Best Fishing Kayak

Fishing is one of the most enjoyable activities and is loved by many. There are various ways to go in search of fish, and kayaking is a convenient option. Fishing kayaks are boats that are built for carrying necessary fishing gear and tackle, navigating waterways, and helping you catch fish with ease.

Kayaks make your fishing experience calm and easy. They allow you to hear every little sound of the water and birds on the lake, taking you away from the noise of the city.

Fishing kayaks are available in different sizes, shapes, and features to suit various water conditions.

Top 15 Best Fishing Kayaks Under $1000 Reviews 2023

In this article, I am going to share some of the best fishing kayaks that can be purchased for under $1000, which will help you make a buying decision

Kayaks BrandWeight Price
BKC UH-TK181Brooklyn Kayak Company68 pounds
Ocean Kayak Prowler 13 An​​​​​glerOcean Kayak56 pounds
Vibe Kayaks Skipjack 90Vibe42 pounds
Perception Pescador Pro 12 KayakPerception Kayaks57 pounds
Lifetime Muskie Angler Sit-On-Top KayakLifetime57.5 pounds
Lifetime Sports Fisher kayakLifetime82 pounds
Sun Dolphin Journey 10Sun Dolphin108 pounds
Sun Dolphin ExcursionSun Dolphin41 pounds
Native Watercraft SlayerNative Watercraft62 pounds
Feelfree Lure 10Feel Free Kayaks69 pounds
Vibe Sea GhostVibe75 pounds
Ocean Kayak Malibu TwoOcean Kayak57pounds
Sun Dolphin Aruba 10Sun Dolphin40 pounds
Riot Kayaks EdgeRiot Kayaks42 pounds

#1- BKC UH-TK181 12.5 Foot Tandem Fishing Kayak

The BKC UH-TK181 is one of the best fishing kayaks available, weighing only 68 pounds with an impressive weight capacity of 450 pounds. This allows you to easily carry all of your fishing gear.

BKC provides two paddles with the kayak and has a paddle holder that allows you to fish without having to hold your paddles. The UH-TK181 also comes equipped with 3 adjustable rod holders for trolling or for having 3 fishing rods mounted at once. Additionally, it has 4 flush-mounted rod holders for storage purposes.

The adjustable seats can be customized according to your height, and the kayak comes with 4 carry handles, making it easy to transport to and from the water.

With its wide beam, the BKC UH-TK181 is stable on the surface of the water, making it ideal for standing up while fishing. It also has ample storage space, allowing you to spend a day or two on the water without needing to get off-board.

Overall, the high-quality construction and features of the BKC UH-TK181 make it my top pick for a fishing kayak

LEO's Choice

#2. Ocean Kayak Prowler 13 An​​​​gler

The Ocean Kayak Prowler 13 Angler is a sit-on-top fishing kayak designed for efficiency and speed. It is highly stable on the water while fishing, with ample secondary stability that allows it to handle choppy conditions with ease.

The kayak only weighs 56 pounds, yet has an impressive weight capacity of 325 pounds.

As a fishing kayak, the Prowler 13 offers ample storage space, including a large oval hatch at the bow, a 6-inch hatch insert, and a spacious rear tank. It also features bungee deck rigging to attach other gear, allowing you to store all the necessary equipment for fishing.

There are two cup holders within arm’s reach, and a molded footrest at varying leg lengths for comfort during your fishing trips.

The Prowler 13 Angler comes equipped with two flush-mounted rod holders located behind the seats, allowing you to mount your fishing rods. To further enhance your fishing experience, the kayak comes with a padded Comfort Plus seat.

Best Price!

#3. Vibe Kayaks Skipjack 90

The SkipJack 90 is a one-person sit-on-top fishing kayak by Vibe Kayaks that boasts numerous amazing features. It is a fast, reliable, and portable recreational kayak that can greatly enhance your fishing experience.

With carrying handles, it is easy to transport the kayak to and from the water. The molded footrests ensure that paddlers of any size can fit comfortably, allowing you to spend a full day on the water without discomfort.

The SkipJack 90 is designed for greater stability, making it maneuver smoothly through all types of water and conditions. Its sleek single-piece hull design adds to its speed. To enhance your comfort level, the kayak is equipped with ergonomic backrests, cushioned seats, four fishing rod holders, and easy access cup holders.

Number 4!

#4. Perception Pescador Pro 12 Kayak

The Pescador Pro 12 is another amazing sit-on-top fishing kayak. Its lawn chair style mesh seat adds to its comfort level, and the seats are two-level adjustable for comfortable paddling. It weighs only 64 lbs and has a maximum capacity of 375 lbs.

The multi-chine hull of the Pescador ensures greater stability while tacking. Storage is a key feature for any fishing kayak, and the Pescador Pro 12 features a tank well at the bow covered by mesh. There is also a closed hatch compartment at the front which lets you store your phone, keys, and other small items. The closed hatch is just 5 inches wide, thus limiting the storage space for larger items.

There is also one console at the front which is ideal for storing electronic items like GPS or fishfinder.

There are two molded rod holders located behind the seats, and there is also an option to add rod holders to the GearTrac rails on the sides of the cockpit. You can also add additional gear to these rails.

Number 5!

I have listed some of the Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks here for you; read the complete buyer’s guide and know more about it. 

#5. Old Town Vapor Predator MX Fishing Kayak

The Old Town Vapor Predator MX Kayak is a perfect fishing vessel for anglers, with many features to talk about.

Let’s start with the comfort level. It has adjustable footrests to fit any size, thick thigh pads for long hours of paddling, and a padded Comfort Flex seat.

The kayak also comes with a sealed bow hatch for storage and substantial space behind the seats for fishing gear and tackle boxes.

There are 6 adjustable rod holders and an anchor with a trolley system, allowing you to set up camp in one place on the water. The kayak is stable enough to allow for fishing while standing up.

Overall, it is the best fishing kayak under $1500.

Number 6!

#6. Lifetime Muskie Angler Sit-On-Top Kayak

The Lifetime Muskie Angler is an affordable fishing kayak that comes with numerous features. It is a single-person kayak that offers great value for its price.

The kayak has two flush-mounted fishing rod holders and one top-mount fishing rod holder. Its adjustable padded seat back and seat pad, along with multiple footrests, ensure that you are comfortable while fishing.

Made of UV-protected high-density polyethylene, the Muskie Angler is a durable kayak that is designed for fishing. Its flat bottom enhances its stability while on the water.

The kayak has 6″ storage compartments at the rear and center, and also features t-handles, which make it easy to transport from one place to another.

Overall, considering its features, the Lifetime Muskie Angler is definitely one of the best fishing kayaks available under $400.

Number 7!

#7. Lifetime Sport Fisher Single or Tandem Kayak

The Lifetime Sport Fisher kayak is a versatile vessel that can be used for both solo and tandem fishing. Its unique hull design offers exceptional stability, making it an ideal choice for stand-up fishing. Made from blow-molded high-density polyethylene, this kayak is durable and strong, able to withstand the elements and rough waters.

The kayak features multiple footrest positions for added comfort, and its durable high-density UV-protected construction resists cracking, peeling, and fading. The Lifetime Sport Fisher kayak comes with two double-sided paddles, paddle clips, two padded backrests, and three fishing pole holders. Additionally, it has a 6-foot storage hatch, providing ample storage space for all your fishing gear.

Number 8!

#8. Sun Dolphin Journey 10-Foot Sit-on-top Fishing Kayak

The Sun Dolphin Journey 10 Foot sit-on-top kayak is an affordable fishing kayak with great features. It comes with vertical mount rod holders and one swivel rod holder for fishing convenience.

It also has dry storage wells and a Portable Accessory Carrier that offers plenty of storage space for fishing gear.

For added comfort, the kayak has adjustable footrests and knee pads at the edge of the boat. Overall, the Sun Dolphin Journey SOT Kayak is one of the best inexpensive fishing kayaks available.

Number 9!

#9. Sun Dolphin Excursion 10-Foot Sit-In Fishing Kayak

The Sun Dolphin Excursion is another excellent fishing kayak that is available for under $1000. This kayak features one swivel and two flush mount rod holders, just like the Journey kayak.

The Excursion kayak has a closed cockpit design that allows you to fit it with a spray skirt. When it comes to comfort, this kayak has a large seating area that is very comfortable. The seat is adjustable and padded, and there are also adjustable foot braces.

For those who are looking for an affordable fishing kayak to get started with, the Sun Dolphin Excursion is definitely one of the best options available.

Number 10!

#10. Native Watercraft Slayer 10 Propel Pedal Fishing Kayak

The Native Watercraft Slayer is a pedal-driven fishing kayak that is perfect for anglers. It offers ample storage space to spend a full day on the water. The kayak has breathable adjustable seats and a padded deck for standing while fishing.

The rotational pedal drive system powers the propeller under the hull, which keeps your hands free for fishing or photography. It also offers convenient tracking and maneuverability.

The kayak features a large oval hatch storage at the bow and a storage area at the stern that can be secured with bungee cords. Additionally, there is a small dry hatch.

Overall, the Slayer is a versatile kayak that can handle various water conditions and is an excellent choice for those who want to fish hands-free.

Number 11!

#11. FeelFree Lure 10 Kayak

FeelFree is another amazing fishing kayak that lets you enjoy a fantastic day on the water. It features a wheel in the keel for easy and safe transportation from one place to another.

Its compact design ensures greater stability on the water. The FeelFree kayak comes with adjustable seats so that you can experience a better paddling or fishing position.

As a fishing kayak, there is enough storage space, including a closed storage hatch at the front and a rear storage area for your crate. FeelFree also features two fishing rod holders.

In addition, it also has front and rear gear tracks, allowing you to add extra rod holders or accessories.

Number 12!

#12. VIBE Sea Ghost

VIBE is a well-known kayak brand that always provides great vessels for paddlers. The Vibe Sea Ghost focuses on great stability and speed, ensuring a perfect balance.

It has an impressive weight capacity of 500 pounds, allowing you to carry all of your gear at once. The Sea Ghost also features a rudder system and ample storage space.

The Sea Ghost has the best stable and slip-resistant deck, which allows you to fish while standing. As far as comfort level is concerned, the Vibe Sea Ghost features 2 breathable Hero seats, adjustable foot braces for any size angler, easy access accessory gear tracks, paddle parks, and cup holders.

Number 13!

#13. Ocean Kayak Malibu Two

The Ocean Kayak Malibu Two targets the sea fishing kayak market, ensuring premium quality and greater durability. It features seating positions that support solo, tandem, and tandem with a child or pet.

The Comfort Plus seats provide four-way adjustability and slip-resistant seating. Molded footrests are also included to fit any size paddler.

With a maximum weight capacity of 425 pounds, you can store all the necessary gear for a day on the water.

Number 14!

#14. Sun Dolphin Aruba 10

The Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 is the best sit-in fishing kayak with all the necessary features required for fishing. It features adjustable padded seats with large back support, allowing you to paddle for the whole day on the water. It also has adjustable foot braces for added comfort.

The Aruba 10 has convenient gear storage along with shock cord deck rigging. It also features a paddle holder so that you don’t have to carry the paddle all the time. Made of rugged UV-stabilized Fortiflex High-Density Polyethylene, it is one of the most durable fishing kayaks available in the market.

Number 15!

#15. Riot Kayaks Edge, Flatwater Version

The Riot Kayaks Edge is primarily a touring kayak, but its flatwater version can also be used for fishing. Its slender bow and slim deck line allow for smooth tracking and add to its speed.

The Edge also comes with a pilot rudder system and an advanced custom-fit seating system, along with adjustable sliding footbraces. For storage, there are two closed hatches located at the front and rear deck.

With sliding footbraces and thigh pads, you can paddle comfortably all day long. Overall, it is definitely one of the best fishing kayaks available under $1000.

Safety Considerations for Purchasing a Fishing Kayak

Here are some of the precautions and suggestions along with their references:

  1. Determine your skill level before purchasing a kayak – The American Canoe Association recommends that buyers determine their skill level before purchasing a kayak to ensure that they get a kayak that is suitable for their level of experience. Reference:

  2. Look for a kayak with a stable base – The US Coast Guard recommends that buyers look for kayaks with a stable base to minimize the risk of capsizing. Reference:

  3. Consider the type of water you will be fishing in – The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recommends that buyers consider the type of water they will be fishing in when purchasing a kayak. Reference:

  4. Ensure that your kayak has proper safety equipment – The US Coast Guard recommends that buyers ensure that their kayak has proper safety equipment such as personal flotation devices, distress signals, and a whistle. Reference:

  5. Buy from a reputable dealer – The American Canoe Association recommends that buyers buy from reputable dealers to ensure that they get high-quality kayaks that meet safety standards. Reference:

What to Look for Before Buying the Best Fishing Kayaks Under $1000?

When deciding on the best fishing kayak to buy for under $1000, there are several things to consider. These are some of the key features to look for when selecting the perfect fishing kayak for yourself.


Stability is the most important thing to look for when selecting the best fishing kayak under $1000. Fishing kayaks must be very stable so that you don’t tip over while trying to catch a fish. They should be stable enough for you to easily catch a fish while standing up on the kayak.

Therefore, do not compromise on stability!


Going out fishing requires gear and equipment necessary for spending a day on the water. Most fishing kayaks have front and rear storage along with dry, closed hatches.

Consider what equipment you might be taking for fishing to help you decide which kayak to choose.

All the listed kayaks have fish rod holders, closed hatches, and front and rear storage compartments which are enough for spending a day on the water.

Moreover, some kayaks have the option to add extra accessories without taking up space, such as adding fish finders, GPS, or LEDs for night paddling.

Weight Capacity

Another important factor to consider before making a purchase decision is weight capacity. Deduct your weight, and in the case of tandem kayaks, your partner or pet’s weight, and see how much capacity is left for the equipment you intend to take.

After doing this simple math, you will know whether these particular kayaks fit your requirements or not. Do proper calculations while checking the weight capacity for your kayak.

Speed or Turning?

Fishing kayaks are not meant to be fast, but they should turn great. However, this is a matter of preference and happens for the following reasons:

  1. Longer kayaks are more efficient through the water, hence have better speed, and
  2. Shorter kayaks turn great along with a rounded keel that also helps to turn better.


Fishing kayaks are usually made of high-quality polyethylene, a durable material that makes the kayak resistant to peeling, tearing, and the sun. However, make sure that the material is durable enough to handle all your gear and rough use.

Kayak Safety Tips: Everything You Need to Know About Safe Kayaking

Here are some basic kayak safety tips that you should follow when going out for kayaking.

  • Always take care of the weather conditions and water temperature. Keep track of the weather and temperature, as it may become an emergency situation. If you are paddling in cold weather, a dry suit or wet suit will keep you warm and dry.
  • Invest in appropriate clothing while paddling. For warm weather, wear full-sleeve shirts to protect yourself from the sun. For cold weather, invest in dry or wet suits.
  • Keep track of wind power and force, as excessive wind can create issues while paddling.
  • Avoid being intoxicated while boating or paddling, as it can make the activity dangerous.
  • Always follow the boating rules of the area you are paddling in.
  • Never overload your boat and always try to stay 2 to 5 kg below the actual weight capacity of your kayak.
  • Before paddling in flowing water, it is recommended that you properly learn kayaking techniques.
  • Practice self-rescue techniques and make sure to practice all the available techniques that can help you survive any unfortunate event.
  • Always wear your Personal Floatation Device. According to Coast Guard regulations, all kayaks must have a life-jacket on board. Wearing it all the time will help you stay afloat in case of a flip-over.
  • It is highly recommended that you inform someone about your paddling plans, including where you are going, how long you are going to stay, why you are going, and when you are expected to return.
  • If you are paddling in surf zones or rivers, always wear helmets as it can be dangerous.
  • Always remain hydrated and carry lots of water and food with you.
  • Whenever paddling in a new area, always consult locals about currents, shoreline conditions, and weather patterns. Always plan an escape route in case of an emergency.

Following these simple kayak safety tips and tricks will make your journey adventurous and fun with proper safety precautions.

Top Rated Fishing Kayak Under $1000 Brand on The Market

Below are some of the top rated Fishing Kayak Under 1000$ brands listed for you;

  • 1- BKC UH-TK181 12.5 Foot Tandem Fishing Kayak
  • 2. Ocean Kayak Prowler 13 An​​​​​gler
  • 3. Vibe Kayaks Skipjack 90
  • 4. Perception Pescador Pro 12 Kayak
  • 5. Old Town Vapor Predator MX Fishing Kayak
  • 6. Lifetime Muskie Angler Sit-On-Top Kayak
  • 7. Lifetime Sport Fisher Single or Tandem Kayak
  • 8. Sun Dolphin Journey 10-Foot Sit-on-top Fishing Kayak
  • 9. Sun Dolphin Excursion 10-Foot Sit-In Fishing Kayak
  • 10. Native Watercraft Slayer 10 Propel Pedal Fishing Kayak
  • 11. FeelFree Lure 10 Kayak
  • 12. VIBE Sea Ghost
  • 13. Ocean Kayak Malibu Two
  • 14. Sun Dolphin Aruba 10
  • 15. Riot Kayaks Edge, Flatwater Version

Types of Angling kayaks

Here are some types of angling kayaks that I will discuss below for you:

Usually, there are two main types of angling kayaks: Sit-in Fishing kayaks and Sit-on-top Fishing kayaks. Let’s discuss both one by one.

Sit-on-Top Fishing Kayaks

These are kayaks on which paddlers sit on top of the kayak. In this kayak, the paddler is not enclosed inside the vessel. In this kayak, it is fairly easy to get in and out of the kayak.


  • Paddler sits free and does not feel confined in a cockpit.
  • Fairly easy to get in and out of the kayak.
  • Great for hot weather.
  • More stable than sit-in kayaks.
  • A paddler can move freely.


  • Paddlers can easily get wet while paddling.
  • Little slower and less control.

Sit-in Kayak

In this kayak, the paddler is enclosed inside the kayak. Spray skirts are used to keep the water away from the lower body.


  • Full control over the kayak.
  • Paddler sits dry and warm.
  • Faster compared to SOT.


  • Difficult to get in and out.
  • May be difficult to get out in case of emergency.
  • Too confined.

How to Take Care of and Maintain Your Fishing Kayak

This is the most common question that most paddlers ask, which is how to take care of and maintain your fishing kayak. So, for you guys, I am sharing some tips that you may follow to keep your fishing kayak clean.

Saltwater and sun are the enemies of your kayak!

Although most fishing kayaks are saltwater and sun-resistant, they can still impair the quality and durability of your kayak. Particularly, saltwater will damage the deck cord, bungee rigging, seat material, handles, life-jackets, wetsuits, and almost everything. Therefore, I recommend rinsing everything with fresh water after every use.

Once you have rinsed everything, apply mild detergent for stubborn grime, and if necessary, use a soft scrub brush.

Store it away from the sun and cover it!

If you need to store your kayak out of the sun, try to store it in a place with minimal sun rays. Cover it with a cloth and leave enough space for air circulation. If you have a sit-inside kayak, invest in a cockpit seal which will make your seat last longer.

Always give support to your kayak while storing!

Your kayak requires support while storing. Most kayaks are made of Polyethylene and have a tendency to get bent under heat. Therefore, they require support to store them. If you want to hang your kayak, don’t hang it by the ends as it will put undue pressure on the middle of the kayak hull and deform it after a month of storage. I recommend investing in kayak wall hooks, kayak wall slings, or a kayak hammock. If you are going to store it on the ground, then you must spend on kayak rack pads or kayak stands which will give the kayak the support it requires.

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs

There are some frequently asked questions related to fishing kayaks which are as follows.

Can I buy cheap Fishing kayak?

There are different fishing kayak models available in the market. You must look for features of the kayaks as most of the cheap fishing kayaks do not have any modern features. So if you are willing to compromise on modern features, then you may get a cheap fishing kayak.

As a beginner, which fishing kayak should I buy?

Actually, there is no such thing as “fishing kayaks for beginners” because fishing and kayaking are two different things. You first have to become proficient in your paddling skills so that you are comfortable in your kayak. Once you have mastered paddling, you can move on to fishing skills and combine the two.

What is the ideal storage option to choose?

It completely depends on you and your preferences. It’s up to you how much gear you want to bring with you when you go fishing. You can choose any of the fishing kayaks mentioned above as they all have ideal storage space.

How do you select a kayak for offshore fishing?

There are various models of kayaks available for offshore fishing. One feature to look for is a flared bow that can handle high waves and help you move forward with ease. Additionally, look for models that offer perfect stability in rough water.

Final Words

Based on our experts’ analysis and experience kayakers’ feedback, we can conclude that the fishing kayaks mentioned above are some of the best options available in the market for beginners and seasoned anglers alike.

It is important to prioritize your personal needs and preferences, such as storage space and stability, when selecting a fishing kayak for offshore fishing. With careful consideration, you can find a reliable and comfortable kayak that meets your needs without breaking the bank.

In conclusion, we hope that this list has provided valuable insight and helped you make an informed decision on your next fishing kayak purchase. Happy fishing!

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