River kayaking is undoubtedly fun, but you’ll agree with us when we say that finding the best kayak for fishing is not easy.
Fortunately, we’ve looked for and tested plenty of river fishing kayaks and listed the best ones for you.
In today’s post, our team will review the best rated river fishing kayaks for you.
After a lot of reviewing and testing with river fishing kayaks of all kinds, we think that these three are the leading ones.
Without further ado, let’s move onto the top 10 reviews of the best river fishing kayaks.
Best River Fishing Kayak – Top 10 reviews
#1:Best River fishing Kayak for Calm Waters – Sea Eagle 370 Deluxe Kayak Review
Sea Eagle 370 Deluxe Kayak is a good choice for calm waters.
Our team took this out in calm water and it was perfectly stable. The paddles worked really well and there was no issue in steering it. This can be easily transported anywhere due to its lightweight, and inflatable nature.
We were worried that it might take too long to assemble, but it was actually set up pretty quickly.
Features of Sea Eagle 370 Deluxe
- Two bottom skegs for better tracking
- Open and close drain valve
- Good quality paddles
- 650 pounds capacity
- Weight: 26 pounds
- Integral 5-Tube I-Beam Floor
- Storage space available limitedly
Overall, this Kayak is good for calm rivers as it is inflatable.
Best river fishing kayak for calm waters
The best river fishing kayak for calm waters is Sea Eagle 370 Deluxe Kayak due to its easy portability, inflatable nature, and open & close drain valve.
#2:Best Sit-on-top River Fishing Kayak – Lifetime Lotus sit-on-top Kayak Review
Lifetime lotus Kayak is one of the best fishing kayaks you’ll find with a sit-on-top feature.
You won’t have to worry about your safety with this kayak as it is built with one of the best kayak materials. Our team also tested its weighing capability and found out that it floated really well even with a lot of load. Storage provides enough space for equipment.
With proper care, this kayak can last a long time.
Features of Lifetime Lotus sit-on-top
- Polyethylene Structure
- Adjustable quick release seat back
- Storage hatch with a bungee cord
- Multiple footrest positions
- Carry handle in the middle
Overall, this is a really good kayak as it provides both safety and stability in rivers, making it prominent among fishing kayaks.
Best sit-on-top river fishing kayak
The best sit-on-top Kayak is Lifetime Lotus Kayak due to its polyethylene structure, affordable price, and weighing capacity.
#3: Best River Fishing Kayak for Individual use – Pelican sit-on-top 100X Kayak Review
Pelican sit-on-top 100X is a really good Kayak to use on a solo trip. Its highly durable structure and lightweight ensures a long life and also makes it easy to carry around.
It is especially suitable for beginners and has all the amazing features needed for someone completely new to kayaking. Last but not the least, the kayak stays pretty stable in rivers. This means that you can enjoy your kayaking trip without having to worry about safety.
The only thing you might find discouraging about it is that it comes without a paddle.
Features of Pelican sit-on-top 100X
- High Polyethylene structure
- Removable storage compartment with bungee cords
- Weight: 42 pounds
- 275 pounds weight capacity
- Molded footrests
Overall, this Kayak is good for a single adult as it has a weighing capacity of 275 pounds.
Best river fishing kayak for individual use
The best river fishing kayak for individual use is Pelican sit-on-top 100X Kayak due to its weighing capacity, lightweight, and easy portability.
#4:Best All-Purpose River Fishing Kayak – Lifetime Tamarack Angler Review
The Lifetime Tamarack Angler Kayak is indeed one of the best fishing kayaks in town. One of the things we love about it is that it comes with a five year warranty.
This beginner-friendly kayak comes with three fishing rod holders, definitely making fishing easier. Its comfortable seat is another reason you’ll love it. It travels at a good pace but remains highly stable, not giving you a chance to dive.
This means that you won’t have to worry about safety even at high speed.
Last but not the least, extensions can also be added to this all-purpose fishing kayak.
Features of Lifetime Tamarack Angler
- Three fishing rod holders – making fishing easy
- Extensions can be added
- Spacious storage hatch
- Five year warranty
- UV-Protected Polyethylene structure
- Weight capacity: 275 pounds
Overall, this fulfills most of the requirements needed for kayaking in rivers with its durability and stability.
Best All-purpose river fishing kayak
The best all-purpose river fishing Kayak is Lifetime Tamarack Angler due to its spacious storage, five year warranty and UV-Protected Polyethylene structure.
#5:Best River Fishing Kayak for Children – Lifetime Youth Wave Kayak Review
Lifetime Youth Wave Kayak is a kids-friendly kayak, specially designed for ages 5 and up.
This kayak works really well in steady water due to some key kayak features. It is light in weight, appropriately sized (not too big) and really stable.
If your kid likes kayaking in steady and calm rivers or is a beginner just about to experience his first kayaking trip, then this might be a good option.
Our team recommends you this Kayak for your children after being very particular about their requirements and needs.
Features of Lifetime youth wave Kayak
- Best for its price
- Scupper holes to get water out-if it enters
- UV protection-color and coating won’t be damaged.
- Molded finger handles on each side of kayak
- Weight: 18 pounds
- Weighing Capacity: 130 pounds
- For ages 5 and up – Adult supervision required.
- Space for storage is available limitedly
Overall, this kayak is good for children as it is stable and can be easily transported.
Best river fishing kayak for children
The best river fishing kayak for children is Lifetime Youth Wave Kayak due to its weight capacity, scupper holes for getting water out and comfortable kayaking.
#6:Best River Fishing Kayak to go Solo – Sevylor Quikpak K1 Kayak Review
Sevylor Quikpak Kayak is one of the best kayaks for fishing to go solo. Its inflatable nature makes it easily portable. It comes with a tarpaulin bottom, ensuring safety.
The backpack which includes the kayak, the pump and the paddle can be turned into the seat of the kayak, making it even more convenient.
When it comes to safety, here’s what makes it obvious among other fishing kayaks: the multiple air chambers present in it don’t allow it to deflate all at once – if it does.
The kayak material is of good quality too so it’s safe to say that with this product, you will be in good hands.
Features of Sevylor Quikpak Kayak
- Portable – can be easily kept anywhere
- Reasonable price
- Tarpaulin bottom – durable protection
- Multiple air chambers
- 21 gauge PVC construction
- Multi-position foot rest
- Storage space available limitedly
Overall, this kayak is one of the best kayaks for rivers due to its easy portability, inflatable nature and stability.
Best river fishing kayak to go solo
The best river fishing kayak to go solo is Sevylor Quikpak K1 Kayak because it has been specifically designed for a single person.
#7: Best River Fishing Kayak for One Person – Intex challenger K1 Kayak Review
Looking forward to your next kayaking trip? Intex challenger K1 Kayak might be a good option for you. It’s one of the best kayaks as it is inflatable, easily portable and lightweight.
Built with puncture-resistant vinyl, this will last you long if taken proper care of. It has two separate air chambers, which is great because if one chamber deflates, you can steer back to land easily.
This is a comfortable, easy to maneuver kayak that comes with an inflatable seat. Storage space is available limitedly. It works pretty well, but may not be the best choice for higher speeds.
Features of Intex challenger K1 Kayak
- Portable, you can carry it easily
- Reasonable price
- Two separate air chambers
- Heavy duty puncture-resistant vinyl
- Storage space available limitedly
Overall, this kayak is a really good kayak built for a single person as it is easy to carry and assemble.
Best river fishing kayak for one person
The best river fishing kayak for one person is Intex challenger K1 Kayak because of its reasonable price, inflatable nature and comfortable kayaking.
#8:Best River fishing Kayak for Beginners – Intex Explorer K2 Kayak Review
Intex Explorer K2 Kayak is a two person, beginner-friendly river kayak that allows a maximum weight of 400 lbs.
Our team took this out for a test and it was pretty stable. The ride was good overall, but you might find a bit of a problem with paddling. Nonetheless, this kayak is good for its price. A removable skeg provides directional stability and lightweight makes it easy to carry.
All in all, this Kayak is a good choice for an enjoyable kayaking trip.
Features of Intex explorer K2 Kayak Review
- Portable, can be carried easily
- Two separate air compartments – if one part gets pierced the kayak doesn’t burst all of a sudden
- Removable skeg
- Weighing Capacity: 400 pounds
- Bright yellow colour helps visibility in case of emergency
- Inflatable I-beam for rigidity.
- Storage space available limitedly
Overall, this river kayak is really good for rivers as it provides almost everything that is needed for a smooth kayaking trip.
Best river fishing kayak for beginners
The best river fishing kayak for beginners is Intex Explorer K2 Kayak because it is lightweight, inflatable, and reasonable in price too. It is a highly stable kayak with easy portability and bright yellow color to attract people in case of any emergency.
#9:Best River Fishing Kayak for a Pro – Intex Excursion Pro Kayak Review
Intex Excursion Pro Kayak is an inflatable, easily portable kayak for fishing that comes with two removable skegs. Built with a super tough PVC material, this will last you a long time if taken care of properly. It has two fishing rod holders that make fishing more convenient and easy.
Our team found this to be an inexpensive, spacious kayak. It goes really well in steady rivers and is quite comfortable as well.
Another thing to like about this kayak is that it gives you the choice of travelling solo or tandem comfortably, here’s why: you can install either one or both the seats depending upon the number of people travelling.
This lightweight kayak can be easily assembled, comes with two removable skegs and is pretty stable.
Features of Intex excursion pro Kayak
- Reasonable Price
- You can install either one or two seats
- Two removable skegs
- Weighing capacity: 400 pounds
- Super tough PVC with polyester core
- Two fishing rod holders
- Storage space available limitedly
Overall, this kayak is really good for rivers as it is convenient and long-lasting due to its durable material and light weight.
Best river fishing kayak for a pro
The best river fishing kayak for a pro is Intex Excursion Pro Kayak because it is spacious enough, portable, and affordable. Moreover, its weight capacity is also enough.
#10: Best River Fishing Kayak for a Newbie – AdvancedFrame Convertible Kayak Review
AdvancedFrame Convertible Kayak is one of the best fishing kayaks available for a beginner. While testing this kayak, our team found out that it comes pre-assembled, so there’s little left for you to do.
This kayak is inflatable and light in weight, making it easily portable. It provides a comfortable ride in the water and stays perfectly stable throughout. Its reinforced bow and stern seams improve tracking and make it a lot more easier to travel.
All in all, this is a good option to consider when you look for kayaks – especially if you are a beginner.
Features of AdvancedFrame Convertible Kayak
- Reinforced front and rear seams-improve tracking
- Comes PreAssembled
- Weight: 52 pounds
- Weighing capacity: 550 pounds
Overall, this kayak for river is one of the best kayaks for rivers due to all the features that it offers.
Best river fishing kayak for a newbie
The best river fishing kayak for a newbie is AdvancedFrame Convertible kayak because of its long-lasting material, perfect stability and comfortable kayaking.
1. What should I look for when choosing a river fishing Kayak?
A kayak that is highly stable is one which remains steady in all kinds of rivers – rough or calm. The stability of a kayak is important so that the kayak doesn’t flip or make you fall in the water.
- Depth of the Kayak
Most kayaks are of regular size but if you have a good height, then you should definitely go for a deeper kayak that provides enough space for your legs to fit in comfortably.
Deeper kayaks also provide space for storage. One con that comes with deeper kayaks is that they catch wind easily, and so the speed lessens.
- Length of the Kayak
Short kayaks are the best. They are easy to carry and maneuver. You should look for a shorter kayak with a good depth so that you fit in properly along with your storage.
- Weighing capacity
Weighing capacity is important. You need to know how much weight your kayak can carry before boarding it. The weighing capacity depends on the material used in the construction of the kayak.
- Width of the Kayak
Narrow kayaks are more stable in the beginning. For a short kayaking trip, you should prefer a narrow kayak whereas you should go for a wider kayak when planning a longer trip.
2. Which Kayak material is the best?
Polyethylene is a common material used for kayak building. Polyethylene kayaks are considered budget-friendly and a good choice for beginners. The problem with such kayaks is that the sun affects polyethylene and softens it, but it cools down pretty quickly too.
Composite kayaks are made by combining two or more materials together. These materials are combined using resins or epoxies. This is a lighter but expensive material. Its strength is quite good so safe kayaking is a pro of a kayak made from composite material.
Inflatable kayaks are made from soft shells. Polyethylene and composite-made kayaks are usually mentioned as hard shell kayaks. These kinds of kayaks can be used regularly and are usually free from defects and flaws.
3. What sort of kayak is the best?
- Recreational Kayak
These kayaks to fish are for those who want to relax and spend some time away from the worldly hustle. These are considered best for beginners.
This might be the best kayak for you if you only want to relax.
- Touring Kayaks
These are somehow similar to recreational kayaks. But, their lengthy and slim structure allows them to be more sleek and fast with lesser effort on the paddler. These kayaks are unstable in the beginning so if you’re planning for a short kayaking trip, they may not be the best option.
This might be the best kayak for you if you are planning a long trip. A touring kayak is also known as an ocean kayak.
- Inflatable Kayaks
Inflatable kayaks are easy to carry and transport. Generally, inflatable kayaks are made of materials like hypalon, Nitrilon and PVC. These can be either inflated by an electrical pump – which is present in most kayak packages – or be simply inflated by your hands and feet.
This might be the best kayak for calm waters. The rugged design allows it to be strong and durable against white water as well.
- Tandem Kayaks
These are recreational kayaks that serve various purposes. They are stable, more comfortable and spacious enough. They can be easily loaded and unloaded. Built from a strong and durable material, they usually last for a long time.
- Sit-on-top Kayaks
These Kayaks contain scupper holes for drainage of water – in case any water comes on board. At such a time, these scupper holes will automatically drain the water.
These kayaks are budget-friendly. Their design is rugged and they are best for longer fishing trips.
1. Is Kayak fishing better than other modes of fishing?
Well, not absolutely, but in some ways kayaks do make better anglers. Besides, kayaks are the vessels needed for clever fishing in all sorts of water bodies.
2. Should I prefer a sit-on Kayak over a sit-in one?
A sit-in kayak will certainly avoid getting you wet whereas a sit-on will not. However, a sit-in kayak will not give you as much freedom to move in and out of the water as compared to the latter.
3. What should be the maximum length of a Kayak?
The maximum length of the kayak should be 10-12 feet.
4. Are inflatable Kayaks more convenient?
They are. Their inflatable nature makes them lightweight and easy to carry – making them more convenient compared to hard shell kayaks.
5. How long does an inflatable Kayak last?
We wouldn’t state years particularly, but an inflatable kayak does last long. Its material might not be too strong against rocks and knocks but it is manageable.
6. Is Kayaking safe enough?
Kayaking is a safe activity as people from all around the globe love it. However, you must try to get a good-quality kayak to ensure safety.
7. Is a Kayak better than a canoe?
Kayaks are more agile and speedy due to their streamlined shape and lightweight whereas canoes are more stable.
8. Can a two-person Kayak be used for an individual?
Yes, absolutely. You can use the other seat for your personal items and equipment. In fact, some kayaks even allow you to install either one or more seats depending upon the number of people travelling.
Our final verdict is that AdvancedFrame Convertible Kayak is the most agile and suitable kayak for fishing. It is perfect for rivers and would stay stable in rough waters too.
Its inflatable nature makes it lightweight and easy to be carried. With a weighing capacity of 550 pounds, this kayak provides stability in the water. With a spacious storage It comes pre-assembled so that you don’t have to do all the assembling and just enjoy the ride without much delay.
This might give you the best fishing experience.