I've paddled a total of 7 paddleboards, so my experience is limited, but here's my advice.
You maybe limited to what is available in your area because you really need to demo the board before buying. As a bigger guy (230lbs), I've been told some boards would work, and they were simply too small. Without paddling them, I wouldn't have known.
You also need to demo to decide if you feel more comfortable with a displacement or surf type. Personally, I'd look at the displacement first with your stated use.
Another reason to demo is to determine the stability you feel comfortable with. At first it may feel nothing would be stable enough, but don't sell yourself short. You'll be surprised how quick you get comfortable.
Wabakimi Canoe Pack
Pull-Up Strap Handle Kit
Touring Kayak Paddles
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