Planning to venture out into the open seas?
Whether you'll be sailing leisurely, catching fish, or exploring, a good fishing watch can be a great tool to accompany you on your journey.
Unlike regular timepieces, tidal watches [R] are made with a lot of extra functions to help you have a more enjoyable and comfortable experience.
If you're ready to find the best fishing watch for you, check out my guide below!
Casio Men's Pro Trek Tough Solar Digital Sport Watch: Best Overall
The Casio Men's Pro Trek fishing watch ticks all the boxes—it's affordable, multifunctional, and durable.
With its built-in triple sensor (barometer, thermometer, altimeter readings) [R], compass, as well as its tide/weather tracker, you'll be extra prepared for your next fishing trip!
- 200M Water Resistance
- Chronograph Display
- Tough Solar Power
Now, this fishing watch isn't just packed with features; it's energy-efficient too.
It's both battery-powered and solar-powered, so you won't have to worry even when you're miles away from civilization.
The LED light and power indicators will keep you updated with the charge levels of the watch, so you can quickly switch to a power-saving mode if needed.
In terms of water resistance, the Casio Pro Trek fishing watch can fully operate at 660 feet or 200 meters.
This means it's suitable for light water activities but no deep diving. Since it's made to withstand the higher pressure of saltwater, though, it's definitely a great watch for fishing.
You should also know that this model is manufactured with a stainless steel case and G-Shock technology [R] to keep it super strong, weather-resistant, and water-resistant.
If you plan to be outdoors a lot, you'll definitely need a tough watch like this by your side.
- Good value for money
- Made to last
- Solar-powered for convenience
- Slightly inaccurate readings
- The functions are a bit confusing if it's your first time using the watch
Suunto Traverse Alpha Watch: Best Value
The Suunto Traverse Alpha is a sleek and modern smartwatch great for both hunting and fishing.
Some of its many features include a digital compass, GPS and GLONASS systems, a barometer, and topographic and altitude profiles, so you'll never get lost out in the wild.
- Features a rugged, knurled stainless steel bezel, durable water repellent nylon strap, and a premium...
- Suunto's automatic shot detection technology keeps track of when and where you shoot, mapping the...
- Gps tracks your path, helping you find your way back using the automatic breadcrumb trail,Compatible...
The moon phase calendar also helps you determine the best times to go fishing.
Want to optimize the routes of your trips and record important information? You can easily keep track of these through the Suunto Movescount web app, a handy tool that sets it apart from other, less technologically-advanced fishing watches.
Besides these, the Suunto Traverse Alpha is well-equipped with all the timekeeping functions you'd expect from an outdoor watch.
It's tested against military standards, plus it has a flashlight and a night-vision backlight for easy readability in the dark.
However, this isn't suitable for intense water sports, as it's only water-resistant up to 100 meters. It definitely shouldn't be worn deep-diving.
Overall, though, this is a good fishing watch to own if you want something a bit more modern, innovative, and techy. You'll really enjoy browsing through its many touchscreen functions!
- Sleek, modern look and features
- Has a lot of useful functions
- Has a helpful app that's compatible with iOS and Android devices
- The software isn't perfect, so it can be prone to lagging and slight inaccuracies
- Only has a 100-meter water resistance
Casio G-Shock Rescue Digital Sport Watch: Best Budget Pick
Looking for something basic and inexpensive but still very reliable? The Casio G-Shock Rescue fishing watch definitely gets the job done without hurting your wallet.
This watch doesn't have too many complicated functions, so it's perfect if you don't see yourself using them anyway.
- Round sport watch featuring four-point design protection, large buttons and display format, as well...
- 50 mm resin case with mineral dial window
- Digital display
However, it contains all the important stuff—accurate timekeeping, good shock, water resistance, and a backlight for night visibility.
Those taking the G-Shock Rescue fishing even have moon and tide graphs [R] to help you figure out the best time to go on your trip.
It's practical for the outdoors, too, as it's water-resistant up to 200 meters, has a tough mineral dial, and is protected by a hard resin case. Best of all, it fits practically any budget.
Now, it could've been constructed with higher-grade materials such as sapphire crystal or stainless steel, but I don't think this is a big issue, especially if you're just looking for a daily beater.
You won't have to be too careful while wearing this watch, so you can fish comfortably too!
- Very affordable
- Comfortable to wear
- Basic features compared to other fishing watches
- Some users prefer higher quality materials
Timex Intelligent Quartz Tide Compass Watch
Because the Timex Intelligent Quartz Tide Compass watch isn't digital, it looks a touch more elegant than other fishing watches.
Powered by an accurate quartz movement, this analog watch features a digital compass, a convenient nightlight for late fishing trips, a thermometer that measures air and water temperature, and a tide tracker, of course.
- Compass watch in brushed and polished gunmetal-tone finish with yellow color pops at dial
- 45 mm stainless steel case with mineral dial window
- Quartz movement with analog display
It's also water-resistant up to 100 meters.
Compared to the other fishing watches on this list, it's a bit lacking in features for the price, but I particularly like its aesthetics.
Its bright yellow accents contrast beautifully with the black casing and strap, giving it a rugged and playful look.
On the other hand, the traditional analog display makes it look very professional. Together, they make this fishing watch a great statement piece.
If you're content with having basic functions and average water resistance, you may want to consider this stylish fishing watch for everyday wear.
- Stylish analog-type fishing watch
- Accurate functions
- Harder to access features due to the analog display
- Some users feel the illumination isn't bright enough
- Only has a 100-meter water resistance
Garmin Quatix 5 Watch
Priced a little over $500, the Garmin Quatix 5 is definitely one of the more expensive fishing watches, but that's because it's packed with many great features.
Right away, you'll notice that this multisport marine smartwatch is very high-tech.
- Provides connectivity with compatible Garmin chart plotters and other devices to provide autopilot...
- Sail Racing assistance includes virtual starting line, distance to start line, race countdown timer,...
- Built-in Fusion-Link Lite App controls connected Stereo Active products, as well as other ANT...
It boasts built-in activity tracking to record data and performance metrics such as speed, depth, temperature, and wind.
Its advanced software also connects with Garmin-compatible chart plotters [R] and devices so you can switch your boat over to autopilot control.
Another of its unique features includes SailAssist capabilities, which are very useful for sail racing.
If you're doing other fitness activities besides fishing, you can use the Garmin Quatix 5 to monitor your heart rate while you run, bike, swim, or golf too.
Because it has different built-in activity profiles, it is a convenient tool you can take with you wherever you go.
Lastly, I like that it has comprehensive smart connectivity, which means your phone's alerts are conveniently synced to the fishing watch.
Everything—from your social media to your music—can be accessed quickly through its touchscreen interface.
Clearly very user-friendly, the Garmin Quatix 5 is one of the best fishing watches in the market, but be prepared to shell out more money for this one.
- All-around fitness watch
- Features advanced technology
- Widest variety of features
- Quite fragile
- Only has a 100-meter water resistance
What Is a Fishing Watch?
A fishing watch is a general term for timepieces that share several useful features for fishing and other water-related activities.
Since a fisherman watches tides, spends long periods of time outdoors, and constantly needs location data, fishing watches attempt to make these tasks a lot more convenient and efficient for him.
Generally, a good watch for fishing will have GPS tracking, water-resistant features, and other measurement tools such as a barometer.
Buying Guide for Fishing Watches
Now, what features should you look out for when buying a fishing watch?
For me, the best ones should have superb water-resistant features, long-lasting durability, accurate timekeeping, and some fun extra features.
Naturally, a fishing watch should be water-resistant. You can find fishing watches with varying water resistance levels, depending on the price, but around 200 meters is good for most marine-based activities.
If you're on a budget, 100 meters is fine if you don't expect to submerge it in deep waters anyway. For the average person, this is enough for everyday use.
You know your activity level best, so adjust accordingly!
It's essential that your fishing watch is durable. After all, you'll be using it outdoors a lot, so you want it to withstand different weather conditions, temperatures, and environments.
Always check the watch case, watch face, and watch band material, as these should be high-quality.
Titanium and stainless steel are often preferred to resin and other plastics because they're stronger and more lightweight. Materials such as stainless steel are rust-resistant too.
Additionally, shock-proof materials will help your watch last longer.
Do you see yourself confidently wearing the watch? Is it designed to your liking?
The perfect watch for you is one that you can see yourself wearing even years down the line. It should look exactly the way you want it.
Besides its aesthetics, a good watch should also be easy to wear for long periods of time.
The watch and watch strap should be comfortable. Some watches with metal finishings may feel too clunky on the wrist, which can be distracting while you're out fishing.
They should be lightweight and easily adjustable so that you won't even know you're wearing one.
Another vital function of a great fishing watch is accurate timekeeping. Make sure your watch runs on a quality movement, so you can always rely on it to display the correct time.
Consider its battery life as well—is it easily rechargeable, and how often will you need to charge the watch?
When you go on long, remote trips, you'll appreciate the convenience of a watch with long battery life.
A fishing watch can come with a ton of complications such as chronograph functions, app connectivity, barometers, altimeters, backlights, and so much more. Usually, more features translate to a steeper price.
The best option is the one you'll get the most use out of, so choose a fishing watch based on the features you know you'll need.
Ease of Use
Your watch may have a ton of features, but is it user-friendly?
At the end of the day, a great fishing watch is one that is easy to use.
Is the watch face big enough for the numbers to be seen clearly? Is the display big and bright? Readability is critical, especially when you're spending time outdoors, in the dark.
Now, depending on how comfortable you are with technology, you may prefer the simple interface of a basic watch or the convenient touchscreen features of smartwatches.
Nowadays, many people prefer touchscreen watches over traditional ones with a lot of different knobs and buttons.
It's also important to remember to read the provided user manual. Before taking your watch out to the water, you should be familiar with its many different functions so that you know what to do in any situation.
There are many budget or premium options for fishing watches, so it won't be hard to find one that'll fit your desired price range.
While quality usually increases with price, this isn't a hard rule, so don't go for a more expensive option just because you think it'll be better.
Definitely read up on its unique features, characteristics, and design, among others, so you're completely informed before making a purchase.
At the end of the day, though, how much you spend on a watch is still your decision!
How to Care for Your Fishing Watch
Care for your fishing watch by cleaning it regularly.
Since you'll be using it outdoors a lot, dirt and debris can get stuck in the fishing watch, leading to discoloration, funky smells, or even damages.
If you take it fishing, expect the dirty water to affect its condition as well.
With that said, it's a good idea to brush off any solid particles around your watch and clean it with a solution of water and mild detergent.
Some watches will also need regular maintenance and servicing, so be sure to check the brand's care directions.
If needed, you should bring your timepiece to an official service center for any repairs. This will definitely help you keep it in tip-top shape!
To Sum It Up
For those on a budget, consider the Casio G-Shock Rescue Digital Sport Watch. It's reliable, inexpensive, and durable—perfect for everyday wear. While it's not the most advanced, it has all the important functions you'd expect in a good watch.
For those looking for something more high-tech, the Suunto Traverse Alpha Watch is a great option. It's a smartwatch with a ton of great features, so you can conveniently sync everything to your phone too.
Out of all the best fishing watches though, my pick is the Casio Men's Pro Trek Tough Solar Digital Sport Watch because it's universally stylish, functional, and easy to use.
You not only get great value for money with this one, but you can also expect it to last you a long time.
A fishing watch is a great companion for many outdoor activities—not just fishing! This makes it a good investment and a smart choice for your everyday timepiece.
Now, use my guide to pick the perfect one for you!
Links, prices, and images were pulled from the Amazon API. Last updated on 2021-02-10.