Best Tandem Kayaks

How to Choose the Best Tandem Kayaks

During a getaway at an island resort, you’ll discover options like water gliding and jet skiing, which may come with a hefty price tag. These activities are also categorized as extreme water sports and necessitate some level of proficiency. For those seeking a more serene water activity that merely requires swimming skills, kayaking ought to be your priority. When journeying with a beloved, a tandem kayak suffices for savoring moments off the shore. You can navigate through the pristine waters without the need to invest heavily in equipment. In fact, it’s beneficial to have your own tandem kayak.

Here are three of the best tandem kayaks available today.

Old Town Twin Heron Kayak

This Old Town’s innovative auto trim hull is designed to prevent the bow from popping up when you are seated in the stern seat, which helps to create added stability. When paddling alone, you can remove the front seat to store extra hunting or fishing gear or to give your furry companion plenty of room to ride along.

It is made with adjustable comfort Flex seat that includes a supportive seat back and extra padding for all-day comfort. It also has a Glide Track foot brace system to create a comfortable, stable platform to help you maneuver through rough waters. You can keep multiple fishing rods positioned for the catch using the six rod-mount receivers and two Cannon Rod holders.

SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Bali 13.5-Foot Tandem Kayak

This tandem kayak can accommodate up to three persons per trip. It comes equipped with three Covered storage compartments, onboard shock cord Deck rigging and deluxe adjustable seats fitted with comfortable back supports. If you want to bring your fishing gear, you can safely store it away in the storage compartments that can also be used to store food and other equipment.

Intex Explorer K2 Kayak

This Kayak includes an adjustable inflatable seat with backrest in a cockpit design for comfort and space. When inflated, it measures 10 feet 3 x 3 feet x 1 feet 8 inch with a maximum weight capacity of 400 pounds. It is made with directional stability thanks to the removable SKEG. In case of emergency, the bright yellow color helps visibility. Please note that this kayak is made for smaller bodies of water including lakes and mild rivers.

How to choose the best tandem kayaks

When you need to buy a tandem kayak, there are a few factors you need to consider. These include:


One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a tandem kayak is weight. You need a boat that is easy to move around from your home to the waters. The best kayaks should be made from lightweight material without compromising on its sturdiness and quality. Any of the options in this article are made from lightweight yet high-quality material that can easy to lift and move around for one person or a group. A lighter kayak is also easier to paddle faster compared to a heavy one. This is an especially important factor to consider if you plan to paddle alone. With a lighter kayak, you paddle much faster without using too much energy.


How long a tandem kayak is an important factor to consider because it shows how stable the equipment it. While short kayaks are incredibly easy to maneuver, they are not as stable as longer alternatives. Tandem kayaks should be at least 14 feet long for better maneuverability and balance.

Sit-in or sit-on-top

Most old school kayaks come with traditional sit-in designs, which gives you a feeling of being closer to the water beneath you. The sit-in kayaks come with enough legroom for added comfort. Sit-on-top kayaks are a mode modern design that offer a more open water experience. The choice between these two types of seating arrangements depends on your sitting arrangements. It helps to know that a sit-on-top arrangement is better for people who are claustrophobic as they give you more air space for your head. While the types of seating does not affect the performance of a tandem kayak, it definitely delivers completely different experiences.

Where it will be used

The water source you plan to paddle your tandem kayak is an important consideration to make when choosing the best tandem kayak for your needs. For river tours, you will require a stringer and much more durable tandem kayak because of the water current in rivers. Lakes are much calmers than rivers, but they are wider therefore requiring more effort to paddle. This is because of the absence of waves and zero push factor for kayaks.

If you plan to kayak in larger water bodies like the sea or ocean, you will required a balanced kayak that can be used in a river or late without comprising on the performance. Your kayak choice depends on the type of water body you plan to paddle on.

Paddle rests

If you ask anyone who has used a kayak before or someone who loves going fishing, one of the most important accessories on a tandem kayak is paddle rests. When you are out in the water, there is a high chance of losing a paddle to the wide waters if you do not have a reliable holder for them. Once it falls in the water, you either dive down and get it or forget about it all together.

Having a kayak with a paddle rest can save you from the unnecessary frequent replacement of paddles. A paddle rest ensures your paddles are safely on board whenever you need to rest your hands, layback and enjoy the view or enjoy fishing.

Storage capacity

When it comes to kayaking, it is important to ensure that the kayak you go for has enough space to keep all your accessories and luggage on board. Having a storage unit ensures some sensitive gadgets like your phone or camera does not get wet from the occasional tides and winds. This is especially important for times when riding strong currents without enough time to peddle and check on your equipment. If you do not have a kayak with adequate storage, you are likely to keep losing stuff whenever you are out paddling.

Ample storage also comes in handy when you need to carry food on-board for long tours. Good storage allows you to bring on an ice cooler for cold drinks and fresh caught fish.

Bottom line

Whether you plan to vacation somewhere on a beach, on a remove tropical island or in a cabin with access to a later, one of the things on your bucket list should be trying out kayaking. With this buying guide, you are better placed to choose the best tandem kayaks for your needs.


There are affiliate links in this post. At no cost to you, I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.