Last Updated on August 22, 2023 by Afsar
Looking for the best sea kayaks? Since all sea kayaks are a subset of touring kayaks, we will also share the best touring kayaks in this post. Most people find no difference between sea and touring kayaks. These touring and sea kayaks are designed for paddling on open waters like lakes, bays, and the ocean. Before we discoverthe best touring kayaks, let’s check a short comparison chart of the best sea kayaks and touring kayaks.
Table of Contents
Best Touring Kayaks and Sea Kayaks 2024
|Pakayak Bluefin||14 Feet||4.9|
|Necky Chatham 18 Composite||18 Feet||4.7|
|Riot Kayaks Edge 11 LV||11 ft||4.6|
|Dagger Stratos 14.5L||14.5 ft||4.8|
|Sea Eagle Razorlite 393rl||12.8 Feet||4.7|
|Ocean Kayak 16-Feet Two Expedition||16 Feet||4.2|
|Riot Kayaks Edge 14.5 LV||14.5 Feet||4.8|
|AirFusion Elite||13 feet||4.6|
|Sea Eagle Razorlite 393rl||12'10"||4.9|
|Old Town Castine 140||14 feet||4.7|
|Perception Carolina Sit-Inside||12 ft||4.5|
Riot Kayaks Edge 14.5 LV Flatwater Day Touring Kayak
Best Touring Kayak: Riot Kayaks has been very popular for producing quality sea kayaks for a long time. Riot Kayaks Edge 14.5 LV is a flat water day touring kayak with a reasonable price. This excellent day touring kayak comes with a length of 14.5 feet and weighs only 60 pounds. As we know, touring kayaks have larger lengths than usual kayaks, this one’s length is appropriate for your day touring adventures.
With the slender bow and slim deck profile, Riot Kayak Edge 14.5 is one of the best touring kayaks on the market.
Finding a stylish touring kayak with useful features might be hard work. But once you lay your eyes on this elegant touring kayak, you will inevitably fall in love with its features, beautiful body, and performance. Since it is a touring kayak, it is needed to have a good kayak seat to make sure you feel comfortable on the trip. Thankfully, the advanced custom-fit seating system comes to the rescue. It’s comfortable and offers a great fitting for most users.
There are other useful features like the pilot rudder system, adjustable sliding foot braces, front & rear storage compartments, drainplug, shock cord storage with safety straps, bars, and more. Due to the large size of the kayak, it tracks very well. I can write all day, but I guess I have made my points clear to prove why this is one of the best sea kayaks on the market.
- Advanced custom fitting system for comfort
- Pilot radar system
- Length of 14.5 feet
- Stylish and elegant design with highly-visible color
- Adjustable sliding foot braces and integrated thigh braces
- Great tracking
- Front and rear storage compartment with dual density hatch cover
- Reflective lifelines, security bar, security straps and more
If you are like me, who hates transporting long kayaks and looking for a more clearsolution, this portable kayak from PaKayak is what you need. It is super easy to carry, pack, and store. Pakyak’s Bluefin is a 14 ft long sea kayak packed with unique features. This excellent sea kayak comes in three vibrant colors: habanero, sunshine, and surf. Pakayak used aerospace and underwater design technologies to make this leak-proof sturdy sea kayak. It uses high-density UV-resistant kayak-specific polyethylene. The double-chined hull makes carving, turning, surfing, and control easy.
Pakayak takes around 5 minutes to assemble. You can turn it into a backpack and store it easily when not in use. You can store it in your house, dorm room, closet, trunk, or garage. The patented shape is modeled after the Bluefin tuna. Hence the name came. As you can see in the picture, this is a single-person sea kayak. There are six pieces of parts that can be snapped to make it work.
Length: 14 feet
Weight: 59 lbs
What we like
- Assemble in under 5 minutes
- Easy to pack, carry, and store
- Available in three stunning colors
- Leak-proof design
- Double chinned hull enable carving, turning, surfing, and control
- Patented shape based on Bluefin tuna
- Great tracking
- Rigid high-density UV-resistant kayak specific polyethylene
- Made in the USA
- Take it anywhere with ease
- Paddles just like a conventional kayak
- Two big watertight hatches for dry storage
- Comfortable foam seat
What we don’t like
- No paddle provided
Dagger Stratos 14.5L
Dagger’s Stratos 14.5L is a fantastic kayak for sea kayaking. It has a length of 14 ft 6 inches and weighs 57 pounds. The wider hull and larger cockpit offer more room for large-sized paddlers. Just like the top-notch kayaks, Dagger Stratos is also made of rigid polyethylene construction, offering high performance and rugged durability. It has excellent features to make life easier for paddlers who love sea kayaking.
An excellent seating system is all the sea kayakers want. The dagger used ConTOur CFS seating system, which is adjustable and has ergonomic floating back band, soft foam seat padding with leg lifters, comfort control hip pads, and more. As a result, you can understand that Dagger cares about providing the comfort you deserve. The adjustable padded thigh braces with SideLock XX foot braces can be adjusted according to your wish.
Sea kayakers need to carry a lot of stuff, so having a good storage option is necessary. The 10-inch bow and full-size stern hatch have bulkheads to turn them into dry storage. You can keep your electronics, gear, and clothes dry. It is the dual-density hatch covers that make the watertight protection. Also, bungee deck rigging can be used to access your stuff quickly and easily.
There are soft-touch handles on the bow and stern to make it easy to carry the kayak. Another great feature is the TruTrak Skeg System, which improves the tracking of current and wind. You can quickly deploy the skeg from the cockpit. In a nutshell, this s one of the best sea kayaks on the market, and I highly recommend it.
- Spacious design to accommodate larger paddlers
- Super comfortable ConTOur CFS seating System
- Adjustable and ergonomic floating back band with soft foam padding
- Soft touch handles on bow and stern
- Dry storage: 10-inch bow hatch and full-size stern hatch
- Bungee deck rigging offers additional gear storage
- Rotomolded polyethylene construction for high durability
- Height-adjustable TruTrak Skeg system provides better tracking
- Sidelock XL foot braces
- Adjustable padded thigh braces
- Hull beam
- Excellent color
AirFusion Elite Inflatable Kayak
Best Inflatable Sea Kayak: An inflatable sea kayak? Is that what we are seeing? Yes, this inflatable kayak is ready to fight small to medium swells of the ocean. This is the best inflatable ocean kayak if you can’t handle more than 6 feet high swells. Once inflated, most people can’t detect whether it’s a hardshell or an inflatable kayak.
Due to the easy setup, many ocean kayakers loved this kayak. The slim design with aluminum alloy frame poles and pressurized air tubes offers excellent stability to the users. You will find a wide beam of 28 inches, making it more spacious and helping achieve more stability to combat harsh conditions.
Unlike most inflatable kayaks, AirFusion Elite offers a good amount of storage on the rear hatch for easy access. Due to the 13 feet-long design, AirFusion Elite offers great tracking ability compared to regular hard-shell kayaks. However, the 13 feet long design has made the maneuver slow, but it’s worthy of having better tracking when you are aiming for longer distances.
Other features include the bungee deck lacing storage, optional fixed skeg, highly-visible color, and more. Regarding durability, AirFusion Elite comes with highly durable and heavy-duty PVC tarpaulin material, which provides excellent & extreme puncture resistance. In a nutshell, this kayak is for people planning to sea kayaking but don’t want the hassle of a hard-shell kayak.
- Easy setup
- Aluminum alloy frame with air pressurized air tubes for better performance
- Spacious design
- Nice stability
- Able to handle rough situations
- Bungee deck lacing
- Rear access hatch storage for easy access
- Heavy-duty PVC Tarpaulin for great puncture resistance
Ocean Kayak 16 Feet Two Expedition
Best Tandem Sea Kayak: If you plan to take your buddies for a kayaking tour, Ocean Kayak 16 Two Expedition is the fastest tandem touring kayak you will find on the market. Whether a one-day trip or a weekend adventure, you are ready to roll with this touring kayak. This kayak provides two adult seats with a small child or pet seat. This Ocean Kayak weighs only 75 lbs and can handle 500-600 lbs.
Due to the highly visible color, it is easy to spot this tandem touring kayak. The 16 feet long length allows the users to sit comfortably in comfort plus seats. It also comes with molded-in foot braces for more flexibility. The oversized stern tank well with bungees and bow deck bungee storage is enough for a weekend-long tour. It has other features like the side carry handle for easy transportation, molded-in cup holders, two side-mounted paddle keepers, and more.
- Spacious design
- Two adults with a small child or dog
- Comfort Plus seats with molded-in foot braces
- Stern Oversized tank well with a bungee storage
- Highly visible color
- Side carry handles for easy carrying
- Paddle keepers
- Skid plate
- Best for using in warmer places
- Molded-in cup holders
- 16 feet long
Necky Manitou Sport Kayak
Best Cheap Sea Kayak: Finding a sea kayak with a limited budget can be tricky and annoying. If you are a seasoned kayaker, you will know that most sea kayaks are expensive. Necky Manitou is the best sea kayak on the market for people looking for a budget-friendly sea kayak. This sea kayak comes in four different colors with very reasonable pricing.
Necky Manitou Sport Kayak comes at 10 feet and 11 inches. Unlike most sea kayaks, this one is slightly shorter, but that doesn’t affect your having fun in the open sea. As you can see in the picture, the kayak comes with a comfortable and large cockpit opening. It helps you to get in the kayak very easily and quickly. The highly efficient hull of this Manitou Sport Kayak is made of polyethylene.
Most people who are new to sea kayaking hate the choppy water. However, having a sea kayak with a highly stable kayak can be very beneficial for them. You will be glad to know that Manitou is blended with excellent stability and good tracking. This highly performing sea kayak can deliver great stability even in harsh marine conditions.
About tracking, Necky Manitou also tracks very well. So if you aim for longer distances, you will appreciate this sea kayak’s tracking, stability, comfort, and adjustable seating. It also has stern storage if you carry gears or other essentials like lunch bags. In a nutshell, this is the best sea kayak for beginners, in our opinion.
- Hull made of polyethylene
- Available in different colors
- Soft chine lines
- Excellent stability
- Good maneuverable ability
- 60 liters of Stern storage
- Active Comfort system 2.0 seat for comfort
- Foam thigh pads provided
- Cockpit big enough to enter easily
- Excellent tracking
Wilderness Systems Tsunami 125 Kayak
Best sea kayak for larger paddler: As the name says, this really is one of the best sea kayaks on the market. With a spacious cockpit and a deeper hull, this sea kayak is highly recommended for larger kayakers. Packed with many impressive features, Tsunami 125 is the kayak you need for your next touring trip.
One of the most impressive features of the Tsunami 125 kayak is its Phase 3 AirPro seating system. It has a six-way adjustment ability, which lets you customize your seating position. Thus, you have the best seating position you need for better comfort. It also has padding densities on the back and covers you where you may need them. This comes in very handy for larger paddlers.
Domed bow and stern hatch covers offer a watertight seal and rugged storage option. The bungee deck rigging provides ample storage for small and essential gears like a dry bag.
However, you will see tabs that are easy to remove. Wilderness Systems Tsunami 125 kayak is packed with other features like the adjustable padded thigh braces, paddle holder, SlideLock XL foot brace system, Bungee Deck Rigging, and more.
- Ergonomic carry handles with soft rubber construction for easy transportation
- Sidelock XL Foot Brace System for better comfort and better paddling position
- Phase 3 AirPro seating system offers six-way adjustment for comfortable seating position
- Adjustable padded thigh braces
- Domed bow and stern hatches
- Bungee deck rigging offers
- Stunning design with cool color
- Seat’s leg lifter with a soft edge
- Paddle Park to let you go hands-free for scene watching
Perception Carolina Sit-Inside Kayak
If you are living in a cold area or are just a fan of sit-in kayaks, you should take a look at this amazing sit-in touring kayak from Perception kayaks. Perception Carolina is a colorful touring kayak best suited for beginners and intermediate paddlers who prefer comfort and stability. This 12 feet long touring kayak weighs 49 lbs and has a weight capacity of 275 lbs. You can purchase this kayak in three different amazing colors. This versatile kayak can be used for a long day of a paddling session, thanks to the great comfort provided by the six-way adjustable seat.
Beginners will appreciate the great stability provided by the Perception Carolina, while seasoned anglers would love its speed and agility. It has a V-shaped hull with soft chines that combines stability and speed. The spacious cockpit allows easy entrance for most paddlers and is compatible with a spray skirt. Besides the adjustability of the seat, it also has a quick-adjust footrest to accommodate paddlers of all sizes. The front and rear dry storage with easy on/off sealed covers can be used to hold more gears and belongings. You can take advantage of that to explore quiet coastal and inland waterways both full days and overnights. Another great thing about this kayak is that it is designed, molded, and hand-assembled in the USA.
Length: 12 feet
Weight: 49 lbs
Capacity: 275 lbs
- V-shaped hull with soft chines combines stability and speed
- Great for both beginners and intermediate paddlers
- Deluxe comfort: Six-ways DLX adjustable seat
- Back-friendly seat
- Large open cockpit allows easy entrance
- Excellent comfort and versatility
- Easy to carry
- High maneuverability allows exploring the quiet coastal and inland waterways
- Spacious dry storage
- Keepers foot braces
- Bow and stern deck rigging
- Bow and stern bulkheads
How to Find The Best Sea kayaks and Touring Kayaks
Sea kayaking is one of the most popular forms of kayaking. A lot of people are using kayaks for touring or camping purposes. If you want to grab one of the best sea kayaks, you need to understand the factor that will determine its performance. Different people have different types. This is why you must research adequately to identify the best sea kayak.
Despite sharing some top touring kayaks and sea kayaks, we will help you find the one that meets your needs. Just go through the factors, and you will be able to land the best sea kayaks for your cause.
If you have already looked for some sea kayaks, you already know that they are costly. Most ocean kayak has a larger body for better tracking and offers a good amount of storage to make it easier for the user to store items for a weekend or a day’s trip. Due to the larger sizes, the kayaks usually have higher prices. This is a very important thing to consider when you are looking at touring kayaks.
One of the things which increases the price of your kayak is the material of the hull. Different types of materials are used to make the hull of a kayak. It can be plastic, or it can be composite. Plastic kayaks are usually cheaper for being heavier. On the other hand, composite kayaks are expensive. However, you will find them very lightweight. So if you aren’t using a kayak cart and carrying them by yourself, you will love composite sea kayaks.
There are other benefits of using composite kayaks, as they come with a glossier exterior. Due to the good polish, some kayakers believe it enhances the tracking of the kayak. However, composite kayaks are more prone to get scratches when hit with sharp objects. On the other side, plastic kayaks don’t get scratched easily. And even if they do, it is relatively easy to repair them. These are my findings, and I hope you can use them when choosing a sea kayak.
Length and Width
As I have told you earlier, sea kayaks are usually bigger than typical kayaks. Try to pick a kayak with a longer length. At first, it will take some time to gain speed, but you will be amazed at their tracking ability. It helps, especially when you are looking for longer trips. However, longer kayaks are tough to maneuver, and they are expensive. I guess these are the trade-off for the impressive tracking ability.
The width of the kayak will have a relation to its length of it. A good sea kayak will have widths ranging from 50cm to 90cm. There are exceptions, but most kayaks will fall under this range. A sea kayak with a higher width will have more stability, but they are slow and hard to flip. On the other hand, narrower kayaks are lightweight, easy to flip, has better tracking. However, they have lesser stability.
Flatwater or Choppy Water
Kayaking in choppy water is different than flat water. You can choose a casual sea kayak for paddling on flat water. However, the scenario will change when you paddle in the choppy water. Flatwater sea kayaks are usually cheaper than choppy waters kayaks.
A kayak made of good material will not only offer better durability but will also provide better performance. You must check the hull material, hatch material, bungee chords, paddle holder, and more. In this way, your kayak will be able to survive harsh conditions and thrive on the water.
Rudder Or Skeg
If you are getting a new kayak for the open sea, you may want to get a rudder, a skeg, or maybe neither. Different kayakers have a different opinions about these things, but it is you who will decide. A rudder is used to set and control the direction of your kayak. On the other hand, a skeg is used to assist the tracking of the kayak in windy weather. If you are not sure how they work, you can do a little research about them on YouTube.
If you see clearly, you will notice that the sea kayaks usually come with small cockpits. If you are a big guy, you may want a sea kayak with a broader cockpit. To feel comfortable or get into the kayak quickly, cockpits must be more comprehensive than the waist. However, you will also be OK with a larger cockpit if you plan a casual day touring trip in flat water. We have mentioned a few kayaks with larger cockpits if you are not familiar with smaller cockpits.
I hope this information is sufficient for you to land the best touring kayak. You will have to read the factors carefully; that way, you will have a clear idea about which one suits your need. However, the touring kayaks we posted are capable of making your day touring trips more enjoyable and fascinating.
Afsar is an avid kayak blogger born near the coast. He has a passion for kayaking and started as a child. He has paddled in various conditions and locations and promotes responsible kayaking. Afsar’s blog is widely read, and they are a respected voice in the kayaking community, offering valuable content on kayaking trips, gear, tips, and tricks. Afsar collaborates with other bloggers and brands and continues to inspire others through their writing and social media.