Before heading off to the houseboat this summer, we purchased some inexpensive Pelican Solo Kayaks from Canadian Tire. These have been awesome. The kids have played on these so much already... at the houseboat they paddled them around for hours. We also pulled one, with a kid on it, behind the zodiac! These little kayaks are so strong and sturdy and they are so stable that the only time the kids have fallen off was when they tried to fall off... and it was no problem at all to get back on. I even went out and paddled a few times and it was great fun.
Since coming home from the houseboat, we have taken the kids to Charlie Lake and they paddled around and explored and are still really enjoying them... They have also figured out that the boats are so stable that they can stand in them and use them like paddle boards, which is particularly fun when other boats go by and they can ride the waves that come in.
So the outcome of these inexpensive toys... is that they are not going to be inexpensive for long. Hubby and I have watched the kids go out and have so much fun that we have decided WE would like kayaks too... and of course the adult version of kayaks are a fair bit more money! However, it looks like something we can do as a family and spend a day out on the lake (and maybe the river if we practice a lot more!) and use for years and years... I want to play too!