Fastest Sit On Top Kayak List | Six Fastest Sit-On-Top Kayaks

Fact Checked By James A Rockey | Post Updated On: November 24, 2022
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Some of the fastest sit-on-top kayaks that are specifically designed for higher speed on the water are Stellar Racer Kayak, Vagabond Marimba Kayak, Perception Pescador Sit On Top Tandem Kayak, Wilderness Systems Tarpon 160, Kaskazi Dorado, Sun Dolphin Bali 13.5 kayak, etc.

Key Takeaways

  • Stellar Racer Kayak has high strength spectra Dyneema steering line that doesn’t rust and offers low stretch
  • Vagabond Marimba Kayak has a weight capacity of 335 pounds and offers the perfect balance between speed and storage
  • Perception Pescador Sit On Top Tandem Kayak has a 500 lb capacity with plenty of room for two people and a pet or small child
  • The hull of Wilderness Systems Tarpon 160 is made from high-density polyethylene to provide rugged durability and easy to care
  • Sun Dolphin Bali 13.5 Kayak comes with two seats that are padded and have a backrest for extra comfort

Six Fastest Sit-On-Top Kayaks

Here’s our list of the fastest sit-on-top kayaks and a review of each. These kayaks are specifically built and adapted for speed. If you are looking to buy a fast kayak for either recreation or kayak racing, you can’t go wrong with any of these.

1. Stellar Racer Kayak

2. Vagabond Marimba Kayak

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4. Wilderness Systems Tarpon 160

5. Kaskazi Dorado

6. Sun Dolphin Bali 13.5 kayak

Reviews Of The Fastest Sit-On-Top Kayaks

1. Stellar Racer Kayak

Stellar Racer Kayak

This stellar racer kayak works excellently if you are transitioning from a touring kayak to something faster. It is designed for paddlers who are between 5″ and 6.5″ tall and has a weight capacity of 285 pounds. The cockpit is designed in a way that makes it easier for paddlers to catch waves. This kayak has a slender entry that allows it to go fast and light by reducing drag.  When paddling in rough conditions, this kayak demonstrates above-average stability.

Key Features

1. High strength spectra Dyneema steering line that doesn’t rust and has low stretch

2. It has an ergonomic and adjustable seat, thus allowing for good hip rotation

3. The deck is designed with cut-aways that allow for an efficient stroke; it also has bungee cross lines and static perimeter lines for deck rigging

4. Has ergonomic bow and stern carry handles that ensure a comfortable haul to and from the water

5. It has a foot brace with toe pedals for responsive steering and powerful leg drive

6. It is designed with long and efficient hull lines and a slender bow to ensure maximum stability and speed

2. Vagabond Marimba Kayak

Vagabond Marimba Kayak

This vagabond kayak is all about speed and angling convenience. The kayak makes for the perfect trawling and is ideal for fishing trips that involve covering long distances. If your main focus is on trawling and speed, get this kayak. This kayak features two flush-mounted rod holders located behind the seat, and each has a multi-fit for securing your rods as you paddle. The deck rails also allow you to customize the deck by attaching GPS, fish finder .tc. This kayak also has bungee cord straps, adjustable footrests, and a paddle rest. It also features a Scupper Venturis that make paddling long distances through choppy waters a pleasure.

Key Features

1. Fastest recreational kayak– the vagabond kayak is the fastest on the list of recreational kayaks

2. It has a weight capacity of 335 pounds

3. It offers the perfect balance between speed and storage- most of the fastest kayaks barely have any storage but not this one. It features watertight storage and a spacious deck for storing large and medium-sized dry bags

4. It has adjustable foot braces that allow you to find the perfect paddle position and increase leg drive. The foot braces can be adjusted independently if you prefer a unique leg position.

3. Perception Pescador Sit On Top Tandem Kayak

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This perception Pescador is amongst the fastest sit-on-top recreational kayaks. It is designed for speed and comfort and features adjustable seatback positioning for personalized comfort and fit. This kayak has a 500 lb capacity with plenty of room for two people and a pet or small child. It has front and rear open storage that you can use for your cooler and other gear, and in front of every seat, there are storage hatches with protective lids for other delicate stuff. This kayak is easy to transport since it has front, rear and side comfort carry handles. If you are looking for a tandem sit-on-top kayak designed for speed, this is the perfect one for you. You cannot go wrong with a perception Pescador.

Key Features

1. It has a comfortable seating system with thick cushioned padding and a reclining seatback for customized support

2. They are designed for incredible stability without compromising on speed. This kayak’s weight capacity also helps increase its stability on the water

3. It is made from high-density polyethylene and one-piece roto-molded construction that provides exceptional UV, impact, and abrasion resistance. It withstands saltwater and can be used even on the ocean.

4. Wilderness Systems Tarpon 160

Wilderness Systems Tarpon 160

Wilderness systems tarpon 160 kayak offers excellent speed and high stability in choppy waters. The kayak is made from high-density polyethylene which makes it durable and easy to care for. It has an ergonomic construction that makes it super comfortable even for long distances. The kayak features a contoured seat and cushioned legs and backrest.  It also has enough storage for your essentials and a weight capacity of 375 lbs which is enough for one person and some luggage.

Key Features

1. It has a length of 16 feet which makes it stable in choppy waters and extremely fast. It also has enough capacity for all your gear

2. The hull is made from high-density polyethylene to provide rugged durability and easy to care

3. Ergonomically designed with padded and contoured seats. It is designed for comfort around the back and foot area to make long adventures bearable

4. Features a dual slide Trax system at the front that you can attach compatible accessories without tools

5. Kaskazi Dorado

Kaskazi Dorado

Kaskazi dorado is the fastest sit-on-top kayak specially designed for fishing, snorkeling, and spearfishing. The kayak is stable and also long enough to provide a good turn of speed. The loading capacity and speed of this kayak make it great for all types of expeditions. This kayak has fishing rod holders and a fish box and is also easy to paddle, making it the best fishing kayak. This kayak is made from a mixture of fiberglass and carbon fiber, making it solid and durable. The dorado kaskazi is 15’10” long and 24.5″ wide, making it extremely fast and seaworthy. The kayak is narrower, making it faster and more comfortable than most sit-on-top kayaks. It is exceptionally stable, mainly because you are sitting below the waterline.

Key Features

1. It has a deep and comfortable seat with back support

2. It comes with a large fish box and rod holders and a loading bay with storage crates

3. Exceptionally stable even with big loads

4. Has adjustable steering pedals with self-adjusting rudder lines

6. Sun Dolphin Bali 13.5 Kayak

Sun Dolphin Bali 13.5 Kayak

if you are looking for a fast kayak without compromising on space and size, this is the perfect one. The Bali 13.5 is a tandem kayak spacious enough to fit three persons but is designed for two persons. It has enough storage with hatches for all your essentials and dry storage to keep your cell phone and other gadgets away from water. The kayak is easy to transport since it has carry handles. The hull of this kayak is made from UV-protected high-density polyethylene, which protects the kayak from dents and scratches. This material also guarantees a lightweight but tough vessel. It is advisable to rinse the kayak after use in saltwater to help retain its strength and durability.

Key Features

1. The hull weighs 70 lbs and has a weight capacity of 500 lbs

2. It comes with two seats that are padded and have a backrest for extra comfort

3. It has four carry handles that make it easy to transport the kayak

4. It has three storage hatches that make for enough storage for your essentials

5. Accommodates solo and tandem usage; you can move the seat to the center for easy paddling for solo use.

Factors To Consider When Choosing A Sit On Top Kayak

Before you start looking for the fastest kayak to buy, it is essential to know what features and specifications to look for and how these factors affect your kayak’s performance. In this section, we have a buying guide to help you know some factors that will determine your kayak’s on-water speed and how to choose.

1. Length Of The Kayak

As you might have noticed, all the kayaks on our list are relatively long. For a kayak to be fast, it needs a wider/ longer area where all the weight of the paddler and other essentials is distributed. Distributing the weight over a more extended area will minimize the drag, which would have sunk the kayak further down, making it slower. For speed, longer kayaks are ideal since they will remain buoyant with less resistance. When choosing a longer kayak, paddlers have to compromise on the ability to turn quickly. If you need a balance between a fast kayak that turns fast, find one that’s not too long. 

2. Method Of Draining The Cockpit

Every kayak has a different method of draining water from the cockpit. Some drain naturally, while others need a manual operation to drain water. When choosing a kayak, ensure you consider the type of water you paddle in and your paddling style. If you are mostly paddling in rough waters, where water keeps getting into the cockpit, go for a kayak that drains naturally.

3. Stability Of The Kayak

As a beginner, stability is key to keeping you motivated on the water. Go for the most stable kayak for the activity you intend to use it for. Doing this will ensure you enjoy kayaking as you gain proficiency in paddling. It is also essential to choose a lightweight kayak buoyant to make your experience better and kayak faster.


Choosing a kayak designed for speed can be challenging since most of them are sit-in models. If you find the right sit-on-top kayak that is fast enough for you, you will love the experience. We hope this article will help you decide on the best sit-on-top kayak for your needs. We wish you good luck and a happy kayaking experience.




Last update on 2023-09-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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