Top 12 Best Family Canoes | 2020 Reviews (Sea Eagle)

Canoeing is one of the most exciting water activities that you must share with your family. It can be a fun family bonding to teach your sibling or kids the skills for the great outdoors while building up beautiful memories.

Investing in a premium-quality and durable family canoe is an excellent way to get your family out of the house. However, keep in mind that purchasing one requires you to think about the essential considerations. For instance, it should be big, comfortable, and stable enough for all the members.

In this buying guide, you will see the top twelve family canoes that fulfill the strict criteria. All you have to do is to find the best one that suits your family. This page also offers a comprehensive list of features that you need to look for before settling with a particular vessel.

Top 12 Best Family Canoe Reviewed

  1. Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16
  2. Sea Eagle 330 Inflatable Canoe
  3. Sea Eagle 370 Inflatable Canoe
  4. 465ft FastTrack™ Inflatable Canoe
  5. 420x Explorer Inflatable Canoe
  6. Sun Dolphin Mackinaw 15.6ft Canoe 
  7. BRIS 15.4Ft Inflatable Kayak 
  8. Sun Dolphin Scout Elite SS 
  9. KL Industries Waterquest Scout 14-Feet Canoe
  10. Old Town Canoes & Kayaks Saranac 160 Recreational Family Canoe 
  11. Old Town Guide 147 Recreational Canoe 
  12. Intex Excursion 5 Person Inflatable Boat Set

#1. Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16 – Best Overall

Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16

Specifications:

  • Material: 1100 Decitex Reinforced
  • Length: 488 centimeters
  • Type: Two-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 415 kilograms
  • Colors: Black and Gray

Over the years, several people have purchased the Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16 due to its accomplished feats that are way better than most traditional canoes. With this product, you can say goodbye to unstable, uncomfortable, heavy, and space-consuming canoes. This Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16 fits snugly and comfortable at your car’s trunk or storage room while you still have plenty of space left.

This Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16 is completely unsinkable due to its buoyant 1100 Decitex Reinforced materials. Thus, you can expect that this product is 33% lighter than most family canoes out there. Besides that, its full-length flat surface area generates better lift, faster speed, and reduced drag.

According to the manufacturer, the Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16’s hull waterline can help you paddle for up to five miles per hour. Its removable rear skeg and double chine system also increases stability and enhances tracking. Regarding your safety, Sea Eagle made sure that you can enjoy a fun canoe through its independent and separated high-pressure drop stitch chambers.

ProsCons
Incredible buoyancy, speed, and stability
Does not have UV protection
Convenient to transport and store
Durable construction
Reduced drag

#2. Sea Eagle 330 Inflatable Kayak

Sea Eagle 330 Inflatable Kayak 

Specifications:

  • Material: 33 mil Polykrylar (K80 PVC)
  • Length: 340 centimeters
  • Type: Double-Ended Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 2 Person or 227 kilograms
  • Colors: White and Blue

The Sea Eagle 330 Inflatable Kayak is the most recommended inflatable family canoe that provides a spacious, stable, and durable ride. It can be your perfect recreational canoes with its two seats and a weight capacity of 227 kilograms.

This Sea Eagle 330 Inflatable Kayak offers a flat bottom with low seats, which provides impressive stability. You will not have a hard time paddling since its K80 PVC responds smoothly with each sweep. With this product, your anxious family members will quickly be assured. According to the manufacturer, this canoe offers an I Beam construction and a high-frequency welded seam, making it more robust.

Furthermore, the 330 Inflatable Kayak is Sea Eagle’s lightest and most portable kayak. If you don’t know yet, this product only weighs 26 pounds and only takes tiny space in your small car’s trunk. Despite its lighter weight, this 330 Inflatable Kayak is rugged and durable enough to carry two people or 227 kilograms.

ProsCons
Thicker hull material for better durability
Not the best for stability
Easy to handle for young and old people
Sun and saltwater resistant materials
Convenient to transport and store

#3. Sea Eagle 370 Inflatable Kayak

Sea Eagle 370 Inflatable Kayak 

Specifications:

  • Material: 38 mil PolyKrylar (K80 PVC)
  • Length: 381 centimeters
  • Type: Three-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 3 Persons or 295 kilograms
  • Colors: White

Families who prefer buying the best-selling family canoe should go for the Sea Eagle 370 Inflatable Kayak. This product is a portable and lightweight ride that provides remarkable durability and stability at only 32 pounds.

If you don’t know yet, the premium-quality Sea Eagle 370 Inflatable Kayak can hold up to three adults. Nevertheless, if you want more storage space, some customers recommend two persons only.

Your family members will appreciate the Sea Eagle 370 Inflatable Kayak since its quality is suitable for beginners and experienced paddlers. With its efficient hull shape, I Beam construction floor, and lightweight design, younger and older people can paddle it effortlessly.

If your family wants to fish, you will appreciate its paddle rests and rod holders. Plus, its 38 mil PolyKrylar can resist any impact and abrasions, as well.

ProsCons
Safe for younger and older paddlers
Smaller width than other recreational canoes
Large capacity with three seats
Incredible comfort and stability
Suitable for longer trips

#4. 465ft FastTrack™ Inflatable Kayak 

465ft FastTrack™ Inflatable Kayak 

Specifications:

  • Material: 1100 Decitex Reinforced
  • Length: 465 centimeters
  • Type: Three-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 3 Persons or 360 kilograms
  • Colors: White and Blue

If speed is an integral part of your family’s canoe trip, you will surely appreciate the 465ft FastTrack™ Inflatable Kayak. This product can accommodate up to three persons. Several experts recommend this family canoe for paddlers who want more speed since its NeedleKnife Keel provides true rigid performance and smoother paddling experience.

With the 465ft FastTrack™ Inflatable Kayak, you don’t have to worry about durability since it has a state-of-the-art, patented, and professionally-designed 1100 Decitex Reinforced materials that can carry up to 360 kilograms. Besides that, you can easily transport the 1100 Decitex Reinforced since it only weighs 35 pounds. It means that you can pack this canoe inside your bag and will only take a small space.

With 465ft FastTrack™ Inflatable Kayak’s high performance, breakthrough design, stow-able portability, and ultra-lightweight, you can guarantee that your family will have the most exciting canoe adventure several years.

ProsCons
Faster speed than other recreational canoes
Not the best for first-time paddlers
Innovative design and durability
Massive yet lightweight
Easy to maneuver

#5. 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak

420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak

Specifications:

  • Material: 1100 Decitex Reinforced
  • Length: 427 centimeters
  • Type: Three-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 3 Person or 388 kilograms
  • Colors: Black and Blue

Spacious, versatile, and super stable, the 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak is a top-rated all-around family canoe. Suppose your family loves recreational paddling, camping, and catching fish, you should purchase this Sea Eagle model. With its 388-kilogram capacity, you can include cooler, dry storage containers, and fishing rod holders during your water adventure.

Designed with a premium-quality shallow arch hull shape, paddlers can guarantee that the 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak can perform well with optimal stability and tracking.

Over time, everyone knows that vessels likely encounter solid materials and hard surfaces underwater. It would be a hassle and disastrous if your hull got damaged since it would then sink your canoe. But with the 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak, you can rely on its robust 1100 Decitex Reinforced materials. Your family members can assure many years of canoe adventures with this versatile canoe.

Plus, the 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak is a solid performer, too. Thanks to its stabilizing chine system, several customers reported that this vessel moves smoothly even in hard to maneuver situations.

ProsCons
Ideal for fishing, touring, camping, adventuringOne-way air valve
Stable and comfortable to use
26 D-rings that secure seats
Easy to transport

#6. Sun Dolphin Mackinaw 15.6ft Canoe 

Sun Dolphin Mackinaw 15.6ft Canoe

Specifications:

  • Material: Polyethylene
  • Length: 187.5 inches
  • Type: Three-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 3 Persons or 360 kilograms
  • Colors: Navy Blue

The Sun Dolphin Mackinaw 15.6ft Canoe is one of the most robust vessels that can accommodate two adults and one to four kids. With its 360-kilogram capacity, the manufacturer tends to outdo themselves with the Mackinaw’s quality. However, it is crucial not to overload this vessel since it usually leads to poor stability and other disastrous results.

If your family is looking for a long-lasting and top-quality addition to your camping gear, you should not hesitate with the Sun Dolphin Mackinaw 15.6ft Canoe. Thanks to its high-density polyethylene, you can assure that it can still perform impressively in rough waters.

Furthermore, you will appreciate the vessel’s storage compartment, where you can store your favorite snacks and beverages. Keep in mind that this canoe weighs slightly more substantial due to its heavy-duty materials. Plus, it requires at least two people to carry it to the water.

On the downside, this vessel does not have backrests, which may lead to additional strain while you are paddling. Users should mainly rely on themselves for extra support.

ProsCons
Drink holders attached on every seat
Seats have no backrests
Spacious storage compartments
Built-in transport handles
Durable construction

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#7. BRIS 15.4Ft Inflatable Kayak 

BRIS 15.4Ft Inflatable Kayak

Specifications:

  • Material: 1,100 Denier PVC
  • Length: 184.8 inches
  • Type: Three-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 3 Persons or 360 kilograms
  • Colors: White

The BRIS 15.4Ft Inflatable Kayak should be your number one choice if your family prefers a stylish, easy-to-transport, and robust canoe. You will not have a hard time carrying this vessel for long travels since it does not take much room on your compartment. You can even have plenty of space to carry other camping essentials.

Since the BRIS 15.4Ft Inflatable Kayak comes with 1,100 Denier PVC, your family can expect that it is one of the lightest canoes in today’s market.

Furthermore, the 1,000 Denier PVC materials help the inflatable kayak to have excellent resistance to tension, breaking and tearing. Plus, the large diameter 17.5-inch tube design provides enhanced stability and buoyancy. Regarding the seams, everything has been heat-welded to guarantee its long-lasting quality in saltwater, freshwater, and humidity.

The BRIS 15.4Ft Inflatable Kayak can surely give you the best value for money since its high-pressure inflatable deck floor can withstand several jumps, and its two air chambers make the vessel safer.

ProsCons
Excellent buoyancy and stabilityPaddles need extra length
Durable PVC construction
Resistant to tension
Unique design

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#8. Sun Dolphin Scout Elite SS 

Sun Dolphin Scout Elite SS

Specifications:

  • Material: UV-stabilized Fortiflex polyethylene hull
  • Length: 168 inches
  • Type: Square-Backed Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 3 Persons or 360 kilograms
  • Colors: Navy

The Sun Dolphin Scout Elite SS have been designed for both fishing and recreational use. It features a robust storage compartment and a built-in cooler under the center sea. Suppose your family wants better performance, you can install an electric trolling motor at the back.

Since the Sun Dolphin Scout Elite SS is a three-seater canoe, this vessel can accommodate up to two adults and two kids. Its tumblehome side shape and shallow arch hull will help you and your loved ones glide smoothly through the water while maintaining excellent stability.

Besides that, this canoe features a robust and rugged UV-stabilized Fortiflex polyethylene that can maintain your vessel’s high quality.

ProsCons
Suitable for adventuring, camping, and fishingLow-quality stern handle
Durable PVC construction
Stable, durable, and sturdy
Molded-in seats

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#9. KL Industries Waterquest Scout 14-Feet Canoe

KL Industries Waterquest Scout 14-Feet Canoe

Specifications:

  • Material: Durable High-Density Polyethylene hull
  • Length: 186 inches
  • Type: Three-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 3 Persons or 360 kilograms
  • Colors: Green

The KL Industries Waterquest Scout 14-Feet Canoe is a stable 186-inch polyethylene canoe suitable for slow-moving rivers lakes, and calm bays. Its construction allows paddlers to add a trolling motor for better performance. Since it can accommodate up to 360 kilograms, two adults and three kids can enjoy this large vessel. Plus, you can carry other essentials that you will need while navigating the waters.

With the KL Industries Waterquest Scout 14-Feet Canoe, you can enjoy better stability and tracking than the other products listed here. Regarding the construction, the canoe’s multi-chined shallow arch hull helps users to paddle and track effortlessly. Its high-density polyethylene can also withstand any tension and tear.

ProsCons
Drink holders attached on each seat
Slightly difficult to maneuver than other models
Optimal stability and tracking
Comfortable molded seats
Durable construction

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#10. Old Town Canoes & Kayaks Saranac 160 Recreational Family Canoe 

Old Town Canoes & Kayaks Saranac 160 Recreational Family Canoe

Specifications:

  • Material: Roto-molded polyethylene hull
  • Length: 192 inches
  • Type: Three-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 3 Persons or 340 kilograms
  • Colors: Red

The Old Town Canoes & Kayaks Saranac 160 Recreational Family Canoe is a more compact vessel that can be a value choice if your family wants extra comfort. With this model, you can sit snugly on the contoured stern and bow seats. Plus, you will enjoy its adjustable backrests so you and your loved ones can have added support.

Getting out on the water with the Old Town Saranac 160 Recreational Family Canoe is an excellent choice since it is a very stable craft with plenty of room. However, the manufacturer claims that the seats are better for small passengers so they can double their spaces as storage compartments for foods and other valuables.

Over the years, Old Town has developed different canoe models with long-lasting craftsmanship. With this brand, you can assure that your family can stick to one robust canoe for several years.

ProsCons
Comfortable seatsAvailable in red only
Built-in fishing rod holders
Storage compartments
Superior durability

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#11. Old Town Guide 147 Recreational Canoe 

Old Town Guide 147 Recreational Canoe

Specifications:

  • Material: Roto-molded polyethylene hull
  • Length: 182 inches
  • Type: Two-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: 2 Persons or 408 kilograms
  • Colors: Red

Are you looking for a premium-quality family canoe with a lifetime warranty? The Old Town Guide 147 Recreational Canoe is the best option since its manufacturer offers unlimited assistance to you and your vessel. Plus, its roto-molded polyethylene hull is robust enough to provide several years of worry-free paddling.

Several customers recommend this model since its stabilizing chines and cross-section enhance durability and stability, making the Old Town Guide 147 Recreational Canoe easy to maneuver.

With this model, Old Town has spent several months in innovating its construction. Thus, your family can use this recreational canoe for family outings and different water activities, such as sea kayaking, canoe tripping, and fishing. You will not have a hard time carrying this vessel around since its solid ash center yoke offers a comfortable two-person portaging.

ProsCons
Comfortable seats and adjustable backrests
Does not offer the best speed
Durable, versatile, and stiff
Lifetime warranty
Easy to maneuver

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#12. Intex Excursion 5 Person Inflatable Boat Set

Esquif Mallard Square Stern Canoe

Specifications:

  • Material: Puncture-resistant PVC vinyl
  • Length: 144 inches
  • Type: Five-Person Family Canoe
  • Capacity: Five Person or 360 kilograms
  • Colors: Blue and Gray

Last on the list is the Intex Excursion 5 Person Inflatable Boat Set ideal for families who prefer larger spaces. According to the manufacturer, this vessel can accommodate up to five persons or three adults and three kids. Despite its high capacity, you can still store it easily at your car’s compartment.

Since this model has been designed with puncture-resistant and heavy-duty PVC vinyl, it can withstand every tension or excursion your family goes on. It also offers two seats with comfortable backrests and one middle seat for kids. One of the best features of the Intex Excursion 5 Person Inflatable Boat Set is making the vessel more stable whenever the users have high pressure.

ProsCons
Ideal for beginners to intermediate surfersSmall production runs
Durable and river-specific board
Looks like a high-end model
X-Density EPS Foam Core
Inexpensive soft board

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Our Favorite Family Canoe – Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16

Overall, the Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16 is the smartest option for family canoeing. With this vessel, you can guarantee the best buoyancy, speed, maneuverability, stability, and comfort. Besides that, its full-length flat surface area creates a better life and reduces drag. This incredible canoe is also 33% lighter than most of the traditional vessels with the same class.

Because of the Sea Eagle Inflatable TC16’s excellent design, nervous riders or canoeing beginners can explore the water with more confidence. Plus, its 1100 Decitex Reinforced has been tested by several expert canoeists. Such material offers the smoothest and most comfortable experience on the water without spending too much.


Best Family Canoe Brands

Sea Eagle

Family canoes from Sea Eagle are incredibly versatile, durable, and affordable. Several customers choose to buy from this brand since they make all-around kayaks suitable for fishing, canoeing, or floating around the river. You will never feel disappointed with Sea Eagle since this shop offers many recreational-level options.

Since Sea Eagle is an American company, you can guarantee that the canoe built can withstand harsh conditions. You can take these vessels on rivers, lakes, or even on the ocean without worrying abbot sinking or popping.

Sun Dolphin

The good thing about Sun Dolphin is it builds high-quality and beginner-friendly canoes at a very reasonable price. These advantages make it easier for people with tight budgets to enjoy water adventures without worrying about quality. If you are looking for high-performing family canoes, you have to consider this brand.

Old Town

Old Town became known for its excellent craftsmanship and affordable vessels with an average price of $500. Most canoes that you will see from this manufacturer are lightweight and easy to transport. You can also access a wide variety of materials and choose the one that suits your budget.

You can guarantee that Old Town is a reliable brand since it designs their boats with comfortable seats, convenient hatches, paddle holders, carrying handles, and storage areas.


Features to Look for When Buying a Family Canoe

The right canoe depends on how many members will use it and what adventures you will take. Below are some of the essential features that you need to double-check before settling with a particular vessel:

Size

When purchasing a family canoe, make sure that it can accommodate your family and valuables. You may also check the weight to ensure that the users will not have a hard time carrying or transporting it.

Stability

Stability is crucial at family canoes since it provides a smoother and easier paddling experience. If you want better balance, go for broader and flat-bottom vessels.

Quality

Make sure to choose a canoe with long-lasting and high-quality materials. Manufacturers like Sea Eagle, Old Town, and Sun Dolphin have excellent reputations in delivering safe and robust boats.

Material

The best family canoes come with sturdy hull materials that can resist tear, bang, or abrasion. You may choose high-density polyethylene vessels since this material can withstand harsh conditions and do not cut or scratch easily.

Weight Capacity

You should go for a canoe that can accommodate your whole family’s weight. If you purchase a vessel with low weight capacity, you might experience a difficult time handling and maneuvering it. Plus, the boat might tip over, which is disastrous.

Before settling with a family canoe, calculate the total weight of all family members to guarantee that your purchased kayak can accommodate all.


Conclusion

Gliding swiftly across calm rivers and mild lakes require a robust and premium-quality canoe. Since this water adventure should be fun and easy, you have to choose the boat that can withstand any harsh conditions.

Suppose you want your family to remain worry-free and confident on the water, you have to purchase canoes from the trusted brands, such as Sea Eagle, Sun Dolphin, Old Town, and Intex. The said companies have decades of experience developing safe and sturdy kayaks or canoes that your family can use for adventuring, paddling, birding, and fishing. Because the products here are so stable, they will remain steady and not move quickly.


FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q: Is there an age restriction for canoeing?

A: No, there is no age restriction for canoeing. All you need is a correctly fitted life jacket, and the kids should be old enough to wear PFDs. 

Q: Is PFD required in family canoeing?

A: Yes, all members should wear PFD, regardless if you are young or not. It is also essential to ensure that it has an excellent fit and Coast Guard approved.

Q: What is the best canoe for beginners?

A: Beginners should go for more full canoes since they are more stable and safer. Do not choose cheaper models since they are less durable, which is not suitable for first-time canoeists. As a beginner, you are likely to experience many bangs and knocks. Thus, go for trusted brands like Sea Eagle and Old Town. 

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