One of the most important decisions you can make before heading out on your kayaking adventure is what type of kayak to choose. Whether you are fishing, exploring, or just trying something new, there is a perfect model for you. In this article, we will give reviews and tips about the best kayaks for lakes that will help you find one that meets your needs!

Kayaks for lakes is a term used to describe kayaks that are specifically designed and intended for use on freshwater lakes. These kayaks typically have features that make them more stable and easier to control in open water, such as wider beams and flatter hulls. They may also include special designs or fittings intended to help you catch fish, like rod holders and tackle storage.

If you are looking for a kayak to use on your local lake, it is important to choose one that will be comfortable and easy to operate in calm waters. Some of the best kayaks for lakes include models from brands like Sun Dolphin, Pelican, and Old Town. Let’s take a closer look at some of these options!

Kayaks for lakes are ideal if you are looking to do some casual paddling in a lake near your home. They will be easy to control and won’t require too much storage space when not in use. If you live on or close to a large body of water, kayaking is an excellent way to explore the area without having to travel far from home!

These models can also be used by kids who want their own boat for playing around with friends on the local pond. For young children that may need more stability, it may even make sense to purchase one designed specifically for fishing rather than investing in a pricier model intended only for adults!

Kayaks For Lakes Reviewed

Lifetime Tioga

Lifetime Tioga

This tandem inflatable kayak is a great option for those who want something that can handle heavy use and last you for years. It comes with aluminum oars and all the necessary safety equipment to keep everyone safe on the water (two-person pump, patch kit, skeg). The thick PVC makes it nearly indestructible so if you are looking for a boat that will hold up under pressure this should be your first choice! With two seats included as well as adjustable foot rests there isn’t much more you could ask of such an affordable model. This boat would work best in flat or calm waters but we wouldn’t recommend taking it into rough seas unless you were really prepared.

This kayak is perfect for one or two people and comes in at just under 60 pounds! It has a lot of room to move around, adjustable foot braces, an inflatable seat with back support that can be moved forward if needed. This model also features the option to add on equipment like fishing rod holders etc., making it easier than ever before to get out there and enjoy your time on the water no matter what you are interested in doing! Of course all this quality does come at a price so if you are looking for something more budget-friendly check out some other items below.

  • Perfect for one or two people
  • Adjustable foot braces and inflatable seat with back support
  • Options to add more equipment like fishing rod holders, etc.
  • Pricey
Intex Challenger K1 Kayak

Intex Challenger K1 Kayak

This model is another great option for those who are looking to get out there and enjoy the water without breaking their budget. The material isn’t as high quality or durable as some of the other models on this list but it still does a good job at deflecting punctures, tears etc. It comes with two seats included which makes steering easier than ever before and has front handles that make carrying simple!

This kayak weighs about 33 pounds so if you want something lightweight or don’t want to take up too much space when storing it, this may not be the best option for you. This model is also pretty long so if you’re worried about taking up too much room in your car or around others on the water, keep that in mind.

  • Inexpensive
  • Comes with two seats
  • Front handles make carrying simple
  • Material isn’t as high quality or durable as some of the other models on this list
Lifetime Beacon Tandem

Lifetime Beacon Tandem

This budget-friendly kayak is a great choice for beginners, especially if you are looking to paddle with someone else. It comes in at only 23 pounds and can carry up to 500 lbs. The seats are quite comfortable but do not provide much support for your lower back which may be an issue if paddling long distances or carrying heavy loads.

The bright orange color of the kayak could definitely be a pro or con depending on your personal preference but if you are looking to enjoy some time out on the water this summer, it is nice to know that you will pretty easy to spot! This model has front and rear handles making carrying simple which can’t always be said about other models in its price range.

This is also one of the shortest options available so keep that in mind when deciding whether or not it would work well for you and what kind of space might make sense for storage purposes.

  • Inexpensive
  • Great for beginners
  • Short length difficult to maneuver in windy conditions
Sevylor Quikpak K5

Sevylor Quikpak K5

This mid-priced kayak is great for beginners or those who might be looking to get into kayaking but don’t want the high price tag that often comes with more advanced models. It weighs 30 pounds and can hold up to 450 lbs so it would also work well for tandem paddling, though I wouldn’t recommend carrying too much extra weight as this could affect its performance.

The color of this model has been described by many users as “vibrant teal” which again isn’t a con if you like bright colors but may not match everyone’s preferences.

It does have one unique feature when compared to other similar options in its class: built-in backpack straps making transport easy when car-topping or backpacking.

It’s made with a polyester material that makes it durable and lightweight, while also making it easy to inflate/deflate when needed due to its Boston valve design.

  • Inexpensive
  • Can hold up to 450 lbs
  • Heavy (30 pounds) and bulky when deflated can make transport difficult.
Riot Kayaks Edge 13.0

Riot Kayaks Edge 13.0

This kayak is designed for those who are looking for speed and stability in a model. It’s 13 feet long and has a weight capacity of 500 lbs, so it can accommodate larger paddlers or those who want to bring along plenty of gear.

It’s made with a polyethylene material that makes it durable and impact resistant, as well as UV protected which will help keep it looking good over time even when exposed to the sun’s rays.

The Edge also comes with some great features like adjustable footrests, thigh braces, and a built-in rudder system – all of which work together to make this one smooth and easy to paddle kayak.

  • Fast and stable
  • Built in rudder system for easy navigation
  • Adjustable footrests and thigh braces
  • Expensive compared to other models on the market today.
Brooklyn Kayak Company TK122

Brooklyn Kayak Company TK122

The Brooklyn Kayak Company TK122 is a 12-foot kayak that’s designed for lakes and calm rivers. It has a weight capacity of 325 pounds, making it suitable for most people. The TK122 is made from high-density polyethylene and features a comfortable seat with back support. It also includes adjustable foot pedals, a water bottle holder, and storage space in the front and rear compartments.

This kayak is easy to maneuver and tracks well in open water. The TK122 is stable and provides good stability even when empty. It can be paddled solo or tandem, making it perfect for shared adventures. The Brooklyn Kayak Company TK122 is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a kayak that they can use in lakes or on slow moving rivers.

  • Good speed for the size
  • Easy to maneuver and control
  • Stable design even when empty
  • Tracks poorly in windy conditions
Old Town Dirigo 106

Old Town Dirigo 106

The Old Town Dirigo 106 is a great choice for those who want to paddle lakes and rivers with ease. It’s a versatile kayak that’s easy to maneuver, even in windy conditions. The weight capacity of this model is 300 pounds so it can accommodate most paddlers from beginners to experts.

This sit-on-top kayak includes adjustable foot pegs, thigh braces, and an ultra comfortable seat along with the other typical features you’d expect from a good quality kayak. It’s not as fast as some other models, but it will get you where you need to go and can handle a wide range of water speeds.

This is an excellent choice for those who want the stability and comfort of a sit-on-top model with plenty of features at a budget price.

  • Versatile
  • Easily maneuverable in windy conditions.
  • Lightweight for easy carrying and transporting.
  • Not the fastest kayak out there, but it will get you where you need to go!


The Sundolphin Bali SS is a great option for those who want a kayak that’s easy to carry and store. This model has an adjustable seat which makes it ideal for people of various heights – even kids! It can accommodate up to three children or two adults at once, making it perfect as a family boat.

The weight capacity on this kayak is 375 pounds, so most paddlers from beginner to expert will be comfortable using it. The high back supports your lower back while you paddle and the foot braces allow for optimal control over your movements. Plus, this lightweight kayak only weighs 52 pounds so carrying and transporting won’t be much trouble at all.

This sit-on-top kayak also includes a paddle holder, bungee cords for securing cargo, and a storage hatch.

  • Very lightweight and easy to transport
  • Adjustable seat for different users
  • Can hold up to 375 pounds
  • May be too small for some paddlers
Ocean Kayak Malibu 11.5

Ocean Kayak Malibu 11.5

The Ocean Kayak Malibu 11. is a great choice for those who want an all-around kayak that can do it all. This model is perfect for both beginners and experts, as it has a weight capacity of 425 pounds and comes with a number of features to make your paddling experience more enjoyable.

The oversized cockpit on the Malibu 11. makes getting in and out very easy, while also providing plenty of space for you to move around. The seat is adjustable so you can customize your comfort level, and the foot braces let you control your movements easily. There’s even a built-in cooler which will keep your drinks cold on hot days!

This kayak also front and rear storage hatches, so you can take all of your gear with you on the water. The Malibu 11. is a great choice for lakes, ponds, and slow-moving rivers.

  • Oversized cockpit for easy entry and exit
  • Lots of storage space
  • Large size can make it a bit harder to control in choppy waters or rivers with strong currents.
Emotion Kayaks Guster 10.0

Emotion Kayaks Guster 10.0

The Emotion Kayaks Guster 10. is another all-around kayak that’s great for beginners and experts alike, with a weight capacity of 425 pounds. This model comes in four different colors so you can choose the one that best suits your style, while also having an adjustable seat to make sure you can always be comfortable on the water.

This kayak has front and rear storage hatches as well, along with foot braces for easier paddling control . The cockpit opening makes getting in and out easy , while also giving you a comfortable space to sit. The deck is covered with bungee cords for storing additional gear, and there are four different storage spaces as well .

It’s easy to transport this kayak around due to the fact that it only weighs 55 pounds , while also being 10 feet long and 34 inches wide. You can use this model on lakes of all sizes without worrying about your safety : because it has high-density polyethylene plastic construction, you never have to worry about puncturing or damage from rocks or other things in the water. Even though this boat isn’t made specifically for traveling over large distances , many owners report that they do just fine paddling across smaller bodies of water such as ponds and streams .

  • Multiple storage places
  • Easy transportation
  • It is not ideal for long distance paddling.

How To Choose The Best Lake Kayak For You?

What You Plan on Doing

The first thing you need to consider before purchasing a kayak is what it is that you plan on doing with it. If you are only going to be using it in calm waters, then a recreational model might be the best option for you. However, if you want something that can handle rougher conditions or fishing trips, then a touring or fishing kayak would be a better choice.

Remember also to think about how often you will be using your boat- if it’s only once in a while, an inflatable model may make more sense than buying a expensive hardshell kayak.

Sit-In vs. Sit-On-Top

The next decision you need to make is whether you want a sit-in or a sit-on-top kayak. The former option will provide more protection from the elements, but can be harder to get in and out of.

Sit-on-tops are more popular for fishing as they provide better access to gear and are also typically wider than sit-ins, making them more stable. They do, however, offer less wind protection.

Inflatable vs Hard-Sided Kayaks

If you are looking for something that is easy to store and carry, then an inflatable kayak might be the best option for you. These models come with a small pump which can quickly fill up your boat once it has been deflated, meaning that they do not take up much space in your garage or on the roof of your car!

Hard-sided boats will offer more storage room but may be harder to transport. If you live close to water where most trips would only last one day (think weekend getaways), this shouldn’t matter too much. However, if you want something that can go long distances without needing maintenance work along the way, then an inflatable model probably isn’t what you need.

Tandem or Single Kayak

If you are buying for two, then you will need to decide if you want to buy a tandem kayak or purchase one that is designed specifically for just the two of you. Tandem models can be more stable and easier to control but may take up too much space on your car (and in your garage!). It also means that only one person can use it at any given time, so this might not work well with friends who all want their own boat!

Single kayaks offer more storage room and typically cost less than their double counterparts. You won’t have as much stability, but they do come outfitted with most accessories which is ideal if there isn’t going to be another paddler along for the ride.

Weight Capacity

Before buying a kayak, you need to consider how much weight it can hold. This will largely depend on the material used for construction- plastic is typically more durable and can support a higher amount of weight than fiberglass or inflatable models.

For example, recreational sit-in kayaks have an average capacity around 500 pounds while touring/fishing models might be closer to 350 pounds . Inflatable boats usually only offer enough room for one person so keep this in mind if you are planning on using yours as a tandem boat!

Experience/Skill Level

If you are a beginner, it is important to buy a kayak that is suited for your experience level. Novices might want to avoid models with lots of extra features and instead focus on boats that are stable and easy to control.

On the other hand, if you have been paddling for a while and are looking for something more advanced, there are plenty of options out there that will let you take your skills up a notch. Just be sure to read reviews carefully before making your purchase- not all boats are created equal!

What Kayaks Are Good To Use On Lakes?

  • Inflatable Kayaks

When you are looking for kayaks to use on lakes, inflatable models may be an option. These boats can easily be deflated and carried inside a car or even stored under your bed! Some people also like the fact that they weigh less than other types of kayak, making them perfect if you plan to do some paddling with younger kids in tow.

However, there are some downsides as well- it takes time to set up these models before each trip, and any damage could cause leaks which would mean having to start over from scratch! The best way around this is by investing in high quality materials that will hold up for several years (or more), despite reasonably heavy usage.

  • Fishing Kayaks

If you are specifically looking for kayaks that will allow you to do some fishing while paddling, then a model designed with anglers in mind may be the right choice. Fishing kayaks typically have rod holders and storage compartments built into their design so you don’t need to install them yourself (which can make your boat less stable).

These models often come equipped with flatter hulls which makes it easier for beginners to control- if speed or efficiency is what you are after this might not be ideal, but it should provide more stability when fishing. With many of these options priced under $500 , they also represent an affordable option compared to other types of boats!

  • Touring Kayaks

If you are looking for kayaks that will allow you to do extensive paddling, then touring models might be what you need. These boats typically have longer waterlines than other types of kayak which makes them more efficient and faster when it comes time to move around on the open lake or river.

Many of these options also come equipped with rudders so steering is easier- this can make a huge difference if you plan to paddle long distances! However, they may not be as stable as fishing models so keep this in mind before making your final purchase decision!

  • Recreational Kayaks

If you are looking for a versatile kayak that can do it all, then a recreational model might be the best option. These boats are typically designed to be comfortable and stable in a variety of water conditions, making them perfect for lakes as well as calmer coastal waters.

They also come with a wide range of features, from storage space to cup holders, so you can always have what you need close at hand. Prices for these boats start around $300 , making them an affordable choice for those who want one boat that can handle everything!

Tips for Using Kayaks For Lakes

  • Most kayaks for lakes are designed to be more stable than those made for rivers. A flat bottom and wider body allows the user to sit lower, which increases stability.
  • The best way to learn how to use a kayak is by taking some lessons from an experienced kayaking instructor. If you don’t have access to such classes near your location, consider watching instructional videos on YouTube or using books as reference materials instead of buying them at full price in bookstores.
  • When getting started with kayaking on lakes, it would be better if you can find someone who has experience with this kind of activity so that he/she could show you the basics before letting go off his hands!
  • It’s always important to wear life vests when kayaking, especially if you are a beginner.
  • When looking for the best kayak for lakes, consider the size of the lake and your own weight and height. Larger lakes can accommodate wider kayaks while smaller ones might be better suited for narrower boats. Your weight and height will also help determine which type of kayak is best for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the basic things I need to know before using a kayak in a lake?

Before getting started with kayaking on lakes, it would be better if you can find someone who has experience with this kind of activity so that he/she could show you the basics. Some important things to keep in mind include wearing life vests, staying aware of your surroundings, wearing a helmet when you are in rough waters, and not to overload your kayak with equipment or passengers.

Are there any special safety concerns for people who use kayaks on lakes?

Yes! The most important thing is that if you ever find yourself in trouble while out on the water, it’s very important that you know how to perform self-rescue techniques so that you can get back into your kayak safely. It would be best if I could learn these skills from an experienced instructor before using my own boat.

What type of kayak is best for lakes?

When looking for the best kayak for lakes, consider the size of the lake and your own weight and height. Larger lakes can accommodate wider kayaks while smaller ones might be better suited for narrower boats. Your weight and height will also help determine which type of kayak is best for you.

What are some common mistakes people make when using kayaks on lakes?

One mistake that many beginners make is not staying aware of their surroundings. This can lead to accidents if they run into obstacles or other boats without knowing it. Another common mistake is underestimating the power of the wind and trying to paddle against it instead of steering clear or landing until the wind subsides.


Kayaks for lakes are different from kayaks in the ocean because they need to be easy to maneuver and lightweight. This means that you should avoid getting a large, heavy kayak. You also want one with an open cockpit so that it is easier for you to get out of or into during high winds or choppy water conditions. These types of kayaks are made specifically for use on lakes and offer many benefits including increased stability, better wind protection, lighter weight, more room inside the boat (which can make them good if you have children), and convenience when loading up your gear at campgrounds. If this sounds like something you would enjoy then let us know which type of kayak best suits your needs!