Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks

As a long-time saltwater angler, nothing gets my heart pumping like watching my kayak drift over the big blue sea swells. I still remember my first paddle out – nervously gripping the rod as I wobbled towards deeper waters, unsure if I was ready for the power and unpredictability of the ocean’s turf.

Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks

But now I can attest first-hand that an Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks opens up a fishing paradise impossible for shore-bound anglers to explore. Each drop-off, wreck, and reef hides its village of feisty fighters just waiting to test your strength and smarts. And nothing compares to reeling in stripers, mahi, tuna, and other pelagics as you bounce over ocean waves in a battle of wills.

So if you are ready to trade sand for surf and unlock the wide world of Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks, investing in a kayak purpose-built for the sea is a must. I’ve tested out several models to find the top kayaks that can handle both big water and fat fish without flipping or cramping your rowing style. 

 5 Best ocean kayaks

Different types of Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks are available there, each made for different situations. If you’re in calm water, a basic kayak is fine. But if you face strong currents or wind, you need one that can handle them.

Ocean kayaks are popular now because water sports are trendy. They come in types like inflatable ones, ones for two people, or sit-on-top models.

Top 5 Best Ocean Fishing Kaykas

Our Top Picks For 10 Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks

  • Best Sit-on-Top: Old Town Sportsman BigWater 132
  • Shorter Sit-on-Top Alternative: Jackson Kayak Coosa HD
  • Best Sit-Inside: Jackson Kayak Kilroy
  • Best Value Sit-Inside: Old Town Loon 126 Angler
  • Best Lightweight: Eddyline Caribbean 14 Angler
  • Best Tandem: Jackson Kayak TakeTwo
  • Best Inflatable: Sea Eagle 385fta FastTrack Angler Series
  • Best Pedal: Jackson Kayak Knarr FD
  • Best Value Pedal: Old Town Sportsman BigWater PDL 132
  • Best Motorized: Old Town Sportsman Autopilot 136

Best Sit-on-Top: Old Town Sportsman BigWater 132

Old Town Sportsman
13′2″34″86 lbs425 lbs

You make an excellent point about the Old Town Sportsman BigWater 132 being a decked out fishing machine. Let me try rephrasing your insights in more everyday language:

One look at this SUV-sized sit-on-top is all it takes to see Old Town come into play. When a kayak goes by “BigWater,” you know they mean business!

Despite its rugged size, the tri-hull build keeps the BigWater surprisingly nimble over waves that might swallow up other 13-footers. Standing to cast is no sweat thanks to a cushy floor pad and handy stability strap if you lose balance.

Once you paddle out to the sweet spot, this baby becomes a floating tackle shop ready to land that trophy catch. Mounting tracks galore for dialing in your perfect accessory setup. Flush rod holders keep multiple lines ready for drop-offs.

But the star of the show is the front console packed with handy Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks features. Flip open those hatches and take your pick from magnets to hang lures, custom pole tips storage, more gear tracks – even a slot for your phone protected from splash!

With a beastly capacity for hauling everything including the kitchen sink, trips won’t be cut short for lack of space. Just load up the bow hatch for smaller dry goods and bungee down bulkier supplies in the tank-sized rear well.

When a day on the water means business, the Old Town Sportsman BigWater 132 brings the goods while keeping anglers comfy. No question it takes the trophy for the most decked-out fishing kayaks on the market


  • Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks has Handy central console for your small gear
  • Faster due to longer and narrower design
  • Stable for standing and casting


  • Higher price compared to basic fishing kayaks

Shorter Sit-on-Top Alternative: Jackson Kayak Coosa HD

Jackson Kayak Coosa HD
12′6″34″83 lbs425 lbs

You make a fair comparison between the Jackson Coosa HD and Old Town’s BigWater fishing kayaks.

At just eight inches shorter than the BigWater, Jackson’s Coosa shares many of the same stats on paper – the same width, weight, and hefty 500-pound capacity. But that slightly more compact size does lower top speeds a tad when covering distance.

Where I give the edge to the Coosa is the adjustable seat allowing you to dial in the perfect height for fishing versus paddling. Raised, it grants better views of the water without needing to stand. And makes landing hooksets more accurate.

Both models include popular accessories like mounting tracks for adding rods or electronics. And special storage compartments to keep essentials handy yet secure. Though the Coosa’s modular hatch is a little more basic in its offerings.

For making up speed, the Coosa’s big open rear deck can handle trolling add-ons like Torqeedo motors. So while it paddles a bit slower, you can upgrade to a power boost when needed.

All in all, I’d say the Jackson Coosa HD lets anglers enjoy user-friendly features and generous capacity in a slightly trimmed-down size. But without sacrificing much in performance compared to the maximalist Old Town build. Let me know if this helps summarize the key trade-offs!


  • Lots of customization available
  • Has a scupper for fish finder attachment
  • Compatible with trolling motor


  • Despite shorter length, weighs similar to BigWater
  • Speed is a bit slower

Best Sit-Inside: Jackson Kayak Kilroy

Jackson Kayak Kilroy
12′4″31″71 lbs325 lbs

As a fellow angler, I agree the Jackson Kilroy caught my eye too as a rare sit-inside standing fishing kayak

Like most kayak fishers, I stick to sit-on-tops for the open deck real estate. But Jackson’s Kilroy model made me reconsider sit-insides with its unique stable standing pad below water level.

The cockpit openings on sit-insides are usually cramped, though Kilroy’s feels downright spacious in comparison. Plenty of wiggle room in the molded seat too, with adjustments to dial in the fit whether you’re petite or husky.

Sure, storage is more limited than on those cavernous sit-on-tops we know and love. Just one sealed hatch out back for keeping small essentials dry. But an entire open cargo hold upfront lets us pack cooler, crate, and camping gear galore, albeit exposed to elements. Just don’t overload beyond 325 pounds or you’ll have a sinking feeling!

Naturally, Jackson stuffs this baby with its signature accessory mounts all around. The raised side rod holders are a stroke of genius for protecting your poles from bumps and tangles. And the front dash offers the perfect spot for rigging fish finders, knife holders, and all those little tools that go missing when you need them most.

For this sit-inside convert, the Kilroy feels like the whole package for fishing – just in a more compact and sportier frame.


  • Allows standing and casting, rare in sit-in kayaks
  • Lightweight
  • Narrow hull for easier paddling


  • Smaller load capacity
  • Limited storage space

6 Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks Reviewed

Best Value Sit-Inside: Old Town Loon 126 Angler

Old Town Loon 126 Angler
12′6″31″60 lbs450 lbs

You make a fair point that Old Town’s Loon 126 Angler kayak packs a lot of functionality into a budget-friendly fishing package. I’ll admit, I didn’t expect much from the Loon 126 given its wallet-friendly price tag. But this ‘yak impressed me as a stable, fully loaded fishing machine sans the premium cost. At 12.5 feet, it fits smaller paddlers yet somehow hauls up to 450 pounds – rivaling those colossal 14-foot sit-on-tops!

The enclosed cockpit does limit storage versatility, though the secure rear hatch and open bow cavity provide ample space for essentials. You’ll just need to pack strategically when maxing out capacity for all-day outings.

Where the Loon 126 shines is its central console workstation, perfect for organizing hooks, pliers, bait, and all those tiny tackle pieces that love to disappear mid-trip! Flush-mounted rod holders keep your rigs safely stowed yet ready for action. And the anchor trolley is clutch for locking onto hot fishing holes.

I will admit the accessories don’t offer quite as much flexibility for customization as the Jacksons. And the comfy seat lacks upright adjustments for stand-up sight casting. But overall, the Old Town Loon 126 Angler punches way above its weight at this price point, delivering an impressive sit-inside fishing experience.


  • Includes anchor system
  • Built-in paddle clip
  • Large load capacity


  • Limited custom options available
  • Not designed for standing up in

Best Lightweight: Eddyline Caribbean 14 Angler

Eddyline Caribbean 14 Angler
14′29″50 lbs350 lbs

The Eddyline Caribbean 14 Angler is a sharp looking ‘yak that blends performance attributes from both sit-inside and sit-on-top styles. At first glimpse, the Eddyline Caribbean resembles a sleek touring kayak with its narrow hull and rounded contours. But that recessed cockpit borrowed from sit-insides keeps it surprisingly steady, even standing up to cast. And once you start paddling, this baby takes off thanks to its streamlined shape!

The spacious, scuppered cockpit delivers that same open feel as sit-on-tops though, enabling easy movement. Custom mountings allow multiple rod holster options too – I configured two behind the seat and one handily in front.

Sure it lacks the full-on tackle station consoles of wider angler kayaks. A small mid-ship compartment secures essentials like phones, with room for mini Plano boxes. Just don’t expect to keep gear meticulously organized once you hit the waves!

In my experience, the 350-pound weight capacity proved ample for day trips chasing stripers and blues with ample payload room to spare in the bow hold and open stern tank. Plus the Caribbean 14 just looks damn fine gliding low across coastal waters!

For anglers wanting best-in-class speed wrapped in a nimble versatile package, Eddyline’s Caribbean 14 brings a performance edge to fishing kayaks as unique as it is useful.


  • Designed for efficient and fast paddling
  • Offers ample storage choices
  • Lightweight for fishing purposes


  • Has a smaller load capacity
  • Being lighter doesn’t necessarily mean it’s less expensive in the kayak market

Best Tandem: Jackson Kayak TakeTwo

Jackson Kayak TakeTwo
13′9″37″110 lbs500 lbs

As a tandem paddler, Jackson’s TakeTwo kayak has become my go-to recreational and fishing craft for hitting the water with friends. Right away I appreciated the TakeTwo’s rugged raft-like construction – this big boy can handle 350 pounds no problem! Despite an almost 14-foot hull, 

the wide beam grants plenty of wiggle room for two anglers (or two kids plus gear). 

Their acclaimed seat system lives up to the hype too with on-the-fly height adjustments.

That beefy build does limit storage compared to solo yaks, especially with the second seat mounted. But Jackson’s versatile TriTrak system accepts accessories like rod holders, fish finders, and even an electric trolling motor mounted. So you can transform this blank slate into a perfect floating fortress for landing lunkers!

I’ll admit the bright neon color schemes of yellow, lime and orange made me wince at first. Maybe they help avoid collisions? But don’t worry, muted earth tones like olive and gray are available to keep fashion police at bay.

For pairs wanting room to roam on family adventures or outfitted fishing missions, the TakeTwo skippers have supreme stability, capacity, and versatility in one package.


  • Useable for one or two paddlers
  • Back area fits a trolling motor
  • Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks Excellent stability
  • Color choices might be unique


  • Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks has Limited storage room

Best Inflatable: Sea Eagle 385fta FastTrack Angler Series

Sea Eagle 385fta
12′6″36″45 lbs635 lbs

With room for tons of gear, you could mistake this 36-inch wide Sea Eagle for a small raft. The fact that you can even attach a 15-pound motor makes it seem more like a little pontoon boat as you zoom across the water.

But make no mistake – the 385fta works great as a Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks. Just be sure to pack some quality dry bags since there’s limited protected storage space on board.

While Sea Eagle says three people can fit, the 385fta only feels comfortable with one paddler. Two smaller folks can make it work for short trips, but they’ll be sitting close together. Any longer journeys probably won’t be very comfy.

You miss out on some of the customizable features hard-sided kayaks offer. However, the setup is straightforward and the lightweight material makes transporting a piece of cake while still being plenty durable.


  • Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks is Motorizable
  • Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks has High load capacity
  • Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks is Portable and easy to inflate


  • Inferior performance compared to hard-shell kayaks

Best Pedal: Jackson Kayak Knarr FD

Jackson Kayak Knarr FD
13′9″37″140 lbs425 lbs

If paddling isn’t your thing, check out Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks for hands-free fishing. They let you cast while moving your feet.

The Jackson Kayak Knarr FD is the best of the bunch. Yes, it’s heavy and bulky – that comes with the pedal territory. But the sturdy Flex Drive Mark IV system is quiet and efficient so you can sneak up on fish.

The steering is just as slick. Using one or two hands, you can make tight turns and weave between objects that a boat this big has no business fitting through.

Once you’ve reached your sweet spot, Jackson’s custom TriTrak system lets you outfit the Knarr so all your go-to fishing gear is within arm’s reach. There are two flush rod holders right behind your seat for easy access.


  • Ample dry storage
  • Strong, durable pedal system
  •  Adjustable, comfortable seat


  • Heavy; challenging to move solo

Best Value Pedal: Old Town Sportsman BigWater PDL 132

 Old Town Sportsman
13′2″36″122 lbs500 lbs

Slightly smaller than the Knarr FD, the Old Town Sportsman BigWater PDL 132 still handles open water with ease thanks to excellent stability and an award-winning, easy-to-use pedal system.

I love how reassuringly stable the BigWater feels, with a spacious traction pad up front that makes standing and casting comfortable even during marathon sessions.

The intuitive pedal system lets you go forward or backward without fuss. Steering is a cinch too courtesy of the durable rudder.

You know Old Town wouldn’t leave you hanging without all the customization options we need in our fishing kayaks. The BigWater delivers accessory tracks, flush rod holders, and even a built-in transducer mount for effortless fish finder installation.

Old Town doesn’t mess around with load capacities. This ain’t no typo – the BigWater PDL can seriously handle 500 pounds of gear without compromising stability or performance. Take advantage of all that storage courtesy of the cavernous dry hatch up front and even bigger open-air space in the back.


  • Paddle clip integrated
  • Accommodates transducer fish finder
  • Utilizes vast storage due to high load capacity


  • Cumbersome for solo movement

Best Motorized: Old Town Sportsman Autopilot 136

Old Town Sportsman Autopilot 136
13′6″37″158 lbs660 lbs

If you want a Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks designed specifically for motorized use, check out the Old Town Sportsman Autopilot 136. It comes with a saltwater-ready 12V motor to blast through wind and waves, leaving other paddlers in the dust.

The Autopilot lives up to its name with Old Town’s Spot-Lock tech, helping keep you in position when winds or tides push you around. And the tech wonders don’t end there. The included iPilot remote lets you steer via Bluetooth.

The thru-hull wiring kit lets you rig electronics without tangled wires, while accessory tracks allow mounting other must-have fishing gadgets.Even with the 45-pound engine, there’s still generous load capacity. I do wish there was more than the small bow storage for dry items, but the cavernous stern tank well swallows larger goods easily.


  • Saltwater-resistant motor included
  • Bluetooth remote for hands-free steering
  • Customization options aplenty


  • High cost compared to others
  • Limited dry storage space

Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks Comparison Table

Kayak ModelLengthWidthWeightCapacitySeatingCockpit Type
Old Town Sportsman BigWater 13213’2″34″86 lbs425 lbs1Sit-on-top
Jackson Kayak Coosa HD12’6″34″83 lbs425 lbs1Sit-on-top
Jackson Kayak Kilroy12’4″31″71 lbs325 lbs1Sit-inside
Old Town Loon 126 Angler12’6″31″60 lbs450 lbs1Sit-inside
Eddyline Caribbean 14 Angler14′29″50 lbs350 lbs1Sit-on-top
Jackson Kayak TakeTwo13’9″37″110 lbs500 lbs1 or 2Sit-on-top
Sea Eagle 385fta FastTrack Angler Series12’6″36″45 lbs635 lbs1, 2, or 3Sit-on-top
Jackson Kayak Knarr FD13’9″37″140 lbs425 lbs1Sit-on-top
Old Town Sportsman BigWater PDL 13213’2″36″122 lbs500 lbs1Sit-on-top
Old Town Sportsman Autopilot 13613’6″37″158 lbs660 lbs1Sit-on-top

Different kayak types have key distinctions you should know.

  • Sit-Inside vs. Sit-on-Tops
  • Material Used
  • Speed
  • Maneuverability
  • Comfort
  • Stability & Tracking
  • Durability
  • Portability & Storage

Understanding these factors helps differentiate kayaks in terms of speed, stability, comfort, durability, and more.

Kayaks come in two styles: sit-inside and sit-on-top. They handle it differently. Sit-ins are narrower and faster, but sit-on-tops are wider and more stable for fishing. Choose based on your needs.

Most quality kayaks today are made of polyethylene plastic. It’s durable and affordable, requiring little maintenance. The Sea Eagle inflatable and Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks uses reinforced drop-stitch material that is also quite tough.

Narrow and longer kayaks are generally faster, like the Eddyline Caribbean. Wider models like the BigWater are more stable but slower. Pedal and motorized systems can make up for sluggish paddling speed.

Ocean Fishing Kayak

Shorter kayaks, like the Kilroy, are most maneuverable since they catch less water when turning. Mastering paddle techniques also helps handling. Pedal/motorized models use a rudder for easy steering.

Cushioned, adjustable seats keep you comfy for long days. Jackson’s vertical adjustability and the open cockpits offer versatility. Ensure ample legroom for your body type.

Stability is crucial when reeling fish. Sit-on-tops allow confident standing. Sit-ins like the Kilroy take more practice but build skills. Longer kayaks also track better in wind/waves.

Best paddle kayak for fishing

 There are 6 best paddle fishing kayaks.

Tough polyethylene holds up to bumps and scrapes with little maintenance. Inflatables like the Sea Eagle need caution but are still durable. Store out of sunlight and avoid dragging to prolong life.

Heavy-duty features make most quite heavy, needing two people or a cart to transport. But the Caribbean, Sea Eagle, and Coosa are under 100 lbs for easier handling.

Dry storage availability varies. The Knarr excels here while the Autopilot disappoints. But all have space for overnight trips with careful packing and gear choice.


For sea fishing, consider stability and storage. Sit-on-top kayaks offer easy gear access, while sit-in kayaks provide more protection and storage. Test different types and maybe take a fishing class to find the best fit.

There is no one “best” saltwater fishing kayak, as the choice will depend on your specific needs and preferences. Some popular options include the Old Town Castine 140, the Perception Tribute 12.0, and the Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120. All of these kayaks are designed for saltwater fishing and have received positive reviews from users.

It depends upon the type of river and what you want to do with your kayak.

For big tidal rivers and their estuaries, I would suggest a sea kayak.

For racing, I would suggest a K1 design, and for slalom, a slalom-design kayak.

Inflatable ones have their place, but they are a bit of a faff, heavy, and awkward to carry. If you get a roof rack for your car, get a proper rigid one.


After testing my fair share of Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks, I’ve learned there’s no universal “best” choice. The right kayak for you depends on your needs and preferences out on the water.

For me, stability and storage are top concerns to stand and fish confidently while having my gear handy. So wider sit-on-top models like the Old Town BigWater suits my style.

But I have friends who prioritize speed and nimble handling in their kayak. They favor streamlined sit-insides like the Eddyline Caribbean that eat up miles while still offering versatility.

Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks choice also comes down to logistics like transport and budget. Thankfully there are durable and affordable options for most situations, whether you have the back of a truck or small sedan.

My advice for Best Ocean Fishing Kayaks? Be honest about the performance you expect and features you must have. This helps narrow down models with ideal designs to unlock hours of awesome ocean fishing and exploring from a kayak perfectly matched to you.

At the end of the day, pretty much any kayak is better than watching from shore. So don’t overthink it too much. Just get out on the water because amazing catches and memories await!

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