Kayaks can typically hold one to three paddlers. Depending on the type of material, prices for the vessels can vary greatly. Plastic is usually the cheapest, with kayaks of this material ranging from $250 to $1,500, while Kevlar, considered lighter and stronger than other kayak materials, is the priciest, costing up to $4,000 for a Kevlar kayak. Built for specific environments, there are a variety of these boats available: whitewater kayaks, surf kayaks, racing kayaks, sea or touring kayaks, and hybrids, often labeled as recreational kayaks.
The design for the different kayaks vary with shape and materials used. For instance, sea kayaks typically have longer bodies so they can cover more distance while whitewater kayaks are made of high-impact plastic so they can bounce off rocks while incurring less damage. Sit-on-top kayaks are the most commonly sold and ideal for beginners because they are stable, easy to get in and out of, and used for recreational paddling and fishing. They're often made of rotomolded plastic or fiberglass, both of which are light-weight, low-maintenance and durable materials. Because sit-on-tops have wider beams, it's easy to keep upright while also staying stable. With the increased width, these kayaks typically require slightly longer paddles.