29 Gifts For Kayakers That Will Really Float Their Boat

By Candice Elliott | Updated: November 6, 2023

    Were you hunting for that perfect (wallet-friendly) surprise for the kayak or canoe lover in your family this year? Or maybe you’re the one who’s got a soft spot for paddling out on the open water. After all, kayaking and canoeing are your tickets to soaking up the sun, breathing in that fresh air, marveling at breathtaking landscapes, and, hey, sculpting those biceps, too! Let’s dive into a list of stellar gifts for kayakers and canoeists that will paddle right into their hearts!

  1. Floating Cooler
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    There isn’t much room inside a kayak, but it’s not a day on the water without cold drinks and snacks. This little more excellent floats alongside, attached to the kayak! Don’t let the small size fool you. This cooler holds a lot! It has a 15-quart capacity and can hold up to 15 twelve-ounce cans and 10 pounds of ice. The top has two drink holders, and the cooler can chill ice for up to 24 hours. Don’t forget the bottle opener!

  3. Folding Anchor
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    This folding anchor weighs 3 1/3 pounds and can be secured in mud, sand, gravel, and rock. The anchor is attached with 25 feet of marine-grade rope and is perfect for kayaks, canoes, float tubes, and other small, personal watercraft. The anchor can be stored in the included nylon pouch. 

  5. Quick Dry Towel
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    Toweling off yourself or your gear at the end of the day is nice, but no one wants to deal with a heavy, set towel afterward. This towel is lightweight and fast-drying. The microfiber towel can absorb five times its weight and be folded back into its mesh bag when not used. The towel is available in several colors and sizes. 

  7. Kayak Seat 
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    If you’ve never sat in a kayak, take it from me: the seats aren’t comfortable. Sometimes, they don’t even have a back! This kayak seat will give them a much more excellent ride! The seat is adjustable, easy to install and remove, and includes a detachable storage bag.

  9. Solar Power Bank
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    A phone charge will last long enough for a day-long kayaking trip, but an extended trip means you have to have a way to charge your phone. But for anyone who isn’t outdoorsy, there isn’t electricity in the woods! So solar power it is! This charging bank is solar-powered. The solar panel will charge the battery when placed in direct sunlight, and the bank has a flashlight that features an SOS strobe mode in case of an emergency. 

  11. Pelican Case
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    The Pelican case can hold a phone, GoPro camera, or other small electronics. It’s water-resistant for up to 30 minutes at depths of 3.3 feet and rigid to help protect the contents. While the clip lets you attach it securely to a bag or belt, the transparent top lets you see text messages, and the bright color makes it easy to find if it falls in the water. The Pelican makes a fab stocking stuffer.

  13. Waterproof Dry Bag
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    Nothing can ruin a paddler’s outdoor adventure faster than a wet phone or lost wallet and keys. That’s why a dry bag is perfect if you’re looking for gift ideas for kayakers. This bag is waterproof, floats, and comes in bright colors, so it’s easy to recover if the kayak tips. It can even be attached to the kayak and allowed to float alongside so it doesn’t take up precious space. In addition, this bag includes a waterproof phone case. 

  15. Water Shoes
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    The best gifts for kayakers are those that make the activity they love more comfortable, so these water shoes are a great gift idea. The shoes are breathable and made of quick-dry material. They provide a comfortable stretch and are soft, flexible, and non-slip. The shoes are perfect for all water sports, unisex, and available in several sizes and colors. Of course, wet shoes are great for the beach, too. 

  17. Floating Sunglasses 
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    You might notice a theme on this gift list: things that float! Floating is an essential quality in gifts for kayakers! These sunglasses float! The lenses are polarized, offering UVA, UVB, and UVC protection. In addition, the sunglasses are anti-glare, impact-resistant, and anti-scratch. 

  19. Floating Speaker
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    A day on the water is even better when you can bring your favorite music along! The speaker is waterproof and comes in a silicone case, protecting it from drops and bumps. The carabiner loop lets you easily clip it to a bag, belt, or lifevest. 

  21. Water Bottle + Holster
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    Hydration on the water is paramount! This stainless steel water bottle is specially designed for kayaking. The bottle holds 30 ounces and comes with a mesh bag holster and bungee ball latching system to be secured to the kayak and always within easy reach. 

  23. Kayak Cart
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    A kayaking trip can involve a long distance from the truck to the water, especially if it’s a camping trip. This kayak cart has a 200-pound weight limit and is made from heavy-duty anodized steel for durability. The tires are inflatable and can navigate sand, dirt, and gravel easily. The cart can also be used for a canoe, paddleboard, float mat, or Jon boat. 

  25. Fish Finder 
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    Let your loved one combine two hobbies: kayaking and fishing! The fish finder gadget issues an alert when it finds fish or schools of fish. The finder can distinguish between fish sizes and will show icons for small, medium, and large fish on the screen, perfect for waters that have minimum size rules. 

  27. Fun T-Shirt
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    Live, Love, Kayak! That’s the kayaker’s motto. This t-shirt is the perfect gift to let them show their love for kayaking even when they can’t be on the water. The t-shirt is available in both men’s and women’s cuts, in several sizes and colors. 

  29. Kayak Paddle Stir Sticks
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    These would be a fun gift, even if they aren’t helpful when kayaking! The delightful set of five swizzle sticks is excellent for a summer party and is made of food-safe plastic. In addition, the sticks can be washed and reused. 

  31. Necklace
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    Let her wear a little piece of her hobby daily with this cute 3D sterling silver kayak pendant and necklace. The chain is sterling silver, measures 18 inches long, and arrives in a gift box, ready for gifting. An excellent gift for an avid kayaker!

  33. NRS Life Jacket (PFD)
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    A good life jacket is essential for kayaking, paddle boarding, and canoeing; safety first! This life jacket has a low-profile, flexible fit and a large zippered pocket for keys, ID, and other essentials. The jacket is designed with 16.5 pounds of flotation and has US Coast Guard Certification. The jacket is available in three sizes and three colors. 

  35. Paddle Grips
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    One of the top kayaker’s complaints is blisters. These grips can help take the sting out of a day on the water. These grips help make paddling more efficient and help prevent blisters and calluses. Made of silicone, the grips are non-slip and weatherproof. The grips fit paddles with a diameter of about 30mm and come in several colors. 

  37. Utility Knife
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    A knife can come in handy in lots of kayaking situations. The blade can be used to cut rope and cords, fishing line, or to slice up your snacks. The tip is blunt so that it won’t pierce an inflatable kayak, and the screwdriver tip can be used to pry open any tasty mussels, clams, or oysters you might come across. 

  39. Custom Caricature Portrait
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    Are you looking for a unique gift they’ll remember forever due to its absolute thoughtfulness? Let an artist draw a fantastic cartoon caricature portrait of your loved one in a kayak. All you need is a photo of their face. No, they can’t take it out on the water, but they can gaze adoringly at its cleverness afterward. 

  41. Sun Protection Hat
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    Sunscreen is a must-have when kayaking, but it can easily sweat off on a hot day. This UV hat will provide additional protection from the sun’s damaging rays and help keep the sun out of her eyes. The hat offers UV protection of SPF 50, and the wide brim protects the face, ears, and neck. There is a hole to accommodate a ponytail. The hat is available in several colors. 

  43. Changing Poncho
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    Wearing wet clothes is a horrible feeling, but you don’t always have a convenient place to change when you’re out in nature. This changing poncho solves that problem. Change into warm, dry clothes without giving anyone who happens to be around a free show! The poncho is one-size-fits-all and available in several different designs. 

  45. Compass Watch


    Sometimes, you’re just too far off the grid to rely on GPS. In that case, you must go old school and use a compass. Well, this watch also functions as a kayak compass! In addition, the watch is water-resistant up to 100 meters.

  47. NRS Paddling Jacket
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    Some kayakers prefer not to wear a full suit. For those paddlers, this paddling jacket is an excellent alternative. The jacket is waterproof and protects the wearer from wind and rain. The jacket is available in several sizes and three colors. 

  49. Christmas Tree Ornament
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    This tree ornament makes an excellent stocking stuffer for kayaking enthusiasts in your life! Personalize their name and the year, choose from male or female, and select hair color. Voilà!– an instantly customized gift to impress their neoprene socks off!

  51. Safety Whistle Keychain
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    A whistle can be a survival tool in many outdoor situations. This is a keychain and emergency whistle. Made of stainless steel, the whistle is 120 decibels loud, water-resistant, and can be carried as a keychain or worn on a lanyard, which is included. 

  53. Sexy Tee
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    A funny t-shirt for those interested in kayaks, canoes, dinghies, boating, or rafting, this tee comes in seven colors with the witty quote, “I’m sexy, and I grow it.” Available in both men’s and women’s sizes. If your kayaking friend is more of a tank person, check out this version.

  55. Headlamps


    These headlamps are the perfect gift for kayakers who like to go out at night. They’re rechargeable; the charge lasts up to ten hours on a full charge. They’re adjustable, so you can get the light just where you need it, and they are waterproof. 

  57. LEGO City Kayak Adventure
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    You’re never too old for a high-quality LEGO kit, especially when it captures your most favorite hobby. It may not take long to build, but it can take pride of place on a desk, mantle, or coffee table. You’ll get a sturdy off-road truck with roof racks to attach the kayak that your mini-figure will set off in on his whitewater adventures! Plus, there’s a frog for good measure.

    What are the best gifts and gear for kayakers? 

    The adventure-seeker in your life will appreciate a good quality dry bag to keep their belongings safe and dry during their water escapades. A high-end personal flotation device (PFD) isn’t just a thoughtful gift; it’s an essential safety tool for any kayaker. For those long paddles, an ergonomic kayak seat can significantly enhance comfort. GPS devices or waterproof maps of local waterways can be a game-changer for exploration and safety. Lastly, a sturdy car-top kayak carrier would make transporting their vessel a breeze!

    We’ve compiled a great gift guide for you that’s jam-packed with useful items (plus a few that’ll invoke joy but shouldn’t go in the water.) From coolers to dry bags, floating sunnies to floating speakers, paddle grips to stir sticks, and even some hip tees, jewelry pieces, and LEGO (yup, those LEGO.)