Freshwater demand will rise in the next couple of decades, with an increase in worldwide population growth and industrial development. The development activities, on one side, have increased the freshwater demand. However, the ground water has been degraded. Among the various organic and inorganic contaminants, arsenic is one of the most toxic elements. Arsenic contamination in ground waters is a major issue worldwide, especially in South and Southeast Asia. Various methods have been applied to provide a remedy to arsenic contamination, including adsorption, ion exchange, oxidation, coagulation-precipitation and filtration, and membrane filtration. Out of these methods, adsorption of As(III)/As(V) using nanomaterials and biopolymers has been used on a wide scale. The present review focuses on recently used nanomaterials and biopolymer composites for As(III)/As(V) sorptive removal. As(III)/As(V) adsorption mechanisms have been explored for various sorbents. The impacts of environmental factors such as pH and co-existing ions on As(III)/As(V) removal, have been discussed. Comparison of various nanosorbents and biopolymer composites for As(III)/As(V) adsorption and regeneration of exhausted materials has been included. Overall, this review will be useful to understand the sorption mechanisms involved in As(III)/As(V) removal by nanomaterials and biopolymer composites and their comparative sorption performances.