camping speaker
Getty/Pollyana Ventura

4 of the Best Portable Speakers for Hiking, Kayaking, & Camping


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The best way to set the mood for your camping trip or lake day is to bring one of the best portable speakers along for the day. After all, lake days require country music -- or whatever music you and your friends or family love to listen to as you're watching the stars or sitting by the fire. The best portable speakers are easy to take with you anywhere, will hold a charge for your whole evening playlist, and sound just as good as the ones you have at home.

For the best portable speakers, we chose ones that will require Bluetooth for use --  you'll definitely love being able to control the music from your phone, but they're also more convenient (no aux cord!) and you can download some music and listen to it anywhere, no Wi-Fi required. Some of these speakers are waterproof or splash-resistant, so Mother Nature won't be able to ruin your new speaker. With a waterproof speaker, you can take it along your kayaking adventure, tubing trip, or even on a trek where rain is in the forecast. We also made sure that these speakers were compact -- because no one needs to pack a heavy speaker for a camping trip. These speakers may be small but they have crystal sound, so get your hiking, fishing, and even relaxing bedtime playlists read: You won't camp without a speaker going forward. We rounded up some of our favorite speakers for various occasions that are easy to carry and easy to use.

1. Our Top Pick for Camping

OontZ Angle Solo - Bluetooth Portable Speaker - Amazon, $19.99

You don't have to break the bank on a speaker with good sound quality. OontZ speakers are designed and engineered right here in the US and aim to provide customers with high-quality speakers for an affordable price. The Angle Solo is a particular favorite amongst music lovers -- you've probably seen this speaker at a beach or a friend's house by now. The freestanding speaker is a great pick for the cabin, camping tent, or RV. It is water-resistant but not waterproof, which means it's great for days on the lake, but skip bringing it on the kayak or while tubing.

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It has a 100-foot Bluetooth range and is compatible with Apple, Android phones, and also Echo Dots and laptops. There's a built-in microphone as well, so you'll even be able to answer phone calls. As for sound quality, it's very loud and clear. The music doesn't sound distorted and the bass quality is fantastic, which is impressive for how small it is: It's under eight ounces and is about three inches tall. It has a battery life for up to 10 hours of playtime, and the USB charging cable and lanyard are included.

2. Best Waterproof Option 

EBODA Waterproof Shower Bluetooth Speaker - Amazon, $21.99

Nothing beats floating the river on a hot summer day. Grab some cold drinks, snacks, and your favorite buddies for an afternoon of relaxation on the water -- and this powerful speaker. The EBODA shower speaker is splash-proof, completely waterproof, and even floats. Yep, if it accidentally falls out of your tube you're all good. It comes with an aluminum alloy carabiner, so be sure to clip it to your tube rope, cooler, or daypack for added security. Just connect the speaker to your phone via Bluetooth and enjoy music for up to 15 hours. That's about three river trips total!

Note:  your phone will need to be within 66 feet of the speaker. As an experienced Texas river rat, don't forget to buy a waterproof bag for your electronics, car keys, and ID. It'll keep your phone safe from the water, since it's not waterproof like the speaker is.

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3. Best for Hiking & Mountain Biking

Kunodi Outdoor Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker - Amazon, $19.99

Here's the only speaker you need for hiking or biking. It can easily be clipped to your backpack or bike, allowing you to listen to music on your ride. This Bluetooth speaker is also dust-proof, waterproof, and shock-proof. It's definitely ready to take on the elements and even a minor fall or two. Since it's waterproof, you can even take this one out on the water as well. The speaker has clear sound and rich bass, and can easily connect to your Apple and Android smartphones and devices, including MacBooks and laptops. Overall, it's everything you want in a speaker and the size of it is perfect -- it can fit in the palm of your hand.

4. Best Splurge

JBL FLIP 5 Waterproof Speaker - Amazon, $99.95

If you love listening to music all year round and are willing to splurge for a really great option, consider this JBL Flip. It's waterproof up to three feet of submersion, has durable fabric and a rubber outer shell for extra durability (and even comes in tons of cute colorways), and you can even pair it with another JBL Flip 5 for even louder sound. It lasts up to 12 hours before needing to be recharged, and you can play it vertically or horizontally. I actually prefer this over the pricier Bose speakers: it's very loud and clear, too, so it's great for outdoor parties.