Best Canoe for Fishing – Top 10 Right Fishing Canoe Reviews

Best Fishing Canoe

While anyone can easily fish from the shores, most anglers can tell you the real experience is going out into the depths. However, getting into deep waters is always a big challenge.

This is where canoes come into place allowing you to get to deep waters with relative ease. Canoes are exciting for deep water fishing in lakes and calm rivers.

Some people view canoes as pretty basic, but there is more to a canoe. The curved shape of canoes and excellent stability in waters provide anglers with the stealthy they need to get their catch.

You can easily get to your ideal fishing spot without spooking the fish when riding on a canoe.

Canoes are excellent choices for anglers. They offer plenty of space for your fishing gear and offer you a temporary home in the water.

However, this does not mean choosing any canoe you find on the market. There is a wide range of fishing canoes making it pretty difficult for most anglers to find the most suitable one.

Luckily for you, this is where we come in and help you find the best canoes for fishing. 

Our comprehensive buying guide and best fishing canoe reviews will help you make a wise purchase decision.

The Buying Guide

Before deciding on the best fishing canoe, there are a few things all anglers need to consider. This is the only way to find a canoe that will meet your needs and enable you to fish effortlessly in deep waters. These major considerations include:

Length and Space

The length and space of the canoe are probably the most important features to consider when buying a fishing canoe. These two features determine the size of the canoe. The length of your cane is a crucial feature which also determines the ease of transportation. If you have a big vehicle to transport the canoe, then you can buy a longer one. Flat bottomed canoes are also ideal when you need to stay in the waters for long. This is because they are more stable. However, flat bottomed canoes are a bit slow. If you’re looking for speed, then choose small canoes with rounded bottoms.


This is an obvious consideration to make. Heavier canoes are usually difficult to transport as opposed to small canoes. If you plan to fish alone, then choose a lightweight and portable canoe. How far do you go before getting into the waters? This will also help you decide between a lightweight and heavier canoe.

Carrying capacity

How much weight or persons can your canoe hold? Canoes are usually rated for the number of persons they can carry. If you want to go fishing alone, with a friend or entire family, then choose a canoe with a corresponding weight capacity. You don’t want to exceed the weight capacity of the canoe as this can pose danger to everyone.


The materials used to make the canoes go a long way in determining the quality, durability, and weight of the canoe. Aluminum canoes are the best when fishing in rocky areas. However, if you’re worried about height, the consider buying plastic canoes.


How easy can you maneuver the canoe? Make sure you choose a canoe that is easy to maneuver in the waters without spooking the fish.


You also need to consider the speed of the canoe. Flat bottomed canoes are a bit slow compared to round-bottomed canoes. If you’re looking for faster moving canoes, then consider small canoes with a rounded bottom.


The environment you intend to fish can also determine the type of canoe to get.  If you’re fishing in very cold areas, the consider getting a canoe with heat isolating materials. This type of canoe will prevent your legs and bum from freezing in the cold waters.

Overall comfort levels

You also need to consider the overall comfort of the canoe. Since fishing requires patience, you need a canoe that will make you feel comfortable for long hours in the waters.

Gear or equipment included

Are there any gears or equipment included in the canoe package? You should always be looking for value for your money. Take advantages of canoes that come with extra gears and equipment.

Brand’s reputation

Lastly, make sure you consider the brand. High-end brands don’ necessarily mean getting the best quality canoe. However, you still need a brand with good customer service and support.

The Designs of Canoe

There is no one-size-fits-all canoe design, and anglers must compromise one feature for the other. The design of the canoe is a very crucial feature that will determine how the canoe handles the waters. Canoes are designed with several elements of length, width, shape and hull profile. Longer canoes are easy to paddle and keep a straight track provided the width remains proportional. Recreational canoes are designed longer as opposed to canoes designed for white waters.

It is always difficult deciding on the best canoe design. Some of the basic terms that describe the cane design include:


Beam is usually the width of the canoe. Narrow canoes are usually faster but tend to be less stable. Wider canoes, on the other hand, are more stable but sacrifice on speed.

Canoe depth

How deep the canoe goes in water usually affects paddling and carrying capacity. When the canoe sinks more into the water, it increases its carrying capacity and allows for easy paddling. However, this also makes the canoe less responsive to the wind and heavier.

Hull profile

Canoes are designed with a flat, round or shallow arch bottom.  Each of this unique shape affects the speed, stability, and ease of maneuver in the waters. Flat bottomed canoes are quite stable in calm waters. However, they are also vulnerable to waves and winds making capsizing very easy. Round bottomed canoes feature a curved bottom making them hard to tip over due to wind and waves. However, they are extremely difficult to paddle and not recommended for inexperienced paddlers. These canoes feel tippy but are rarely tip over. Lastly, we have the shallow arch bottomed canoes which tend to balance between flat and rounded bottoms.

There are just so many canoe designs out there to buy. The ideal design usually comes down to what works for you. Make sure you understand the place you intend to fish, water calmness levels and much more before choosing the canoe design.

The Features

Most anglers will confidently tell you that not all canoes are made for fishing. The suitable fishing canoe will stealthily get you to your catch. While you can fish from any canoe, there are just a few canoes that will give you an amazing fishing experience. Some of the main features that signal a good fishing canoe include:

Stable but easy to maneuver

The canoe hull design affects a wide range of things. However, it plays a crucial role in the stability and maneuverability of the canoe. This is by far the most important feature to signal a good fishing canoe. The best hull design needs to make the canoe stable and easy to paddle.


The canoe needs to be made of high-quality materials for long-lasting use and durability. Some of the popular canoe materials include wood, polyethylene, and fiberglass composite. Polyethylene materials are one of the cheapest but not the best. It usually takes a beating from the sun and does not last for long. Wood remains a classic choice and one of the best materials in terms of performance and versatility. With good care, wood materials are the best and have nicer appearances. Fiberglass composite is another excellent choice material but a relatively expensive one. It is durable, sturdy and resistant to damage.

Right size for your needs

The size of the canoe will also determine the ease of paddling and maneuverability in the water.

Storage space

The best fishing canoe must have enough space for all your gears and catch. It should also have a good weight capacity to handle all the weight.

Fishing accessories

Lastly, the suitable fishing canoe must feature the necessary fishing accessories. The canoe needs to have rod holders, storage spaces and much more.

Canoes vs. Kayaks vs. Float Tubes

If you’re confused on the right boat between a canoe, kayak and float tube for your fishing, then stick with us as we break down the pros and cons of each boat.  Here are some pros and cons of each boat:

Comfort levels

Canoes take it all when it comes to comfort by providing enough room to stretch your legs. In a canoe, one can sit with the legs bent or straight out flat as opposed to kayaks and float tubes. Most kayaks and float tubes don’t offer enough room to stretch your legs.


When it comes to stability, kayaks and float tubes take it all. Their design allows anglers to stay closer to the waters and be more stable. Canoes stay a bit higher in water making them less stable. However, with practice, one can master the skill of keeping the canoes stable in water.

Storage space for gears and fish

Both canoes and kayaks offer a dedicated space for fish and accessories as compared to float tubes. Most of them feature fishing rod holders, bait and fish storage space. However, if space is your biggest consideration, then a canoe is your best pick. 


Canoes are easy to paddle and have the option of adding an electric propeller. Kayaks and float tubes require a two-bladed paddle as opposed a single-blade paddle for canoes.

Weight and capacity

Float tubes are lightweight and quite easy to transport as opposed to kayaks and canoes. However, canoes and kayaks have a higher weight capacity and can carry more gear and fish.

In summary, kayaks, canoes, and float tubes are all good for fishing. The right choice usually comes down to what best matches your fishing needs.

The Maintenance

Buying a quality fishing canoe costs a lot, and it makes sense taking good care of it.  Regular maintenance and proper storage can help keep your canoe in top shape. Here are some simple tips to help you take care of and maintain your canoe.

  • Make regular inspection of the wood canoe for any damages to the seat, joints, thwarts, stern points and much more.
  • Make it a habit to rinse out canoes after every use. Canoes used in salt waters are at a huge risk of corrosion and rust. The ones used in fresh waters are borne to have bacteria and other pollutants which can cause bad odors.
  • Make sure you tighten loose screws and repair frayed bungee cords. Springs, snaps and other metal parts that move also need lubricating.
  • If you fish in hot sunny conditions, make sure you regularly apply automotive wax to prevent damage from the UV rays.
  • You also need to protect exposed gears from the sun by using water-resistant lubricants and zippers.
  • Lastly, you need to make sure the canoes are properly stored with all accessories and equipment removed. Empty canoes tend to drain water faster preventing the growth of mold and mildew. Make sure the cockpit is well-covered to keep out critters and rain.

Top Fishing Canoes

Well, if you’re on the market for a quality, sturdy and reliable fishing canoe, then our top picks present you with the best choices.

8. Old Town Canoes and Kayaks Discovery 119 Solo Canoe

The Old Town is one of the leading fishing canoe brand and a great choice to our list. It is a durable canoe with a three-layer molded polyethylene hull to withstand heavy beatings in the waters. This is a stable, agile and easy to handle the canoe. It is a great choice for all your fishing needs. The single canoe features a comfortable, breathable and UV-resistant seat. It features a webbed nylon seat with excellent airflow. This is a great design canoe ideal for use with a traditional canoe paddle and even double-bladed kayak paddle. Overall, this is an ergonomic fishing canoe with carrying handles. The canoe can hold up to 500lbs maximum weight. You also get a lifetime hull warranty for worry-free buying.

7. Old Town Saranac 146 Recreational Family Canoe

This is another recreational family canoe with a capacity for two persons. It is a durable canoe with thermoformed polyethylene construction. The canoe’s hull is impact and abrasion resistant making it ideal for fishing in rocky waters. This is a pretty comfortable canoe with contoured stern seats and bow. The canoe included molded-in storage trays for easy storage of gears and accessories. This is a comfortable and easy to use canoe with adjustable backrest for support and comfort. The canoe also features built-in carrying handles for easy carrying. It is a reliable and efficient canoe with a maximum weight capacity of 750 pounds.

6. SUN DOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Mackinaw 15.6-Foot Canoe

This is a pretty long 15.6 feet family recreational canoe. The canoe features three comfortable seats for three persons. It is a great choice when fishing with friends or family. This is a well-designed fishing canoe with storage compartments and a cooler under the seat. The canoe can hold your fishing gear and fish making it quite spacious. This is a leading brand canoe with excellent features. It is highly rated and recommended. Every seat features a molded drink holder to keep your drink close and safe. The canoe is quite easy to transport and features built-in molded handles and tie down eyelets for the stern and bow. You also get two years manufacturer’s warranty to buy with confidence.

5. Sun Dolphin Scout SS Canoe

This is one of the best fishing canoes when it comes to excellent tracking and optimal stability. It is a well-built fishing canoe with a square stern. The stern helps provide electric motor trolling when you’re looking for greater speeds. However, the motor is not included and must be ordered separately. This is a three-person canoe with six built-in rod holder locations to keep your rod firmly held. This also allows for hands-free use when in the waters. Overall, this is a unique design canoe with a 16 feet square stern. The canoe is sturdily made and can hold three adults safely. It features a high-density polyethylene hull construction to withstand heavy beatings in the water. The canoe is also CE rated for worry-free purchase.

4. Old Town Canoes and Kayaks Discovery 133 Recreational Canoe

This is another top-quality Old Town recreational canoe to consider buying. This is a comfortable three-person capacity canoe. The canoe features a maximum weight capacity of 800 pounds. You can also use it solo by seating on the center and rowing effortlessly. It features a sturdy and durable construction for long-lasting use and durability. This is a three-layer polyethylene molded hull canoe with a kneeled for easy paddling. The canoe is also quite comfortable and features breathable, durable and UV-resistant seats. The seats are nylon webbed and allow for excellent air movement keeping anglers at ease. It also comes with a comfortable carrying handle for easy transportation.

Overall, this is an exciting fishing canoe to buy. It is compatible with Old Town’s motor to help you reach fishing spots pretty fast.

3. Old Town Canoes and Kayaks Discovery Sport

This is another pretty versatile fishing canoe and one of the best picks when fishing with friends and family. It is a pretty durable and solid canoe with a weight capacity of 1650 pounds when paddled. The canoe holds a maximum of three persons but can hold up to four when using a motor with a weight capacity of 800 pounds. It is a comfortable canoe with a breathable and UV-resistant seat. The canoe seat is durable and allows for excellent airflow keeping you cool and relaxed. This is a 3-layer polyethylene canoe hull to buy without any worries. It can withstand heavy water beatings and give you excellent value for money.

It also comes with easy-carrying handles for easy transportation. Overall, this is a pretty decent canoe for fishing with a lifetime hull warranty. It is a reliable and efficient canoe to offer you confidence and dry fishing. The generous beam and full-length stabilizing chines ensure you remain dry when fishing.

2. SUN DOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Mackinaw SS

The Sun Dolphin Mackinaw is another hybrid fishing canoe with a rugged Fortiflex polyethylene hull construction. This is a complete package fishing canoe with fishing rod holders included. The canoe features a square backed design for easy paddling. The square design also allows for easy use of an electric trolling motor. It is a quality canoe available in three colors of green, navy and hazelnut. The canoe finish is UV-stabilized to prevent damage from the harsh rays of the sun. Overall, this is an excellent fishing canoe design with three comfortable seats to fit up to three adults.

The canoe is also backed with a 2-year warranty for confidence buying. Other canoe features include built-in cup holders and cooler. This allows for safe storage of your fish. There is a further dry storage for keys and other personal items.

1. Grumman 15 Feet Sportboat –

This is our final best fishing boat on the market with excellent features for easy rowing. It is a simple yet effective fishing canoe with a sturdy and durable construction. This is a 2-person capacity fishing canoe with a maximum of 450 pounds weight limit. It is a pretty versatile canoe that can be paddled, rowed or powered using a trolling motor. The canoe features an extra-wide beam for added strength and stability. Overall, this is a safe and reliable canoe with excellent stability levels. It is a quality boat designed to last generations and one to choose with confidence.


These are the best fishing canoes right now to buy with confidence. Fishing with a canoe is exciting and a must-try. Canoes are spacious, safe and pretty easy to row. They get you right to your ideal fishing spot stealthily without spooking fish. Make sure you find one from the list above that best suits your needs and order with confidence.

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