When heading out into the wild for a spot of fishing, all of your gear needs to be practical and perform its designated task to the highest level possible.
Your headgear is no different. Hats are no longer basic pieces of material that sit on your head to protect you from the sun – they now offer so much more and some time should be taken in choosing the right one for you.
Boonie hats are a great style of hat for fishing so, in this article, we look at 15 different boonie hats so you can get a good idea of their features and find which is the one you want on your head on your next fishing adventure.
What is a Boonie Hat?
Boonie hats were first worn by the US Army during the Vietnam war.
A boonie is a wide brim hat that is now commonly worn by armed forces around the world working in hot, tropical climates.
Although boonie hats may resemble a bucket hat, the brim of a boonie is actually stiffer which allows it to offer you better protection from the elements.
Boonies are sometimes referred to as a jungle hat or a bush hat which highlights how well-suited they are to being worn out in the wild.
In simple terms, a boonie hat is a wide-brimmed hat that protects you from the sun, rain, and wind while you are outdoors.
As they provide you with so much protection, they make great fishing hats and can handle hot environments, wet environments, and even windy environments too.
Best Fishing Boonie Hat: Quick Picks
The Columbia Bora Boonie not only gives UPF 50+ sun protection but also has great moisture-wicking capabilities meaning your head, and your hat stays dry on your fishing adventures.
An attached neck flap adds another level of UV protection onto the JFH Bora Tactical Boonie Hat. If you are heading out into the wild on a particularly hot, sunny day – this Boonie is a great choice.
The Simms GORE-TEX Sombrero is a fully waterproof Boonie that has an EVA foam brim that bounces back into shape after storage.
Best Boonie Hat: Full Reviews
Made from lightweight hemp, recycled polyester, and organically grown cotton fabric, Patagonia The Forge Hat is an extremely comfortable boonie hat.
It provides UPF 50+ sun protection and has a chin strap to make sure it fits perfectly.
- Eyelets in the crown for increased airflow
- 3-inch wide brim
- Lightweight and comfortable
In addition to the UPF 50+ protection offered, the Columbia Unisex Bora Bora II Boonie Hat has been treated with Omni-Wick moisture management technology. This is basically a fancy way of saying this hat does a great job at wicking moisture away from your head.
It’s made from 100% textured nylon so is comfortable too.
- Adjustable chin strap, drawstring, and toggle to get the best fit
- Mesh vents for added ventilation
- Omni-Wicking technology to keep your head cool and dry
Are you even a true outdoorsman if you don’t own a camouflage boonie hat? The Rothco Tactical Boonie Hat not only comes in a range of camouflage patterns, but it also has foliage rings that allow you to add leaves and similar to further hide yourself in the wild.
It also has side vents to help keep you cool and comfortable.
- Foliage rings to enhance your camouflage
- 4 screened side vents for airflow and comfort
- Lightweight and breathable
The Simms Bucket Hat is a no-frills, simple boonie.
It has a crushable brim and fits comfortably. Simms have also made sure it can stand up to wet conditions by making it water-resistant too.
- Crushable brim to make sure it keeps its shape during storage
- Very lightweight and comfortable
- Simple design – no-frills bucket hat making it budget-friendly
A neck flap has been added to the JFH Bora Tactical Boonie Hat to give you even more protection from the sun.
Of all the boonie hats on this list, this is the only one available in two styles – solid construction or in a mesh/net crown style if you want more ventilation whilst still maintaining UPF protection.
The JFH Bora Tactical Boonie is our choice for the best boonie hat for UPF protection.
- Available in 2 styles – solid or mesh
- Cord locks on the chin strap for a secure fit
- Neck flap for additional protection
This is a very soft, light, and comfortable boonie hat.
The Dealstock Boonie Hat is made from 100% cotton and is hypoallergenic. It has an adjustable drawstring chin strap that keeps it in place even in windy conditions.
- UPF 50+ sun protection
- Made from 100% cotton for a light, comfortable fit
- Available in two sizes
The Dorfman Pacific Men’s Outback Boonie Hat is a great choice if you want a traditional boonie hat. It is tear-resistant and looks very stylish.
The brim is able to be shaped which allows you to add your own style to your hat without losing any level of protection.
If you like the cowboy look, then this could be the best boonie hat for you!
- Brow band absorbs sweat and moisture
- Adjustable chin strap keeps your hat in place during activity
- Tear and wrinkle-resistant
Propper has been making the best military boonie hats for over 50 years.
The Propper Men’s Boonie Hat is made to the same specifications as the ones made for the military – so if you want to be confident your fishing hat can withstand the rigors of the wild, this is a very good choice.
It is a tough and durable boonie hat and has ventilation holes built in to keep your head cool and dry.
- Made to military specifications
- Ventilation holes for improved airflow and comfort
- Comes in a range of colors
The Simms Guide GORE-TEX Sombrero is a fully waterproof boonie hat.
The underside of its brim is black to help reduce glare while out on the water in sunny conditions.
As Simms are known for making some of the best fishing gear around, it should be no surprise that they have included a small loop fly patch on the front panel of this boonie hat for fly storage.
- EVA foam brim is crushable and is able to return to its original shape after storage
- Adjustable chin strap for a comfortable and secure fit
- Fully waterproof
This bucket hat style boonie hat is made from 100% polyester which makes it extremely light and comfortable to wear.
Mesh vents have been added for enhanced ventilation and, like all of the best boonie hats on this list, the Camo Coll Military Boonie Hat offers UPF 50+ sun protection.
- 3″ brim width for all-round protection
- Mesh vents provide plenty of ventilation
- Adjustable chin cord for a secure fit
The Simms Superlight Solar Sombrero is a lightweight fishing hat with a wide brim width for extra protection.
It is a simply designed and well-made boonie hat that is as comfortable in the wild as you are.
- Foam brim makes your boonie hat float if dropped in the water
- UPF 50+ protection
This is one of the best boonie hats for wet weather.
It has a three-layer construction that keeps water from your skin so you will always be dry and comfortable with the Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero Boonie Hat.
The shaped brim also helps guide any water away from your face – this boonie hat was made for the rain!
- Wide brim width for extra protection
- Adjustable and removable chin strap
- UPF 50+ sun protection
This Tru-Spec Boonie Hat meets current military specifications so it is more than capable of handling the rigors of your outdoor adventures.
The Tru-Spec Woodland, Size 7.75 Military Boonie Hat has vents for good ventilation to keep your head cool, and accessory attachments allow you to customize your boonie hat as you see fit.
- Made from 100% cotton ripstop material
- Adjustable chin strap
- Comes in a range of colors
The Quiksilver Bushmaster Boonie Hat has the look and style of a great safari hat.
It is made from 100% cotton so is very light and comfortable. It is a simple boonie hat that won’t break the bank.
- Drawstring chin strap
- Different color options available to suit your style
- A budget-friendly Boonie hat
The Tekma Sports Boonie Hat is one of the more versatile boonie hats available. It can be folded up small and still retain its shape comfortably.
There are poppers on both sides of the hat that allow you to pin up the brim if you need more visibility.
- Fabric chin cord
- Wide brim for good levels of face and neck protection
- Comes in different colors
You can’t have a list of the best boonie hats without a few camo boonies on there!
The Rothco Boonie Hat comes in multiple camouflage patterns and colors so you can find the one that best suits your style.
There are four screened side vents to make sure ventilation is good and you are kept cool and comfortable.
- Adjustable chin strap
- Multiple camouflage colors are available
- Includes loops on the crown to add leaves for extra cover
How To Choose A Boonie Hat
Choosing the best boonie hat for you can seem a bit challenging as there are so many out there to choose from.
To make things easier, there are certain things you should look out for and consider when choosing a boonie hat to make sure you get the one best suited to you.
Some boonie hats come in a “one size fits all” design.
Other boonie hats have a choice of circumference sizes. This allows you to measure your head size and pick the best-sized hat for you.
The boonie hats on this list include both of these size options.
Making sure you get the right size of hat for you can make a big difference to the comfort, look, practicality, and protection you get from your boonie hat.
You may think that the color of your boonie hat is not important but you would be surprised about how much difference it can make.
From a protection and practicality point of view, you want colors that are going to help reflect sunlight away from you and help offer protection from sunburn and similar.
You may also benefit from camouflage hats if stealth is important on your fishing or other outdoor adventures.
Boonie hats come in a variety of styles.
You can get tactical boonie hats, bucket boonie hats, safari boonie hats, and more.
Spending some time considering what style best suits your needs will help you find the best boonie hat for you.
Another aspect to consider when choosing the best boonie hat is the features it has and how these can benefit you.
For example, some boonie hats will have chin cords, some will have poppers, and others may have accessory attachment points.
You should also think about the practical features. Waterproof boonie hats are important if you are venturing out in wet conditions, whereas good levels of sun protection are paramount if you want your boonie to be a good sun hat.
Final thoughts on the Best Boonie Hats
Finding the best boonie hat for you can make a big difference to your outdoor experiences.
This list covers a range of the best boonie hats out there and gives you plenty of options when it comes to style, practicality, features, and benefits.
Whether you are looking for a waterproof boonie hat, a boonie hat with an extra-wide brim, or simply a boonie hat that will keep you comfortable in hot weather – this list of the best boonie hats will help you find the best boonie hat for you.