit inside, and sit on top.
Sit inside kayaks have a cockpit large enough for you to put your legs into. One of their most significant advantages is that you can potentially store some gear inside the compartment. Sit inside kayaks are more stable in rough waters, as they are less likely to turn upside-down. Additionally, the compartment protects you from the elements.
Sit on top kayaks tend to be flat with the top of the boat being open to the water. They don’t have an enclosed cockpit, so the paddler sits on top of the yak above the water’s surface. These kayaks can be fun but are also more prone to tipping.
Either option is great, as long as you have a well-fitting life jacket and your gear is secured. Choosing the right kayak for you should depend mostly on what kind of kayaking you need it for. Read on for a few recommended models.
Sun Dolphin Aruba
The Sun Dolphin Aruba recreational kayak is a standard model, suitable for river and lake trips. It offers an adjustable seat – a unique feature for such a low price. It also has a small gear storage bin for your dry bag. The dry bag must be tied down with a carabiner for added security.
The Aruba kayak is made from a durable material, specially designed to last. It also comes with standard thigh pads, that will make your ride more comfortable.
This yak weighs only 40 pounds, which make it the most lightweight model of recreational kayaks reviewed here. It is 10 feet long, and like most recreational kayaks, it is best suited for calm waters. This is a great budget-friendly recreational kayak.
Dagger Zydeco 9.0
The Dagger Zydeco 9.0 is a recreational kayak of the midrange type. This model prioritises comfort with its contoured seats and added thigh pads. The retractable skeg will help you steer straight even in windy conditions.
This kayak is relatively lightweight at 48 pounds without having to sacrifice its 11 feet of length. The Dagger is truly versatile as it is suitable for relaxed paddling and more challenging waters alike.
The storage compartment is of generous size and can easily fit a cooler bag. At $560, The Dagger Zydeco is an excellent option for a beginner or anyone looking for a versatile midrange yak.
Eddyline Equinox Kayak
The Eddyline Equinox is one of the most comfortable options on this list. It features hip pads, thigh pads, a comfortable padded seat, and an adjustable backrest, that make the boat a real treat for paddlers of any shape and size.
The laminated exterior combines the performance of a composite kayak with the durability of a plastic one. Thanks to its sleek design, the kayak tracks well and performs leaned turns with ease.
The Equinox is 14 feet long and weighs 45 pounds. The boat also features two storage compartments, as well as tie-downs for added storage space. This model is an excellent high-end kayak for anyone who feels they have outgrown their recreational yak.
Perception Kayak Tribe Sit On Top
The Perception Kayak Tribe Sit On Top yak is a dependable and versatile sit on top model. It comes with an adjustable seat featuring Perception’s Comfort Seating System. In the event of a tip, your gear will be secure thanks to the tie-downs in the front and back.
This boat comes in several vibrant colours and is perfect for anyone who wants a relaxed day on the beach. Thanks to its adjustable recline positions, you can comfortably sit back and unwind under the sun.
The Perception Kayak Tribe Sit On Top is 9.5 feet long and weighs 46lbs. This model is an excellent option for anyone looking for a beautiful sit on top kayak, at a reasonable price point.
Recreational kayaks can be found in all shapes and sizes. The right kayak for you has to match the features you’re looking for, as well as your budget. Owing to the wide variety of models and price points out there, you are bound to find a kayak to your liking.