Top 8 Best Lake Kayaks | 2023 Review (Intex)

Last Updated January 27, 2023
With the growing popularity of going outdoors and enjoying on-water activities, many products are built to appeal to the different pursuits of what people want to do. Kayaking has become the outdoor sport for thrill-seekers and offers interest in getting into a fitness lifestyle.

Lakes are one of the best places to start kayaking because they are usually calmer, slow, and easy to get around. If you are only looking to explore nature by coursing the waters, lake kayaking will suit you. Lake kayaks are usually used for touring or leisure boat riding with friends or family. There are those made well for longer hours on the trip and those for shorter ones. Make sure you choose a safe and comfortable boat to let you enjoy the lake of your choice.

Top 8 Best Lake Kayaks Reviewed

  1. Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump – Best Overall
  2. ADVANCED ELEMENTS AdvancedFrame Inflatable Kayak – Best Value
  3. Sevylor Quikpak K5 1-Person Kayak – Editor’s Choice
  4. Ocean Kayak Malibu Two Tandem Sit-On-Top Recreational Kayak
  5. SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Aruba SS 8-Foot Sit-in Kayak
  6. Perception Sound 9.5 Sit Inside Kayak for Fishing and Fun
  7. Wilderness Systems Aspire 105 Sit Inside Recreational Kayak
  8.  Emotion Spitfire Sit-On-Top Kayak

#1. Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump – Best Overall

Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump

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  • Length: 11.2 in. 
  • Material: Synthetic
  • Type: Sit-on-top
  • Weight: 26 lbs. 
  • Person capacity: 2

Intex Explorer K2 has been tested to do great on over more than ten lake visits. It is also pretty good on river trips. This one is a good fit for you if you are looking to learn kayaking while exploring the outdoors. It can also handle rocky bottoms even on turbulent waters to not worry about shifting into a more challenging one. This boat will collapse small enough to fit in the trunk of your car as well. It is a wide boat also, which means you will have enough room to move around. Not only is it strong and stable, but you must be against metal for it to be a puncture. It will hold well on to mild rapids and choppy waters. Its skeg is also easy to install. If you are on a budget, then this one is a good buy because it is inexpensive.

Easy set-upLoose seat straps

#2. ADVANCED ELEMENTS AdvancedFrame Inflatable Kayak – Best Value

ADVANCED ELEMENTS AdvancedFrame Inflatable Kayak

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  • Length: 10 ft.
  • Material: Heavy-duty puncture-resistant vinyl
  • Type: Two-persons sit-on
  • Weight: 30.6 lbs.
  • Person capacity: 2

AdvancedFrame is a hybrid of a folding frame and an inflatable kayak. It utilizes its built-in aluminum ribs located in the bow and stern, allowing it to slice through water like a knife and rivals tracking hard-shell kayaks. The stern acts as a skeg that increases the tracking performance. You will have no problem setting this one up and attaching the seats that provide comfort for hours. You can also bring this with you for an adventure as it is compact enough for the trunk of your car. This kayak has plenty of on-board storage for your gears, food, and other stuff. It also has extra rings and paddle loops. You can also use this one for fishing trips because it is easy to cast from the boat. It can cut through the waters well and have comfortable seats.

Easy to transportNon-drop stitch floor

#3. Sevylor Quikpak K5 1-Person Kayak – Editor’s Choice

Sevylor Quikpak K5 1-Person Kayak , Gray

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  • Length: 9 ft.
  • Material: PVC construction
  • Type: Sit-on-top
  • Weight: 16.5 lbs. 
  • Person capacity: 1

Sevylor Quikpak K1 will make you hit the waters right away with its 5-minute set-up and easy-to-carry backpack system, which folds into your seat. It will be easy for you to pack and unpack this product. It is easy to inflate and deflate. This product will easily handle the lake’s rigors because of its 21-gauge PVC construction and rugged tarpaulin at the bottom. Its backrest and multiple-position footrest will make your water explorations more comfortable. It also comes with a drink holder and bungee storage area to keep your gears readily accessible for you. When you are in the water, you will find more comfort in paddling because it allows more room for you to stretch your legs, back, and arms with ease. It has a three-chamber that keeps the boat shape on the water solid. Offering added security. 

Comfortable seatsPaddles are flimsy
Easy to set-upLacks storage

#4. Ocean Kayak Malibu Two Tandem Sit-On-Top Recreational Kayak

Ocean Kayak Malibu Two Tandem Sit-On-Top Recreational Kayak

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  • Length: 11.5 ft. 
  • Material: Single Layer Polyethylene
  • Type: Sit-on-top
  • Weight: 59 lbs. 
  • Person capacity: 1

Ocean Kayak Malibu will let you enjoy the sun with a friend or a furry companion thanks to its three seating positions that support solo, tandem, or with a child or a pet of yours. Perfect for affordable family adventures. Its comfort plus seats provide four-way adjustability, well-fitted, and great slip prevention. Patented overlapping footwells allow for paddlers to settle in comfortably while bracing their feet. It is also easy to get in and out of the kayak. The boat’s design provides a stable platform, a versatile deck, and a hill that tracks good, which also helps handle the wind. You can also utilize this for fishing as there is ample deck space to stage your rods and hold gears. If you have pets, extra loops used for other seat configurations work well to attach the pet beds and hold it in place.

Family-friendlyLack of storage
Good trackingHeavy
Very stable

#5. SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Aruba SS 8-Foot Sit-in Kayak

SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Aruba SS 8-Foot Sit-in Kayak

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  • Length: 10 ft. 
  • Material: High-density polyethylene
  • Type: Sit-in
  • Weight: 44 lbs. 
  • Person capacity: 1

Sun Dolphin Aruba SS is the perfect lake kayak for your next adventure. This boat is great for recreational use on the lake or river. One of its features is that it is lightweight, easy to carry, and has an open cockpit for easy entry and exit. Well-incorporated to the kaya is storage for your items, whether it is a long or short trip. It also has adjustable foot braces and a large seating area to keep you comfortable. You can also get to those excluded fishing spots in this one. This kayak tracks and paddles with ease while offering maximum stability and for easy transport. It is also great looking, which makes it perfect for a picture. If you are on a budget, this will be worth the money since it also tracks well, comfortable, rod holders are perfectly placed, and large space to get in-and-out.

LightweightUncomfortable seats
Very stableLacks legroom
Good value

#6. Perception Sound 9.5 Sit Inside Kayak for Fishing and Fun 

Perception Sound 9.5 Sit Inside Kayak for Fishing and Fun

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  • Length: 10 ft. 
  • Material: Rotomolded polyethylene
  • Type: Sit-in
  • Weight: 38 lbs. 
  • Person capacity: 1

Perception Sound 9.5 is the best value in sit-inside kayak fishing and great for general recreational use. This boat is built to explore quiet, slow-moving waters, making it perfect for you if you seek a chill outdoor trip. It is the perfect introduction to kayaking if you are looking for a beginner-friendly. It also makes paddling and fishing easy with its combo of comfort, features, and lightweight portability. The tri-keel hull was made for ultimate stability and smooth steering for you to track well on course with less effort. When you purchase one of these, you also get a dashboard with mounting points for accessories, two molded-in holders, and a spacious storage area with a bungee cord for added security. You will feel safe with the material used for this boat because it is very stable on the water and good in dealing with the impact.

Comfortable seatsNot good against the wind
Smooth tracking

#7. Wilderness Systems Aspire 105 Sit Inside Recreational Kayak

Wilderness Systems Aspire 105 Sit Inside Recreational Kayak

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  • Length: 11 ft. 
  • Material: Rotomolded polyethylene
  • Type: Sit-in
  • Weight: 48 lbs. 
  • Person capacity: 1

Aspire 105 is a high-performance sit-inside recreational kayak designed for the beginner to intermediate paddler looking to expand beyond flat-water. Its versatility combines easy handling and maneuvering with great stability. If you prefer the slow, moving water, then this kayak is a good choice. You will not worry about storage as it comes with a convenient dashboard to keep smaller gears close to you for easy access, and a good space for drinks, snacks, phones, and other personal belongings. It boasts about one of the most comfortable kayak seats out there, which is fully adjustable brought by their Phase 3 AirPro Seating, allowing for greater airflow to you cool while supporting your lower back. This boat is an excellent choice for you since it also has great stability and good straight tracking. You will also have no problem entering and exiting.

Super comfortable seatsHeavy
Straight trackingSlow
Greatly stable

#8. Emotion Spitfire Sit-On-Top Kayak

Emotion Spitfire Sit-On-Top Kayak

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  • Length: 5 ft.
  • Material: Polyethylene Plastic
  • Type: Sit-On-Top
  • Weight: 45 lbs.
  • Person capacity: 1

Emotion Spitfire is a nice sit-on-top kayak. This boat has built-in padded CRS with UltraLite seat, a rear tank well with cargo net lacing to store your gears, and another storage hatch beneath the deck when you want to bring food, tools, or other personal stuff. Another good feature of this boat is the molded-in paddle keepers, and side carry handles and freedom footwell for comfort and secure bracing. You will not worry about water getting in because it has a self-bailing scupper hole for draining. This kayak also has a hull design that provides great tracking and ultra-stability, which will be great on rocky bottoms other than comfort. This boat can handle choppy waters, and you can use this for longer trips. You will also have easy access to getting in-and-out. Available to you also are the various footrest where you can change positions.

Comfortable seatsToo wide
Easy to maneuver

Top pick – Best Lake Kayaks 2020

Intex Explorer K2 will suit you well for its sporty and fun plus streamlined design for easy paddling. It is a bright yellow color, and sporty graphics will make your kayak highly visible in the water, a good safety feature. If you are just new to the kayaking trend, this one is a good start for experiencing lakes and mild rivers either with a friend, kid, or pet. This Sports Series kayak is perfect for two adults. You will find this boat to be a snap to assemble because it is lightweight and company, which will allow you to take the fun of kayaking whenever and wherever you go. 

This sturdy kayak, having been made with vinyl construction, has an inflatable I-beam floor for comfort and rigidity plus a removable skeg that will provide you directional stability. There are also two adjustable, inflatable seats with backrests included for your maximum comfort. This kayak is also worth your money as it comes with a repair patch kit, enough storage to fit your personal belongings, another area for carrying your gears, tools, and paddles. It is also a breeze to set this up if you want to maximize enjoying your trips.

Best Lake Kayaks Brands


Intex is the company that centers its products around quality, values, and family time. You probably heard this brand name from airbeds, ground pools, spas, toys, and furniture, but they have been producing boats and other outdoor equipment. You will be amazed at their goods’ affordability with the highest quality that is mainly designed for comfort, safety, and fun. They also have an amazing customer service to help you purchase their products, which values your input. This company started with an inflatable beach ball but has made its products known for its excellence. Over the years, the company has ventured into water sports. Its inflatable kayak line will meet your expectations regarding the value, safety, price, and overall experience. Its kayak boats consist of 3 entry-level models that are good if you are a beginner interested in recreational paddling. 

Advanced Elements

One of this company’s goals is to develop new and unique paddle sports products to enhance their customers’ outdoor experience, which is why you will not be surprised about the quality of their inflatable kayaks because they are sure to deliver. They focus on designing and manufacturing their inflatable kayas with the use of cutting-edge technology. Deep-rooted in their product development is striving to better their inflatable kayaks, iSUPs, and paddle sports accessories. You will get what you deserve because all their products have been made to give you the tools you need in paddling. Their kayaks are built to ensure you the best experience possible. They also have a passionate focus on customer support because they think that your feedback will allow them to excel and continue to grow over time. You will notice their kayaks have good materials for durability and stability.

Ocean Kayak

The history of Ocean Kayak dates to 1971 when the founder took an old surfboard and carved out two places where one could sit in and another for his scuba gear. It all started because of a passion for scuba diving. If you want a brand with a good reputation in terms of water sports, consider them. The company got a lot of inquiries, so they started looking at ways to mass-produce their kayaks. When you purchase one of their boats, you will probably come across the word rotomolding because this is the process that allowed them to make a tougher, practically indestructible kayak at an affordable price. You will not regret checking this brand for premium kayaks because theirs is sturdy and durable. Word has spread how much fun their boats are since then. They have been one of the biggest manufacturers of sit-on-top kayaks. 

How to Choose the Best Lake Kayak


Determine what kind of experience you want to achieve. Lake kayaking is a good start for beginners who wants to explore the activity, but if you are just looking to tour, that is a different type of kayaking. Ask yourself if you want something fast or slow. Some kayaks will maximize your experience, depending on how they are built, so choose well. 


It can be a sit-in or a sit-on-top kayak you are looking for. It may as well be a hybrid one. All have its advantage and disadvantages, but this will tackle the first two only as they are common. Go for the sit-in type if you want to have adventures and long travels, and one that offers good stability. Choose a sit-on-top if you just want to have a leisure activity with or without someone.

Person capacity

This one is a personal preference of yours. You can choose a solo kayak or if you want to bring a friend, family, or pet, then get a 2-person kayak. Make sure it is spacious, though, and can hold the weight of 2.


You will always bring valuables with you, including important gears, tools, and repair kit, so it is necessary to check if the kayak has plenty of storage or even has one. If you plan to go on longer journeys, choose a kayak with a good storage area. It is a plus if it comes with a bottle holder. There should also be a place where you can put your paddles and bungee straps for securing your belongings. If you intend to go fishing, then get yourself a boat with good storage or one that is wide enough.


Is it durable? Is it easy to set up? Is tracking well? – these make up the quality of your kayak. Of course, you would want a strong material to help you navigate easily and keep you safe. You do not want a boat that would tip a lot on the water. It is best to check if the quality you seek fits the type of activity you will be going for.


Lake kayaks are amazing for beginners but are also perfect for intermediate paddlers. Since lake kayaks offer different types of usage, it is better to look for those that will properly suit your needs in terms of the experience you want. You will have many choices in choosing the best but what is important is to consider first your safety. Look for lake kayaks that are strong and sturdy with good storage space.

FAQs(Frequently Asked Qestions)

Are lake kayaks good?

They are certainly good for what they are built for, which is the lake. Since lakes are calm waters, it is a great beginning for those who just want to start kayaking and learn it. It is also a good choice for simple explorations like nature touring, fun outdoor activity, or simply enjoying nature. Lake kayaks also tend to have better storage options, which are ideal if you want a long trip. Generally, it is convenient and comfortable in the lakes. 

Is the length important?

Lake kayaks tend to be longer and wider to navigate well in the lake, even on rivers. Length is important because you will know if the maneuverability of the boat is flexible and good. It also says something about the amount of space and storage you will get, so pay attention to it. It also determines your speed and how decent you can turn it while paddling. Longer ones tend to be more stable. Knowing this will help you choose a boat the would also fit your height and overall size.

What are skegs?

Skegs are one of the integral parts of a kayak, as this is useful for good tracking. It is a retractable blade that drops out in the hull of the boat close to the stern. They are a great way to improve your handling of the kayak primarily on windy conditions. It also less prone to collision damage because they are under the kayak but always exercise caution. You will find the sometimes the boat will come with a skeg or a rudder. Both are equally important and have their functions to make the ride smooth for you.

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