Best Kayaks of 2023

So, you’re looking to buy a kayak. Of course, you are! Kayaks are a great way to enjoy nature, get a little exercise, and even spend some quality time with family and friends on the weekends.

But how do you know which kayak to buy? It can be a little tricky to know which kayak type or brand is worth your investment. Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered! I’ve done a ton of research (both online and in the water) to help you figure out which kayaks you should consider. Let’s take a look at the best kayaks this coming year has to offer.

Best Kayaks of 2023

1. Oru Haven TT Kayak

2. Old Town Topwater 120

3. Intex Explorer K2

4. Lifetime Youth Wave

KayakKayak TypeWeight CapacityAverage Price
Best Recreational KayakOru Haven TTFolding kayak500 lbs$1,899.00Check Today’s Price
Best Fishing KayakOld Town Sportsman PDL 106Pedal Fishing kayak475 lbs$2,199.99Check Today’s Price
Best Beginner KayakIntex Explorer K2Inflatable
400 lbs$140.00Check Today’s Price
Best Youth KayakLifetime Wave YouthSit-on-top130 lbs$139.99Check Today’s Price

Best Recreational Kayak for 2023: Oru Haven TT Kayak

Oru Kayak was started to make the outdoors more accessible—and the Haven TT accomplishes that goal. Its fully-foldable nature makes it so easy to transport and, once you get the hang of it, set up time only takes about 5 minutes! Check out the deets:

Oru Haven TT info:

  • Weight: 40 pounds
  • Length: 16 feet Width: 28″
  • Storage: 140 liters
  • Weight capacity: 500 pounds
  • Kayak box: 34″ by 17″ by 29″
  • Set-up time: 5 to 10 minutes

This kayak is the perfect recreational kayak, but doesn’t compromise speed and agility, and is best for day trips on smooth bodies of water.

What do Oru Kayak customers have to say?

Oru Kayak Reviews

oru kayak reviews
Oru Kayak reviews

Fun fact: I own this kayak and absolutely love it. It fits perfectly in the trunk of my Toyota RAV4 and offers more than enough room for me and my dog (and sometimes my nephews.)

My one disclaimer is that if you go with Oru, be prepared for set-up to take a lot longer than 5-10 minutes your first few tries. It took me about 4 or 5 uses to really get the hang of unfolding and re-folding my Oru, but once I did, it was a piece of cake.

Best Fishing Kayak for 2023: Old Town Sportsman PDL 106

The all-new Sportsman offers large fishing kayak performance, in a compact, nimble package. A marriage of stability and performance, this kayak quietly glides through any water condition while providing a stable, comfortable stand-up fishing platform.

Equipped with thoughtful on-board tackle and rod management and a revolutionary universal transducer mount, even the saltiest of anglers will be impressed by the overall fishability of the new Topwater series.

Old Town Sportsman info:

  • Weight: 82 pounds
  • Length: 12 feet
  • Width: 33.5″
  • Weight capacity: 500 pounds

Best Kayak for Beginners in 2023: Intex Explorer K2

Choosing your first kayak as a beginner is important.

A lot of beginners choose to go with inflatable kayaks because of the easy portability and affordability. The Intex Explorer K2 inflatable kayak is proof that you don’t have to spend a lot of money in order to get a high-quality yak.

This kayak has features galore: it comes with adjustable seats (with backrests), two grab handles, two aluminum paddles, a carrying bag, and a pump. Check out the deets:

Intex Explorer K2 features:

  • Product Dimensions: 123 x 36 x 20 inches
  • Product Weight: 30 lbs
  • Weight Capacity: 400 lbs

What do Intex Kayak customers have to say?

Intex Kayak Reviews

intex kayak reviews
intex kayak reviews

Best Youth Kayak for 2023

Editor’s Note: It should go without saying that kids should never be left unsupervised while kayaking and should always wear their (correct-sized) lifejacket.

1. Lifetime Wave Youth (Ages 4-8)

The Lifetime Wave Youth 6-foot kayak is a great starter kayak for kids.

Young paddlers will find the Wave easy to maneuver and paddle, thanks to its “twin fin” design, and its multiple molded-in footrests mean it’s a kayak that can grow with its owner.

All in all, the Lifetime Wave Youth 6-footer is one of the best, most affordable kayaks for kids. Check out the deets:

Lifetime Wave Youth info

  • Designed for kids ages 4-8
  • Weight capacity: 130 lbs
  • Lightweight 18 lb design
  • Molded finger handles on each side for easy transport
  • Swim-up step so paddler can re-enter the kayak from the water
  • Made from High Density Polyethylene for ultimate strength and durabilty
  • Multiple footrest positions for different size riders
  • Paddle included
  • 5-year limited manufacturer warranty
  • Lightweight with Molded Finger Handles on each Side

What do Lifetime Youth Wave customers have to say?

Lifetime Kayak Reviews

Lifetime Kayak Reviews

Did we miss your favorite kayak? Have your own reviews or recommendations for our 2023 roundup? Sound off in the comments below!

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