Best Lightweight Kayaks: Portable Picks for All Budgets

Does hauling around a super heavy kayak wear you out before you even hit the water? You’re not alone! Thankfully, Best Lightweight Kayaks are here to save your arms and enthusiasm for awesome days of paddling.

Best Lightweight Kayaks

Now, don’t think lightweight means flimsy—today’s Best Lightweight Kayaks deliver high performance and sturdy stability while still being easy to carry. In addition, they offer ample space to pack snacks, gear, or your furry first mate. Our team researched to find the lightest, most innovative kayaks that don’t compromise on features.

 Our guide breaks down what makes these kayaks quite a catch, from cool designs to storage space. We’ll also delve into a detailed comparison and answer common questions.

           Top 8  Best Lightweight Kayaks

  • Top All-Around Performer: Eddyline Sky 10 (32 lbs)
  • Optimal Sit-On-Top Choice: Eddyline Caribbean 12FS (45 lbs)
  • Premier Tandem Selection: Sea Eagle 385fta FastTrack (35 lbs)
  • Finest Inflatable Sit-Inside: Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Sport (26 lbs)
  • Superb Inflatable Sit-On-Top: Aquaglide Deschutes 110 (18 lbs)
  • Outstanding Folding Kayak: Oru Kayak Lake+ (18 lbs)
  • Best Value Sit-Inside Option: Pelican Argo 100X (36 lbs)
  • Best Value Sit-On-Top Choice: Pelican Sentinel 100X (40 lbs)

                Eddyline Sky 10

Best overall lightweight kayak
Eddyline Sky 10


Length10 feet
Width26 inches
Weight32 pounds
Max. Capacity250 pounds

The Eddyline Sky 10 kayak is a total game-changer for casual paddlers seeking a lightweight ride. Weighing only 32 pounds and stretching 10 feet long, this Best Lightweight Kayaks is a piece of cake to transport and store. 

Its carbonate build gives it a featherweight design that makes it much easier to carry than clunky hard-shell options. This makes the Sky 10 awesome for seniors or solo paddlers who don’t want to wrestle with a bulky kayak.

However, don’t let the small size fool you – this baby has speed and stability that keep up with bigger models. It handles like a dream, allowing you to zip around and maneuver tight spots with ease. One of the coolest things about the Sky 7 is the ample storage space inside, which isn’t commonly found on most lightweight kayaks. The front and back bulkheads give ample room for gear and goodies.

Comfort is also top-notch, with a backrest that makes even long paddling days a breeze. You can increase the coziness even more with an additional backband. However, heads up – if you’re over 6 feet tall, the snug cockpit may not suit you.

The only downside is the noisy carry handles when you strap it to a car roof. But that doesn’t affect the Sky 10’s performance once you hit the water.


  •  Super lightweight and easy to carry
  • Best Lightweight Kayaks is Plenty of storage space given its compact size
  • Stable and fast – nice combo!
  • Best Lightweight Kayaks has Comfy seat with backrest and optional lumbar support


  • Smaller sizes may not suit every paddler
  • Carry handles can make a racket when moving the kayak

                 Eddyline Caribbean 12FS

Best lightweight sit-on-top kayak

Eddyline Caribbean 12FS


Length12 feet
Width30 inches
Weight45 pounds
Max. Capacity275 pounds

The Eddyline Caribbean 12FS kayak takes the sit-on-top category to a whole new level with its unbeatable blend of comfort, performance, and quality design.

Weighing in at just 45 pounds, most paddlers can easily transport this bad boy. And it skips on features too.

You get abundant storage with a huge front hatch and a smaller rear door. But even cooler is the removable frame seat that doubles as a camp chair – how genius is that? This thing was designed with long outings in mind.

At 12 feet long and 30 inches wide, the Caribbean 12FS tracks like a dream so you stay on course even sans rudder. It handles smoothly whether you’re cruising open water or navigating tight spaces.

The fully adjustable foot braces, dual side tracks for gear, and built-in paddle holder demonstrate the thoughtful touches Eddyline included. You also get ample space to stow rods and camping gear, you name it.

While it shines as a versatile, high-performance kayak, this baby’s really in its element in warm climates and calm waters when you want to kick back.

Potential drawbacks are the lack of an easy-access drink holder or storage for small items. But that’s a small sacrifice for such a comfortable, feature-loaded kayak ready for adventure.


  •  Comfortable, padded seating
  • Lightweight for a tandem kayak
  • Extremely stable
  • Can carry multiple paddlers or cargo


  •  Inflation may take longer than expected                                                                                         
  • Requires thorough cleaning and drying

Sea Eagle 385fta FastTrack

Best lightweight tandem kayak

Sea Eagle 385fta FastTrack


Length12 feet 6 inches
Width36 inches
Weight35 pounds
Max. Capacity635 pounds

The Eddyline Caribbean 12FS kayak takes the sit-on-top category to a whole new level with its unbeatable blend of comfort, performance, and quality design.

Weighing in at just 45 pounds, most paddlers can easily transport this bad boy. And it skips on features too.

You get abundant storage with a huge front hatch and a smaller rear one. But even cooler is the removable frame seat that doubles as a camp chair – how genius is that? This thing was designed with long outings in mind.

At 12 feet long and 30 inches wide, the Caribbean 12FS tracks like a dream so you stay on course even sans rudder. It handles smoothly whether you’re cruising open water or navigating tight spaces. The fully adjustable foot braces, dual side tracks for gear, and built-in paddle holder demonstrate the thoughtful touches Eddyline included. You also get ample space to stow rods and camping gear, you name it.

While it shines as a versatile, high-performance Best Lightweight Kayak, this baby’s really in its element in warm climates and calm waters when you want to kick back.

Potential drawbacks are the lack of an easy-access drink holder or storage for small items. But that’s a small sacrifice for such a comfortable, feature-loaded kayak ready for adventure.

So if you want a sit-on-top kayak that’s a breeze to transport, incredibly comfy, and effortlessly stable, the Caribbean 12FS delivers big time.

Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Sport

Best inflatable sit-inside kayak

Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Sport


Length10 feet 5 inches
Width32 inches
Weight26 pounds
Max. Capacity250 pounds

The best part is how easy it is to take with you. You can bring it on buses or fit it into your car without any trouble. This makes it awesome for spontaneous kayaking trips whenever you feel like it.

It’s good at turning and handling tight spaces, like narrow rivers or mangrove areas.

It’s comfy too! You can easily get in and out, and it feels roomy inside. But it might not hold a lot of stuff, so if you need lots of space for gear, you might want to check out other kayaks.

One thing to remember is that because it’s a sit-inside kayak, it needs a good clean and dry after using it, especially in saltwater. So, after your kayaking adventure, plan some time to wash and dry it properly before packing it away.


  •  Extremely lightweight and easy to transport
  • Quick and straightforward assembly and deflation
  • Offers exceptional comfort and stability
  • Exhibits impressive maneuverability and tracking


  • Has slightly restricted storage space

Aquaglide Deschutes 110

Best inflatable sit-on-top kayak

Aquaglide Deschutes 110


Length11 feet
Width36 inches
Weight18 pounds
Max. Capacity300 pounds

The Aquaglide Deschutes 110 is the ultimate lightweight, inflatable kayak. It’s built with tough Duratex-reinforced PVC, so it’s strong and portable, making it easy to pack up and deploy for quick expeditions. At 11′ long and 36″ wide, it’s the perfect balance of maneuverability and stability, making it great for both beginners and experienced paddlers.

The Deschutes 110 can comfortably accommodate an adult and a small pet, with a weight capacity of 300 lbs. Dog lovers who love paddling with their furry friends will appreciate this!

One of the best things about the Deschutes 110 is its excellent portability.

It weighs only 18 lbs, making it incredibly easy to transport, inflate, and pack up. This makes it ideal for people with limited storage space or those who don’t want to deal with the hassle of roof racks.

While speed and tracking aren’t its top priorities, the Deschutes 110 performs better than some other inflatables in its price range. Its low rocker profile and narrow tubes make it glide smoothly on water. It can handle quiet creeks, lakes, and even medium rapids, making it a very versatile kayak.

There are a couple of minor drawbacks to the Best Lightweight Kayaks. The fixed footrests might not be comfortable for everyone, especially those with longer legs. Also, the seat rests on the floor, which can make for a damp experience if water gets into the kayak.


  •  Extremely lightweight and portable, making it easy to transport and store
  • Provides exceptional stability, even in choppy waters
  • Ample space for paddlers and small pets, perfect for family outings
  • Quick and easy setup and takedown process
  • Versatile, suitable for a variety of water conditions, from calm lakes to gentle rivers.


  • Fixed footrests may not be comfortable for paddlers with longer legs                                                                                           
  • The seating position can lead to a slightly damp experience
  • Moderate tracking and speed capabilities,

                         Oru Kayak Lake+

Best lightweight folding kayak

                         Oru Kayak Lake+


Length9 feet
Width32 inches
Weight18 pounds
Max. Capacity250 pounds

Embrace the tranquil beauty of gliding across serene waters with the Oru Kayak Lake+, our top pick in the lightweight folding kayak category. This featherweight marvel, weighing a mere 18 pounds, is crafted from resilient double-layered polypropylene, making it your ideal companion for leisurely paddling adventures.


  •  Super lightweight and portable, making it easy to transport and store
  • Perfect for casual kayaking on calm waters and leisurely paddling
  • Compact design for efficient space utilization
  • Hassle-free setup and breakdown, requiring minimal effort


  • Slightly restricted storage space inside the kayak
  • Not as comfortable or as fast as some other kayaks on the market

Space-Saving Design: Travel Companion and Storage Masterpiece

The Lake+ redefines portability, folding into a compact size comparable to carry-on luggage. This ingenious design makes it an ideal choice for those without rooftop racks or limited storage space at home.

Effortless Gliding Savor the smooth gliding sensation as your paddle strokes effortlessly propel you across tranquil waters. While the Lake+ isn’t designed for speed demons or whitewater enthusiasts, it truly shines in calm waterways, delivering a delightful paddling experience.

Essential Gear Storage: Practicality Meets Minimalism

The Lake+ accommodates your essential gear with ease, ensuring you have everything you need for a comfortable paddling excursion. While the storage space for non-essentials is slightly limited, it’s still a fantastic option for casual and recreational paddlers seeking a lightweight, portable kayak.

The Oru Kayak Lake+: Your Gateway to Unforgettable Paddling Experiences

With its exceptional portability, space-saving design, and effortless gliding capabilities, the Oru Kayak Lake+ is your gateway to unforgettable paddling adventures. Whether you’re seeking a tranquil escape on a serene lake or a leisurely paddle along a calm river, the Lake+ will elevate your kayaking experience, making it your go-to companion for years to come.

Pelican Argo 100X

Best value sit-inside kayak

Pelican Argo 100X


Length10 feet
Width28 inches
Weight36 pounds
Max. Capacity275 pounds

Discover the Pelican Argo 100X – a gem among the Best Lightweight Kayaks. Weighing just 36 lbs, it’s a top choice for solo adventurers craving an affordable, light kayak that’s a breeze to handle on and off the water. At 10 feet long and 28 inches wide, it’s versatile enough to fit on your car’s roof or inside larger vehicles.

In calm waters like lakes and gentle rivers, the Argo 100X truly shines. It’s easy to maneuver and responds well to your paddling, perfect for beginners or anyone looking for a relaxing day out. Yet, in strong currents or rough waters, its tracking ability isn’t as strong, and it might feel a tad wobbly. Remember, this kayak isn’t built for those challenging conditions.

For comfort, it’s alright but could use more padding in the seat, especially for longer trips. Taller folks might feel a bit cramped in the leg space. While storage is decent, the front area could be more secure and roomy.

Pelican Sentinel 100X

Best value sit-on-top kayak
Pelican Sentinel 100X


Length10 feet
Width30 inches
Weight40 pounds
Capacity300 pounds


  •  Great value for the price
  • Easy to handle due to its lightweight
  • Stable and perfect for beginners
  • Accommodates small to medium-sized dogs


  • Seat might not be very comfortable for longer use
  • Could use more grip points for easier carrying
  • Basic storage options
  • Convenient Size and Weight: A length of 10 feet and a lightweight build at just 40 lbs make it easily portable.
  • Versatile Open Cockpit Design: Ideal for beginners, seniors, and pet owners due to its easy entry and stability.
  • Stability and Maneuverability: Offers solid balance, especially in moderate wind, and handles turns smoothly.
  • Relaxed Performance: Suited for calm outings on lakes or gentle rivers, though not built for high-speed tracking.
  • Decent Storage Options: Basic yet adequate storage includes a rear tank with bungee cords, a dual-position bottle holder, and extra side storage for personal or pet items.
  • Fair Comfort Features: Comfortable enough for short trips with molded footrests and adjustable backrests, but consider upgrading the seat for longer excursions.

Comparison and Analysis

When choosing the best lightweight kayak, we took into account various factors, each with its importance. This thorough approach ensures that our recommendations are well-rounded and tailored to the diverse needs and preferences of all kayakers.

Portability, a key feature of Best Lightweight Kayaks, holds a significant 20% weightage in our evaluation, reflecting its importance in making transportation a breeze. But that’s not all; maneuverability and stability also received considerable attention, given their direct impact on the paddling experience.

By assigning different levels of importance to these facets, we’ve created a comprehensive evaluation that considers every aspect. So, whether you’re an experienced paddler seeking speed and agility or a beginner looking for a safe and comfortable ride, our analysis aims to guide you toward the perfect kayak for your needs.


A Best Lightweight kayak speed is a symphony of factors, including length, width, hull shape, and construction material, all playing their part in the performance.

Kayak speed factors: Long means fast – like the 12ft Eddyline Caribbean. Slimmer widths glide better – think Eddyline Sky 10 vs. Aquaglide Deschutes 110. Curved bottoms beat flat for speed. Lightweight builds like carbonite composites zip ahead, as seen in Eddyline’s models.

Stability and tracking

Imagine paddling your kayak with ease, effortlessly gliding along a straight line without constant course correction. That’s the essence of tracking, a crucial performance metric in kayaking.

Three key factors influence a kayak’s tracking ability: its length, hull design, and the presence or absence of a skeg or rudder.

Stability and tracking

Longer Best Lightweight Kayaks generally track better, while shorter kayaks may require more effort to maintain a straight line. The hull shape also plays a role, with rounder or V-shaped hulls offering superior tracking compared to flat-bottomed designs.

Finally, the presence of a skeg or rudder can dramatically enhance tracking. These retractable fins act like miniature rudders, helping to keep the kayak on course, especially in windy conditions.


Imagine navigating a maze of rocky outcrops or navigating through swiftly flowing currents – that’s where maneuverability takes center stage in kayaking. This essential quality defines a kayak’s agility and responsiveness, allowing you to change direction swiftly and safely, transforming every paddling adventure into a thrilling escapade.

 Kayaks Maneuverability

Kayaks with a shorter length and wider beam typically excel in maneuverability, making them ideal for navigating tight spaces or dodging unexpected obstacles. The hull shape also plays a significant role. Rounder or V-shaped hulls offer superior maneuverability compared to flat-bottomed designs, allowing you to make sharp turns with ease.

So, when choosing a kayak, consider its maneuverability to ensure you can conquer any waterway with confidence and precision. Embrace the thrill of navigating challenging environments with a kayak that responds to your every command, transforming every paddling experience into an unforgettable adventure.

Kayak Stability

Just like a steady ship at sea, a kayak’s stability is crucial for a safe and enjoyable paddling experience. This stability can be divided into two categories: primary and secondary.

Primary stability refers to a kayak’s steadiness when resting on calm waters, while secondary stability measures its ability to stay upright when leaning to one side or in rough conditions.

Several factors influence a kayak’s stability, with the hull design often playing a central role. Wider and flatter hulls typically provide excellent primary stability, making them ideal for beginners or calm water paddling. In contrast, V-shaped or rounded hulls excel in secondary stability, catering to experienced paddlers or those venturing into more challenging environments.

Among the Best Lightweight Kayaks we’ve reviewed, some stand out for their exceptional stability across various activities. The Sea Eagle 385ft FastTrack and Aquaglide Deschutes 110, with their broad hulls, offer superb primary stability. This translates to an easy entry and exit point, making them ideal for activities like fishing.

Despite their contrasting design approaches, the Eddyline Caribbean 12FS and Eddyline Sky 10 both excel in stability. The Sky 10, with its narrower and streamlined design, provides solid secondary stability. Conversely, the Caribbean 12FS, with its broader base, boasts superior primary stability, making it a suitable choice for senior paddlers.


Kayaks comfort
  • Comfort is crucial for a pleasurable kayaking experience.
  • The most important factor in kayak comfort is the seat design.
  • Adjustable footrests and thigh braces are also essential for comfort.
  • The size of the cockpit also matters as it affects both comfort and controllability.
  • The Eddyline Caribbean 12FS is an excellent choice for kayakers who prioritize comfort.
  • The Eddyline Sky 10 is a good option for smaller kayakers who value comfort.
  • Several inflatable kayaks offer comfortable seating, including the Sea Eagle 385ft FastTrack, Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Sport, and Aquaglide Deschutes 110.
  • The Pelican Argo 100X and Sentinel 100X are affordable kayaks that provide reasonable comfort.
  • The Oru Kayak Lake+ is a folding kayak that offers sufficient comfort for shorter recreational trips.


Whether you’re planning an extended kayaking trip or a casual fishing excursion, storage is an essential aspect to consider. The right kayak should accommodate your gear seamlessly, ensuring a hassle-free and enjoyable paddling experience.

The Eddyline Sky 10 stands out for its exceptional storage capabilities, despite its compact size. Bulkheads at the bow and stern securely hold your essential gear, making it a top choice for adventurers.

Kayaks storage

In the sit-on-top kayak category, the Eddyline Caribbean 12FS impresses with its abundant storage space. Large front and smaller rear hatches make it an excellent choice for extended trips or fishing expeditions, ensuring you have ample space for all your essentials.

While inflatable sit-on-top models like the Sea Eagle 385ft FastTrack and Aquaglide Deschutes 110 may lack dedicated storage compartments and waterproofing, they compensate with impressive load capacities. Additionally, a multitude of D-rings allows you to secure dry bags, providing ample flexibility for your gear.

Budget-friendly options like the Pelican Argo 100X and Sentinel 100X offer adequate storage for recreational kayaking. However, their storage compartments don’t match the quality found in higher-end models like Eddyline kayaks.

Unfortunately, the Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Sport and Oru Kayak Lake+ fell short in the storage department. Their designs prioritize portability over extensive storage, making them less suitable for trips requiring significant gear.

Build Quality

Choosing a kayak is an investment in your paddling experiences. A well-built kayak will endure the elements, provide a safe and enjoyable experience, and be a reliable companion for many adventures to come. When selecting a kayak, consider the materials used, the construction process, and the kayak’s ability to withstand wear and tear. The Eddyline Sky 10 and Eddyline Caribbean 12FS exemplify exceptional build quality, with carbonate composite construction for lightweight durability.

The Sea Eagle 385ft FastTrack’s 1000 Denier Reinforced material and high-pressure drop-stitch floor ensure durability in challenging conditions. Inflatable kayaks like the Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Sport and Aquaglide Deschutes 110 rely on PVC materials for strength, resilience, and lightness.

The Oru Kayak Lake+ showcases its commitment to quality with double-layered polypropylene material, offering durability and flexibility. The Pelican Argo 100X and Sentinel 100X prove that affordability and build quality can go hand in hand with their RAM-X polyethylene plastic construction.

By prioritizing build quality, you’ll invest in the Best Lightweight Kayaks that deliver years of enjoyable paddling experiences.


When choosing the Best Lightweight Kayaks, portability is crucial, especially if you enjoy paddling in different locations or struggle lifting heavier models. In our evaluation of lightweight kayaks, we’ve given portability a significant 20% weightage.

Lightweightness and compactness are essential aspects of kayak portability. However, additional features like carry handles, ease of loading and unloading, and whether the kayak is foldable or inflatable further enhance its portability.


The Aquaglide Deschutes 110 and Oru Kayak Lake+ revolutionize kayak portability. Weighing a mere 18 lbs, these inflatable and folding Best Lightweight Kayaks are not just lightweight but also highly compact. They can be conveniently folded, packed, and transported in a car’s trunk or on public transport, eliminating the need for a roof rack.

The Sea Eagle 385ft FastTrack and Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Sport impress with their portability. Weighing 35 and 26 lbs respectively, these Best Lightweight Kayaks are easy to carry, making them ideal for spontaneous adventures.

Among hard-shell Best Lightweight Kayaks, the Eddyline Sky 10 stands out for its exceptional lightness at 32 lbs. Its carbonate composite construction ensures easy transportation, making it perfect for solo kayakers or those finding heavier models challenging to handle. Its compactness and lightness make it suitable for roof rack loading or fitting inside larger vehicles.

Weighing 36 lbs and 40 lbs respectively, the Pelican Argo 100X and Sentinel 100X, while relatively light for their size, offer a budget-friendly yet reasonably portable option.

Although the Eddyline Caribbean 12FS weighs 45 lbs, it still presents an excellent choice for easy transport. Its longer length does not compromise its manageability, making it a feasible option for most paddlers.


A lightweight kayak typically weighs under 45 pounds. A very light kayak weighs less than 35 pounds, but some of the best lightweight kayaks weigh even less, making them easy to carry and transport.

Best Lightweight Kayaks are easier to carry and move around, especially if you have to carry them for a long time or have trouble loading them onto the top of your car. They also take less effort to paddle, especially in calm water, making them a good choice for beginners or people who want a more relaxing experience.

 However, it is important to note that the very Best Lightweight Kayaks made from materials like carbon fiber or Kevlar can be very expensive. Kayaks made from heavier materials like polyethylene are usually more affordable.

Inflatable and folding kayaks are very lightweight and easy to carry around. The lightest inflatable kayak you can buy is the Advanced Elements PackLite. It only weighs 4 pounds! That makes it extremely easy to transport from place to place. 


Choosing the Best Lightweight Kayaks can be a daunting task as there are many factors to consider, such as weight, design, comfort, storage, and performance. However, the best lightweight kayaks do not compromise on any of these factors. The Eddyline Sky 10 is a prime example of a lightweight kayak that excels in all these areas.

It is lightweight, comfortable, portable, and easy to store. Additionally, it performs exceptionally well on the water. However, different models may suit you better depending on your specific needs and preferences. Regardless of your choice, these lightweight kayaks promise to make your kayaking adventures enjoyable and hassle-free.

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