Top 8 Best Recreational Kayaks Under $500 in 2021

So, are you looking for the Best Recreational Kayaks Under $500?

Everyone has their own hobby they love. If you’re someone who is looking for a good, calming hobby to have, you should try fishing. Fishing can be a great stress reliever for people as it makes you feel the freedom you usually can’t feel when in the city or work. You get to see a scenery and aura different from what you usually experience in your everyday life. But for you to go fishing, you would need several items like fishing rod and fishing kayak. Fishing is best done in the middle of the lake so a kayak would help you get there. However, like with any other items in the market, there are tons of kayaks. If this is your first time, you might get confused on what kayak to buy or what would be the best. This list compiled multiple reviews of fishing kayaks and went through several brands of kayaks to help you decide what to choose.

Here has a list of top 8 best kayaks of the world. You can choose from here without any doubt to fill your dream.

Top 8 Recreational Kayaks Under $500: At A Glance

  1. Sea Eagle 330 Pro 2 Person Inflatable Kayak
  2. Sun Dolphin Excursion 12 Fishing Kayak
  3. Airhead Montana AHTK-2 Kayak
  4. Sun Dolphin Aruba SS 8-Foot Sit-in Kayak
  5. Sun Dolphin Journey 10 Sit-on Fishing Kayak
  6. Ocean Kayak Frenzy Recreational Sit on Kayak
  7. Elkton Outdoors Cormorant 2 Person Fishing Kayak
  8. Lifetime 10 Foot Tandem Sit on top Kayak

Our Top Picks


Budget friendly

Sevylor Coleman Colorado 2-Person Fishing Kayak
  • Perfect for 2 persons though they are bigger/taller
  • Most strong and durable inflatable kayak that is perfect for attaching a trolling motor
  • Excellent customer support

Also Great

Advanced Elements Lagoon 2 Tandem Inflatable Kayak
  • High quality construction of air chambers
  • Portable enough, good tracking and fun to paddle
  • Set up & packing is very easy, so no need the roof racks

Best Recreational Kayaks Under $500 Reviews

Lifetime 10 Foot Tandem Kayak

The Lifetime Two Person Tandem 10 Foot Fishing Kayak with Paddles is another best fishing kayak.

It has a very versatile style of design that allows it to work for both solo and tandem paddling when the need arises.

It is also spacious and sits at a 10-foot length for a much safer and easy transportation and portability. The size also provides easy storage.

This fishing kayak also offers 3 fishing rod holders and additional rear storage for both the fish and also your personal accessories.

Strategy 8: Pros & Cons

Pros

  • 5-year limited warranty 
  • 500 lbs weight capacity
  • Stable Hull Design Technology
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • No back support when seated
Elkton Outdoors Cormorant 2 Person Tandem Inflatable Fishing Kayak

The Elkton Outdoors Cormorant 2 Person Tandem Inflatable Fishing Kayak is easy to use the kayak. It is wide enough and has enough space to comfortably accommodate two grownups.

This two-persons kayak measures 10 feet in overall length and uses the EVA Padded Seattechnology to guarantee the best comfort and sitting ability.

But what makes it rock? Well, it inflates quickly.  The Elkton Inflatable 2 Person Kayak will inflate in less than 5 minutes to achieve the full-size touch.

It is also spacious and will make kayak fishing a much more convenient and enjoyable experience than ever.

The kayak is constructed with the 18-gauge 1000D PVC. The PVC is rip-resistant and gives this kayak the best tear resistance. Therefore, you don’t have fiddle at the thought of worry springing a leak whenever you are fishing.

Thankfully, the kayak’s seats are also adjustable. They work best in the kayak and allow you to easily access the rob holders.

This fishing kayak is very compact. It is a lightweight design that you can easily use around trips and other hiking sprees.

Specifications

  • Length: 10 feet
  • Width: 2.1 feet
  • Weight: 40lbs
  • Capacity: 350 pounds
  • Material: 1000D PVC
  • Paddler/How many Paddlers: 2
  • Suitable For: Fishermen and Recreational kayaking

Strategy 7: Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Adjustable seats  
  • Large enough to accommodate two paddlers
  • Strong and durableEasy to steer
  • Easy to steer
  • Comfortable seating

Cons

  • Needs to dry before storage
  • May get a tear if mishandled
Ocean Kayak Frenzy One-Person Sit-On-Top Recreational Kayak

The ocean kayak frenzy is a one-person recreational kayak. This kayak is very stable when used on flat water unlike in the surf where it tends to be very playful.

It has a stable structure accompanied by an extended focus point to enhance stable movement.

In addition to that, it has a strong, adjustable and comfortable seat which is favorable for all body types. This makes it super cool for an all-day paddling spree.

Traveling in the ocean kayak allows you to carry as much luggage as you want as it is very spacious. It has sufficient storage space where you can stack in all your items and very clean food compartments too.

 You can use its firm interior handles and bow to move this heavy kayak to your desired destination.  Additionally, it is also equipped with the portable bungees and bow deck bungees. 

And did I mention that it comes with a warranty? This 325-pound weight capacity ocean kayak frenzy comes with a lifetime warranty on its exterior.

Specifications

  • Length: 9 feet
  • Width: 2 feet
  • Weight: 43 pounds
  • Capacity: 325 pounds
  • Material: 18-gauge PVC
  • Paddler/How many Paddlers: 1
  • Suitable For: guys who love outdoor activities like water and ocean adventures

Strategy 6: Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Lifetime warranty  
  • Large capacity of 325 pounds
  • Durable seats for all body types
  • Adjustable and comfort plus seats
  • Spacious

Cons

  • Heavier
  • No paddle latches
Sun Dolphin Journey 10-Foot Sit-on-top Fishing Kayak

Stock Available

The Sun Dolphin Journey Fishing Kayak is also a great model. It is great for lakes and rivers. The kayak is designed for the fishing ad will help you to dock in the most excluded fishing spots.

Even so, it is lightweight and also easy to carry. You can carry it along with trips, hikes, and vacations. The kayak has the best retractable carrying handles that maximize efficiency and ease of use.

This kayak is nothing like any regular kayak too.  It is easy to tracks and also, more importantly, paddles with a lot of ease.

The kayak’s construction also guarantees the best stability so there are low chances of toppling with your catch. The stability is guaranteed by the P.A.C. (Portable Accessory Carrier) technology.

Don’ worry though. The maintenance of this 250-pound kayak is easy. You can wash it, dry it, and store it in the right way quickly.

 The same applies to the mounting system. The kayak has a two flush mount system and one easy to reach swivel holders for your fishing rods.

Specifications

  • Length: 10 feet
  • Width: 2.1 feet
  • Weight: 44 pounds
  • Capacity: 250 pounds
  • Material: Heavy gauge PVC
  • Paddler/How many Paddlers: 1
  • Suitable For: fishing and sports

Strategy 5: Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Cool and stylish color
  • Wide space for storage
  • Comfortable to use
  • Safe harness
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Minimal power
  • Simply light
Sun Dolphin Aruba SS 8-Foot Sit-in Kayak

This is undoubtedly one of the best fishing kayaks under 300 that features fantastic facilities to fit customers' preference list. Although you might think that buying a cheap kayak isn’t useful, the reality is the opposite.

If you are sure about your use, this Aruba 8-footer is a pretty baby then. Yes, it doesn’t fancy high-end features, but it does the job entirely, at least for my liking. The seating arrangement is padded and adjustable to match your comfort level.

The storage compartment is airtight, so your gear remains safe even after hours of kayaking session. There’s also an integrated drink holder for your favorite beverage. The paddle holder will allow you to move with liberty without worrying much about the paddles.

The 27 pounds weight means that the yak is incredibly lightweight. But this doesn’t affect its stability and performance.

Specifications

  • Length: 8 foot
  • Width: 28 inches
  • Weight: 27 pounds
  • Capacity: 250 pounds
  • Material: High-density polyethylene
  • Paddler: One
  • Suitable For: Lakes and mild whitewater
  • Strategy 4: Pros & Cons

    Pros

    Cons

    • Not so stable
    • Tight space

    Tips

    This is an ideal kayak for women and beginners to try out their skills before jumping into the salty water of oceans.

    Airhead Montana AHTK-2 Kayak

    Airhead Montana is an ideal choice for a wide range of activities such as- vacation, recreational tour, cursing ships, and camping. The kayak is made of 840-denier nylon, which is water-resistant and UV protected for extended durability.

    Bot seats are adjustable, and there’s a mesh pocket at the back of each chair. Furthermore, adjustable footrest gives you pure comfort on the water.

    The four bottom fins are for super low dragging with superior tracking. There are carrying handles on either side for easy transportation. However, it is admissible that you don’t take the kayak all by yourself.

    The bright orange color is visible from a distance, even in the low-light. So, you will feel secure. Besides, the color looks attractive.

    Specifications

  • Length: 12 feet
  • Width: 32 inches
  • Weight: 36.3 lbs.
  • Capacity: 500 lbs.
  • Material: 840 Denier Nylon
  • Paddlers: Two
  • Suitable for:  Mild whitewater and lakes
  • Strategy 3: Pros & Cons

    Pros

    • Attractive design    
    • Durable
    • Inflates quickly
    • Superior tracking

    Cons

    • Paddle and pump not included

    Tips

    Airhead Montana AHTK-2 is a mild whitewater kayak for big guys. The solidly built kayak will be an excellent addition to your touring list if you wish to go on a camping. Its stability and tracking will keep you on the course all the time. 

    Sun Dolphin Excursion 12 Fishing Kayak

    Do you love fishing in cold water or hate getting wet during angling? If yes, then this Sun Dolphin Excursion fishing kayak is meant for you. It is a pre-rigged kayak that has- a swiveling rod holder, and two mounted flush rod holder and an extra compartment for accessories.

    The olive drab color looks impressive as you paddle it through tie waterways. What’s more, anglers will feel at home with the sit-in design of the 12-foot kayak.

    The easy to carry lightweight fishing kayak is your perfect choice for recreational activities and camping adventures. With premium durability and stability, you are going to experience one of the best fishing experiences with this kayak built exclusively for anglers.

    The Portable Accessory Career, aka PAC, adds like an incorporated storage compartment to accommodate your gear as well as keep them dry and safe. Its spacious seating arrangement will make you comfortable even during the long fishing hours. It is indeed a blessing.

    Specifications

  • Length: 12-feet.
  • Width: 29.6 inches
  • Weight: 47 lbs.
  • Capacity: 395 lbs.
  • Material: Rugged Polyethylene
  • Paddler: One
  • Suitable For: Lakes and rivers
  • Strategy 2: Pros & Cons

    Pros

    • Comfortable seating arrangement    
    • Console is covered
    • Easy paddling and navigation
    • Stable

    Cons

    • Limits mobility
    • Comes in one color only

    Tips

    This sit-in kayak offers you a dry and warm kayaking session with the use of a sprayer kit.

    Sea Eagle 330 Pro 2 Person Inflatable Sport Kayak Canoe Boat with Pump and Oars

    If you are keen to find a fishing kayak under 600 that delivers extraordinary performance and looks fantastic, congratulations, you are on the verge of finding the best one. The kayak is a perfect choice for those who love paddling around calm water in lakes and rivers.

    The polyethylene made hull design is good at providing smooth maneuvering experience with the best stability you will ever get. The Sea Eagle manufactured kayak will give you premium comfort as it comes with flex padded seats. So, you can adjust the positions to meet your comfort zone. What’s more, the foot braces and stuffed thighs ensure your safety and relaxed fishing all the time.

    The sporty look of the kayak is attractive. Not to end here, I must mention that the kayak weighs only 26 pounds. So, transportation is just more than comfortable. However, the lightweight doesn’t necessarily mean that the kayak is unstable. It is more stable than one could imagine.

    Specifications

  • Length: 11-feet
  • Width:34 inches
  • Weight: 26 pounds
  • Capacity: 500 pounds
  • Material: 33 mil Polykrylar
  • Paddlers: Two
  • Suitable For: Lakes, rivers and coastal fishing
  • Strategy 1: Pros & Cons

    Pros

    • The cockpit is spacious  
    • Space for a cup holder
    • Sufficient storage
    • It inflates in less than just six minutes

    Cons

    • The width is too tight for a comfortable spreading of your legs sidewise

    Tips

    It is an excellent sporty looking best fishing kayak under 600. The loaded features will make you fall in love with the kayak instantly.

    Your Guide to Choosing A Perfect Recreational Kayaks Under $500

    When buying a kayak, you must be very careful in choosing which ones to buy as kayaks aren’t exactly cheap. Not only that but you might not have storage space for another kayak in your house or garage. But with the amount of kayaks available in the market claiming to have well and quality features, it might get confusing. There are also different kinds of kayak out there. There are kayaks meant for recreational kayaking, ones for fishing or angling, ones for sports, and many more. When buying a kayak, make sure that you know what you’re buying it for. You wouldn’t want to buy a sports kayak but your aim is to fish right? While there may be kayaks that are multi-purpose and thus can be used both for fishing and recreational, you would want a kayak that would suit your purpose the best and so that the cost would be worth it.

    There are also lots of fishing kayaks out there that have a wide range of price. But since not everyone has plenty of cash to spare for fishing kayaks, the best possible price you can go for while still having quality kayaks is $500. So if you’re looking for fishing kayaks under $500, this article is the right place for you.

    Safety

    First and foremost, you would want a kayak that is stable and durable. You wouldn’t exactly want for your kayak to capsize while you’re in the middle of the lake or ocean. A stable kayak is necessary not only for the safety of the fishes you caught but also for the fishes you caught. This is especially true for beginners too. Beginner fishers might take some time in adjusting and balancing in the water so you would want a kayak that would keep you stable on it. It wouldn’t do you good if both you and the kayak are unstable and unbalanced. In addition, this should also allow you to travel fast enough on the water. A durable kayak will also make it possible so that you don’t have to buy a kayak more than once. You also wouldn’t want to go into the water on a kayak with a hole and risk drowning.

    There are fishers and anglers out there who live to chase the adventure. Some would even go to farther parts of the ocean or lake just to fish or chase the waves. But doing this means taking the risk to go to the higher tides. However, if you plan on doing this too, you should make sure that your kayak is safe. Your kayak should be able to let you remain inside it while fishing. And to stay safe, never put your hands out of your kayak too.

    Portability

    Whether you’re one to always go fishing or kayaking or not, the portability of the kayak is always important. The kayak should be big enough to fit you but at the same time light enough so that you can carry it with you whenever you’re travelling without you having to exert any extra effort in carrying it. However, there are kayaks are full and thick enough to the point that they’re extremely difficult to carry and thus aren’t portable. If you’re planning on going kayaking often, make sure to choose a portable one by choosing a kayak with round ended shape, light weight, and keg wheel.

    Seating Area

    There are two types of seating area in a kayak: the sit on top and the sit in type. But first, the seating area should be padded and comfortable enough for you to sit enough. After all, you would be using it for hours under the sun. It should have a backrest that would be able to support your back, foot braces that you can adjust to your liking, thigh pads, and many other more. You should also consider how many people will be going kayaking. Most kayaks offer 1 to 3, the maximum, number of seats for the users. The number of seats will ultimately depend on you and your preference. If you’re someone who likes to appreciate nature and go fishing in silence, then a one seating kayak would be the best. However, if you’re planning to bring one or two of your kids, then you might want to consider two or three seats in the kayak.

    Sit on Top Kayaks

    As mentioned earlier, there are two types of seating area in kayaks and the Sit on Top is one of them. Most fishers like this kind of seating because it is more stable and thus, is easier to use when fishing. There are even Sit on Top kayak models that show that you can stand on it confidently and still not tip over or capsize. Sit on Top kayaks have a double hull construction, making it more stable than other kayaks. This means there is enclosed air space between the inner and outer hulls. You can also customize this kind of kayaks too according to your preference so you can bring or fit your accessories to your kayak. Sit on Tops also have big storage space. If you’re the type of fisherman or woman who has a lot of gear and would want to bring them, the Sit on Tops would suit you.

    Sit In Kayaks

    Whereas fishermen prefer the Sit on Top kayaks better for its stability and ability to make fishing easier, anglers prefer the sit in kayaks more. The hull displacement of Sit In kayaks is better than the Sit on Top ones and this feature makes it more maneuverable in the open water. This allows anglers to go to a certain area on the water faster. Since it is also more enclosed as compared to the Sit on Top, you are also more protected from external elements like the cold. The Sit In kayaks are perfect for fishers and anglers who live in areas where the water and climate is colder.

    Storage space or capacity

    If you’re a fisherman, you would know that fishing requires a lot of gears and items to be brought with you. You would need your rod, your bait, your hat, food, yourself, and many more. Therefore, it’s important that you have a lot of storage space in the boat. When buying a kayak, make sure to weigh yourself first so that you would know what to choose. Most kayaks under 500 would have a capacity between 200 lbs to 400 lbs. The more lightweight the kayak is, the smaller the loading capacity seems to be so if you want one with a big loading capacity, you should be ready to haul heavy kayaks. Consider the weight of your gear too when buying a kayak besides your own weight.

    Best Recreational Kayaks Under $500 FAQs

    1. What are the Best kayaking Safety Tips?

    Always check out for the weather before leaving. It helps you to easily understand the right types of gears to carry. You should also watch out on a foggy day since it will be very hard to see.

    Next, always remain vigilant and keen to your surroundings and remain aware of the other kayakers that might be around. The same applies to the other motorized bodies that ply the water.

    Finally, you must never fish in stormy weather. In case you anticipate a storm or there is lighting in the water, you should stop kayaking and pull out as fast as possible.

    2. What Are the Best Care Tips for Kayaks?

    Never use your kayak without reading its user manual. This is the most important rule. The user manual will shed more light on the best way to use the kayak. It will also show you the care tips that you need to maintain.

    Even better, you must use the kayak for the right use. Only use the kayak in the water. Make sure the kayak is inflated to the right capacity.

    In addition to that you must also repair the kayak immediately you get a puncture. However, do not repair alone if your warranty is still valid.

    3. Where Can I Buy the Best Kayak?

    Irrespective of the type of kayak that you need, buying a kayak online is the best thing to do. When you buy online, you will end up with many advantages.

    First, you will save so much on the price as online buying has very affordable prices. You will also have a direct warranty. But more importantly, you have a variety of kayaks to shop through. When it comes to shipping, the kayak is shipped straight to your doorstep.

    Many people who buy kayaks online don’t always have to leave their homes. They can browse through their laptops, order, and wait. At the same time, they can compare numerous features and prices.

    4. How Can I Store the Kayak Best?

    The best thing to do is to ensure that your kayak is dry before you fold it up. When folding, keep an eye for pebbles too. By storing the kayak when it is fully dry, you will be able to minimize dampness, eliminate molds, and maximize the lifespan of the kayak. This is easier if you follow the user manual.

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     Final Thought 

    There is no definite Best Recreational Kayaks Under $500. For example, the Lifetime Sport Tandem is the best when it comes to having more than one seat in the kayak. If you want to bring a partner or a child with you to fishing, this would be your Best Recreational Kayaks.


    However, if you want to go fishing alone and more space for your fishing rods, the Vibe Kayaks Skipjack Fishing is the best kayak for you. There are a lot of factors you should consider when choosing a kayak, especially when on a budget. First of all, consider how safe the kayak is. It should be stable and durable. It should also be portable so you can bring it along with you on trips easily. The seating area should also fit you and be comfortable enough to sit in for hours. You should also consider what kind of seating area to choose. The storage capacity is also important.


    In the end, it should really depend on the purpose you would be using it for, what standard you’re holding it against, and your preference.