Access to Adventure

This post is intended to help you decide which Oru Kayak is right for you! We will quickly review each Oru Kayak model, its unique qualities and which model suits you best. Let’s start with our bestselling kayak!

The Beach

The Beach Kayak if fun, stable, and great for all skill levels

The Beach,  Oru’s first recreational kayak, is lightweight (26 lbs) and designed for ease of assembly and enjoyment. The larger, open cockpit is designed to make getting in and out simple and allows you room to keep things behind you or between your legs. It also provides ample space for taller folks to position their knees. The Beach is the perfect beginner’s kayak and is a great to have any of your friends or kids splash around in!

Who should buy the Beach?

  1. If you are a person who loves floating around, traveling through calm waters and exploring shorelines.
  2. If you love relaxing, chasing friends or floating through seemingly unexplored inlets at your favorite lake, you will love the Beach.
  3. If you are looking to take a cooler, small child, a puppy or go fishing.

Who should NOT buy The Beach?

  1. If you are looking for a kayak you can take into waves or choppy water (including white water), this is not the boat for you. The large open cockpit allows for great comfort and ease of entry, but also makes it easier for larger waves to dump in your lap.
  2. Unlike our other kayaks, the Beach does not have a coaming to fit a skirt like the Bay or Coast.
  3. If you’re looking to progress your kayaking abilities.

Recommendation: For more adventurous folks who would like to take kayaking to the next level, The Bay and the Coast series can develop your kayaking techniques as well as take you on longer and stronger waters.

The Bay Series

The Oru Bay Kayak in Colorado

The Original Origami Kayak! The Bay is perfect for cruising around and exploring waters or coves. It has a closed cockpit that allows you to put a spray skirt on and take on rougher water conditions. The Bay is intended for protected waters, but has been tested on Class III rivers and played in 6 foot waves.

NOTE: Class III rivers are not recommended, but demonstrates the durability of the Bay.

The Bay vs Bay+:  both models are 12 feet long and have the same cockpit, but the Bay+ comes with a day hatch (just behind the cockpit), ratcheting deck buckles for easy assembly and a more rigid and taller seatback. If comfort is priority, then the Bay+ would be best suited for you. If you are looking for the original and simplicity, the Bay is probably a better fit.

Who should buy the Bay Series?

  1. If you want a kayak that is quick and comfortable or if you are looking for a kayak you can learn with, the Bay has enough features that you can develop your paddling techniques.
  2. If you plan on going out in any kind of conditions; i.e. choppy waters, waves, rain–the Bay series is designed to fit a spray skirt and float bags. The skirt will keep water out, but in the event you capsize and can’t roll, the float bags will help make rescues easier.
  3. If you enjoy traveling in protected waters.

Who Should NOT buy the Bay Series?

  1. If you are taller than 6’2.”
  2. If you have long legs.
  3. If you don’t like sitting inside a kayak.

Recommendation: For taller folks, the Coast series is designed for more extendable legroom and the Beach’s open cockpit allows more space for bent knees. If you are concerned the cockpit is too small, then the Beach’s open cockpit is a great way to get in and out of the water without having to worry about cockpit size!

The Coast Series

A afternoon workout with the Oru Coast Kayak

The Coast and Coast+ are our longest kayaks–16 feet long, 25” wide, and 400 lbs capacity, these boats can take you places! Between the Coast and the Coast+, the Coast series has the length and agility for long-distance travel and is a great fitness kayak. The Coast series’ performance is comparable to traditional non-folding kayaks and handles open seas just fine. Both of these kayaks are well suited for touring or camping.

Coast vs. Coast+

The Coast+ has deck lines and thigh braces for more advanced paddling. The deck lines are a safety feature that is a must in open water.The Coast+ also has an upgraded seat back, day hatch and ratcheting deck buckles, like the Bay+.

NOTE: Know your limitations and contact your local kayak shop for instruction before paddling open waters. You will want to get float bags and other safety gear before heading out.

Who should buy the Coast?

  1. If you’re looking to camp or go for that long paddle and want to carry some serious gear, the Coast Series is perfect.
  2. If you are looking for a workout in the morning, the Coast can give you that! You do not need to be an expert to paddle the Coast, it is very stable and a great boat to learn in!

Who should NOT buy the Coast?

  1. If you are looking for super simple assembly and just want to poke around in small coves, the Coast, might be too much kayak for the job.
  2. If you do not like the idea of sitting inside a kayak.

Recommendation: Though the Coast series has more legroom than the Bay, if you are taller than 6’4,” the Beach’s open cockpit is easier to get in and out of. If you are concerned that the cockpit (16”X 30”) is too small, then the Beach’s open cockpit is a great way to get out on the water without having to worry about size!

Backpacking with a Kayak in New Zealand

In general the Beach is a recreational boat designed to make getting on the water more accessible for everyone! The Bay Series, is the original fun and nimble boat that started the Oru foldable kayak and does well on bays and has a closed cockpit. The Coast is designed for longer distances, greater carrying capacity and is fantastic for taller folks. All our Kayak models are great for traveling by plane or car and can fit into our convenient Oru Packs for hiking.

Overall Recommendation

Oru Kayak in New Zealand South Pacific

Height is an approximation. Leg size and body proportions vary by person. If you are concerned about comfort, your best bet is to sit in an Oru Kayak before buying one. You can rent an Oru Kayak at and if you decide to purchase one the rental amount will go towards your purchase made off of Or to just take a look at an Oru Kayak, contact your local retailer to take a look and sit in one of these bad boys.