A watch can be a great multi-purpose tool for sailors just like a Swiss army knife. Modern watches can do a lot more than keeping time and some watches are even tailor-made for sailors. Whether it’s chronograph or tachymeter function for racing or apps to track your boating, modern watches are versatile.
These watches come with tide function, compass, altimeter, barometer, and even apps that can make fishing, racing, or enjoying a weekend on the yacht fun.
However, not every watch has these features or meets the level of the standard required on a top-notch boating watch. That’s why I have researched the best boating watches that you can take on your yachting & sailing adventure.
Quick links to specific parts of the article:
- Best Boating Watches Comparison Table
- Best Nautical Watches For Boating
- What Should I Look For In A Sailing Watch?
Best Boating Watches Comparison Table
VIEW ON AMAZON
Best Boating Watch
Best Smartwatch for Boating, Yachting & Sailing
Garmin Quatix 6 Multisports Watch
Best Affordable Nautical Watch
Best Tide Watch For Sailors
Timex Intelligent Quartz Tide Watch
Best Nautical Watches For Boating
1. Casio Pro Trek
When it comes to making reliable and affordable timepieces there are only a few brands that can rival Casio. Take a look at this Casio Pro Trek watch, while from a distance it may seem like a simple digital watch but that’s not true at all. The watch is loaded with various smart features which will come in handy whenever you will go outside sailing, fishing, or any other activity.
First and foremost, connect this watch to your Android or iOS smartphone using the Pro Trek Connected app. Once connected, you can use the location indicator on the watch. It allows you to save any location whether it’s shore, fishing spot, or starting point of the sail. So when you will be tired after the boating session, the watch hand will show way back to the saved location.
With the app, you can import moon phase, tide, sunrise, and sunset time for more than 3,300 locations all over the world. And, we all know the full moon is best for fishing, surfing or you can avoid tidal waves for smooth sailing.
Besides that, the watch comes equipped with an altimeter, barometer, compass, and thermometer. The barometer is a very important tool for sailors as it can detect falling pressure which is an indicator of rain or storm. Therefore, you will be able to head back to the shore before getting caught in a storm. Your phone’s battery may die in the middle of nowhere but you would be able to head back using the compass. And, I am happy to report that these ABC sensor’s features aren’t smartphone-dependent.
On the land, the watch can measure your steps as it comes with a built-in pedometer. Talking about dimensions, the case of the watch is 58mm in diameter making it the perfect watch for a big wrist. And, the strap of the watch is 22mm wide which is made of durable resin material.
Are you wondering how often would I need to charge this sailing watch? The answer is never, as it uses a replaceable coin cell battery which according to Casio will last up to 2 years. In my opinion, all these features make it the best cheap smartwatch for sailing with so many features available on Amazon.
2. Garmin Quatix 6 Multisports Watch
If you want an all-in-one watch for your boating, sailing, or yachting then look no further. Garmin Qautix is one of the best smartwatches for boating or yachting money can buy. The watch is built from the ground up keeping the sailor’s needs in mind and comes with boating apps and features built-in.
For instance, if you are a yacht racer then I am happy to report that the watch comes with a built-in race assist function. You can mark the imaginary starting line and race start point and then use the watch as a regatta timer.
Not only that, if you have a high-end boat or a yacht then you can connect the watch to the boat. Once connected the watch will show you boat speed, engine rpm, GPS path, and more on the watch screen in real-time.
Moreover, you can even control the music system on the boat using the Garmin using the Fusion-Link System on the watch. However, before purchasing the watch do ensure that the watch is compatible with your boat’s onboard electronics. You can check all the compatible equipment on the watch by clicking here.
Besides GPS, the watch supports GLONASS and Galileo navigation systems so you will be able to pinpoint your location anywhere. You can also transmit freshwater charts and premier coastal charts to the watch’s screen in real-time.
Moreover, Garmin Quatix 6 also features ABC(Altimeter, Barometer, and Compass) sensors which are must-have tools for a sailor. Sailing isn’t the only forte of the watch as it features built-in profiles for skiing, kayaking, Stand Up Paddleboarding(SUP), and more.
When you will be on the land, the watch will be able to track your run, swim, and other workout sessions. At night, you will be able to track sleep using the watch and it will tell you the next morning how well-rested you are. If you notice low sleep quality then you can work on improving your sleeping habits.
If you are wondering with so many features the watch must offer poor battery life then let me tell you it’s quite the opposite. Most watches offer 4-6 hours of battery life with GPS enabled but this one offers 24 hours of continuous GPS tracking. In normal smartwatch mode, expect the watch to easily last a week with all the daily use features enabled.
These are some of the many things that this watch can do and that’s why this is considered to be one of the top boating watches. I personally think that the high price of this boating smartwatch is justified. Take a look at this smartwatch, I assure you that you won’t be disappointed.
3. Timex Intelligent Quartz Tide Temp Compass Watch
Timex without a doubt has made a name for itself with affordable Timex watches. However, the brand has been evolving over the years and today makes watches with many complications. Like this Intelligent quartz watch which also has compass and tide function for sailors.
Using the button on the 8 o’clock position you can enable the compass. Once pressed, the red watch hand would point towards north directions for few seconds. Make sure that the compass is calibrated before using the watch as it might not be accurate or reliable out of the box.
The button at the 4 o’clock position enables the tide function on the watch. On pressing the button if the red hand points to the 12 o’clock position then it means the tide is currently high. Depending on the time, the watch hand would switch back & forth between high and low tide positions.
If you aren’t impressed already then let me tell you that watch also comes with a built-in thermometer. You can use it to measure the water or ambient room temperature. However, you would need to remove the watch from your wrist to get accurate readings on it.
Talking about the dimensions, the watch features a 45mm case which is accompanied by a 16mm leather strap. Overall, the looks of the watch make it seem like a premium Swiss watch with sophisticated complications.
The watch also comes with a luminous coating on the watch hands that makes them glow in the dark making it easier to read the time. Similarly, this is also a Timex Indiglo watch so pressing the crown will light up the entire display. In addition to so many features, the watch is water-resistant up to 100m making it suitable for swimming, boating, and other similar activities.
In my opinion, this is the best boating analog watch in the sub $200 dollar category from Timex. You can wear it while sailing all day or at the bar, the looks of the watch will help you stand out.
4. Apple Watch Series 6
Without a doubt, Apple Watch is one of the best smartwatches available in the market for iOS users. It can track your health vitals, sports and fitness activities, and do a lot more. So it shouldn’t come as no surprise that it is one of the top boater watches in the market as well.
What makes it the ideal watch for yachting, sailing or other activities is the wide selection of boating apps available on the App Store. You can install sailing apps like Waterspeed which can display wind speed, tides, weather, and gust for the location you are sailing at. Moreover, you can track your max speed, duration of sail, view speed in knots, miles, and km within the app. Waterspeed is one of the many boat watch apps available on the App Store.
If you desire convenience then you can go with Apple Watch with cellular network support. It would allow you to leave your phone with your partner on the shore while you enjoy the tides. You will be able to make and receive calls or even use data without needing your phone.
Don’t worry about the durability of the screen as it is protected by sapphire glass. It is the best type of glass any watch can use for protecting the screen and is almost unscratchable. You can also replace the stock strap with a sports strap available for the Apple watch for better grip and durability.
The watch also features a wide variety of sensors which includes a barometer, compass, and always-on altimeter.
Besides sailing, you can use Apple Pay to do contactless payments while shopping at Target or Starbucks. The watch’s built-in microphone and speaker allow you to play music and use Siri on the watch itself. You can also connect Bluetooth speakers, earphones, heart rate straps, and various other Bluetooth accessories to the watch.
The two shortcomings the watch have are that it doesn’t support Android devices and offers an average 1-2 days battery life. Otherwise, it is a fully feature-loaded watch for sailors and without a doubt one of the best.
5. Tissot Sailing-Touch
It is a common misconception that good and reliable Swiss watches cost thousands of dollars. And, the perfect watch to break that misconception is this Tissot watch priced under 500. As the name suggests, this is a watch made specifically for sailors and comes with various features for them.
The first feature is the ability to calculate the speed of your sail during a race. This watch features buttons below and above the crown that allows you to feed the distance of the sail. After entering the distance, you can start the countdown, and once you have crossed the finish line, stop the clock to know your sail speed. It is the perfect tool for having some fun with your fellow sailors on weekends.
All the information would be presented to you on the neat digital display at the 6 o’clock position. Now if you will notice that the watch has various features written at the different locations of the dial. For instance, Regatta at the 2 o’clock position, the speed at the 4 o’clock position, and so on. Allow me to be the first one to tell you that this is also a touchscreen watch! And, to use its features all you have to do is touch the options.
Touching various options would enable tide function, compass, Regatta timer, and so on. If you are looking for a watch with a Regatta timer then this might be the best for the job. You can set a 0-10 minute timer on the watch and as soon the timer would end, it would switch to the chronograph function. So you will have to focus on the racing without having to constantly fiddle around with the watch.
The case of the watch that houses the dial and display is 45mm in diameter. And, the dial of the watch is protected by the top-of-the-line sapphire glass which is highly scratch resistant.
Moreover, this Tissot watch is accompanied by a 20mm rubber strap which is perfect for water sports activities. However, it is to be noted that the watch only supports official Tissot straps. Still, that shortcoming is easy to overlook as it is also a Swiss-made quartz watch and features top-of-the-line build quality. Not only that, but you also get plenty of smart features which makes it the best watch for yacht owners, sailors, or kayaking.
6. Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster Seahawk
If you are a sailor who often travels around the world then Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster Sea Hawk is the watch you need. The watch comes with the ability to keep track time of major 30 cities from all over the world. You can even keep track of other timezones using the dedicated UTC sub-dial on the watch located at the 10 o’clock position.
For competitive sports, the watch comes with a yacht race timer, chronograph function, split lap timer, and countdown timer function. You can even set 2 separate alarms on the watch which can be useful for reminding important tasks like refueling the engine.
With so many features you must be thinking that this watch would require a battery replacement every 6 months. Rest assured that you won’t require battery replacement for a long time as the watch comes with Eco-drive technology. This tech allows the watch to charge itself using solar as well as artificial fluorescent lights.
Talking about the dimensions, the watch features a 44mm case which isn’t too big nor too small in my opinion. Along with that, you get a 22mm rubber strap with the watch which won’t corrode like bracelet straps when exposed to saltwater.
Don’t worry about the watch not meeting your expectations as Citizen is known for delivering the best performance with their watches. You can see that confidence as the watch comes with 5 years warranty so the watch would last for a long time. To conclude, I would say that this is one of the best nautical watches available on Amazon. Do check it out.
7. Casio SGW-100-2BCF Twin Digital Display Quartz
If you want a sailing watch that is easy to operate then you are better off going with this Casio watch. It is simple to operate like any other Casio digital watch but what sets it apart from other models is its features.
The watch comes with a built-in compass so you can ensure that you are always heading in the right direction. Along with directions, you can keep track of temperature as well using the built-in thermometer of the watch.
Not just that, the watch comes with a built-in countdown timer that you can use for yacht racing or other water sports activities. Also, the watch meets specifications for diving as it is water-resistant up to 200m. Therefore, you can go scuba diving wearing this watch on your next trip without worrying about damaging it.
While wearing the watch you won’t feel like it’s bulky as it weighs only 1.9 ounces (54 grams). Similarly, the case of the watch is 45mm in diameter, and the resin strap is 19mm wide. This will be quite a comfortable watch for sailors who want a simple digital without many sub-dials in it.
I recommend this watch to boating lovers who are looking for the best affordable boat watch that doesn’t compromise on quality.
What Should You Look For In A Sailing Watch?
I have shortlisted various types of sailor’s watches and smartwatches that are available on Amazon. However, that doesn’t mean every watch is ideal for you on this list.
If you are a sailor that likes to explore the deepest corners of the oceans then I would recommend a watch with ABC(Altimeter, Barometer, and Compass) sensors. They can come in very handy to find direction and track atmospheric changes in real-time.
On the other hand, if you plan to remain close to the shore then any watch on the list would suffice. All of them have temperature and compass sensors built-in. For high-end yacht owners, I would recommend the Garmin Quatix smartwatch. It can be connected to the entertainment system, navigation equipment and monitor the boat in real-time.
Which Garmin Watch Is Best For Boating?
Garmin Qauatix 6 is the best watch for sailing as it can connect to your boat’s navigation and entertainment system. Once connected you can view crucial information or control the entertainment system using the watch’s screen. Besides that, it also comes with other functions like a regatta timer, ABC sensors, and more for sailors.
Is The Apple Watch Good For Sailing?
Yes, Apple Watch comes with access to App Store which allows you to download various apps like Waterspeed to track your sail. You can also use the watch to make or pick up calls while sailing as it comes with a built-in speaker and microphone.
Which Is The Best Watch For Boating?
Tissot Sailing Touch is the best watch for boating as it comes with a built-in tachymeter, chronograph, and regatta timer function. The biggest plus point of the watch is that it can be operated just like a touchscreen smartwatch with your fingers.
What Is A Regatta Countdown?
It’s difficult to keep boat stationery on water compared to a car on a race track. That’s why sailors are given a 5-minute headstart before the final countdown begins so that they can maneuver until the final countdown begins. This 5-minute backward countdown is known as the regatta countdown.