Sun Dolphin Kayaks in 2022: Full Model Range and Reviews

It can be hard to find your perfect recreational kayak without breaking the bank. Sun Dolphin, based on the banks of Lake Michigan, has been making affordable kayaks since 1982. All of their boats are made in the US and are designed to give you the best kayak possible for your money.

Sun Dolphin kayaks are made from high density, UV resistant polyethylene. These plastics will stand the test of time and regular use, so you can enjoy your kayak for years. They have a wide range of sit-in and sit-on-top kayaks that are both recreational and angler-focused.

Sun Dolphin kayaks are beginner-friendly. They are wide and stable, with the sit-in models having large open cockpits that inspire confidence. We’ve broken down the recreational and fishing kayaks from Sun Dolphin to help you to see if there is a kayak in their range for you.

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Recreational Kayaks

Sun Dolphin Aruba 8 SS

Sun Dolphin Aruba 8 SS

Length: 8 ft. / 243 cm
Width: 28 in. / 71 cm
Weight: 27 lbs. / 12 kg
Capacity: 260 lbs. / 118 kg

Aruba 8 SS is Sun Dolphin’s most compact kayak. The lightweight design of Aruba makes it easy to transport between the rooftop of your car and the water’s edge. You can be on the water sooner and lower the risk of injury by choosing a lightweight kayak.

On the water, the Aruba 8 paddles easily and tracks straight thanks to the defined keel at the bow. There is storage on the rear deck, as well as a secure hatch for smaller items. A paddle park across the cockpit rim lets you relax and take in your surroundings, without worrying about losing your paddle.

The compact size and low weight capacity of this kayak make it more suited to smaller framed paddlers. An adjustable seat system, with a padded backrest and footpegs, lets you get comfortable in this kayak. The high-rimmed cockpit works to deflect splashes, giving you a dryer ride.


Sun Dolphin Aruba 10

Sun Dolphin Aruba 10

Length: 9 ft. 7 in. / 292 cm
Width: 29 in. / 74 cm
Weight: 40 lbs. / 18 kg
Capacity: 250 lbs. / 113 kg

Aruba 10 is aimed at lake kayaking and floating downstream on a gentle river. The large cockpit makes it easy to get in and out of the Aruba 10. Large cockpits on kayaks can often inspire confidence in uneasy paddlers, removing the constricting feeling and letting you relax and enjoy your journey.

The seating inside the Aruba 10 is molded for comfort and comes with a padded backrest. Protective thigh braces protect your legs from the hard outer plastic, and adjustable footpegs keep you firmly in your seat.

At the rear of Sun Dolphin Aruba 10, there is a storage compartment secured with a lid and shock cord. A water bottle recess on the front deck is secured with a bungee so you can stay hydrated and safe on the water. 


Sun Dolphin Fiji 10 SS

Sun Dolphin Fiji 10 SS

Length: 9 ft. 7.5 in / 293 cm
Width: 29.5 in. / 75 cm
Weight: 44 lbs. / 20 kg
Capacity: 280 lbs. / 127 kg

Sun Dolphin Fiji 10 SS is a wide and stable kayak that has a clearly defined keel line. This is a kayak designed for lakes and rivers that will track easily through gentle and moderate winds. 

The portable accessory holder at the rear of the Fiji 10 SS can be towed behind your kayak to act as extra storage. This opens up the rear of your kayak as a storage well, while your equipment in the pod stays dry. A hands-free electronics console at the front of the cockpit lets you use your phone, camera, or GPS while you paddle. 

The fully adjustable backrest and molded seat are comfortable and keep you supported on the water. Padded thigh rests stop your legs from rubbing off the hard plastic shell of the Fiji 10 SS. Adjustable foot braces keep you comfortable in your seat.


Sun Dolphin Aruba 12 SS

Sun Dolphin Aruba 12 SS

Length: 12 ft. / 364 cm
Width: 30 in. / 76 cm
Weight: 47 lbs. / 21 kg
Capacity: 395 lbs. / 179 kg

Aruba 12 SS is a long, wide kayak suited to beginner and intermediate paddlers. The combined stability and speed of the Aruba 12 SS make it suitable for longer day trips exploring rivers and lakes. The defined keel line at the bow and stern let the Aruba 12 SS track through the wind and paddlers can maintain higher speed with less effort.

The Aruba 12 SS has a large cockpit area that makes it easy to get in and out. A large cockpit can help grow confidence on the water, giving nervous paddlers a more free feeling kayaking experience.

The removable portable accessory carrier can be used as internal storage or can be towed behind your kayak. There is also a bow hatch for small day items. Two flush mount rod holders behind the seat make the Aruba 12 suitable for the recreational angler to find their perfect fishing spot.


Sun Dolphin Bali 6

Sun Dolphin Bali 6

Length: 6 ft. / 183 cm
Width: 25 in. / 64 cm
Weight: 28 lbs. / 13 kg
Capacity: 140 lbs. / 64 kg

Young paddlers will benefit from the large open design of the Bali 6. The stability and easy access of the Bali 6 makes this a confidence-inspiring platform for your child to learn to kayak. The graduated food rests and comfortable open seating means that this is a kayak your child can learn in and keep using for years.

The swim platform at the rear, for easy reentry, makes this an excellent kayak for summer days swimming around in your local lake. While they’re swimming, your child can stow their paddle easily on the paddle rest at the bow of the Bali 6.

The Bali 6 is light enough that you can get your child involved in carrying it to and from your vehicle. Involving young paddlers in every aspect of kayaking keeps them engaged and builds their love of kayaking into a lifelong passion.


Sun Dolphin Camino 8 SS

Sun Dolphin Camino 8 SS

Length: 7 ft. 11 in. / 241 cm
Width: 31.5 in. / 80 cm
Weight: 40 lbs. / 18 kg
Capacity: 225 lbs. / 102 kg

Camino 8 SS is a downriver cruiser designed to let you sit back and enjoy the ride. The slight rocker at the bow has enough of a v-shape to track a little, but this is designed to go with the flow. The flat rear section and wide beam make the Camino 8 stable and easy to climb aboard.

Any water that gets into the Camino 8, as you cruise downstream, will drain out through the self-bailing ports. This means you won’t be sitting in a wet patch all day. The molded seat and padded backrest combine with molded footwells to give you comfort without overdoing the features.

At the rear of the Camino 8 is a large storage well. This is secured with a shock cord to keep your equipment safe.


Sun Dolphin Bali 10 SS

Sun Dolphin Bali 10 SS

Length: 9 ft. 6.5 in / 291 cm
Width: 29.5 in. / 75 cm
Weight: 44 lbs. / 20 kg
Capacity: 250 lbs. / 113 kg

Sun Dolphin Bali 10 SS balances stability with agility to give you a recreational kayak that can explore with ease. The defined keel line gives the Bali 10 the ability to track smoothly through the water and cope against the wind. This v-shape flattens in the center to give you a kayak that is maneuverable too. 

On long days out on the lake, you need to be able to store your equipment securely. The portable accessory holder at the rear of the kayak doubles as a watertight, tow-behind pod to give you extra space. Storage at the bow and a water bottle recess in the middle of the kayak means you have loads of room to store all your gear.

The comfortable seating on the Bali 10 SS means you can stay out on the water all day long. The padded backrest is fully adjustable to keep you supported. Protective thigh pads stop you from rubbing your legs against the hard plastic shell and adjustable footpegs keep you in your seat and upright.


Sun Dolphin Capri 10 SS

Sun Dolphin Capri 10 SS

Length: 10 ft. / 306 cm
Width: 28.5 in. / 72 cm
Weight: 44 lbs. / 20 kg
Capacity: 250 lbs. / 113 kg

Capri 10 SS is a compact and stable recreational kayak with plenty of onboard storage. This lightweight kayak is easy to move from the rooftop of your vehicle to your local lake or river. The Capri 10 is maneuverable on the water but has enough of a v-shape at the bow to track against the wind.

The molded seat on the Capri 10 has drainage slots so you can avoid sitting in a puddle all day. An adjustable backrest and foot braces allow you to get fully comfortable in your kayak and stay out on the water all day. 

The large storage at the rear of the Capri 10 lets you stow all of your equipment away securely. A smaller storage hatch between the paddler’s legs fits smaller items securely and within easy reach. Paddle storage on the side of the kayak means you can go hands-free if you need to take photos, or just want to sit back and enjoy your surroundings.


Sun Dolphin Bali 12 SS

Sun Dolphin Bali 12 SS

Length: 11 ft. 11.5 in. / 364 cm
Width: 31 in. / 78 cm
Weight: 48 lbs. / 22 kg
Capacity: 395 lbs. / 179 kg

The Bali 12 SS is the larger brother of Sun Dolphin Bali 10 kayak. The extra length carries more speed over the water so you can explore further, faster. The Bali 12 is a stable platform of a kayak that stays balanced even in moderately choppy conditions.

The high capacity of the Bali 12 makes it suitable for larger paddlers, or paddlers who like to carry plenty of equipment with them. The large storage area at the bow of the Bali 12 and the portable accessory carrier combine to give you loads of storage space. If this isn’t enough, the portable accessory carrier can be removed and towed behind you.

A padded seat pad and backrest keep you comfortable on long days of kayaking. The seatback is fully adjustable, as are the footpegs, so you can find your ideal kayaking position. Padded thigh protection means your legs don’t rest against the hard plastic shell of the Bali 12. 


Sun Dolphin Bali 13.5 SS Tandem

Sun Dolphin Bali 13.5 SS Tandem

Length: 13 ft. 5.5 in. / 410 cm
Width: 34.5 in. / 88 cm
Weight: 70 lbs. / 32 kg
Capacity: 500 lbs. / 227 kg

Bali 13.5 SS Tandem is an adaptable recreational sit-on-top that can carry one to three paddlers. The seats can be moved around so that solo paddlers can enjoy the same high-backed comfort as tandem paddlers. The bow and stern positions have adjustable footpegs, while the middle seat has graduated footwells.

Those paddling in a three can make use of the central molded seat position for their young paddler or pet. Paddlers can stay dry on the water thanks to the self-bailing scupper holes in the hull of the Bali 13.5. 

Two large storage hatches and one smaller one give you plenty of space to stow equipment away from the elements. For larger pieces of equipment, there are recesses at the bow and stern, secured with a shock cord. With a large capacity, you’ll be carrying a lot of equipment before you overload the Bali 13.5.


Fishing Kayaks

Journey 10 SS

Journey 10 SS

Length: 9 ft. 6.5 in. / 291 cm
Width: 29.5 in. / 75 cm
Weight: 44 lbs. / 20 kg
Capacity: 250 lbs. / 113 kg

Sun Dolphin Journey 10 SS is an affordable way to take your fishing to the next level. The large open deck design makes it easy for you to access your equipment when you’re out on the water. The width of the Journey 10 means you can move around to collect your gear and cast your line without risking a capsize.

The portable accessory carrier at the stern of the kayak can be removed and towed behind. This opens up a large storage well that is secured with a shock cord. There is another large storage space at the front of the Journey 10 SS, as well as recessed tackle storage in the sidewalls and a central hatch. 

Two flush mount rod holders behind the seat and a swivel rod holder in the center of the Journey 10 let you change your setup as you paddle. The padded seating and backrest couple with the adjustable footrests to make sure you stay comfortable on a long day of fishing. To avoid sitting in a puddle all day, bailing scuppers are fitted to the hull.


Journey 12 SS

Journey 12 SS

Length: 11 ft. 11.5 in. / 364 cm
Width: 31 in. / 78 cm
Weight: 48 lbs. / 22 kg
Capacity: 395 lbs. / 179 kg

The larger version of the Journey 10, the Journey 12 is sleeker, faster, and more maneuverable, with a far higher capacity. This kayak is designed for fishing journeys. A V-shaped hull at the bow and stern gives this kayak enough tracking ability to move against a moderate breeze, but the central width keeps you stable when you cast.

There is plenty of storage onboard the Journey 12 SS. There is a bow recess, secured with a bungee cord, as well as a rear portable accessory carrier that can be removed and towed behind to open another large storage well. An internal hatch ahead of the paddler is suitable for small items that you need close at hand.

The seating is fully adjustable, so you can stay comfortable out on the water all day. This is kept a low profile so you can move around and grab gear or cast without being inhibited by outfitting. There are two flush mount rod holders behind the seat and a swivel mount in front, so you can keep your setup ready to go.


Boss 12 SS

Boss 12 SS

Length: 12 ft. 3.5 in. / 375 cm
Width: 33 in. / 85 cm
Weight: 78 lbs. / 35 kg
Capacity: 500 lbs. / 227 kg

The Boss 12 is loaded with features found on high-end kayaks. This is a lot of kayaks and to keep it stable, Sun Dolphin has used a catamaran-style hull. Catamaran hulls are stable on the water but still carry speed and track against the wind so you can get to your fishing spot more easily.

When it comes to fishing, you need space to move. The top deck of the Boss 12 is fitted with non-slip pads and there is a stand-up assist strap to help you get out of your seat. The seat itself folds to three different positions or folds away completely so that you can maximize your freedom as you cast and catch. 

Both the front and rear storage wells are large enough for milk crates or buckets and both of these are secured with a shock cord. A swivel mount and four flush mount rod holders give you a huge choice of setups to choose from. Extra storage can be accessed through the front hatch and there are universal mounting plates so you can accessorize your kayak to suit your style. 


Excursion 10

Excursion 10

Length: 9 ft. 7 in. / 292 cm
Width: 29 in. / 74 cm
Weight: 41 lbs. / 19 kg
Capacity: 250 lbs. / 113 kg

Excursion 10 is the fishing-specific version of one of Sun Dolphin’s most popular recreational kayaks. This is a lightweight and transportable model that is easy to rooftop and compact enough to store. Getting to the water with less effort and fuss means more fishing time.

The large open cockpit has a molded seat, a padded backrest, and adjustable footpegs. You can fit the Excursion 10 to you quickly and easily, ensuring that you stay comfortable on the water. Just behind the cockpit are two flush-mounted rod holders, with a swivel rod holder in front for quick access.

The Excursion 10 tracks well against the moderate breeze, but is best suited to calm fishing lakes and shorter journeys. The lower capacity may make it hard to take all the gear you want, but there is a storage hatch for equipment at the rear of the Excursion 10. A water bottle holder on the front deck lets you stay hydrated out in the sun. 


Excursion 12 SS

Excursion 12 SS

Length: 11 ft. 11.5 in. / 364 cm
Width: 30 in. / 76 cm
Weight: 47 lbs. / 21 kg
Capacity: 395 lbs. / 179 kg

Excursion 12 SS is a closed cockpit fishing kayak designed to go further afield. The length, stability, and tracking capabilities of the Excursion 12 make it suitable for moderate breeze and mildly choppy conditions. This kayak can get you to your favorite fishing spot faster, so you get more time casting.

The portable accessory carrier at the stern of the Excursion 12 can be removed, leaving large storage well secured with bungee. This carrier is watertight and can be towed behind as extra storage. Topdeck bungee and a small storage hatch on the bow keep items secure and within reach.

A covered electronics console at the front of the cockpit lets you protect your accessories from the weather while still being able to use them on the move. Two flush-mounted rod holders and one swivel holder keep your setup close to hand. A comfortable and adjustable seat, with adjustable footpegs and padded thigh protectors, means you can stay out on the water all day.


Picture ModelSpecsWhere to Buy
Sun Dolphin Aruba 8 SS
Size: 8 ft. x 28 in.
Weight: 27 lbs.
Capacity: 260 lbs.
Amazon
Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 Size: 9 ft. 7 in. x 29 in.
Weight: 40 lbs.
Capacity: 250 lbs.
Amazon
Sun Dolphin Fiji 10 SS Size: 9 ft. 7.5 in x 29.5 in.
Weight: 44 lbs.
Capacity: 280 lbs.
Amazon
Sun Dolphin Aruba 12 SS Size: 12 ft. x 30 in.
Weight: 47 lbs.
Capacity: 395 lbs.
Amazon
Sun Dolphin Bali 6 Size: 6 ft.x 25 in.
Weight: 28 lbs.
Capacity: 140 lbs.
Amazon
Sun Dolphin Camino 8 SSSize: 7 ft. 11 in. x 31.5 in.
Weight: 40 lbs.
Capacity: 225 lbs.
Amazon
Sun Dolphin Bali 10 SSSize: 9 ft. 6.5 in x 29.5 in.
Weight: 44 lbs.
Capacity: 250 lbs.
Amazon
Sun Dolphin Capri 10 SSSize: 10 ft. x 28.5 in.
Weight: 44 lbs.
Capacity: 250 lbs.
Amazon
Sun Dolphin Bali 12 SSSize: 11 ft. 11.5 in. x 31 in.
Weight: 48 lbs.
Capacity: 395 lbs.
Amazon
Sun Dolphin Bali 13.5 SS TandemSize: 13 ft. 5.5 in. x 34.5 in.
Weight: 70 lbs.
Capacity: 500 lbs.
Amazon
Journey 10 SS Size: 9 ft. 6.5 in. x 29.5 in.
Weight: 44 lbs.
Capacity: 250 lbs.
Amazon
Journey 12 SS Size: 11 ft. 11.5 in. x 31 in.
Weight: 48 lbs.
Capacity: 395 lbs.
Amazon
Boss 12 SS Size: 12 ft. 3.5 in. x 33 in.
Weight: 78 lbs.
Capacity: 500 lbs.
Amazon
Excursion 10 Size: 9 ft. 7 in. x 29 in.
Weight: 41 lbs.
Capacity: 250 lbs.
Amazon
Excursion 12 SS Size: 11 ft. 11.5 in. x 30 in.
Weight: 47 lbs
Capacity: 395 lbs
Amazon

Moose started his paddling life on the ponds and rivers in the south east of England. He has slowly worked his way north and has spent the last few years working his way through all things Scottish. As well as being a very experienced and knowledgeable coach and guide across Scotland and the rest of the UK, he spent a summer in Norway and a month in Nepal; apparently they weren’t bad.

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