- Overall Rating
- Quick setup and assemble
One of the lightest kayaks
Speed monitoring Meter
Very affordable Price
Not suitable for racing
- Overall Rating
- Value for Money
Easy to assemble & Setup
Luxurious spacing for storage
Foam seat which is very comfortable
Very durable material
A few years ago, the options we got for Kayaks were pretty limited. One of the major problems people faced was that storage space required to stow them away as kayaks we know are bulky and large. This created problems for people living in small houses or apartments. But times have changed and we have been blessed with new and advanced kayaks which are foldable, can fit in the trunk of any car and thus, can be easily transported from one place to another.
But buying a portable kayak is not a simple purchase decision. There are several factors you need to consider such as durability, weight, maximum capacity and so on. That’s why we did the thorough research for you and have included the top 10 best folding kayaks presently in the market along with a buying guide and an FAQ section to quench your doubts about kayaks and help you make an informed buying decision.
If you like this post, you may also be interested of these useful reviews:
Overview table for 10 the best folding kayaks
|No.||Best Folding Kayak||Image||Features||Editor's Rating|
|1.||Pakayak Bluefin Kayak||1. 14ft long Kayak that can be packed down into a rolling bag|
2. Made of high-density UV-resistant polyethylene
3. Maximum capacity of 300lbs
4. Available in 4 beautiful colors.
|2.||Oru kayak Foldable Kayak||1. Lightweight, weight starting from just 26lbs|
2. Made from customized polypropylene and hardware that’s rust-proof
3. It’s available in 3 variants- Beach LT, Bay ST and Coast XT
|3.||Intex Challenger K1 Kayak||1. Inflatable floor provided for better sturdiness and comfort|
2. Comes with an 86 inch aluminum paddle
3. Provided a cargo net to stow any extra gear
4. high output input pump for easy inflation and deflation purpose
|4.||Tucktec Advanced 2020 Model Kayak||1. Made of high density polyethylene thermoplastic that is durable and never tears, punctures or rips.|
2. Maximum weight capacity of 350lbs
3. Leak-proof and unsinkable
4. Exceeds the US Coast Guard Manufacturing & Safety requirements.
|5.||Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak||1. Made of UV-Protected High-Density Polyethylene|
2. Comes with padded seat pad and back seat for extra comfort
3. Has front and rear shock cord straps
4. Deep hull tracking channels to monitor performance
|6.||Ztotop 2-person Inflatable Kayak||1. Made for 2 people with maximum weight capacity of 400lbs|
2. Constructed of heavy duty vinyl that’s sturdy and long-lasting
3. Adjustable seat for your comfort
4. Net bag provided for easy storage of items
|7.||Advanced Elements Advanced Frame Convertible Inflatable Kayak||1. Comes with 3 layers of material for extra puncture resistance function|
2. Padded and adjustable seat for your comfort
3. Has maximum weight capacity of 300lbs
4. Main inflation chamber divided into two independent air chambers for added security
|8.||Sevylor Quikpak K1 1-Person Kayak||1. Double lock valves with two locking point provided to facilitate easy inflation or deflation|
2. Multiple air chambers provided for safety purpose
3. Adjustable and padded back rest for extra comfort
4. Maximum weight capacity of 400lbs
|9.||Sea Eagle 370 Pro 3 person Portable Kayak||1. 3 person kayak with maximum weight capacity of 650lbs|
2. Lightweight, weighs just 32lbs
3. 2 skegs provided on the bottom for faster speed and better monitoring
4. Available with Self-bailing drain valve
|10.||Driftsun Voyager 2 person Tandem Inflatable Kayak||1. Dual action pump makes inflation easier and quicker|
2. Comes with 2 aluminum paddle oars
3. Lightweight, weighs only 27lbs
4. Has two adjustable padded seats for comfort
Editor’s Review of Top 10 best foldable Kayaks
#10. Driftsun Voyager 2 person Tandem Inflatable Kayak
Whether you opt for tandem or solo paddling, this kayak by Driftsun would be an ideal companion for you. This inflatable kayak comes with desirable features, a great sturdy design, and a lightweight body. A lot of attention to detail has been provided by the manufacturer. The paddles are adjustable and come with comfortable grips, a dual-action pump is included to quicken the inflation time, EVA foamed seats for better comfort are provided and anti-corrosive hardware is present that ensures the sturdiness of the product.
Quality is a big concern for people looking to buy an inflatable kayak as they want their kayaks to not get punctured easily. Driftsun Voyager understands your concern and has a design that can easily withstand even the harshest of environments with ease. It is made of heavy-duty PVC tarpaulin that wouldn’t get punctured even by rocky bottoms and sharp edges. Double threaded Boston valves are provided for quick inflation and deflation purpose and a rear drain plug is also there to ensure easy draining of water which will help you in better cleaning of the kayak.
Talking about comfort, this kayak 2 seats scores pretty well in that area. The seats are padded and adjustable and the kayak comes with rear and front bungee compartments so that you can store any excess cargo easily. The following accessories are included with the Driftsun Voyager kayak- a travel bag, a double-action pump, and two aluminum paddles with safe grip handles.
#9. Sea Eagle 370 Pro 3 person Kayak
It doesn’t matter whether you are an amateur or a professional, the Sea Eagle Pro Kayak is an ideal pick for all. Portable, versatile and compact, it is great for people who are done with the traditional bulky kayaks. This kayak can hold 3 people easily and has a maximum weight capacity of 650lbs. It doesn’t take more than 10 minutes for you to inflate this kayak and it deflates pretty quickly as well, and the end result is compact enough to fit in your over the shoulder carry bag.
The hull is made from the durable 38 millimeters Polykrylar which is salt water and sun resistant and comes with an I-beam construction floor to ensure that even the toughest of conditions can be withstood with ease. If you have a dog and you worried taking him would puncture the inflatable kayak, you don’t have to. The construction of the kayak is strong enough to handle the paws of even the largest of dogs.
A self-bailing draining valve is provided for easy cleaning and deflation purpose and 2 molded skegs are also present to monitor and track speed. The seats are comfortable and adjustable and you can even remove them for better comfort. A repair kit is provided to fix any minor tears. Sea eagle 370 pro is highly versatile as well. You can use it on lakes, ponds, and fares well on whitewater up to class III.
#8. Sevylor Quikpak K1 1-Person Kayak
Launched in the year 1949, Sevylor has been a pioneer in the field of water sports products. From standup paddleboards to floating sofas and some very impressive inflatable kayaks, you can find a large variety of options here. Sevylor Quikpak K1 kayak is a big hit as it’s not another run-of-the-mill kayak. This 1 person kayak is a ‘sit on top’ kayak which has gained huge popularity recently due to its sturdiness and amazing control and stability it provides to the users.
Made of 21 gauge PVC material and a tough tarpaulin bottom, it is fit for the rough conditions. There are multiple air chambers (5 in total) present which will help you in case you do hit a snag so that if one gets punctured, the other cheers will help you keep afloat. The kayak is extremely easy to inflate and within 5 minutes it sets up and is ready to be used. Once inflated, it is very easy to carry the kayak to waters using the lift handles.
Quikpak K1 is foldable and can fit easily in a carry bag and is lightweight enough to be carried around easily. The extras that this kayak comes with are great and what caught our interests. A bungee storage area is provided big enough to fit all your gears, drink holder is available as well for your comfort and a multi-position footrest is given so that you find the most relaxed position.
#7. Advanced Elements Advanced Frame Convertible Inflatable Kayak
A durable, versatile and stable kayak, it is available in two colors- red and green. You can use it for tandem or solo paddling and this 15 ft inflatable piece of wonder wouldn’t disappoint you. The kayak is made of the durable PVC tarpaulin and is covered with 1000 denier polyester. The best feature of this kayak is that it’s convertible.
Although it comes with two seats, you can remove one of them and shift the other to the center to make it fit for solo paddling. However, the kayak is a bit heavy and weighs over 50lbs so solo paddling requires more effort than usual.
The whole set up process is quick and simple as it is delivered pre-assembled to you. All you have to do is unfold the kayak, inflate it and attach the seats and you are good to go. The seats are padded and adjustable to provide you with maximum comfort.
A repair kit is made available so that any minor tears or holes can be patched easily. 6 inflation chambers are present in this kayak and the maximum weight capacity it can handle is 550lbs. Compared to other similar kayaks, this one has its seats lower so that you find paddling to be easy, stable and any wind resistance is reduced.
#6. Ztotop 2-person Inflatable Kayak- Top budget-friendly kayak
This kayak by Ztotop can be used for solo or tandem paddling and has a maximum weight capacity of 400lbs. For people who wish to own a kayak but can’t because of budget constraints, Ztotop has made for them a durable kayak which is not only of the best budgets kayak but also of high-quality.
Made of heavy-duty vinyl, the material is puncture-resistant, saltwater and sun resistant. Want to take your dog along for paddling but are worried that he will puncture your precious kayak? Not anymore. This kayak is strong enough to handle your dog’s paws or claws with ease.
A foot pump is included which allows quick inflation and easy set up. Inflation, as well as deflation of the kayak, takes considerably less time, thanks to the 2 Boston valves available. The seats are adjustable and come with backrests.
A storage net bag is provided so you can stow away your important items in one place. A repair kit is included to mend small punctures whereas you also get two paddles and an instruction booklet for your better understanding. Three separate air chambers are included for your safety and to keep the kayak afloat even if one gets punctured.
#5. Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak-Top fishing Kayak
A strong, stable, comfortable fishing portable kayak that also goes easy on your budget? The Tamarack Angler Kayak is here to check all the boxes. With a length of 10ft and a maximum weight capacity of 250lbs, it is constructed of high-density UV-resistant polyethylene. You can easily use it for fishing on rivers, calm lakes, bays, and inlets.
A stable flat base is a base is provided to keep the kayak buoyant in even the roughest of the conditions. This kayak is fast for recreational and fishing purposes but not fast enough if you intend to use it for racing. Two handles are available at the back and at the front to make it easier for carrying.
Talking about the seats, they are padded and adjustable to offer you the much-needed comfort. Multiple footrest positions are included for your relaxation and two storage hatches are included so that you can stow away your extra gear with ease. The company also provides 5 years of limited warranty on the kayak.
#4. Tucktec Advanced 2020 Model Kayak-Top fishing Kayak
Available in 5 colors, the advanced 2020 kayak by Tucktek weighs only 30 pounds and has a maximum weight capacity of 2 people or 350 pounds. The kayak is super simple to set up and the whole process takes less than 5 minutes. A retractable fin is provided which can be used for stability as well as monitoring of speed.
The kayak is made of high-density polyethylene thermoplastic which does not puncture, rip or tear. Because of the stability, it provides due to its flat bottom, this kayak is a good choice for amateurs as well as professionals.
The high-back seats are comfortable and can be adjusted downwards, forwards, upwards and backward with ease. This kayak is unsinkable as it is constructed from a solid single sheet with no openings, hence the chance of leaks are nil. Also, a 90 days satisfaction guarantee offer is available to the customer, where they can return the product if they aren’t satisfied with it and get a full refund.
#3. Intex Challenger K1 Kayak-Top 1 person kayak
A kayak that is as affordable as the Intex Challenger K1, many people refuse to believe that it would come with such great features and be of high-quality. But Intex proves them wrong. It is a company with over 40 years of experience and has been known for producing great quality products at affordable prices and Challenger K1 is no exception.
This easy to use 1 person kayak is a great option for beginners and is made of rugged vinyl and an I-beam floor. The functionalities provided in this kayak are not something you would easily find at this price range.
A large, oversized adjustable seat is provided for your comfort. This lightweight kayak weighs a little over 27 pounds and has a maximum weight capacity of 220lbs. A repair kit is provided so you can patch up minor tears and holes. A cargo net is there so you can store all your extra gears in one place. An 84 inches aluminum oar is provided as well along with a hi-output manual pump for quick inflation purpose and a removable skeg to monitor the speed of the kayak
#2. Oru Kayak Foldable Kayak–Top 1 person kayak
Available in 3 variants – Bay St, Beach Lt, and Coast XT, the Kayak by Oru are stable, durable, easy to use and lightweight. Made of custom polypropylene which is UV-resistant, fade-resistant, and saltwater resistant and hardware that does not attract rust, it has been rated with a total of 20000 folds in its lifetime.
It doesn’t matter whether you are a novice or a professional paddler, the Oru Kayak is here to meet the needs of everyone. (Beach LT variant is for beginners whereas Coast XT has been made for professionals).
The Bay ST is the initial model that became so popular eventually that its model is currently displayed at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. The kayak is extremely lightweight and its weight starts from 26lbs. It takes just 5 minutes to assemble the boat which saves you precious time and effort.
The three variants of Oru are to be used in different circumstances, so you should buy one that suits your needs the best. While Bay ST is ideal to be used for overnight trips on the quick-moving river, Beach LT is more suitable for day trips on calm and flat water. Coast Xt is more hard-core and can be used in calm as well as rough water conditions. The kayak comes with a 1-year warranty and 30 days money-back guarantee.
#1. Pakayak Bluefin Kayak–Top 1 person kayak
Our number 1 pick on our list for the top folding kayak is the ‘nesting’ Bluefin Kayak by Pakayak. Before we review the product, we’d like to tell you that Pakayak was fully funded for over a million dollars in the Kickstarter campaign in 2016. People waited with anticipation for their product and finally, that wait is over.
What separated this kayak from other ones is that it actually breaks down into 6 pieces which then fit inside each other like some puzzle, hence the word nesting. The kayak is made of high-density UV-resistant polyethylene and comes with a double channel hull for better stability.
The whole assembly process is quick and takes less than 3 minutes. The kayak gets its name from bluefin tuna and a specified % of profits are made to the foundation to save it, that’s what we call doing business with a conscience. This is one of the fastest kayaks in the market currently and is available in 4 colors, is leak-proof, and comes with 2 years limited warranty.
Comprehensive Buying guide for the best folding Kayaks
Things to consider while buying a kayak
You don’t want to buy a kayak that is over and above your budget. Decide upon the budget before you go for kayak shopping and try to stick to it. You can easily find a kayak that ticks all the boxes and which also suits your budget by doing some extensive research.
- Easy to assemble
Pitting your kayak together should not be a difficult or tedious process. Ideally, it should take less than 5 minutes to assemble your kayak. You need to check the instructions for assembly before you decide to purchase the kayak.
They should be simple to understand and follow. Also, check customer reviews on various websites to understand how simple the entire assembly process is. If your kayak doesn’t assemble easily, buying a foldable kayak is a waste and you might have well bought a traditional kayak.
The durability of the product is essential for any product you bit, not just the foldable kayak. The durability of the boat mostly depends on the material used in the construction of its frame and hull. Most durable materials that are used these days are polypropylene, polyurethane and carbon fiber. These materials are not only scratch-resistant and tear proof, but they are also UV-resistant and can withstand even the roughest of conditions with ease.
- Maximum weight capacity
Each kayak has its own maximum weight capacity. Exceeding the weight capacity means the kayak will get unstable and might even topple. Check the weight capacity of the foldable kayak you are planning to buy and make sure it’s what exactly you require. Because of the flexibility of the foldable kayaks, their maximum weight capacity is lower than that of traditional kayaks.
- Where you want to paddle
The kayak you choose should depend upon where you want to take it for paddling. Some kayaks are great in calm water but they don’t do so well in rough waters. While there are other kayaks that fare well in all types of waters without any compromise in speed or quality.
Foldable kayaks are mostly lightweight so this isn’t a big concern. But if you are a beginner paddler, you should opt for lighter kayaks for better control. But the disadvantage with lightweight kayaks is that the paddlers tend to lose control during strong winds or paddling in rough waters. It’s better to check the weight of the kayak and whether it’s suitable for you.
What are the benefits of using a folding kayak?
- Easier to transport
Folding kayak makes it really easy for you to transport from one place to another. Unlike traditional kayaks, you don’t need a large truck to carry it to the waters from the storage space. Instead, the kayak can be folded in a carry bag which can easily be stored in the boot of the car. The folding feature of the kayak is a major benefit if you are trying to get to remote places.
- Lack of storage space
People often want to own a kayak but can’t because they don’t have adequate space to store the boat. They hire storage go downs which can then cost them a substantial amount of money. But with folding kayaks, they don’t have to worry about the lack of storage space. The kayak fits easily into an over-the-shoulder bag that can be stored anywhere in the house or the car without taking much space.
- Comfort and easy set-up
You can take your kayak to the water whenever you want to, you don’t have to schedule the date or arrange for a pickup truck to carry it to the waters. And setting up the kayak is really easy as well. Most of the foldable kayaks can be assembled in less than 5 minutes which is really impressive.
- Easy to carry to the water
Just the whole process of carrying the traditional kayak from the truck to the waters is cumbersome. Most of the people use a wheel or a trailer to transport their kayak. This can be a real problem if the beach is crowded or has steep dunes. These problems you don’t have to encounter with a collapsible kayak. Just take it to the water edge, assemble in a few minutes and you are good to go. Disassembling is as easy as assembling and doesn’t require much of your time.
Different Types of Kayaks
- Inflatable Kayak
These are easy to use and lightweight kayaks that are made from an inflatable outer shell. Even though their body is inflatable, they are much stronger than many people believe them to be and can’t be punctured easily. These kayaks are also the most buoyant out of all other kayaks. These kayaks are lightweight and hence, can be handled by amateurs easily. They can be folded to any size you want and stored in the smallest of storage spaces easily.
These kayaks usually come with a hand pump for inflation purpose and the inflation and deflation process doesn’t take more than 10 minutes. It’s advisable to use them only on calm water as they are harder to control because of their lightweight.
- Origami Kayak
These types of kayaks got popular when they were first introduced by the company Oru in 2016. Origami is the Japanese art of folding papers that dates back to the 17th century. The origami kayaks are normally made from polyethylene and can be folded down to the size of a big suitcase. They are not inflatable but make use of non-rigid material for construction. These are, however, more expensive than inflatable kayaks.
- Sit-on-top Kayak
A great pick for beginner paddlers, these types of kayaks, as the name suggests, are ones where you can just sit on top without any worries about the spray skirts. There is no enclosed cockpit and hence, instead of the paddler being seated inside the kayak, he/she is seated above the surface of the water, on the top.
These kayaks are more suitable for beginners and children because due to an open cockpit, they don’t have the feeling of being trapped inside a kayak. Also, because these kayaks have a higher center of gravity, they are also more stable than normal kayaks.
- Sit-inside kayak
The sit-inside kayaks are opposite of the sit-on-top kayaks. They got an enclosed cockpit and the paddlers are seated inside the kayaks, below the surface of the water, not on the top. For advanced paddlers and professionals, this is the most popular kind of design.
These are simple to use kayaks, stable, fun and a great choice for people who want to stay dry during paddling. The only disadvantage with this type is that during capsize, it can be hard for the paddler to come out of the kayak. But these days, sit-inside kayaks come with large cockpits and one doesn’t have to feel trapped inside them.
- Folding Kayak
Similar to inflatable kayaks, folding kayaks can also be folded for easy storage and transport. They are usually made of wood or aluminum to provide the much-required stability. Folding kayaks are, however, better than inflatable kayaks in several aspects as they are easier to set up (no inflation required), takes less time to dry out and more lightweight.
- Sea Kayak
These are also popularly known as the touring kayaks. These kayaks come with an enclosed cockpit and normally used in the sport of paddling. They have large storage space and can accommodate up to three paddlers. These are non-foldable kayaks and can be hard to transport from one place to another.
Frequently Asked Questions
Conclusion: Find the best folding kayak for you
Folding kayaks are the most portable and space-saving kayaks so far. They are made with durable materials that sun and water-resistant. The folding kayaks combine the toughness of traditional kayaks and with the portability of modern ones. We have reviewed most foldable kayaks, top fishing kayaks, and top 1 person kayaks.
Buying a folding kayak is an important purchase decision and hence, you should pay consideration to all the important factors before you finally decide to take the leap. We did extensive research and have included all the important aspects of kayak shopping that you should be aware of.
I hope our review on the best folding kayak and the buying guide helped you to make an informed and profitable buying decision, land the most suitable folding kayak on the market.