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Home » 7 Best River Tubes To Buy In 2022: Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

7 Best River Tubes To Buy In 2022: Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

Best River Tubes

7 Best River Tubes To Buy In 2022: Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

Without a doubt, one of the best things to do in summer is rafting on the river. However, having a damaged or uncomfortable tube can completely ruin the experience and even put you at risk.

Therefore, when creating our guide, we considered not only looks but also style, durability, and much more.

If you’re looking for the best river pipes, then you’ve come to the right place because our guide has them all! We know you can’t wait to get in the water, so let’s get right to the review!

How to Choose the Best River Tube? – Buying Guide

Now that you’ve read all about the best river tubes, do you know which one you’re going to take to the water this summer? If you’re still hesitant or can’t settle for just one tube, fine! We understand that it can be a little tricky with so many great options!

That is why we undertook to compose a comprehensive and easy-to-use buying guide on the subject. After reading the guide, it will be clear which one is perfect for you and your needs.


Before you do anything else, you’ll want to find out what “type” of river pipe is right for you. That’s right; there are different types, as you can see in our tube picks above. Here is an ordinary floating pipe that is a pipe. Then you have more of a “rest” tube with a headrest and a bit more luxurious.

Then you have the fishing tubes, which are heavier and more complex. They are equipped with headrests, backrests, and even fuller full seats. They are usually more expensive due to the more durable materials, larger size, and added versatility.

Number of Users

Then decide how many people you are going to connect to the tubing. Does your partner (s) already have a tube, or will they need one? If you need, do you want separate tubes or combined with dual seats?

Separate tubes can be fun because they’re easier to navigate, but it means you could lose your floating companion at some point unless you hook a rope. If you hook the strings and the person slips out of the tube, it can cause you to do it too.

You can also choose a duo-rider tube where you both use the same tube. They are a bit more difficult to navigate, but if you have good rowing skills, that’s not a problem.


Durability is one of the most important factors when choosing one of the best floating river pipes. You want something that can slide over rocks, branches, debris, plants, and more. You never know what you will find on the river, so the material from which the pipe is made must be resistant to cracks and tears.

PVC is almost always used because it is dense and strong but soft to the touch. Rubber is an original material used in river tubes due to its durability. However, it can get quite hot in the hot summer sun and feel sticky and even burn your skin. Of course, you can solve this problem by getting wet, but it all depends on your personal preferences.


How easy is it to fully inflate the inner tube? The vast majority can be inflated with the breath; others can also work with air pumps. Some tubes have multiple air chambers designed so that the punching in the tube will not affect all chambers, so ideally, the tube should still float in the water.

You may have noticed that some manufacturers recommend using the “stop and go” filling method, which means you won’t inflate the inner tube in one go. Rather, inflate it a little and wait and then inflate it a little more until the tube is completely inflated. This is to avoid bulging.

Try to get an inner tube with a valve stem that can penetrate the side of the tube to keep it from sticking out.


Believe it or not, comfort does play a big part in river or pond/lake swimming! If you have neck problems or get tired easily, we strongly recommend choosing an inner tube with some headrest.

The vast majority of headrests are stationary, while others are height adjustable. This can provide support for the neck in various positions when sitting or lying down!

Most of the tubes in our guide also come with a mesh base. Mesh bottoms are nice as they don’t let the river water pool inside the tube, nor let it fall through the opening. Moreover, you can realistically store extra gear, snacks, and belongings in the seat as the mesh base won’t drop them.

1. Tube Pro Green Premium River Tube with Cupholder

Certainly one of the best river tubes on the market, the Tube Pro Green 44 ”Premium River Tube is one you should check out. The light green tube is eye-catching and sporty, perfect for others to see. It is a relatively simple design with blue spiral details but is reliable, which is the most important factor.

Made of durable 30 gauge PVC vinyl, it is durable enough for the river. You can navigate in shallower water while you can rely on this model. Not only that, but it comes with twin inner tubes for an extra layer of safety. This makes it strong enough to be used as a tow tube or winter!

The 44 ”size is perfect for most users as it is designed as a single-user configuration. The two large support handles will keep it from slipping (in most cases) or out of the tube, and the soda cup holder keeps you hydrated while on the move.

You can fill it with your mouth, which is easiest for most. However, if you are in a hurry or don’t have bigger lungs, you can use a small electric pump.

2. Classic Accessories Cumberland Float Tube

Then we have a model completely different from the previous one: Classic Accessories Float Tube Cumberland. If you are looking for one of the best river floats for fishing, we cannot recommend it enough. It has almost everything you might need to fish in rivers or lakes on a budget while maintaining productivity.

It is green in color, matching Mother Nature, with a wear-resistant material and PVC base. It holds up well to UV rays, rocks, branches, and debris. Due to the design, you’ll likely want to use it more in ponds or lakes, but it’s quite versatile.

Thanks to the fine craftsmanship and high-quality materials, this chair can support up to 350 pounds at just 14 pounds! If you have a little more room to move, you can even take extra gear with you, thanks to the two cargo pockets. You also get a mesh pocket for things, a mesh storage platform, two fishing rod holders, and 2 cup holders.

Oh, and since you’ll likely be using it for fishing, they even added a mesh apron with a ruler for fishing. Fishing usually requires more than an hour in the water, so comfort is the priority in their design. The extra-high seat has thick padding and is highly adjustable.

3. Intex I Sport Lounge Inflatable Water Float

Thanks to its overall consistency in quality and user-friendly design, Intex is a brand we love. Their River Run I Sport Lounge Inflatable Float is no exception, so we had to add the 53 ”Tube in our guide.

They look sporty and modern in blue or limited colors, yet bright enough to stand out on the river. It is slightly thinner than the Tube Pro Green 44 ”we first covered in our guide as it is made of 18mm PVC vinyl.

However, it is still very durable and is great for various summer fun in the water. Weighing in at just 5 pounds, it’s very easy to carry from your car to the river and back!

While most tubes are just… tubes… this one has a built-in backrest. The backrest provides ample support so you can rest comfortably for many hours in the sun. The mesh backing keeps you cool while keeping out any debris that may be present.

You can see a thin white string around the circumference of the tube. A grasping rope makes it easier for colleagues to grab a pipe or connect with yours to stay together.

The 53 ”diameter is a great size for most people and includes two sturdy handles to keep it in the tube. The 2 cup holders will also keep your soda close at hand and, most importantly, help you stay hydrated in the sun.

4. Tube in a Box The Original Swim and Snow Tube

Most of us have already used or seen one of the best riverside tubes: the classic black rubber ones! You already know them, the ones that look like big racing tires! It seemed to be the only floating river pipe in the past, and it still exists today for a reason!

They say there’s no need to fix something that isn’t broken, and that’s the main reason why we still love the classic black tube. This model is from Tube In a Box and is your original swim and snow tube.

A very large selection of 45″ is ideal for summer and winter use due to its robustness. Made of 100% commercial rubber, it is the hardest price. You won’t even have to think about it breaking or snapping, even when traveling over rocks and sharper branches!

Speaking of price, it is also our top pick in terms of budget options. If you’re trying to save some cash or keep that padded wallet for summer adventures, definitely put this tube on your list!

In terms of comfort level, this is quite normal. We appreciate that the safety valve stem has been converted from pesky metals that have stung you before. Remember to practice the “stop and start” air inflation method to prevent the tube from bulging.

As the entire tube is protected against UV radiation, it does not deflate prematurely and keeps you smooth throughout your journey.

5. Connect Lounge Inflatable Floating Water Tube

If you and your partner or friend want to create tubes together but don’t have them, check out the Intex River Run Connect Lounge 58854EP Inflatable Floating Water Tube 2 Pack. Each weighs around 5 pounds and is easy to transport when not mounted on them.

Made in the USA, tubes are designed with high-quality materials that will keep you afloat for years to come.

Made of 18 gauge vinyl, it is almost completely resistant to tearing and shocks. While not intended for use in mountain waters or high-intensity environments, it is an excellent choice for rides in slower rivers and calmer waters.

The main focus is comfort and relaxation, with a built-in backrest that will make you want to swim all day long. Mesh hem closes the center of the tube while keeping you cool. The great part about the mesh bottom is that it won’t pick up water or debris but still won’t leave you fully exposed.

There are two sturdy handles on each side for added safety and stability, perfect for navigating gentle cascades and small “waterfalls.” 2 air chambers provide a sense of balance that is safer and easier to use for all experience levels.

There are 2 cup holders built into each tube, perfect for keeping additional drinks close at hand.

6. Pafalo Store Adult Pool Floats Sport Lounge with Headrest

Are you looking for the best floating tube for July 4th? Well, look no further – Pafolo Store Lake Floats for Adults! The 53″ tube is large enough to make most people feel safe and comfortable without constantly slipping.

This one is super thick to withstand those sturdy rubber pickaxes while still being soft to the touch.

The red, white, and blue color scheme is certainly patriotic but looks good whatever the date as it is soft and has bright colors. However, it also has two other color combinations: blue, white, and yellow or blue, white, and gray. They both look very athletic and even a little trendy!

As we mentioned, comfort is one of the brand’s top priorities. Here you will find a separate inflatable headrest which was our favorite of all we tried. It has top-down flexibility, which means it works in various positions, from sitting to lying.

The mesh underside keeps you cool, and the 2 cup holders ensure you’ll never have to drink river water to quench your thirst.

It turned out to be one of the most leak-resistant. The thick PVC is very strong and finished with edge detailing, with double seals around the seat. The seal valve allows air to pass during pumping but otherwise not release air.

7. Intex 58837EP River Run II Sport Lounge Water Float

Yes, we are back with another Intex model. On this occasion, we present the Intex 58837EP River Run II Sport Lounge inflatable water float. If you want the best river tube that floats in duos, there’s no better option than this.

Sure, there are other tubes that can be connected to ensure all teammates stay close. However, this one takes a bit more time as there are double seats in one unit. They come in white and blue or white and red, and are the most attractive in many ways.

This is the ultimate cruise ship, made with a built-in cooler with a lid so you can carry all kinds of frozen drinks and chilled snacks! While this varies by product, of course, you can easily fit 18 cans along with ice and snacks.

There is also a built-in cup holder on both sides, so you don’t have to constantly reach into the fridge and keep your hands free. In addition, it has a recessed space between the two seats, so you can store additional snacks or use it as a storage space for a dry bag or other equipment.

To keep everyone safe, it comes with 5 air chambers to make sure a small opening won’t shut it off. 2 heavy-duty handles are built-in, although we recommend taking some smaller oars to help you navigate. A grab line is also included if you want to connect it to other Intex tubing!

Frequently Asked Questions: Best River Tubes To Buy In 2022

What do you look for in a river tube? – Best River Tubes

Look for a tube with handles or other hardware for tying ropes onto, as well as tubes outfitted with a headrest for peak relaxation during lazy floats. Water shoes. Riverbeds can be rocky, so sturdy footwear will help you avoid cutting up your feet when entering and exiting the water.

Can you use a pool tube for river tubing? – Best River Tubes

Since these pool floats are made of UV treated raft grade vinyl that’s 25% thicker than many other floats, they’re also safe to use for floating the river or on a lake.

Can you use pool floats in river? – Best River Tubes

Floating down a river on a hot afternoon can be great fun and relaxation, but there are dangers involved. Proper equipment is necessary to reduce the chance of accidents. Pool toys are just that – toys intended for swimming pools or designated swimming areas – they are not designed to be used on open lakes or rivers.

How do you keep stuff dry while tubing? – Best River Tubes

Dry box/bag to keep wallets or anything else dry. Sombrero. Inexpensive Sunglasses (possibly with safety strap to prevent losing them) Cooler (52 quart coolers fit perfectly in the cooler carrier tubes, smaller ones also work).

Should I go tubing if I can’t swim? – Best River Tubes

You can go river tubing even if you’re unable to swim. Your safety will be ensured because you will have a life jacket to keep you afloat, river tube guides nearby, and a large tubing group around you. Plus, these tubing expeditions generally only stick to calm, shallow waters.

How safe is river tubing? – Best River Tubes

Even though you are in the water, you are quicker to dehydrate. River inner tubing is safest in larger groups. It is much easier to drown in a river than you may think. Undercurrents are powerful and unpredictable, and even seasoned swimmers drown while floating in a river.

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