ContentsQUICK ANSWER – THE BEST FISHING KAYAKSFISHING KAYAKS REVIEWSSUN DOLPHIN BALI SSSUN DOLPHIN ARUBA SSRIOT KAYAKS ESCAPE 9SUN DOLPHIN EXCURSIONSEA EAGLE 330SEA EAGLE 420XOCEAN KAYAK FRENZYOCEAN KAYAK PROWLERPERCEPTION PESCADOR PROWILDERNESS SYSTEMS TARPONOLD TOWN LOON ANGLERVIBE KAYAKS SKIPJACKLIFETIME SPORT FISHERSUN DOLPHIN JOURNEYPERCEPTION PERSCADOR PILOTCOMPARISON TABLE – THE BEST FISHING KAYAKSHOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST FISHING KAYAKSSIT IN OR SIT ON TOP?PEDALSSEATSTORAGEWEIGHT AND LENGTHFISHING LOCATIONCAPACITY & PERSONS A fishing kayak can provide not only an enjoyable pastime but also bring in many meals. The best fishing kayak for your needs will encourage and motivate you to use it regularly, kayak in comfort and give you plenty of storage options. A fishing kayak should be considered an investment that can bring about great returns if you are fortunate to fish in the right locations! It’s important not to rush out and buy the first one you find on sale – there are a number of considerations each person should take into account when choosing a boat. You need to know what features in a kayak are important to fishing. And that’s why The Adventure Junkies is here to help. Our guide will tell you everything you need to know about purchasing a fishing kayak as well as show you the best models of the year. For more of out top kayaking gear recommendations, check out these popular articles: Sea Kayaks | Sit on Top | Tandem | Canoes | Inflatable Kayaks Paddles | Seats | PFDs | Dry Bags | Anchors | GPS Wetsuits | Drysuits | Gloves | Shoes Fishing Kayaks | Rods | Reels | Rod Holders | Fish Finders SUPs | Inflatable SUPs | Paddles cloud-downloadCLICK HERE to Download our FREE Quick Starter Guide to Kayaking. Photo by istockphoto.com/portfolio/teodorapopaPhoto by istockphoto.com/portfolio/marchello74 QUICK ANSWER – THE BEST FISHING KAYAKS Sun Dolphin Bali SS Sun Dolphin Aruba SS Riot Kayaks Escape 9 Sun Dolphin Excursion Sea Eagle 330 Sea Eagle 420x Ocean Kayak Frenzy Ocean Kayak Prowler Perception Pescador Pro Wilderness Systems Tarpon Old Town Loon Angler Vibe Kayaks Skipjack Lifetime Sport Fisher Sun Dolphin Journey Perception Pescador Pilot FISHING KAYAKS REVIEWS SUN DOLPHIN BALI SS Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Flatwater LENGTH: 10 ft CAPACITY: 250 lbs. FEATURES: Dry storage compartment, protective thigh pads, adjustable foot braces, comes with a portable accessory holder PROS: Quick draining, tracks well, lightweight to carry CONS: No fishing rod holders SUN DOLPHIN ARUBA SS Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Flatwater LENGTH: 8 ft CAPACITY: 260 lbs. FEATURES: Adjustable padded seat, storage compartment, recessed drink holder PROS: Plenty of leg room, good entry level fishing kayak, lightweight CONS: Seating not particularly comfortable, very small storage hatch RIOT KAYAKS ESCAPE 9 Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Flatwater LENGTH: 9 ft CAPACITY: 300 lbs. FEATURES: Drain holes, hatch, drain plug, footrests, cord storage PROS: Tracks well, agile kayak, best for flatwater but works in the surf too CONS: Not enough storage space for serious fishers SUN DOLPHIN EXCURSION Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Flatwater LENGTH: 10 ft CAPACITY: 250 lbs. FEATURES: Rear deck storage, two flush-mount fishing rod holders, one centre swivel holder, adjustable footrests, water bottle holder PROS: Lightweight, stable, padded seat, manoeuvrable CONS: Could do with more compartments and storage, paddle comes separately SEA EAGLE 330 Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Up to Class III rapids LENGTH: 11 ft CAPACITY: 500 lbs. FEATURES: Inflatable spray skirts, self-bailing drain valve PROS: Packs down well but has plenty of space to store camping or fishing gear CONS: No bungy cords attached, a little heavy to carry SEA EAGLE 420X Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Up to Class IV rapids LENGTH: 14 ft CAPACITY: 855 lbs. FEATURES: Four convertible drains, front and rear rope lacing PROS: Big enough to carry large fish, holds up to three adults, extremely durable CONS: You won’t win any paddling races with this one OCEAN KAYAK FRENZY Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Surf, recreational LENGTH: 9 ft CAPACITY: 325 lbs. FEATURES: Stern tank well with removable bungees, bow and stern carry handles, cup-holder, side handles, bow deck bungee PROS: Stable, playful enough for the surf, versatile for different paddlers from children to adults CONS: Might need to buy scupper plugs to prevent water coming in, no compartments or holds for fishing rods OCEAN KAYAK PROWLER Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Serious fishing LENGTH: 13 ft CAPACITY: 475 lbs. FEATURES: Large front hatch, bow and stern internal storage, two rod holders, cup holders, paddle keeps, skid plate, oversized tank well for fishing gear and even SCUBA tanks PROS: Excellent fishing kayak with plenty of storage space for all fishing gear, designed with fishing in mind, tracks well CONS: Length of this kayak can make her difficult to manoeuvre, water pools around the footwell PERCEPTION PESCADOR PRO Check out the latest price on: Amazon | REI BEST FOR: Flat water, serious fishing LENGTH: 10 ft 6 in CAPACITY: 325 lbs. FEATURES: Stern and bow tank well, bungee cords, rod holders, cup holder, adjustable foot braces, carry handles PROS: Designed for fishing, plenty of space for fishing gear and fishing rods, good stability and manoeuvrability CONS: Storage areas not easily accessible while out paddling WILDERNESS SYSTEMS TARPON Check out the latest price on: Amazon | REI BEST FOR: Any kayaking activity which requires lots of space to carry gear LENGTH: 12 ft 3 in CAPACITY: 350 lbs. FEATURES: Self-bailing hull, bow and centre dry hatch storage, shock cords for stern storage PROS: Lots of storage space, good tracking, can handle swell and wind CONS: Can be slow once filled with gear OLD TOWN LOON ANGLER Check out the latest price on: Amazon | REI BEST FOR: Anglers, flatwater LENGTH: 10 ft 6 in CAPACITY: 325 lbs. FEATURES: USB port, removable work deck for fishing or camera gear, premium seat padding, adjustable footbrace system, paddle holders, PROS: USB port a great addition, plenty of space for carrying gear, leg room CONS: Expensive VIBE KAYAKS SKIPJACK Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: All conditions LENGTH: 12 ft 1 in CAPACITY: 500 lbs. FEATURES: Can hold two adults and a child or paddle solo from centre, two covered hatches, two flush-mount rod holders, carry handles, rear storage well with bungee cords PROS: Very stable, good configuration options if you want to go solo or tandem CONS: Tracking not always accurate LIFETIME SPORT FISHER Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: All conditions LENGTH: 10 ft CAPACITY: 500 lbs. FEATURES: Can seat up to three people, multiple footrest positions, three fishing rod holders, 6″ storage hatch PROS: Good stability, lightweight to carry, can fish standing up, several paddle clips and other accessories ideal for organising and carrying fishing gear CONS: Small for a tandem kayak, may need a rudder to improve tracking SUN DOLPHIN JOURNEY Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Flatwater LENGTH: 10 ft CAPACITY: 250 lbs. FEATURES: Three fishing rod holders, portable accessory carrier, dry storage compartment, shock cord rigging, adjustable footrests, paddle holder PROS: Good amount of storage CONS: May need rudder to improve tracking PERCEPTION PERSCADOR PILOT Check out the latest price on: Amazon | REI BEST FOR: Peddle propulsion LENGTH: 12 ft 5 in CAPACITY: 525 lbs. FEATURES: Peddle propulsion, moulded tank well and storage compartments with bow, centre and stern dry storage hatches, fishing rod holders, PROS: Peddle propulsion allows travel to longer distances, good storage options for fishing gear, stable enough to stand and fish CONS: Despite efforts to keep peddling quiet, can still be quite noisy COMPARISON TABLE – THE BEST FISHING KAYAKS PICTUREKAYAKBEST FORTYPENO. PERSONSLENGTHPRICERATING PICTUREKAYAKBEST FORTYPENO. PERSONSLENGTHPRICERATING Sun Dolphin Bali SSUnder $400Sit On Top 110ft $4.1 Sun Dolphin Aruba SSUnder $400Sit In18ft$4.3 Riot Kayaks Escape 9 Under $600Sit On Top19 ft. 29 in$4.1 Sun Dolphin ExcursionUnder $600Sit In110ft $$4.2 Sea Eagle 330 InflatableSit In211ft $4.3 Sea Eagle 420x InflatableSit In2-314 ft$$$4.6 Ocean Kayak Frenzy Ocean Sit On Top19 ft $$4.7 Ocean Kayak ProwlerOcean Sit On Top113 ft$$$4.5 Perception Pescador Pro RiverSit On Top110 ft. 6 in$$4.6 Wilderness Systems Tarpon RiverSit On Top112 ft. 3 in$$$4.8 Old Town Loon AnglerRiverSit In 110 ft. 6 in$$$5 Vibe Kayaks SkipjackTandem Sit On Top212ft. 1in$$$4.6 Lifetime Sport FisherTandemSit On Top210 ft$$4.5 Sun Dolphin JourneySit On TopSit On Top110 ft$4.6 Perception Pescador PilotSit On TopSit On Top112 ft. 5 in.$$$5 Gear up for kayaking, without breaking the bankGet the Latest Deals on Kayaking GearSent right to your inbox...GEAR UP FOR KAYAKING HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST FISHING KAYAKS SIT IN OR SIT ON TOP? Fishing kayaks come in different designs to hold the paddler, some of them are ‘open’ where you sit on top of the deck while other kayaks have a hole where the paddler sits in, often with a spray skirt to keep out the water. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. Sit on top kayaks offer much greater maneuverability which is important when reeling in fish. However, they can let in a lot of water, while the sit-in varieties keep a lot of water out of the kayak. Sit on top kayaks offer much easier access to gear and tend to be more stable. But they can expose your gear to the elements, unlike the sit-in. Sit-in kayaks are typically better for more seasoned paddlers who prefer the control, as well as providing more dry storage options. PEDALS Pedals or paddles? We’re seeing more peddle-driven models these days as they can be less tiring than paddling. However peddle models will be more expensive. Paddling offers the best control – but having peddles and a paddle gives you flexibility in all surroundings. SEAT Some seats can turn even the most successful day fishing to a day you can’t wait to end, thanks to a sore back and achy behind from an uncomfortable seat. The seat is one of the most important parts of a fishing kayak when it comes to comfort. You need your back to be appropriately supported, especially if you are paddling long distances, so opt for something that is comfortable or you’ll dread heading back out on the water. STORAGE Kayak fishing requires plenty of storage options on the kayak to store and keep all your gear and equipment. There is a limit on how much you can take on the water but having decent storage for your most important items is an important factor to consider. You’ll need to make sure you have a dry-hatch somewhere on the kayak so you can store those items you can’t allow to get wet or need protection from the elements. WEIGHT AND LENGTH The weight and length of a fishing kayak can play a big role in stability and ease of paddling. Typically, a long, narrow kayak will be fast while a shorter, wide kayak will be slower, but offers more stability. Beginner kayak fishers should opt for something that is smaller and more stable as they get to learn the art. You’ll also want to consider the weight of your kayak – the heavier it is, the harder it will be to lug around to your fishing destination. If it is a heavy kayak, you may need to consider some kind of trolley that can wheel your kayak to and from the car. FISHING LOCATION Where do you plan to kayak? In the ocean or out on the lakes? In calm waters or in the surf? These will all play a role in the type of fishing kayak you will purchase. Rough conditions on the sea will need something stable but that can also cut through surf and obstacles. Maneuverability is key. Smaller, sit on top kayaks are a better option for still water such as lakes. CAPACITY & PERSONS Do you plan on fishing by yourself or taking a buddy, or maybe a family member? You will need to consider if you are happy with a kayak with capacity for just one person, or two. KAYAKING RESOURCESTABLE OF CONTENTSKAYAKINGTABLE OF CONTENTS 1. BASICS 5. KAYAK SAFETY 2. KAYAK SKILLS 6. DESTINATIONS 3. KAYAKING GEAR 7. KAYAK FISHING 4. KAYAK CLOTHES 8. SUP 1. BASICS 2. KAYAK SKILLS 3. KAYAK GEAR 4. KAYAK CLOTHES 5. KAYAK SAFETY 6. DESTINATIONS 7. KAYAK FISHING 8. SUP Disclosure: The Adventure Junkies is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost for you. We also use other affiliate programs like REI, LeisurePro, Diviac and Liveaboard.com.