Types of Kayaks for Beginners – An Ultimate Guide

Types of Kayaks for Beginners

After a long tackling debate we decided to choose a kayak for our fishing tour. I and one of my College mates were planning to go out for a trip in the coming spring. We had never experienced canoeing. So, there is still a confusing state of finding the best Kayak for us.

Finding the best kayak for your memorable trip is not a simple task but after reading this guide it will be easier to choose a good kayak for you.

Are you guys still wandering to pick out the budget-friendly and comfortable kayak? Stop exploring pages, here is a well-researched guide about types of kayaks for beginners, to choose the best type for your tour.

Keep reading!

What is a Kayak?

Kayak is a sleek kind of canoe that is made up of sealed water-repellent covering in a light frame. It is a man-powered canoe and was initially used by people of the Arctic. There is a small opening on the top to sit in.

The guide will also explain how kayaks can be used. Many people think it is just for fishing but there are some wondering uses of kayak. Yes, you read that right!

Why Do You Need a Kayak?

Kayaks are specially designed for fishing over the placid water. These boats were originally used by Eskimos to prevent ice water enter into it. Most of the Kayaks carry only one person at a time.

Moreover, Kayak also improves the cardiovascular health of a person. Have you ever noticed, how? The complete recreational motion of canoeing elevates the heart which is extremely beneficial for your heart.

It’s a proper adventurous sport which helps your muscles to reduce stress by continuous exercise. By kayaking you can also enjoy the sites where other kinds of boats are not reachable.

But we are not through yet, so let’s jump into the main discussion.

What Are the Different Types of Kayaks for Beginners?

Various kinds of kayaks are designed having different features, advantages, and disadvantages. The choice is up to you. Let’s read this informative section!

1. Sit In Style

If you feel like you want to do paddling around in lakes or rivers having flat water then you must go with this efficient Sit in Kayak. These are best during your long-term tours as they are faster than other sit-on-top kayaks.


  • They are winters friendly because their body covers your legs and keeps them warm while kayaking over long distances.
  • These are Longer, Faster, and more efficient kayaks.
  • Big storage bulkheads for overnight plans.
  • Smaller cockpits offer more control and protective boating


  • Because of its shape and narrowness, sometimes it is difficult to turn.
  • Some of them have just one bulkhead.

2. Sit On Top of Kayaks

Sit-on-top kayaks are highly recommended if you’re planning to fish with your family as they are wider and spacious. It is designed in a way that there is no restriction for jumping out and getting in the back.


  • These are easy to launch and are made in a wide stable style.
  • They have comfortable foam seats.
  • Most of them are having folding seats that can give extra space for photography and fishing during kayaking.


  • Slower than Sit in Style Kayaks
  • You cannot take them to narrow lakes’ sides.
  • Water can get inside easily because of its open style.

3. Recreation Kayaks

Want to know a secret? Recreation kayaks are super stable and comfortable because of their width of 10 to 13 ft. approximately. The most beautiful renovation of the extended cockpit looks very nicer if you launch it on the beach.

Moreover, this type of kayak offers a quick drainage system.


  • Large storage compartment.
  • Advanced Drainage System.
  • Wider entrance.
  • Extremely comfy seats.


  • Recreation Kayaks can be heavy and difficult to transport.
  • They require more maintenance
  • They can be expensive due to advanced features.

4. Inflatable Kayaks

Here is another different kind of kayak, Inflatable kayaks can be a good option for your overnight tours. Foldable and easy to transport, they can be transported anywhere. It looks more like a hard-shell kayak.


  • Inflatable kayaks can be converted to both sit-in and sit-on-top styles.
  • Easy to port.


  • They are not able to handle hard shell boats.
  • Wind can easily impact.
  • Slower and less durable.

5. Tandem Kayaks

Tandem kayaks are also a better option for beginners as you don’t need to paddle. They are wider in size and are highly efficient which is why they are the most comfortable kayak for beginners. Children and aged people can take a tour of the bay by just sitting inside.


  • Tandem Kayaks are equipped with a rudder which is very supportive when the boat is kayaking straight. 
  • They are quicker and more efficient.
  • Prevents clashing of paddles during the journey. 


  • Tandem Kayaks would not offer you the freedom of a single kayak.
  • These are bigger and heavier than single kayaks.

Some other kinds of kayaks include touring kayaks, fishing kayaks, Sea kayaks, crossover whitewater recreation kayaks, etc.

What Type of Kayak is Best for Beginners?

We’re now ready to choose the best kayak for beginners. Choose the right one according to your choices.

A 2 person sit on top kayak is best for beginners according to my experience. It is important to ask yourself some questions to reach out to the kayak that meets your requirements.

First of all, you need to ponder on Where. You must keep the water type in your mind while selecting your kayak. It includes the type of water you are going to peddle either fast-moving water or slow-moving placid water.

After that, you need to think about why. It is important to decide on your kayak based on “why you want to go”. Take the answer from your mind and match it with your previous decision. 

As you continue to read, you will be able to choose the best kayak based on your needs. 

Now the question is your budget. Kayaking the best boat is not pocket friendly. Good advice is to go for a second-hand kayak. It will be of better quality and budget-friendly decision. Putting it simply, you need to pay attention to How Much as well.

Now, I’d like to share with you some interesting tips for kayaking in the next section. Let’s have a look at them!

Important Tips for Beginners About Kayaking

To prevent weather cocking on wide, exposed paddling spots, You should go for a kayak with a rudder. The rudder is very helpful in straight paddling during heavy winds.

You need to learn some specialized skills for out-of-boundary kayaking. You must learn all about the limitations and conditions if you need to kayak out of boundaries. You need to learn all the basic techniques of swimming and getting back to your kayak.

To avoid destructive situations during kayaking, you must spend some money on a set of roof racks. You need to practice torso rotational strokes which keep you’re your upper body engaged. Remember, you don’t have to just make strokes using the muscles of your arms.

Kayaking should be done with all safety precautions in mind. Some safety tips are given for your assistance. Never forget your PFD. Don’t consume alcohol while on water. You must be dressed up well according to the conditions.

Stay confident!

Best Kayaking Spots for Beginners

Let’s explore some of the beautiful and adventurous spots for kayakers.

Northern Minnesota has quiet and calming natural routes for kayaking. All inclusively it’s about 1200 miles region with nice calming trees bowing down to waters.

Nevada Lake Tahoe is also known as a kayaker’s paradise because of its breathtaking scenery. There are various rentals and campgrounds for kayakers. If you want to go solo or kayaking then go to this amazing lake.

Have you ever wondered to go sea caves? If not you should try kayaking in Mendocino California. Sea caves are on the outer side of this town. When the sound waves from the Pacific Ocean hit your ears. It will take you to the other level of enjoyment.

Another amazing spot is located in Utah which is known as Lake Powell. It is a deep steep valley that surrounds this lake. The beautiful scenery enhances the paddler’s joy.

One of the most popular fishing spots for kayakers is the Mulberry River lies in Ozark National Forest. This river is the homeland of many kinds of fish like potholes, sunfish, largemouth, and smallmouths. Kayakers enjoy its backdrop scenes absentmindedly.

Paddling over the flat waters of the San Juan River and Arch Athleta is so soothing. This place is best known for its glorious sunset views.

You can go Kayaking aside Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks heading towards the beautiful Jackson Lake of Wyoming.

Kayaking in Walma Creek located in South Carolina is full of amusement. Cyprus trees with a full wildlife environment are just like a dream world for kayakers.

Chesapeake Bay is another wonderful destination for kayaking. This place is the largest estuary in the US. There are thousands of plants and animal species. Kayakers who love to do fishing should go to this place.

One of the spectacularly beautiful spots for fishing and paddling is Eleven Point Wild and Scenic River situated in Mark Twain National Forest. This place is famous because of the sycamore trees. These trees are forming a natural canopy over water with dazzling sun rays peeking into the water. This scenic place is also the perfect choice for kayakers.

Go ahead! Here is the conclusion for this detailed guide.


The best kayak for you is the one that full fills your needs and requirements. Never be too quick while choosing the right kayak. You need to keep many things in focus like required size, material, type of water, weight capacity and storage space, etc. After reading the complete guide about types of kayaks for beginners recheck all of your requirements about the selected kayak and whether it meets all your conditions. With no regret, now you can enjoy kayaking very well!

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