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Getting in and out of your Vagabond kayak using the Stand-up Platform (Video)

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    Why A Vagabond Kayak?

    • All Vagabond kayak fittings have been custom designed by award-winning kayak-designer Celliers Kruger.
    • These high-performance recreational kayaks have the stability and comfort levels you would expect from a recreational boat.  The ergonomic design allows the correct and efficient paddling technique and good speed to make paddling a fun experience.
    • Paddle cutaways are included on all but our whitewater kayaks. This is a feature that is usually only seen in high-end, competitive kayaks.
    • Custom-designed fittings, including the innovative Scupper Venturis, Multifit fittings, and an adjustable footrest system.
    • Vagabond kayaks are moulded with a double layer of plastic. Constructed with a smooth outer-shell of solid UV-stabilised polyethylene and an inner-layer of aero polyethylene, which delivers stiffness and reducing overall weight.
    • The Stand-up Platform on most of our kayaks makes it easier for paddlers to get onto the kayak and to get off unassisted.
    • Two grab-handles fitted either side to most of our kayaks allow for a double-handed grip so that a single person can carry and move the kayak without assistance.

    The Mokolo is a blank canvas; a large platform that can be customized and used for any activity on flatwater.  Paddle it standing up like a SUP or sitting down, load it with a cooler box, a friend, and your dog, kit it out for fishing expeditions or just float it on your swimming pool to spend the afternoon on your belly reading a book.

    The hull of the Mokolo has a double-pontoon design which has been created for ultimate stability. The concave bottoms and sheer volume of these pontoons mean that you can stand and walk around on the deck as if you’re on a floating jetty.  We’ve covered the deck in non-slip EVA foam pads. The edge of the deck is a raised ‘lip’ to prevent your gear accidentally sliding overboard. Smaller items like keys and mobile phones can be stashed within a light drybag in the watertight 8″ Day Hatch for easy access.

    Our most exciting feature is the 15 sections of aluminium deck rail on the sides and down the center of the deck. To these rails, you can attach seats, crates, fish finders, GPS units, rod holders, extender poles for cameras and anything else you would like to fix to the deck. For other items, attach bungee cord, rope or straps to the Multi fits to secure gear to the deck. More than one Mokolo can be connected together too. YES! You can go kayak fishing with a friend, connect your Mokolos together and enjoy double-the-space for your day of fishing.

    The Kwando is made for children but it is definitely not just a floating toy. With this kayak, children can cut their teeth on flatwater and easy rivers by learning basic paddle strokes and skills. It has the performance and the features of our adult boats – just packaged in a size that a child can physically manage.  Paddle Cutaways allow for a full natural stroke without the paddle blade grazing the sides of the deck. Its sculpted seat is designed for comfort and with both feet together in the footwell, this kayak is ergonomically suited to a correct paddling style.

    The 8″ Screw Hatch gives access to watertight storage in the rear of the deck, which, together with the Tankwell, provides sufficient storage volume for children to pack their own gear for single or multi-day adventures.  The Bottle Holder, located in front of the seat, ensures that a beverage is accessible and they will certainly stow their paddle using the Paddle Rest when they stop to chat or stand-up on the flat Stand-up Platform to pose for photographs.

    The Kwando can be carried using the Handles positioned on the front, back and sides.  Children will develop a passion for paddling with a kayak that has been designed to suit their needs. The Kwando is easy to keep moving in a straight line, quick to respond to turning strokes and a pleasure to paddle.

    Designed for stability and comfort, the Tsomo is our shortest and widest adult’s sit-on-top.  Its compact length makes it convenient to transport on the roof racks of a sedan or on the back of a bakkie (aka ‘pickup truck’). It is also easy to store if storage space is a concern. Naturally, the smaller size and lighter weight compared to the longer models in our line-up make it easy to carry around and load on top of roof racks.

    Tsomo is alert, playful and responsive. It turns on a dime, cruises on flatwater and is a pleasure to paddle. It is not designed to win any races, but it has plenty of speed and glides for such a short sit-on-top. Its width aids stability – a welcome feature when the wind whips up the water.  Its large tankwell allows you to transport a decent volume of gear, a child or a large dog. Use the front 8″ Screw Hatch for items that need to stowed away even more securely.

    The Paddle Rest on the one side and Bottle Holder on the other side of the seat makes it easy to stay hydrated and keep your hands free when you’re not paddling.

    Like the other kayaks in our range of sit-on-tops, the Tsomo has a sculpted seat and a footwell that sits lower than the seat for all-day comfort. You might not want to paddle a long distance with this short sit-on-top, but you will be able to spend hours on it.

    The Tsomo Angler has all the great qualities of the Tsomo together with fishing-specific features.  At 2.75m long and 80cm wide, the Tsomo Angler is compact and convenient to transport. This is a playful kayak that is responsive to paddle strokes. It turns on a dime, cruises on flatwater and is a pleasure to paddle.

    The large Tankwell has Crate-holding Indents. These hold a crate or cooler box in place so that it doesn’t slide around in the tankwell. Use Bungee Cord, tie-downs or rope and our Multifit fittings to secure your gear. With the tankwell and 8″ Screw Hatch, you can stow all the gear you need for a long day of fishing.  The Tsomo Angler comes standard with two Rod Holders, which are located behind the seat. Each rod holder has a Multifit positioned close by for securing your rods while paddling.

    Aluminium Deck Rails are installed on either side of the stand-up platform to attach fittings like a fish finder, rod holder, GPS and other accessories. Using these, you can customize and personalize the deck for your activities. To complete the angler capabilities of the Tsomo, an Anchor Trolley is also installed on the right side of the kayak. Use this to position your anchor to keep the boat in the perfect location and angle.  The Tsomo Angler is perfect if you don’t need to paddle long distances and/or do not have storage space for a longer boat. It is also a great all-round fishing kayak for older children and young teens.

    At 11-feet / almost three-and-a-half meters in length and with enough width to ensure stability on the sea and on choppy waters, the Tarka is a versatile kayak. We’ve loaded it with features to ensure performance and comfort – everything you need from a high-performance, recreational kayak.  The Tarka has two watertight 8″ Screw Hatches and a large rear Tankwell to store and protect gear for overnight adventures. Multifits and Bungee Cord on the bow deck add additional storage space for lighter items.

    For hours spent out on the water, you’ll want comfort. The smooth surface of our Sculpted Seat is shaped and angled to support your rear and reduce pressure on the back of your thighs. This is further improved by the position of the footwell, which lies slightly lower than the seat. Adjustable Footrests accommodate paddlers of just about any height.  The Paddle Cutaways are a distinctive feature of our kayak range. They not only allow the kayak to feel narrower than it is, they allow for a full, natural paddle stroke without the paddle blade connecting with the side of the kayak.

    The Paddle Rest on the one side and Bottle Holder on the other side of the seat makes it easy to stay hydrated and keep your hands free when you’re not paddling.  This is a great kayak for teens and smaller sized adults, and it is a perfect ‘next kayak’ for older children that have outgrown the Kwando.

    We’ve added angling-specific features to the versatile Tarka so that you can enjoy speed and maneuverability in a customizable fishing kayak. Deck Rails allow you to personalize the deck by attaching items like a fish finder, GPS, camera, selfie stick or additional rod holders on either side of the Sculpted Seat. Fixed to the rails, you don’t need to worry about these valuable items being washed overboard.

    Two flush-mounted Rod Holders are located behind the seat, on either side of the 8″ Screw Hatch. These rod holders free up your hands when you need to paddle, de-hook a fish or take the time-out from fishing to have a drink or to eat. Each rod holder has a Multifit positioned close by for securing your rods while paddling.  By attaching your anchor to the Anchor Trolley, you can spend all day in that prime fishing stop without drifting away on the current. Slide the anchor forward or backward to get the boat at the perfect angle as determined by the sun, wind, and currents.

    Like the Tarka, this Tarka Angler has adjustable Footrests, a Paddle Rest, Bungee Cord straps to secure gear to the bow and a sizeable Tankwell with Crate-Holding Indents.  The Tarka Angler’s speed and weight carrying capacity makes it very suitable for paddling anglers who want to cover some distance, do some trawling and catch fish without loading a ton of stuff on the boat. It is also great for teenagers and smaller adults who don’t want to deal with a larger boat.

    Sleek, fast and extremely stable, the Kasai is a playful and versatile single-seater, sit-on-top kayak. Paddle this kayak daily for sport and fitness or take it out on weekends or on vacation to paddle on dams, rivers and out at sea.  Although the Kasai is forgiving and is suited to the casual, recreational paddler, those with more experience will appreciate its responsiveness. Its hull is designed to glide, track and to change direction with only a few paddle strokes.

    Paddlers will welcome the Paddle Cutaways that make this kayak feel narrower than it is. These cutaways allow for a full, natural paddle stroke without bashing the paddle blade against the side of the deck. Put your back into paddling with your feet positioned together in the footwell and place your feet on the Footrests to leverage each stroke.

    Another treasured feature is the flat Stand-up Platform in front of the seat. Where one can often get onto the water by sliding in on your kayak, getting out can be an inelegant challenge. Now, there is no need to wait for someone to help you out. Place your feet squarely on the platform and stand-up to step off.  The Paddle Rest on the one side and Bottle Holder on the other side of the seat makes it easy to stay hydrated and keep your hands free when you’re not paddling.  Be a vagabond and embark on adventures with your gear stowed in the 8″ Screw Hatches and Tankwell of your Kasai.

    This angler version of our fast and stable Kasai sit-on-top kayak has all the features of its sibling as well as fishing-specific additions.  Two Rod Holders are positioned next to the hatches (8″ Day Hatch and 8″ Screw Hatch), behind the seat. Swing yourself around, with your legs hanging over the side, to access the hatches and to work with your rods.

    Use the Deck Rails, which are positioned on either side of the seat, to customize your setup by attaching gadgets like cameras, GPS units, and fish finders. An Anchor Trolley is also installed on the right side of the kayak. Use this to position your anchor to keep the boat in the perfect location and angle.  Stretch your legs without making landfall by standing up on our Stand-up Platform. While you’re up, use the advantage of your height-above-water to view your surroundings. The platform is also stable enough for just about anyone to stand and cast from.

    The large rear tankwell has Crate-Holding Indents to hug a crate. Attach tie-downs, straps or bungee cords to the Multifits positioned around the tankwell to secure your gear and prevent it being washed overboard by a rogue wave.  The Kasai Angler can carry a lot of weight. If you want to load a lot of gear or intend to catch some big fish and take them home, this boat is the ticket. The boat has good speed too, so it is great for covering longer distances and for trawling too.

    Speed. That is what the Marimba is all about. It is not a racing kayak, of course, but as far as recreational sit-on-tops go, this is probably the fastest on the market.  The hull is sleek and it glides well. It has been designed to cover long distances. It is easy to keep on track, yet takes minimal effort to turn. The bow cuts through choppy water, and the peaked, high-volume deck resurfaces quickly when punching through waves.

    Apart from being fast, it is also very stable. The hull is designed to handle ocean swell, open water crossings and also moving water. Even when you get tired and your technique sloppy, you can be sure that your stability won’t be compromised.  The deck is typical of all Vagabond’s sit-on-tops. It has a really comfortable Seat and the feet are positioned lower than the bum, making it easy to sit in it for hours. It has the full range of features and fittings that you find on most of our sit-on-tops, like three 8” Hatches, loads of Multifits and Bungee Cords, a Paddle Rest, six Handles, Scupper Venturis and an adjustable, sturdy Footrest.

    The Paddle Cutaways on the deck, combined with the narrower hull, results in a very natural paddling stroke. If you are a racing paddler used to a wing paddle, this is a rec kayak that absolutely allows proper wing paddling technique.  If you want a sit-on-top kayak that is fast, stable, easy to paddle, great for fitness training, and capable of paddling long distances and multi-day expeditions, the Marimba is as good as you can get.

    The Marimba Angler is really all about speed. It has the similar carrying capacity to the Kasai Angler, but it is faster. This makes it a great trawling kayak, and also ideal for fishing trips where you have to cover long distances. To create the Marimba Angler, we took the standard Marimba which already has a bunch of features that make it a great boat for anglers and added some angling-specific fittings to it.  Two flush-mounted Rod Holders are located behind the seat. Each rod holder has a Multifit positioned close by for securing your rods while paddling. Deck Rails allow you to personalize the deck by attaching items like a fish finder, GPS, camera or a selfie stick or on either side of the Sculpted Seat. An Anchor Trolley is also installed on the right side of the kayak.

    Like the standard Marimba, the Marimba Angler has adjustable Footrests, a Paddle Rest, Bungee Cord straps to secure gear to the bow and a sizeable Tankwell with Crate-Holding Indents. The Bottle Holder is positioned behind the seat, in the middle of a larger pocket where a hydration bladder can be fixed. It also features the Scupper Venturis that make paddling long distances through choppy waters a pleasure.  To recap, if speed and trawling is your main priority, this is the boat for you. In addition, if you want one boat that you can use for fishing as well as fitness training, choose the Marimba Angler.

    Perfect for families and friends who like to paddle together, nothing can beat our Mazowe.

    The Mazowe will forever change your perception of what a double sit-on-top is actually capable of. This kayak, carrying two people and their gear, can really move! Its hull is designed to reduce drag, maintain a straight course and respond quickly to paddle strokes to change direction.  The Mazowe’s most valuable feature is that there is a substantial distance between the seats of the front and rear paddlers to give the rear paddler enough space for a full paddle stroke without worrying that their paddle will hit the front paddler. Paddle cutaways – for both paddlers – mean that both can enjoy a full paddle stroke without clipping the paddle blade against the deck.

    The Mazowe is designed to carry two people with their gear stowed on the deck. That’s why we’ve got a sizeable Tankwell behind the rear paddler and we’ve let the footwell of the rear paddler flow into another tankwell in the middle of the boat to maximize the available storage space.  Multifits around the tankwells serve as attachment points for tie-downs, bungee cords, ropes and clips to strap-down gear on the deck. The 8″ Screw Hatch at the front is watertight and it is ideal for items that need to be stowed away more securely. Each paddler also has a Paddle Rest, to secure their paddle to the deck when hands are needed, as well as Bottle Holders.  Where double sit-on-top kayaks are concerned, the Mazowe is a game changer.



    The Dumbi is an easy-to-paddle surf kayak with great performance characteristics. It is not aimed at winning surfing competitions, but rather to bring the joy of surfing waves to aspiring surf kayakers.  The hull of the Dumbi is designed for fast planing and easy carving. You can surf waves without attaching fins to it, which makes it very forgiving and easy to side surf and spin on waves. With the fins attached, you can carve harder and have a generally more aggressive ride. The choice is yours!

    One of the most daunting challenges for inexperienced paddlers is paddling through waves to the backline. For this reason, the bow of the Dumbi is designed to punch through waves with ease. The high volume of the stern adds stability when punching through waves and generally result in a more stable ride.  The sculpted seat and lower-than-bum footwell make the Dumbi comfortable to paddle, while also keeping the paddler securely in the boat when things get a bit rough. Thigh straps are also added to secure you into the boat even better, and if you’re a kayaker with a decent roll, you don’t even need to swim if you capsize.

    Unique to the Dumbi are the Sidewall Drainage Holes, which drain water from the deck in an instant when you punch through waves. This ensures a drier ride and better performance.  It is accommodating and forgiving to novices, but also a blast of fun for experienced paddlers. With the Dumbi, we hope to see more paddlers having more fun in the surf than ever before.



    The feature that makes a sit-on-top whitewater kayak an absolute winner is that you can fall off and easily climb back on because the kayak floats when it capsizes.  For novices, the Usutu opens the door to whitewater kayaking. Learn how to take effective paddling strokes, master ferry angles and easily catch eddies with the confidence that you can attempt a roll or easily get back on if you capsize. Experienced paddlers benefit from improved confidence and the opportunity to try moves they would hesitate to attempt with a sit-in kayak.

    The Usutu has good speed in whitewater, it tracks on flatwater and it is super forgiving. The hull design is based on the Vubu hull, but with more stability added. It is a real whitewater hull that handles rocks well and can boof drops.  The sculpted seat is beautifully shaped and comfortable. Thigh Straps keep you in place and give you greater control in rough water. If you do capsize, your knees can easily slip out from under the straps, or you can roll the boat back up if you have a decent roll.

    If you’re in the water, you’ll appreciate the strategically-placed handles that make it easy to grab the kayak and to get back on; they’re also useful to fetch/rescue swimmers when you paddle to their aid. The big volume stern is both for buoyancy and storage space for multi-day whitewater trips.  The Usutu is the perfect kayak for whitewater novices. In addition, it is also great for fair-weather paddlers, vacation-only paddlers, weekend warriors, river guides and rescue kayakers.

    This able creeker was named for the Umzimvubu River and its tributaries in the wild Transkei region, including the Tsitsa Gorge, an expeditioner’s paradise boasting limited access, intense rapids and remote conditions. Celliers Kruger completed the first descent of the Tsitsa in five days, an experience that gave birth to the Vubu: a creekboat designed to handle any mission you throw at it.  Paddlers will find the Vubu to be an incredibly nimble boat allowing them to make precision moves, easily turning and pivoting through complex rapids to hit their lines.  At the same time, the boat is fast and tracks well through flat water and is able to transition through eddy lines and funny water without spinning out – necessary qualities in challenging waters.

    Celliers’ years of experience paddling and designing have yielded an aggressively performing boat with confidence-boosting stability so you can charge hard into rapids without worrying about catching edges and flipping. If you do capsize, the Vubu rolls easily, but with the secondary stability in this hull design, you may find yourself having more dry-hair days on the river and needing to find other ways to cool off.  The Vubu, like kayakers, loves to boof and will launch on steeps and waterfalls with a well-timed stroke. For those times when you pull your stroke early, late, or not hard enough, the peaked front and back decks help the boat resurface fast and shoot forward, propelling you out of holes. The stern’s squared-off design also ensures that you won’t have any unintentional stern-taps while boofing.

    The Vubu is the perfect creekboat for a whitewater kayaker’s arsenal, whether you are new to the sport, an expert pushing the limits or a seasoned paddler. You will find the perfect combination of agility and stability in this design.

    Based on the design of the Vubu, the Pungwe creeker is the fierce little sister, equally equipped with the same performance and feature requirements designer Celliers Kruger required from its larger sibling.  The Pungwe thrives on technical and lower volume creeks. The boat has more rocker in comparison to length than the Vubu and is slightly agiler. This maneuverability allows paddlers to react quickly and make last minute adjustments such as pivoting into micro eddies or avoiding crocodiles.

    While not quite as fast as its big brother, the Pungwe is still quick through flat-water and tracks well, making it easy to stay online. The shape of the bow and volume help it transition through eddy lines and aerated water without spinning out or slowing down.  The added rocker in the Pungwe also has the added benefit of making it boof more easily, giving paddlers confidence on steep creeks and waterfalls. The peaked front and back decks on the boat to help it resurface quickly and evenly after drops and the stern is designed to propel the kayak forward out of holes.

    The creeker also has substantial secondary stability that is vital for confidence when running steep rapids where flipping upside down isn’t ideal. If you do capsize, the Pungwe is easy and fast to roll, minimizing time upside down.  While based on the design of the Vubu, the Pungwe has its own virtues and is an ideal creeker for smaller paddlers or paddlers that want a responsive boat for technical low volume creeks.


    Lightweight, easily adjustable and very robust, the footrests are fully adjustable forward/backward for leg-length and adjustable sideways for comfort.  The slider-rails for the footrests are manufactured from anodised aluminium-alloy.  The rail-design will fit a number of “attachments” used by other manufacturers and of course compatible with other fittings on the kayak. The custom designed footrests have a fuller profile than most on the market, making them very comfortable to rest your feet on. The footrests are manufactured from Nylon 6 with a glass-fill for stiffness and have non-slip surfaces.