affordable kayak

Best Affordable Kayak 2023

Sun Dolphin Aruba 10ft Sit-In Kayak

Ultimately what I loved most about the Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 was that it offered everything you needed at face value. You’ve got the large cockpit, the extra storage room, and a whole slew of options in terms of color.Expert Reviewer: Adam King

Quick Summary
With this Sun Dolphin, you’ve got ten feet of premium kayak with a single large paddle. The open cockpit gives you room to operate while in the water and there is enough on board storage area so that you can stash some fishing supplies or whatever else you need

I really came to appreciate this kayak from a fisherman’s perspective: the ability to sit in the leaning chair with all of my tackle at my feet.

Selecting an Affordable Kayak

Are you looking to get out in nature, tune your body, and generally just have a good time? Kayaking can be one of the best ways to get in tune with nature and get your body right and that’s what we are going to talk about today. We’re going to break down the different sorts of kayaks that are out there and how you can choose the right model for you.

Kayak Varieties

Though you may not think there are very many differences between kayaks, there actually are. We’re going to break down the three most common kayaks.

  • Sit In Kayaks – This model of kayak tends to be more efficient in terms of its on-body storage. You’ll see that sit-in kayaks have larger hulls which allow for larger cockpits. This style of kayak allows you to have more control while in the water. Overall this style of kayak is perfect for people who want to dig deep into their paddling and get moving or otherwise want to just go slow, even sitting back and fishing. This is the type of kayak we will be talking about later, the Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 Foot Sit-In.
  • Sit On Top Kayaks – This model tends to be more affordable but it has some of its own perks. This style of kayak has you sitting on top of the kayak, with no actual cockpit to speak of. What you will notice about this style of kayak is that you are more capable of getting in and out of the water with relative ease. These are popular for people who want a more extreme workout and a more active kayaking session.
  • Whitewater Kayaks – These are ultra flexible kayaks that turn with ease, never tracking straight forward. You’re seated in a small cockpit which keeps the kayak upright even when the water gets harsh. These boats tend to be smaller and are fitted for just one person.
  • Ocean Kayaks – This style of kayak is perfect for when you’re hitting the beach. Ocean designed kayaks are created to sit you low in the water so that you can avoid the more intense impact of heavy winds and waves. While they all don’t have these, some ocean kayaks do have rudders on board to help you steer when needed.

Nuts and Bolts

Now that you know the general types of kayaks out there we can dig a bit deeper into their actual functional materials. We’ll start by affordability and slowly go up.

  • Inflatable – We’ll kickstart this list by talking about the cheapest material on the market: the rubber inflatable option. Inflatable kayaks aren’t as efficient as the other options in our list but they do handle rough rapids pretty well. Inflatable kayaks can be as cheap as under $100 and generally go no higher than $300.
  • Plastic – This is the most popular building material for kayaks. The style of plastic used for most Kayaks (polyethylene) can be recycled and re-used which helps to prevent toxic waste build up. Plastic kayaks tend to be the heaviest but they are also fairly durable, as well. This is the material used in the Sun Dolphin Aruba and it is a perfect blend between affordable and durable.
  • Fiberglass – This material is more fluid in the water and thus makes your experience much smoother. Fiberglass is durable but it can still crack if you hit it just right with a high enough impact. Fiberglass isn’t recyclable.

Single vs. Double

The last big piece of information that you are going to need is this: do you want a single seated kayak or a double seated kayak? This comes down to how often you are going to be kayaking with a friend or how much independence you want while on the water.

  • Single Kayaks – This style of kayak is perfect for the solo or independent rider. You’ll maximize your control over your trip while maintaining a smaller profile on the water.
  • Double Kayaks – Larger, multiple rider kayaks are made with the intention of longer and slower trips. A double kayak, also called a tandem kayak, tends to have more room in the cargo area for longer trips. Double kayaks are more expensive and less maneuverable on the water but they are great relationship building purchases.

The Sun Dolphin Aruba 10ft Sit-In Kayak

The Aruba is a perfect blend of affordability and durability. First up you’ll notice that the Aruba 10 is made out of polyethylene. As we learned above, plastic kayaks tend to be supremely durable and perfect for people who are going to be going through some rough conditions. Polyethylene is also heavy so that you won’t feel like you are skipping across the water. The Aruba weighs in at about 40 pounds when empty and allows for a single rider.

If we had to slip this kayak into a category we would call it a beginner’s recreational kayak. While this kayak isn’t dirt cheap it is very affordable compared to many fiberglass, wood, and inflatable options. You won’t get the ultra tight turns that a fiberglass option will give you but you won’t be a dead duck in the water either.

Ultimately what I loved most about the Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 was that it offered everything you needed at face value. You’ve got the large cockpit, the extra storage room, and a whole slew of options in terms of color. Just glancing at various online retailers reveals that there are six different colors available. What are you waiting for?

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