Does your child always want to be out on the water? Are you looking for the safest way to allow your child on a boat of their own? Children love adventure, and while it can be fun at times, many parents are hesitant because of safety. Sooner or later, you may have to purchase a kids kayak your children to enjoy in the outdoors. This is especially important nowadays as so many children are obsessed with their games and tech devices that they don’t care to spend the time outdoors. It is integral that you encourage them to have their own physical activity and one of the best times to do that is during the summer time.
Since summer is right around the corner, it may be time to purchase water devices for your kids to use out on a river or on a lake. One of the best ways for them to get exercise is to get a kayak. Now, this may startle you at first, as kayaks are known to be a more adult-oriented activity. However, many of the best kayak companies have created kayak models for little ones that will encourage them to get outside and be right out on the water. If you have a lake house or live near a body of water, this is going to be a fantastic buy for you, and your child is going to love it.
Today we are going to be looking at five of the best kayaks for kids on the market today. They each come with their own unique features to enhance this experience for your child, and to offer you the most affordable option with a lot of safety features.
- 1 What to Look For
- 2 Best Kids Kayak Reviews
- 3 Conclusion
What to Look For
Before we get to the in-depth reviews, we wanted to take a moment to create a guide for you on what to look for in a kayak for kids. We hope you can use this guide as a reference when looking for one, and that it will help you to make an informed and smart purchase decision.
With any child’s product, obviously the most important thing to look for is safety, and this is especially true for any watersport device. When looking at a kayak for kids, take a look at the safety features that are being offered. Does it come with easy-to-bail system in case water begins to fill up, and is it made out of durable material? Does it go at a steady pace and isn’t too fast? These are all things to consider before purchasing a kayak for your child as you want to make sure it is going to be safe for them to use. Luckily all kayaks on our list today are especially safe. You can even check that they have passed safety protocols conducted by a reliable source.
This is very important when it comes to purchasing a kayak. As you may know, kayaks can sometimes be very unstable, especially if you are a beginner. If this is the first kayak you are buying for your child, they are likely a beginner. This is where size comes into play. If your child is small and you get them a huge kayak, it is going to be extremely hard for them to maintain its stability. This can be dangerous as it is more likely to tip over and send them into the water. At the same time you want one that is not going to be too small. This can make them very uncomfortable and render the purchase useless. You want to find one that is in between, and will still fit them as they continue to grow. What good is a kayak if it is only going to be able to be used for one summer? Try and find one that can adapt with their growth and maybe has an adjustable seat to move them around the kayak.
This is going to be a huge factor for your child and why we recommend taking them with you to the store when you are looking to buy. Every child has a look that they will want in a kayak, and some have designs on them that you child may love or hate. We strongly recommend hearing and listening to their opinion while choosing a model.
We wanted to end with this even though we mentioned it briefly before. Kids are known not to be as careful with their toys as parents may like. This includes water toys and they are more than likely to throw their kayak around the beach and sometimes even brush it up against rocks. The best type of kayaks for kids are made out of durable materials that are kid-proof. These are from manufacturers that know kids aren’t going to want to take care of their kayak and are most likely going to be rough with them. Before you make the purchase, see how puncture proof the kayaks are going to be, and if they are going to even last with the antics of your child!
Best Kids Kayak Reviews
Before we get to the main reviews of the kayaks for kids, we wanted to break down the reasoning behind choosing these five. Rather than choosing just one brand to take a look at, and all of their product line, we decided to look at four separate manufacturers. We believe in doing this because it is going to give you a better selection and help you in your decision on which is going to be the best for you. All of these are at various price points, so no matter what your budget, there is going to be something for you to choose from! So, with all of that being said, let’s dive into our first review.
The first kayak for kids up for review is the Lifetime Youth 6 Feet Wave Kayak with Paddle. We wanted to start with this particular brand because Lifetime is known for making extremely high-quality products that are made entirely for kids. This is one of the most affordable options on our list, so if you are looking for a cheaper option, this may be the best one for you. It is available in either a lime green or an orange color, depending on your child’s preference.
This kayak has been designed specifically for a child aged 5 and up and can hold 130 lbs. of total weight.
This has a really lightweight design, of only 18 lbs., and comes equipped with smaller finger handles on both sides to transport it easily. This will allow your child to carry it to and from the water easily. At one end of the kayak, there is a slope and a swim up step, so your kid can easily re-enter the kayak from the water. This is going to help them while their learning, and decrease any frustration if they happen to fall out of the kayak, as it is easy to get back on. It has been constructed using high-density polyethylene, making it very strong and durable. There are multiple foot rest positions for different sized riders, so as they grow they can still use it. It comes with a 5-year limited manufacturer’s warranty in case anything goes wrong. See more reviews HERE!
- Lightweight design
- Concise and compact
- Easy to carry
- Multiple foot rests so as they grow they can still use it
- Made out of strong and durable material
Only comes in two colors
The second kayak for kids on the list today is the Old Town Canoes & Kayaks Heron Junior Kids Kayak. The Old Town Canoes & Kayaks brand is very recognizable, as they are known to create high-end products with sturdy designs. Finding a sturdy and stable design in a kayak is of the utmost importance to ensure it is easy to use. This specific model is one of the most expensive options our list, and whenever we are looking at a higher end model, we want to make sure it comes with additional features to justify the price.
This Junior Kids Kayak can either be bought in either a sunrise or a cloud color. Both of these designs are incredibly pleasing to the eye and they have an authentic look. This model has been designed just for kids, and it comes with the Old Town “Tag Along Tow” system that allows you to tow your child easily from your kayak. It is very lightweight, at only 26 lbs., and has a comfortable seat that contours its shape to a smaller body. It is able to load weight up to 115 lbs. See more reviews HERE!
- Fantastic look
- High-end quality
- Durable design
- Comes with “Tag Along Tow” feature
- Easy to use
More expensive price point
The third product up for review today is the Sun Dolphin Bali 6-Foot Sit-on-top Kayak. Sun Dolphin is one of the leading manufacturers of all things kids, and this device is no exception! It has been made with the thought of “What would a child want?” in mind! It is also the most affordable option on our list today, and that definitely does not make it the worst. However, whenever looking at a cheaper model, we have to be more critical to ensure they did not sacrifice quality to give you a cheaper product.
This kayak comes in 3 colors: blue ocean, red, or tangerine. It is easily able to both track and paddle in the water, while also maintaining a stable exterior. It is very lightweight, and easy to carry for a young one as it is installed with a carrying handle. The cockpit is open, allowing for an easy entry, and there are foot braces that are adjustable; this allows riders of any size to use this kayak. The seat back provides extra comfort, and there is a storage compartment for. It can hold up to 140 lbs. of weight. See more reviews HERE!
- Holds a good deal of weight
- Great color design
- Seat is comfortable
- Foot braces are adjustable
Paddles are not sturdy enough
The next product is the Recreational Kayak Sit-on Top Kayaks for Kids Fishing, created by Hydros. This is a kayak not meant for endurance but for a more relaxing vibe. It is a sit-on-top kayak that is 8’ long and meant for a river or lake water. There is a flat bottom to the kayak, making it much more stable and safe for a young one. There is a backrest that is comfortable on this model and a T-handle making it easy to use. There are multiple foot rest positions so even an adult can use it. It can hold up to 225 lbs. See more reviews HERE!
- Both a child and adult can use it
Too big for a younger child
The final product again comes from Lifetime and is their Wave 6 Ft. Youth Kayak with Paddle Color: Yellow. This is a small kayak that is very portable and lightweight, coming in a bright yellow color. It has been made to hold a small child and has scupper holes to easily drain the cockpit area, making it a lot safer. It can hold weight up to 130 lbs. See more reviews HERE!
- Cute look
- Great brand
- Made for young ones
Paddles could be better
After reviewing all five of the products above, we can strongly recommend all of them as great kayaks for your kids. They all have safe designs, while some are intended more for “bigger” kids rather than the little ones. Just make sure of the size and weight capacity to see if it is the best fit for your child. If you have a teenager or larger kid you may want to check out some of our other top rated kayaks HERE!