Best Inflatable Kayak for Rivers – Ultimate Review in 2020!

Kayaking is one of the best fun activities to undertake for leisure and recreational. For a successful kayaking expedition, you need to secure yourself one of the best inflatable kayak for rivers and enjoy great moments on the water.

Besides being a fun activity, kayaking has been documented as one beneficial health activities you may undertake to stay fit. Kayaking builds your muscles wholesomely from arms to the chest to the entire body. This guide highlights some top inflatable kayaks for rivers that you can rely on a cruise through the waters safely and enjoy your kayaking experience.

best inflatable kayak for rivers

Best Inflatable Kayak For Rivers Reviews in 2020

​1. Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set

This is simply the best choice of kayak for anyone planning to go fishing from an inflatable kayak since it is made to suit such activities besides leisure and recreation.

This kayak is made to give you fun in small water bodies such as mild rivers and small lakes.

It will support up to 400 pounds in weight. In case there is an emergency, anyone can easily spot the kayak because of its bright yellow color. You can get comfort through the adjustable inflatable seats as well as the spacious cockpit.


  • ​High visibility in case of emergency.
  • ​Suitable to go fishing on small water bodies.
  • ​Supports a relatively large weight.
  • ​Comfortable seating posture.


  • ​Has minimal space for carrying your extra gear.

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​​2.​ Intex Challenger K1 Kayak Review

We recommend this kayak for our clients simply because it is among the finest Intex challenger K1 kayak you will meet in the market.

It features a nimble welded material with eye-catchy graphical designs that bring about enhanced safety on lakes and slow-moving rivers. The cockpit gives you comfort while maximizing space.

A well neat cargo net allows you to store extra gear while the 84-inch aluminum oar allows smooth rowing. The inflatable I beam floor enhances stability, and the backseat gives you comfort.


  • ​Has a well welded durable material?
  • ​Very stable, while one is kayaking.
  • ​It provides one with space to store extra gear.
  • ​Made for comfort while onboard.


  • ​Setting up is a process consuming both time and energy.

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3. ADVANCED ELEMENTS Advanced Frame Sport Kayak

​Every little detail of this kayak makes it the best inflatable kayak for rivers with the capability to perform maximally under any water conditions.

Our sporty clients will fancy this kayak since the design makes it easy to cruise in the water easily and at top speed.

It has a proven aluminum bow with stern ribs, which allow increased paddling performance as well as complete control while kayaking. You enjoy the fast set up time, the quick deflation and inflation time plus the minimal weight of the kayak, 26 lbs. The cockpit is large to allow easy entry, and the four air chambers provide increased buoyancy in water.


  • ​Suitable for universal water conditions.
  • ​One has increased paddling performance.
  • ​You spend less time setting up.
  • ​The large cockpit allows easy entry.


  • ​Failure to maintain proper balance may lead to capsizing.

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4. Sevylor Quikpak K1 1-Person Kayak

This kayak is ideal for any explorer seeking a quality kayak to have fun while in the rivers. You enjoy a 5 minutes set up for this kayak, allowing you more time on the water.

It has an easy to carry a backpack, which you turn into a seat when you are setting up.

The 21 gauge PVC construction is rugged, making it conducive for lake use. With the tarpaulin bottom, you are assured of durable protection from punctures while the multiple air chambers cover you when one is punctured. Its inflation/deflation valves are double locked for efficiency.


  • ​You spend less time setting it up.
  • ​It is resistant to minor punctures.
  • ​Comes with multiple air chambers and an airtight system.
  • ​Dual density headliner


  • ​The inflation pump is tiresome.

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​5. Intex Challenger K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak

​If you are planning to attend a kayaking sporting event, we recommend you get yourselves this kayak. Not only will you enjoy kayaking, but also you will come out top of the game as its performance is top-notch.

We rate it the best intex Challenger K2 kayak with a two-person seat capacity.

Its body is well streamlined for speed, and the sporty graphics enhance its visibility in the water. It has 2 -86 inch aluminum paddles coupled with a high output pump for better inflation and deflation. The vinyl used in the assembly is resistant to UV damage making durable in all conditions.


  • ​High visibility due to catchy graphic designs.
  • ​Made to last under any conditions.
  • ​Accommodates two persons or up to 400 pounds in weight.
  • ​Easy to inflate or deflate.


  • ​Little free space within the kayak.

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6. Advanced Elements Advanced Frame Inflatable Kayak

Kayaking will taste a different experience altogether if you decide to try this inflatable kayak, which we included in our list for the best inflatable kayaks for rivers due to its quality and performance.

It comes with built-in aluminum ribs that facilitate easy tracking.

​The material has three layers to withstand pressure and resist quick punctures. With three seat allocation and a weight capacity of 550 pounds, this kayak provides comfort through its adjustable seats. You will appreciate the fact that this kayak comes assembled from the factory, making it easy to set up.


  • ​Has better tracking ability due to aluminum ribs.
  • ​Resistant to frequent punctures.
  • ​Adjustable seats provide comfort during kayaking.


  • ​Inflating is time consuming due to its large size.

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7. Sea Eagle 370 Pro 3 Person Inflatable Kayak Review

Kayaking is one such activity; you never get the great fun if you are rocking and rolling all by yourself. This is why we consider this 3 person seater kayak among the best inflatable kayaks for the river, allowing you to enjoy kayaking with two other persons.

The weight supported by this kayak is up to 650lbs while it weighs 32 lbs. Read on the Sea Eagle 370 Kayak review to get more details.

​It has a 370 deluxe kayak package, which comes with two movable super comfortable deluxe seats. These seats provide improved back support for the users. In addition, the 2 paddles, a foot pump, and a carry bag make this kayak ideal. The 2 skegs on the bottom enable better speeding and tracking while kayaking. You inflate or deflate your kayak through the drain valves.


  • ​Provides comfortable seating posture for the users.
  • ​Can accommodate more than one individual.
  • ​Made to last through strong anti-wear and tear material.
  • ​Easy to inflate or deflate as well as carry in the carry bag.


  • ​Inflation is a tiresome task.

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8. ADVANCED ELEMENTS Island Voyage 2 Inflatable Kayak

​Kayaking with this inflatable kayak will be fun for any person, be it for leisure and recreational only or for sporting purposes. It is made to give you comfort and speed while kayaking.

The provision of a rear drain plug which facilitates cleaning and draining for water made us feature is among the best inflatable kayaks for rivers and other small water bodies.

​You get three seating positions for tandem or even single-use with supportive back seats that have bottle holders. Its pointed bow with a rocker brings about high performance while the removable deep fin facilitates tracking.


  • ​Great visibility due to bright yellow color.
  • ​Pointed bow for better performance.
  • ​You will find it easy to clean and drain water.
  • ​Comfortable seats with bottle holders.


  • ​You can only carry a small load on board.

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9. ADVANCED ELEMENTS Straightedge 2 Kayak

While compiling our findings for the best inflatable kayaks for rivers available in the market today, we had to include this kayak for its comfort and high performance.

It happens to be having the largest internal space for the users. Its tandem incorporates aluminum bow and a stern frame, which improve tracking in water.

​The heavy-duty PVC tarpaulin material will last you and keeping you afloat in bigger waves. Accessories included in this kayak include StraitEdge 2 kayak, durable storage bag, 2 foldable seats, repair kit plus the users’ manual.


  • ​Supports large weight capacity, 500 pounds.
  • ​Easy to operate due to user’s manual.
  • ​Made to last in most water conditions.
  • ​Easy to spot in case of any emergency.


  • ​Limited to leisure and recreation due to its speed.

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Things To Consider While Buying A Kayak For Rivers

Before you buy an inflatable kayak for rivers, the following are some essential things that you should consider.


The kayak you purchase should have a color that allows easy visibility while you are on the water. This facilitates easy tracking of the user and responding to cases of emergencies. Choose a kayak whose body color is shouting, such as bright yellow, gold, and green-white with a shade of blue. Visibility of your kayak is vital at all times for your safety.


Why are you getting a kayak? The purpose of buying your kayak should guide your choice. Those kayaks designed for special purposes such as sporting are designed differently from those meant simply for leisure and recreation. You will notice sporting kayaks have a well-streamlined body compared to any other kayaks.

Weight Capacity

The weight capacity simply guides you on the number of persons you can accommodate in your kayak as well as what extra load you may carry with you. Failure to observe this will result in exceeding the risky weight capacity. It may cause your kayak to capsize. This is a must check and counter check factor for your safety while on the water.


The kayak you choose should be one that has well-layered quality material. It should allow you to navigate different water bodies such as rivers without the risk of getting punctured easily by debris and foreign materials in water. Also, it should be resistant to damage by UV light, thus sustaining you in different weather conditions.


a) Can One Wear Jeans While Kayaking?

​Avoid jeans if possible and instead wear clothes made from synthetic materials such as polyester.

b) What Are The Chances Of A Kayak Tipping Over While One Is On Board?

​Kayaks are made with high stability making them safe against tipping over unless one tries too hard to paddle.

​c) ​Which Kayaks Are Safe, Sit In Or Sit On For Kids And Amateur Kayakers?

​The sit-in kayaks are generally safer for entry-level persons and kids.

Final Words

Kayaking will be a great experience when you choose the right kayak for your expedition. Having prior knowledge of kayaking will be an add-on to your kayaking. It will make you safer and comfortable while kayaking. This guide will provide your insight on the best inflatable kayak for rivers you may choose from.

Barry Robinson

Hi. This is Barry J. Robinson. I love to fishing, kayaking and blogging. I start fishing & kayaking when I was at the age of 18. I love to write about my fishing & kayaking review and parts review. Regularly writing about fishing and kayaking for various magazines, newspapers and websites.

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