Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 Review

If you’re looking for an introductory kayak to dip your toe into the world of kayaking then a very option is the Sun Dolphin Aruba 10. It’s a 10 foot hard shell, sit inside kayak that’s ideal for beginners due to its great maneuverabilty and very affordable price tag.

In this post, we’re going to explore why it’s one of the most popular beginner kayaks in our Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 review.

Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 Construction

Durable – Despite being a very inexpensive kayak, the Aruba 10 is incredibly durable being made out of Fortiflex® which is a high density polyethylene. That means it’s solid and can take a good knock without getting damaged. It probably couldn’t handle a fast moving impact with something pointed but for the typical bashes and scrapes you’re going to get on a lake or slow moving river it should be fine.

Very Lightweight – Weighing in at 40lbs (18kg) the Aruba 10 is pretty easy to transport and move around. You will need to get a roof rack for your car or a cart if taking launching a long distance from where you’re parking, but from the car to the water and launching it on your own shouldn’t be too hard. That being said, if you’re looking for something very lightweight then you might be better off with an inflatable kayak.

Easy To Maneuver – One of the pros of getting a hardshell over an inflatable kayak is the better tracking in the water making it a lot easier to maneuver, especially for beginners. The Aruba 10 has a narrow bow and stern meaning that it cuts through the water very well and traveling in a straight line is a lot easier than in other boats.

Being 10 foot long it’s good at turning too as generally the longer the kayak the harder it is to maneuver. This makes it a very popular option for beginners and kids.

Flat Bottom Hull – The Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 is a flat bottomed hull kayak which can be a good or bad thing depending on what you’re looking for. Flat bottom hulls make it more stable in the water and less likely to flip.

Comfortable – Compared to a lot of similarly priced kayaks we were pleasantly surprised with how comfortable the Aruba 10 was. Firstly it has adjustable feet pegs so you can make it suit your needs no matter what your size (although if you’re a lot of 6ft you might find it a little cramped). The seat and high back rest were also good quality and very comfy for longer trips out on the water.

Pros

  • Very durable – Built with strong Fortiflex plastic it’s incredibly durable and able to withstand small knocks and scrapes without damage
  • Comes with a paddle holder – Comes with built in paddle holder which can come in handy when you need to take a break.
  • Adjustable foot pegs and thigh pads – Comes with adjustable pegs so you can make it comfortable no matter what your height.
  • Water bottle holder – Just in front of the seat is a built in water bottle holder
  • Small storage compartment – It comes with a small storage compartment behind the compartment for storing supplies and valuables
  • Adjustable seat – It has an adjustable seat and high back rest to keep you comfy on longer trips

Cons

  • Not suitable for the ocean – Due to its flat bottom hull, the Aruba 10 is best suited for lakes and calmer water. Don’t use in waves over 1ft as you’ll struggle
  • Storage compartment isn’t dry – The Aruba 10 has a reasonably sized storage compartment but we found it didn’t keep things in there completely dry
  • Not suitable for very tall people – If you’re over 6ft tall you might find this kayak a little cramped

Conclusion

Sun Dolphin Aruba Sit-in Kayak (Tangerine, 10-Feet)
  • Large open cockpit with adjustable padded seat with high back support
  • Convenient gear storage with shock cord deck rigging
  • Adjustable foot braces;Capacity: 113kg

Overall, the Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 is a good option for beginners and those looking for a cheap and reliable kayak that will last for years to come. It ticks all the boxes on performance and comfort and whilst it doesn’t excel out on the sea, for a paddle around lakes and rivers it more than fits the bill.