Top 8 Best Pedal Kayaks For The Money 2023 Reviews

Kayaking is a great outdoor activity. For those who want their hands free, or need to get around without a hand-held paddle there are now pedal kayaks. These are a great option for anglers, as it lets you move around with your rod in hand.

There are several options on the market today. So many in fact that it can get confusing when shopping for the best option for you. With this in mind, we have created a review of the best pedal kayaks on the market. We’ve also included a buying guide if any of the features need further explanation.

So, let’s go through them and find the perfect pedal kayak for you…

Top 8 Best Pedal Kayaks For The Money 2023 Reviews

Top 8 Best Pedal Kayaks In 2023 Reviews

1 Hobie 2023 Mirage Outback

The first product on our list is made by Hobie. Their 2023 Mirage Outback features the first major redesign in over a decade of their best-selling Mirage Outback. We expect this to be the most wanted pedal kayak on our list. It’s the most expensive option we reviewed, so what let’s talk about what you get for your dollar.

A fully-loaded fishing machine…

This pedal kayak has a MirageDrive 180 Turbo. It also has Kick Up Fins and a vantage CTW with multiple adjustments built in for comfort. You can take this beast out on the ocean, or stalk bass in your favorite freshwater fishing spot.

Available in six colors to keep everyone happy…

This kayak also has an extra-wide standing deck. This is another feature that anglers will love and is part of why this is one of the best pedal kayaks for fishing. There is even a Guardian Transducer Shield for a multidimensional vision of what is below.

The Kick Up Rudder System provides easy navigation in shallow water, due to the dual steering capabilities. It’s fast, quiet, and exceedingly nimble. It also has an Outback Loader, which is a plastic bumper that clips to the kayak for easier transportation.

Great storage capacity…

You also get four molded-in rod holders, high capacity storage compartments, and multiple deluxe H-Track mounts. You should be able to have everything you need at hand. For this reason alone this is one of the best pedal kayaks for anglers.

Hobie 2023 Mirage Outback
Our rating:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)


  • Maximum Capacity of 425 lb.
  • Length measures 12 ft 9 in.
  • Made in the USA.
  • MirageDrive 180 Turbo + Kick Up Fins
  • Extra-wide standing deck for casting and spotting.


  • Considerably more expensive than many other options available.

2 Perception Pescador Pilot 12

Dropping right down from the top to near the bottom in regards to price, up next we have the Pescador Pilot 12. This kayak is made by Perception Kayaks and is more of a basic option in the range of pedal kayaks.

Sit-on-top pedal drive kayak…

This option features a comfortable lawnchair-style seat. It’s adjustable, with 2-level seat adjustments and we really like the breathable mesh for all-day comfort outside.

You don’t have to spend a fortune to get a lot…

This kayak can achieve zero draft on account of the pilot drive pedal system being fully recessed into the hull. It has a single-piece construction, so there are no leaking points to worry about. It also has built-in buoyancy for added safety.

Great storage options…

There are both rear and front storage areas for tackle boxes and coolers. We also like the four rod holders, and integrated accessory rails running down either gunwale. These are useful for fish finders, rod holders, and a number of other tasks.

Perception Pescador Pilot 12
Our rating:4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)


  • Maximum Capacity of 475 lb.
  • Length measures 12 ft 5 in.
  • One of the least expensive options on our list.
  • Two-level adjustment and a breathable mesh seat.
  • Lots of storage space.


  • It’s a bit on the heavy side.
  • Not the easiest to turn without a support paddle.

3 BKC PK11 10.6′ Single Propeller Pedal Drive Fishing Kayak – Best Pedal Kayak for Beginners

The third option is the best pedal kayak for beginners, in our view. This option is lacking in a lot of the upgrades, but that means you’re saving a great deal of money. This is, after all, the least expensive option we reviewed.

An entry-level pedal kayak with instant reverse…

This kayak has a rudder system that allows for instant reverse. That’s a really nice feature to have when you’re in the narrow shallows. Brooklyn Kayak Company makes this kayak with one really cool feature which is that you can add a trolling motor for an even easier ride on the water.

Stay comfortable longer…

Not only that, but we expect that you’ll also be comfortable all day long. The PK11 has a fully-padded and supportive seat and backrest with multiple positioning options. You can adjust things throughout the day to keep you comfortable longer.

We appreciate the generous cargo capacity and the three flush-mounted rod holders. The lack of additional features is part of what keeps the price so low so all in all, this is one of the best pedal kayaks on a budget.

BKC PK11 10.6' Single Propeller Pedal Drive Fishing Kayak
Our rating:3.8 out of 5 stars (3.8 / 5)


  • Maximum Capacity of 420 lb.
  • Length measures 10 ft 6 in.
  • Relatively inexpensive.
  • Adjustable, padded and supportive seat and backrest.
  • Generous storage capacity.


  • Not as well made as higher-end models.
  • Not very hydrodynamic compared with other options.

4 Hobie Mirage Sport

Hobie also makes the Sport in their Mirage series of pedal kayaks. This option is completely different from the Outback model we looked at above but those looking for a shorter pedal kayak will want to check these details closely.

Lighter than many other models…

The mirage Sport by Hobie weighs only 78 lbs. (35kg) fully rigged. It can support up to 225 lbs. (102kg), making it both easier to move around but less of a load carrier on the water. This means it’s great for day trips, but less of a multi-day pedal kayak.

With a shorter length, you can’t expect this kayak to glide as well as longer options but at the same time, it makes maneuvering in tight spaces a lot easier.

New patented technology used for propulsion…

Even though it’s smaller, this kayak still features Hobie’s MirageDrive 180 + Kick Up Fins. It also has a twist and stow rudder. This makes moving the kayak around a breeze both in the water and during transportation to the water.

Included in this option are two molded-in rod holders, an 8-inch twist-and-seal hatch, and a sail/bimini mount. The four-way adjustable Vantage CT seat is state of the art and allows for better visibility, comfort, and breathability. You really will be able to stay out longer without back or bum pain.

Hobie Mirage Sport
Our rating:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)


  • Maximum Capacity of 225 lb.
  • Length measures 9 ft 7 in.
  • MirageDrive 180 + Kick Up Fins.
  • Twist and stow rudder for easy transportation.
  • Highly adjustable and comfortable seating.


  • Limited carry capacity compared with many other options.
  • Doesn’t glide as well as longer kayaks.

5 Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10 Pedal Fishing Kayak

At a similar price point to the kayak we just looked at, Native Watercraft enters our list with the Slayer Propel 10. This is another option for a shorter pedal kayak, but it’s by no means the shortest on our list.

One of the lightest pedal kayaks in its class…

The hull comes weighing in at only 62 lbs. Now, that is without the drive unit, but still, this thing is easy to move around compared to most options. If you’re looking for an easy to transport pedal kayak, look no further.

Powered by pedal drive…

It’s powered by Native Watercraft’s Propel Pedal Drive System which employs forward and reverse for easy navigation and better control. The seat also has an armchair design which is both comfortable and durable.

We like the open, clutter-free cockpit the most. The manufacturer states even the largest anglers can easily stand and sight-cast comfortably. There is also a rail mount system running the length of the boat, allowing you to keep any fishing accessory where you most need them.

Overall, this is one of the best pedal-driven fishing kayaks available, in our view.

Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10 Pedal Fishing Kayak
Our rating:3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)


  • Maximum Capacity of 400 lb.
  • Length measures 10 ft.
  • Native Watercraft’s Propel Pedal Drive System.
  • Comfortable armchair style seat.
  • Rail mount system for attaching accessories.


  • Dry storage area is not easily accessible from the seat.
  • Some users find the pedal arrangement uncomfortable.

6 Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 13 Kayak

If the above looks good to you, but you’re looking for a longer option then we’ve got you covered. Native Watercraft also makes the Slayer Propel in a 13 ft option. It’s better for larger anglers and those looking to cover longer distances.

So good it’s won awards…

For hands-free kayak fishing, the Slayer Propel 13 is unmatched in what it offers anglers. It can stop on a dime or pull away from structures to relieve rod pressure. The longer length keeps it stable and allows you to carry more gear with you too.

Great for big boys…

The extra length keeps you stable when sight casting, or reeling in while standing. The stern is impact resistant, and there is a hard shell bow hatch. Bungees in the stern and bow help keep things in place.

The seating is hand-sewn and has an adjustable inseam which we like. Plus, it’s made in America.

Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 13 Kayak
Our rating:4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)


  • Maximum Capacity of 500 lb.
  • Length measures 13 ft. 2 in.
  • Native Watercraft’s Propel Pedal Drive System.
  • Great for larger anglers.
  • Rail mount system for attaching accessories.


  • Dry storage area is not easily accessible from the seat.
  • Some users find the pedal arrangement uncomfortable.

7 Old Town Topwater 106 PDL Angler Fishing Kayak – Best Pedal Kayaks for Anglers

Old Town enters our list with an option designed ground-up for fishing. The Topwater 106 PDL is one of the best fishing pedal kayaks we reviewed since it has most of the features anglers demand but will spare your wallet compared to many other options.

Supreme stability on the water…

The Topwater PDL Angler has a double hull design that makes it one of the most stable pedal kayaks on the market. The compact length makes it easy to maneuver in the water and we really like how easy it is to transport as well.

Supreme comfort…

This pedal kayak is loaded with features for anglers. There is an adjustable element Air seat for supreme comfort for starters. The tank well is oversized for ample gear storage, and there are three rod holders along with a rod and tackle storage spot. You even get deck EVA foam pads for better comfort and traction while standing.

We can’t speak highly enough…

There is also a universal transducer mount system for fish finders. What more can you want? Well, how about a low-maintenance pedal drive with forward and reverse? How about an easy-docking system, and an easy to use trucker-style rudder control lever?

At the end of the day, this is one of the best pedal kayaks for anglers, ever. The pedal drive is top-notch and the whole thing comes protected by a 5-year warranty.

Old Town Topwater 106 PDL Angler Fishing Kayak
Our rating:4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)


  • Maximum Capacity of 450 lb.
  • Length measures 10 ft. 6 in.
  • Great maneuverability and control with the PDL pedal drive.
  • Backed by a 5-year warranty.
  • Comfortable seat and deck padding.
  • Universal transducer mounting system.


  • The carry handle feels a bit awkward.
  • Not the easiest to get in and out of this arrangement

8 Ocean Kayak Malibu Pedal Recreational Kayak

The final option on our list is unlike many of the above options as this kayak is not designed with fishing in mind. Instead, this is geared more towards those looking to go out and explore the coast.

Faster launch and land…

Malibu Pedal was designed by Ocean Kayak to make kayaking easy and carefree. The PDL drive mounts in seconds and it needs no maintenance whatsoever. This makes it a great option for everyone.

When you hit shallow water you can easily tip-up the drive, which makes launching and landing your kayak much faster.

Feature-rich too…

There are three cupholders, to help you keep refreshed all day. There is an element Beach seat with mesh storage underneath which keeps you cool and comfortable all day. It also allows you to keep small items at hand.

Family outings are easy in this…

We like this for the best pedal kayak for family outings or gear-heavy solo kayakers. There is a Click Seal hatch under the seat, two 8 inch accessory tracks, and a stern tank well jump seat.

This makes it a great option for those looking to take kids or pets out on the water. In fact, this is the best pedal kayak for parents that we reviewed.

We also like how quick in the water it is, and the maneuverability is great.

Ocean Kayak Malibu Pedal Recreational Kayak
Our rating:3.7 out of 5 stars (3.7 / 5)


  • Maximum Capacity of 450 lb.
  • Length measures 12 ft.
  • Great size for gear storage, or bringing the kid or pet along.
  • Glides well and easy to maneuver.
  • Tip-up drive makes launching and landing a breeze.


  • No built-in fishing rod holders.
  • Heavy enough that you’ll need help lifting it off a truck-top gear rack.

Buying Guide For The Best Pedal Kayaks

It’s time to jump into the top features mentioned in the review and cover the primary considerations before purchasing a pedal kayak.

  • Intended Use

Are you looking to head out just to explore, or will you be using this primarily for fishing? Do you want to be able to remove the pedal system and use it as a traditional style kayak? Are you using this style of kayak due to a disability, or just to free up your hands for other tasks?

These are important questions that will push you towards certain types of pedal kayaks. Many of the options that we reviewed are specifically designed for anglers.

  • Versatility

If you’re headed out fishing you’ll want lots of cargo space and attachment points. However, if you’re just headed out to explore it’s more about glide and storage.

If you do have a disability of any kind, you should seriously pay attention to the rudder location. In some kayaks, it’s on one side or the other, with others it’s less convenient.

 BKC PK11 10.6' Single Propeller Pedal Drive Fishing Kayak

Some pedal kayaks are designed to allow you to remove the pedal drive. You can then take it out and paddle around like in a normal kayak. This makes for a more versatile kayak.

  • Maneuverability

Longer kayaks will take more effort to turn around. Shorter options are thus generally preferred when navigating tight canyons and other waterways. However, shorter kayaks won’t hold as much gear or weight.

  • Storage

If you’re headed out for a multi-day kayaking trip, you’ll want ample storage. This includes some dry storage. You’ll likely want to have at least a cell phone with you, if not other things that should be kept dry.

 Ocean Kayak Malibu Pedal Recreational Kayak

If you’re an angler, then rod holders and accessory attachment points are crucial. They allow you to rig up a fish finder, or even hang your catch in the water. These attachment points are wildly useful, which is why some options have it running the length of the kayak.

  • Price

The options we reviewed are not the cheapest kayaks on the market. The pedal system kayak tends to run considerably more expensive than traditional kayaks. But, for those in the market, there is a wide range of options to choose from.

If you’re just starting out with pedal kayaking we recommend an entry-level option. It will take some time to get used to this new setup and you don’t want to learn on and ding-up a new, expensive top-of-the-line model.

Accessories Anyone?

We know you’ll have a lot of fun in your new pedal kayak, but are there some items that will make it even more fun? We think so, so take a look at our Best Lunch Cooler Reviews, our Best Kayak Trailer Revews, and our Best Kayak Seat Reviews.

Best Pedal Kayaks Review Conclusion

We have covered the top things to consider before making a purchase and we trust our review of our top choices for pedal kayaks has been helpful.

For those of you who still can’t make up your mind, we will offer one last piece of advice in the form of our personal favorite, which is the…

Old Town Topwater 106 PDL Angler Fishing Kayak

This is a great option that has top-shelf features, with a middle-of-the-road price. It’s most definitely what we’d choose if we were in the market for a new pedal kayak.

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