Summer is undoubtedly the best season to go kayaking. With warm temperatures, abundant sunshine, and long days, getting out on the water is one of the best pastimes for the hottest months of the year.
What’s more, as the water is now refreshing rather than chilling, taking a dip straight off your kayak is an excellent way to stay cool.
Another advantage of kayaking in the summer is that you don’t need to wear many layers. Even so, this doesn’t mean you should head out in only a swimsuit with no second thought, as summer brings its own unique considerations like avoiding sunburn.
In this guide, we’ll cover what to wear kayaking in summer and share some of the best outfits for watersports during the hot season.
How To Decide On What To Wear When Kayaking In Summer
No matter what season you are kayaking in, you should always dress for the water temperature rather than the weather. So as the waters are warming up during the summer, you can drop some of the layers you were wearing in spring.
When deciding what to wear kayaking in hot weather, sun protection and breathability should be your two biggest considerations. For that reason, we still recommend wearing layers, but you can switch to thinner, cooler clothing.
For example, wearing a thin synthetic long-sleeve top with UV protection over a swim or wet suit will stop your shoulders from burning. It will also dry fast if you get wet but won’t cause you to overheat either.
Here are some layer options you can consider for summer kayaking.
If the water you are kayaking in is warm and you’re planning to take a dip, you’ll undoubtedly want to wear a swimsuit (or swim shorts) as a base layer. So, what type of swimwear is best for water sports like kayaking?
Men’s swimming trunks come in varying lengths from short to knee-length like the Kanu Surf Men’s Barracuda Swim Trunks. If you want extra coverage to protect your upper legs from sunburn, these 22-inch long shorts are a good option, and they have UPF 50+ sun protection too.
For women, choosing your swimwear will depend on what feels most comfortable and how much coverage you want. For example, if you are sensitive to the sun, you may prefer a one-piece suit.
Alternatively, you can pair some sport-style swim shorts like these ones from ALove with your favorite bikini top. What’s more, some swimsuits are specially designed for watersports, like the AXESEA Women’s Retro Surfing Bathing Suit.
When deciding what to wear kayaking in summer, consider the difference in temperature between the air and water. For example, if you live somewhere with mild or unpredictable summers, the water may be much more chilly than the air.
In this case, you might want to consider wearing a wetsuit rather than a swimsuit.
If you’re still unsure which apparel to choose, measure the water and air temperatures. Then add the numbers together. If it’s below 100 °F, opt for a wetsuit.
Wetsuits offer insulation and heat retention, so if you capsize and the water is colder than expected, you won’t get the chills. There are different levels of thickness available, and you can choose either short or long-sleeved.
A 2mm short-sleeve wetsuit like the O’Neill Men’s Reactor-2 Back Zip Wetsuit is ideal for summer kayaking.
We also recommend you wear a wetsuit if you’re going kayaking for the first time. As a beginner, you’ll likely spend more time in the water than an experienced kayaker, so you will need Kayak outfits that are insulated and quick-drying.
If you’re prone to sunburn or are cautious about overexposing your skin, wear a rashguard, technical shirt, or another quick-drying top. Rashguards are made from lycra/spandex and come in short sleeve or long sleeve versions.
Like the O’Neill Men’s Basic Skins Short Sleeve Sun Shirt, most rashguards are lightweight, quick-drying, and protect you from harsh UV rays. They typically have a slim fit but are not too tight to cause overheating and have minimal seams to prevent chafing.
There are also many women’s rashguard/swimsuit hybrids. These can either be one or two-piece. For example, the LafyKoly Rash Guard Swimsuit is a one-piece suit that you can get with either long or short sleeves and choose from a range of trendy styles.
Board shorts are some of the best clothes for kayaking in summer, but any comfortable quick-drying shorts like running shorts work well, too. You can wear board shorts over your swimwear, and the longer length gives you more sun protection and coverage.
Synthetic materials like polyester and microfiber are top choices for kayaking shorts. And if possible, choose shorts with UPF 50+ protection like these Kanu Surf Women’s Marina Board Shorts.
During the summer, the water where you’re kayaking may be warm enough to go bare feet. Even so, if you’re kayaking around stony beaches, coral reefs, or anywhere that may have sharp rocks that can cut through your feet, it’s best to wear water shoes.
Water shoes like these ones by SIMARI protect your feet from sharp objects and prevent slipping thanks to their protective rubber soles and bump texture design. They also keep out grit and sand, and their innovative 8-hole drainage design drains water out quickly.
When planning what to wear kayaking in summer, don’t forget essential accessories such as a sun hat. A wide-brimmed hat will offer your face and head vital protection from the heat and the harsh UV rays, meaning you won’t come home with heatstroke or sunburn!
A sun hat will also reduce glare from the sun and improve visibility.
When choosing a hat for kayaking, choose one you can securely attach to your head like this Muryobao Women’s Foldable Sun Hat. Its foldable side snaps mean you can wear it in various styles, such as flat brim or cowboy.
It also has mesh sides for better airflow and ventilation and is lightweight, waterproof, and quick-drying.
Kayaking Summer Outfit Ideas
Now you know what the best clothes for kayaking in summer are, let’s put together the ideal outfit for your summer kayaking sessions.
Kayak Outfits For Men
If you’re planning to enjoy some swimming during your day out in the water, we recommend wearing both swim shorts and board shorts, or one or the other.
These knee-length Tormenter Waterman 5 Pocket Boardshorts are an excellent option as they feature five pockets of various sizes to keep your personal belongings safe.
Then, when you fancy a dip, you can simply remove them before diving in. Underneath your boardshorts, wear these quick-drying Tyhengta Swim Trunks with mesh lining for breathable wear.
Read more: What to Wear Kayaking – Roam Often
Up top, wear this Quiksilver Solid Streak Short Sleeve Rashguard with UPF 50 sun protection. There’s also a long-sleeve version if you want extra coverage.
Pair with these sleek DOUSSPRT Water Shoes. They feature breathable and durable air mesh fabric that dries rapidly. Finally, don’t forget this Columbia Bora Bora Booney Hat with UV protection and moisture-wicking abilities to keep you cool and protected.
Kayak Outfits For Women
We love these stylish and versatile American Trends One Piece Swimsuits. Choose from one of the many trendy designs from Tie Dye to Starry Sky To Gradient. Made from 82% Polyester and 18% Spandex, the swimsuit is stretchy, comfortable, and quick-drying.
Aside from the colorful patterns, it features a racerback and wide shoulder strap style.
Layer up with this Roxy Whole Hearted UPF 50 Rashguard. The soft, stretchy fabric will protect you from sunburn without making you overheat. There are both short and long sleeve options available.
Pair this with the BALEAF Summer Floral Board Shorts. With a 3.5-inch inseam, they give additional coverage to prevent those painful bikini line sunburns. In addition, they are lightweight, breathable, and feature UPF 50+ sun protection. There are also two zip pockets to keep your phone, keys, and wallet safe.
For your feet, opt for these YALOX Water Shoes. They are made from a fast-drying, breathable fabric with a non-slip sole and protective elastic heel. Finally, protect your head with this Konikit Wide Brim Hat.
It features UPF 50+ protection and mesh vents for maximum airflow. It’s also lightweight and foldable, so you can easily store it in your bag when it’s not needed.
Final Thoughts On Kayaking In Summer
Whether you’re a kayaking pro or heading out onto the water for the first time, summer is the perfect time for some watersports.
With the summer kayak outfits mentioned in this article, you can enjoy the warm waters, long days, and abundant sunshine while staying safe and protected.
Need gift ideas for kayak lovers? Check out our kayak gift guide.
Need help with clothing? Read one of the following blog posts:
- What to wear kayaking in spring
- What to wear camping
- What to wear hiking in summer
Through this article, we hope to help you understand more about Cute kayaking outfits the most detailed and complete is Dennis Point Campground MD.