3 Best Folding Kayaks of 2023 + Bonus Pick!

For anyone looking to maximize their kayaking experience, a folding kayak is the perfect solution. As an experienced guide in the field of paddling trips, I can personally attest to how convenient and reliable these folding kayaks are for exploring even the most hard-to-reach places. Unlike traditional designs, folding kayaks can be effortlessly packed up and transported – no more enduring those tedious loading sessions onto your car roof!

In fact, let me tell you, folding kayaks have some serious advantages over traditional hard-shell kayaks. Here are my top 5 reasons why you should consider using a folding kayak:

  1. Portability: Hands down, the biggest perk of a folding kayak is its portability. With the ability to fold down into a compact size, you can easily pack it into a car trunk, check it on a plane, or carry it on public transportation. This opens up a world of paddling opportunities that simply aren’t feasible with a traditional kayak.
  2. Easy storage: Don’t have a garage or a spacious backyard for kayak storage? No problem! Folding kayaks can be disassembled and stored in a closet or under a bed, making them perfect for apartment dwellers and those with limited storage space.
  3. Versatility: Folding kayaks can handle various water conditions, from serene lakes to challenging white-water rapids. They’re designed with durable materials that can withstand the rigors of the outdoors, so you can confidently explore different waterways without worrying about damaging your trusty vessel.
  4. Eco-friendly: As an outdoor enthusiast, I know we all want to do our part to protect the environment. Folding kayaks are often made with recyclable materials, reducing their environmental footprint. Plus, their compact size means you’ll be using less fuel for transportation compared to hauling a traditional kayak on a roof rack.
  5. Quick setup and breakdown: Most folding kayaks can be assembled and disassembled in under 30 minutes, meaning you’ll spend less time fiddling with gear and more time enjoying the water. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll appreciate the convenience of a folding kayak’s straightforward setup.

Remember, it’s all about finding the right balance between performance, convenience, and sustainability.

Best Folding Kayaks

With so many folding kayaks on the market, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. As an experienced paddler and tester myself, I’m here to provide you with my top three picks for the best folding kayak options available! These foldable boats are reliable, solid, and multi-functional— perfect no matter if you’re a beginner or already well-versed in water sports. Let us take a deep dive into these foldable kayaks and find out why they truly stand above the rest.

Bay ST folding kayak from Oru Kayak

Bay ST from Oru Kayak (single person)

For single-riding adventurers seeking a lightweight, reliable foldable kayak with style and performance as priorities, look no further than the Oru Kayak Bay ST. Constructed from custom polypropylene for increased durability without added weight making it much tougher than an inflatable kayak. This folding kayak has been expertly engineered to fit easily in almost any car trunk or apartment closet – perfect for those who want uncompromised portability.

Oru Kayak is revolutionizing the kayaking industry with its origami-inspired design, allowing users to effortlessly fold the origami kayak into a neat and compact package in minutes making it one of the best folding kayaks available. At 12 feet long when fully assembled and weighing only 28 pounds, this product stands out as one of the lightest portable folding kayaks available on the market today! With an adjustable seat, footrests that can be customized to your size preference, and a spacious cockpit for paddlers of various sizes; you’ll find comfort at every corner with this unique foldable kayak.

With its sleek design and sturdy construction, the Oru Kayak Bay ST folding kayak provides a remarkable ride for both experienced and beginner paddlers. Its compact size belies its capability on the water; it handles waves and choppy conditions expertly while remaining agile enough to explore placid lakes or speedy rivers. Whether you’re an advanced navigator or just starting out, this folding kayak is sure to serve as a dependable companion during your aquatic adventures.

Notable specs for the Bay ST Folding Kayak: 

Weight: about 26 lbs

Length: about 12 feet

Width: about 25 inches

Max paddler height: about 6’3″

Capacity: 300 lbs

Haven TT folding kayak from Oru Kayak

Haven TT from Oru Kayak (single or tandem)

Oru Kayak’s Haven TT folding kayak is the perfect vessel for two adults and a child, or even a pet, to embark on an adventure together. Unlike its smaller cousin – the Bay ST – this foldable kayak provides ample space to seat everyone comfortably while they explore what lies beneath the surface of their favorite lake or river.

Showcasing Oru Kayak’s pioneering origami-inspired design, the Haven TT is a game changer in terms of lightweight and convenient tandem kayaks. Its folded form occupies minimal storage space and can be effortlessly transported from one place to another. Fully assembled, the 16 feet long kayak weighs only 40 pounds; making it amongst the lightest on offer for duo riders!

The Haven TT is crafted from a specialized polypropylene material, providing both lightness and sturdiness compared to its cousin the inflatable kayak. Its vast cockpit easily accommodates two people plus has a removable center seat for solo kayaking. Another reason the Haven TT is one of the best folding kayaks is its adjustable footrests and ergonomic design to ensure exceptional comfort no matter how long you choose to stay out on the water.

The Haven TT is the best folding kayak, designed for an extensive range of water activities with its robust and agile design as well as a spacious interior. Furthermore, it has a detachable adjustable track system which permits you to attach accessories like fishing rod holders or GPS tools without any hassle. Take your pick – from serene lakes to choppy open waters, this origami kayak will get the job done!

The Haven TT from Oru Kayak is an outstanding portable kayak for anyone who desires a durable, easy-to-transport tandem kayak that can perform superbly in all kinds of paddling environments.

Notable specs for the Haven TT Folding Kayak: 

Weight: about 41 lbs

Length: about 16 feet

Width: about 33 inches

Max paddler height: about 6’6″

Capacity: 500 lbs

Tucktec folding kayaks

Tucktec Folding Kayaks (low-cost option)

Looking for a more affordable portable kayak experience, but need something stronger than an inflatable kayak? Tucktec Folding Kayaks are a perfect choice. Crafted from high-density polyethylene, these lightweight and resilient boats make transporting them an effortless task while also withstanding any paddling challenges you throw their way. Best of all – they won’t break the bank!

The Tucktec Folding Kayak is the perfect choice for outdoor lovers on the go! Its innovative folding kayak design allows you to put it together or take it apart with just a few minutes of your time and absolutely no tools. When folded, this portable kayak can fit into any backpack or small space in your vehicle – making it an ideal option if you want to bring your kayaking fun wherever life takes you.

Not only does the Tucktec Folding kayak offer an unbeatable price point, but its performance on the water is also top-notch. It moves swiftly and reliably in every situation from tranquil lakes to swift rivers – making it a great kayak option for all types of adventurers. Moreover, with adjustable footrests and a comfortable seat that fits people of various sizes, you can be sure your ride will always feel just right.

The Tucktec Folding Kayak is remarkably versatile and can be used for activities such as fishing, recreational paddling, and light touring. Additionally, the high-density polyethylene material has a strong resistance to UV rays and abrasions; making it an ideal kayak that will serve you well for years to come.

No matter your skill level, the Tucktec Folding Kayak is sure to exceed all of your expectations. If you’re in search of a portable and affordable kayak that will offer superior performance on the water, look no further than this exceptional product! With its unbeatable value and quality, a Tucktec Folding Kayak is an ideal choice for any avid paddler.

Average Specs of the Tucktec folding kayak: 

Weight: about 28 lbs

Capacity: about 300 lbs

Coast Guard approved for 1,000 folds

My final thoughts on why these are the 3 best folding kayaks in 2023

It’s without a doubt that the Bay ST kayak from Oru Kayak, Haven TT from Oru Kayak and Tucktec Folding Kayaks are three of the greatest folding kayaks available right now. Every single one of these lightweight kayaks gives its own distinct characteristics and benefits making them ideal for virtually any type of paddling activity – whether it be solo trips or even family excursions on a tandem kayak.

If you’re in the market for a highly maneuverable, lightweight kayak with unbeatable performance on the water, then the Bay ST is your perfect kayak option. From its cutting-edge design to its sturdy construction, this vessel is ideal for paddlers of all skill levels and provides a smooth and enjoyable ride every time.

For those looking to set out on a journey with their significant other, child, or pet, the Haven TT from Oru Kayak is an ideal choice. It boasts an origami kayak grand interior and has the capability of being used for paddling alone, as well as in tandem or family adventures.

With its high-density polyethylene material and convenient folding design, this kayak is the perfect choice for novice paddlers or anyone looking for a lightweight kayak.

Whether you choose a folding kayak, inflatable kayak, or one of the countless other varieties available today, all offer convenience and portability that can’t be matched. So get out there with assurance knowing you’ve chosen one of the most reliable kayaks on the market! With endless possibilities for exploration ahead, take advantage of what the best folding kayaks have to offer.

See ya on the water!

Encore: My Bonus Pick!

AdvancedElements inflatable foldable kayak

ADVANCED ELEMENTS AdvancedFrame Convertible Elite Inflatable Kayak

I couldn’t sign off without sharing one more kayak option than CAN technically be folded and provides a great ride! It’s the ADVANCED ELEMENTS AdvancedFrame Convertible Elite Inflatable Kayaks offering a first-class inflatable kayak that offers exceptional performance, versatility, and resilience. Whether you are in search of tranquility on a calm lake or want to explore rougher waters such as the ocean, this portable kayak has been designed with all water conditions in mind.

It uses a combination of aluminum ribs and inflatable technology it provides the strength and balance associated with hardshells but also boasts portability just like an inflatable! Reaching up to 15 feet when fully constructed – big enough for two people paddling together – this eye-catching piece of equipment will definitely make your day out on the waves perfect.

Constructed from a resilient, three-ply material that is both light and long-lasting, the Elite inflatable kayak offers an adjustable high back seat with superior lumbar support for those extended paddling excursions. Moreover, it has multiple storage possibilities via its deck lacing and d-ring tie-downs.

Thanks to its adjustable seating system, the Convertible Elite can be quickly and smoothly converted from a tandem kayak into a solo vessel in only minutes. Additionally, this lightweight kayak features an advanced inflation system with high-pressure drop-stitch floor technology for effortless setup and optimal performance on the water.

The ADVANCED ELEMENTS AdvancedFrame Convertible Elite Inflatable Kayak is an outstanding pick for those seeking a reliable kayak suitable for most water conditions. Its combination of inflatable technology and aluminum ribs make it both secure and easily transportable, while its durable build and adjustable seating system guarantee comfortability in any situation. If you’re searching for an extraordinary inflatable kayak that can handle just about anything life throws your way, the Convertible Elite should be at the top of your list.

Happy paddling!

Article Author
Robert Walker has been a Kayak enthusiast for over a decade. He's owned several different Kayak's, but only recently got into Pedal Kayaks in the last few years. This website is Robert's way of sharing his passion for Pedal Kayak's with the world.