The summer is here and you’re wondering how to get out and make the most of it? Get in one of these inflatable kayaks and explore the great outdoors…
Inflatable kayaks have come a long way! No longer just for splashing around at the beach, now you’ll find compact, durable and easy to transport pieces of kit ideal for exploring rivers, lakes and even coast hopping.
If you’re looking for a fun way to get on the water then inflatable kayaks are a great way to get fit and explore. And for under £100 you get a pretty solid kayak.
These are the 7 best inflatable kayaks on the market at the moment, ideal for solo kayaking, going fishing, or hopping around with friends. If you’re the adventurous type, you can even use an inflatable kayak to explore a lake or island region…!
- Always use flotation devices for everyone using the kayak.
- Avoid stormy or changeable weather, especially at sea.
- Don’t go too far from shore if using in the sea. Ideally no more than swimmable distance.
- Check the tide and the weather forecast before you go out in your kayak.
- Let somebody know when and where you are going to go kayaking, especially if you are going to a secluded area.
- Take a waterproof bag. You can then keep your phone and food items in case of emergency.
With that out of the way, lets take a look at the best inflatable kayaks!
1. Intex Challenger K1
This sturdy one man kayak is great for solo explorers. Available for around £80 (under $100), you can be out on the water in about ten minutes.
The material feels very sturdy and once inflated you feel that the kayak can hold a bit of weight. You’ll need to launch and land from somewhere secure as you need to climb into the kayak and put your feet inside. As an entry level one man kayak this is probably the best option, especially if you’re only going to use it occasionally.
Bagged up, the canoe weighs about 11kgs, so not too bad to drag down a coastal path but not ideal to go hiking with.
Also available as a 2 man model [AMAZON LINK].
2. Sevylor Riviera 2 Man
Sevylor make very good quality inflatables and the Riviera is one of their most popular models. The two man version is ideal for rivers, lakes and sea and is a sturdy choice. This kayak will accommodate two big burly adults with ease, plus a couple of small bags.
As a plus, the Riviera folds up into a backpack making it easy to carry. At under 9kgs it’s also not too much of a weight to lug around.
3. Sea Eagle SE370 Sports Deluxe
The Sea Eagle is a more premium construction, and it shows. The shell is heavier and obviously built for a beating, but it’s also a sleek piece of kit. In fact this sports kayak is a great performer, perfect for those looking for speed and manoeuvrability. This is down to the 2 skegs on the bottom of the craft (as opposed to the usual one on most of these models). It’s also self draining
What you get in performance you sacrifice in weight and portability. At 23kg this is a heavy canoe, plus the carry bag isn’t made for long distance carrying.
4. Sevylor Tahiti 2+1
The second Sevylor on our list is a 3 man (or 2 man and one child/dog/fishing kit) kayak suitable for offshore and inshore cruising. Like the Riviera, it’s made of sturdy PVC and is quick to inflate and easy to carry with it’s backpack carry style.
However, you will need to buy a skeg if you’re planning in heading into choppier waters.
More suited to families or friends with equipment, Sevylor have made another great kayak.
5. Aquaglide Chinook 2016 XP
Lots of space and a premium build means the Aquaglide is a great investment for the serious leisure kayak enthusiast. Compared to the others on the list, the Aquaglide Chinook feels that much sturdier, with molded plastic handles and straps.
Another selling point is the fact that the kayak inflates in around 5 minutes (much quicker than most others on our list) and it also folds down just as quick. At 10kgs, it’s lightweight and ideal for carrying short distances.
6. Sevylor Hudson 2+1
Another gem from Sevylor, the Hudson is a broader framed kayak ideal for coast hopping. You’ll need to get the pump and paddles seperately, but you do get a manoeuverable and fast kayak with a more solid feel than the other Sevylors on this list.
At 20kgs, it’s not the lightest, but the carry bag makes it easier to transport.
7. Hydro-Force Ventura
Marketed as a family kayak, this 2 man inflatable is actually a very solid piece of kit, ideal for solo kayakers or duos. The seats are premium finish and quite comfortable (compared to some of the budget options on the list) and the broad frame feels nice and steady in the water.
The Ventura is no slouch either, zipping though river, lake or sea easily. There is also plenty of storage and decent space for fishing.
At just under 18kgs, it’s not the lightest but it is compact and quick to inflate/deflate.
So if you’re looking to get into the water this summer, check out these great inflatable kayaks, suitable for all budgets. We like the Sevylors in general, they are all nice and solid pieces of kit. But if you’re looking for a fun one man boat then the Challenger is a great option too.
Don’t forget to get your life vest and make sure your kayak comes with pump and oars.
Stay safe out there!