8 Best Kayaks for Oceans and Lakes

Best Kayaks for Oceans and Lakes

Kayaking is a fantastic way to explore the serene waters of oceans and lakes, whether you’re an adventure enthusiast, a fishing aficionado, or just looking for a peaceful escape from nature. To fully enjoy your kayaking journey, choosing the right kayak that suits your specific needs and the type of water you’ll be navigating is crucial. In this article, we will delve into the world of kayaks, exploring the best options for oceans and lakes to ensure you have an unforgettable experience on the water.

1. Old Town Sportsman PDL 106

Designed for the adventurous spirit, the Old Town Sportsman PDL 106 is a thing of beauty and function. This platform-style pedal kayak combines stability, quiet, and comfort in its pontoon-style hull. It ensures a hands-free fishing and navigation experience that is light enough for you to take anywhere. Packed with convenient features, this kayak is all about enhancing your time on the water.

Old Town Sportsman PDL 106


  • Hands-free Performance: Forward/reverse pedal drive for comfortable, hands-free fishing and navigation
  • Customizable Features: Accessory tracks, cushioned floor pads, a custom tackle box, and plenty of rod holders
  • Fish Finder Ready: Universal transducer mounting system for easy fish finder installation
  • Comfort-First Design: Superior seat with great lumbar support and adjustable leg length
  • Capacity: 450-pound maximum capacity
  • Efficient Storage: Dedicated horizontal rod storage and an oversized tank well
  • Safety Treads: Non-slip EVA foam deck pads

2. Lifetime Tamarack Pro

The Tamarack Pro from Lifetime is more than just a kayak; it’s a fusion of comfort, efficiency, and thrill. Sporting a classic style, this kayak is well-equipped for fishing enthusiasts. It is laden with adjustable rod holders, resourceful accessory mounting, tackle box storage, and even a ruler to measure your catch right on board. Custom-made for maximum comfort, the kayak features an adjustable framed seat, footrests, deep hull channels, and chine rails for enhanced stability.

Lifetime Tamarack Pro


  • Equipped for Fishing: In-built rod holders (1 Adjustable, 2 Flush Mounted), accessory mounting area, tackle box storage, and a ruler
  • Customizable Comfort: Adjustable framed seat and footrests
  • Performance Design: Deep Hull Channels for superior tracking performance and chine rails for added stability
  • Ample Storage: Center Storage Hatch with Bucket and a deeper tank well
  • Security Provisions: Front and Rear Bungee Cords for securing loose items and Paddle Keeper for your kayak paddle

3. Perception Rambler 13.5

The Perception Rambler Tandem kayak is a two-person recreational masterpiece that aces the perfect blend of stability and agility. Its spacious design doesn’t compromise maneuverability while ensuring stability. The kayak can also be tailored for a solo paddler, rendering it equally useful for solo missions and tandem trips.

Perception Rambler 13.5


  • Two-Person Design: Spacious yet maneuverable, it can also be configured for a solo paddler
  • Capacity and Comfort: Weight limit of 550 lbs with a removable padded seat and adjustable backrest
  • Versatility: Suitable for different types of water bodies, including lakes, ocean bays, light surf, or even slow-moving rivers
  • Storage: Large rear open storage for cooler and gear, plus a mold-in center seat for extra storage or passengers
  • Easy to use: Multiple footrest options to accommodate paddlers of different sizes

4. Pelican Maxim 100X

Pelican’s Maxim 100X Recreational Kayak, with its compact design and lightweight build, offers the ideal solution for leisurely lone paddlers. This kayak pairs comfort with excellent maneuverability without compromising on security. Its upgraded features significantly enhance the navigating and storage experience.

 Pelican Maxim 100X


  • Enhanced Storage: Front hatch with bungee cord and a rear tank well with mesh deck cover
  • Performance Design: Shallow V-chine hull for better maneuverability and tracking, with increased secondary stability
  • Safety Measures: Floating blocks on each side and a flatter hull for secure paddling
  • Comfort Factor: Adjustable ERGOFORM padded backrest with ERGOBASE seat cushion
  • Lightweight: Weighs only 36 lb, allowing easy storage and transportation.

5. Lifetime Cruze 100

Lifetime’s Cruze 100 is an impressive sit-in kayak built for simplicity and comfort. It stands out with its adjustable quick-release seat back and seat pad that offers exceptional comfort. The deep hull channels for smooth tracking performance and multiple footrest positions make it a versatile choice for paddlers of different sizes.

Lifetime Cruze 100


  • Comfortable Seating: Quick-release seat back and seat pad for comfort
  • Tracking Performance: Deep hull channels for improved tracking
  • Adjustable Footrests: Multiple footrest positions for paddlers of different sizes
  • Additional Storage: Oval hatch for added under-deck storage
  • Stability and Transport: Stable flat bottom hull design and front and rear toggle handles for easy transport

6. Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100

The Tamarack Angler 100 by Lifetime, a hard-shell kayak, is designed for durability and comfort. It is made with high-density polyethylene and features an adjustable padded seat, multiple footrest positions, and integrated fishing rod holders.

Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100


  • Material: Constructed of UV-protected high-density Polyethylene for durability
  • Comfort: Adjustable padded seat back and seat pad
  • Fishing Features: Two flush-mounted fishing rod holders and one top-mount fishing rod Holder
  • Storage: Two 6″ storage compartments in the rear and center
  • Additional Features: Front and rear t-handles for easy transport, stability chine rails, paddle keeper, and adult black paddle included

7. Perception Tribe 9.5

Unleash your aquatic adventure with the Perception Tribe 9.5. This kayak’s sit-on-top design brings superior comfort and stability, making it an excellent choice for all-around water fun. The Perception Tribe is proud of its high-back frame seatback, offering support, cushioning, and adjustable recline positions for a relaxing paddling experience.

Perception Tribe 9.5


  • Versatility: Ideal for paddlers of all sizes with a weight capacity of 300 lbs.
  • Comfort: High-back frame seatback for increased support and cushioning.
  • Storage: Ample rear storage with durable tie-downs.
  • Lightweight: Easy to transport due to its lightweight, stackable design.
  • Made in the USA: Proudly crafted in the USA, exemplifying quality and craftsmanship.

8. Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120

The Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120 is a modern marvel that combines comfort, speed, and convenience. Boasting a fast, efficient, and straight-tracking design, the Tarpon 120 features a Phase 3 Air Pro seating system, ensuring cool seating and maximum comfort.

Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120


  • Premier Design: Sit-on-top kayak with superior tracking capability.
  • Comfort Seating: Phase 3 air Pro seating system featuring cool touch.
  • Storage: Large rear storage and front storage hatch for dry storage.
  • Foot Rest: Large, padded footrests for support and comfort, easy to adjust for paddlers of different heights.
  • Handy Features: Dry Tec removable Dry box, Magnate magnetic water bottle strap system, and Sidetracks accessory rails.

Types of Kayaks for Oceans and Lakes

There are several types of kayaks available, each with its unique features. Let’s explore the most common ones:

Sit-on-Top Kayaks

Sit-on-top kayaks are user-friendly and suitable for beginners. They offer excellent stability and are easy to get in and out of, making them a great choice for relaxed lake paddling and ocean adventures.

Touring Kayaks

Touring kayaks are designed for long-distance paddling. They are streamlined and provide good tracking, making them perfect for exploring vast bodies of water like oceans and large lakes.

Fishing Kayaks

Fishing kayaks are equipped with fishing accessories such as rod holders, tackle storage, and comfortable seating. These kayaks are ideal for anglers looking to navigate both lakes and oceans.

Inflatable Kayaks

Inflatable kayaks are convenient and portable. They are versatile and can handle various water types, making them suitable for those who want to explore multiple environments.

Types of Kayaks

Key Features to Look for

When choosing a kayak, consider the following key features:


For beginners or those who prefer calm waters, stability is paramount. Look for kayaks with a wide hull and a flat bottom for better stability.


Tracking refers to a kayak’s ability to maintain a straight path. Kayaks with longer hulls tend to track better, which is essential for ocean kayaking.

Weight Capacity

Make sure your kayak can handle your weight and any gear you plan to bring along. Overloading a kayak can affect its stability and safety.


The material of the kayak impacts its durability and weight. Common materials include plastic, fiberglass, and composite materials.

kayak in water