best fishing watch
best fishing watch

Best Watches for Fishing

Best Fishing Watches – Buyers Guide

Best Watches for Fishing – Anglers who are looking to have a closer connection with nature may prefer minimalism. For example, think about tenkara fans.

Others are gear hounds who seek out tech that will help them catch more fish and do so more efficiently. Anglers are among them and they’re always looking for the best equipment.

A fishing watch might be something you have thought of if you fall into this category. Modern fishing watches are more than just a timepiece. They offer a variety of useful features that can be used to aid anglers.

What makes a fishing watch a good one? And what are the benefits to you? Continue reading to learn the answers.

You need the right tools and accessories for any activity. While some may be useful, others will improve your performance.

A watch can be a great tool for fishing, regardless of whether you do it as a profession or as a hobby. It is essential to choose the right watch for you. A watch that has the right features and information is crucial when fishing.

Watches for fishing have additional requirements regarding durability, water resistance, and build quality. Fishing can be physically demanding so you want to make sure your watch can withstand any kind of fishing.

This article will focus on fishing watches (watches that are used for fishing), which many of them are also known as tide watches depending on their functions. We’ll be looking at some of the most popular and well-respected fishing watches.

What to look for in a fishing watch

There are many types of fishing watches, and they come in many different forms. There are some things that you should consider, depending on your specific needs. There are many options if you only need a watch to show the time when you fish. Most fishing watches have a tide function that tells you when low tide and high tide are expected. This function is extremely useful for both professionals and hobbyists when fishing.

There are many other functions depending on the watch that you choose. It is up to the watch owner to decide what functions are essential and which functions can be lived without.

Water resistance

You must consider the water resistance of a fishing watch. Fishing is a watersport, and you will be exposed to water in many different ways. Your watch is also subject to this. It will most likely involve water splashes. However, for different reasons you might also be in the water. It is essential to ensure your watch is water-resistant.

You won’t likely be deep diving so you don’t need a watch with the highest water resistance of several hundred metres. However, you will need a watch that can withstand water splashes and short periods of submersion.

First, 30m of water resistance does not mean the watch can travel 50 minutes below the surface. 50m is the maximum static pressure the watch can withstand. In practice, this means the watch is not susceptible to splashes but it should not be submerged.

A watch that is water resistant to 100m/10ATM/330ft is recommended if you are looking for a watch you can swim with. Anything above this is fantastic and adds to the watch’s water resistance.

Easy to clean

It is important to keep your watch clean. It’s possible to get your watch dirty while fishing. You may be in direct contact with fish skin and salt water. It is important to have a watch that is easy-to-clean when you are out fishing.

It must be water resistant enough to wash and dry easily. For a fishing watch, leather straps might not be the best choice. While nylon straps are possible, they are not the best.

Rubber, silicone, and metallic are the most popular choices for straps when it comes to fishing.


It is important that the fishing watch is sturdy and durable. It is important that the watch can withstand shocks and bangs when it is used for fishing.

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Fishing can be very rough so it is not uncommon for your watch to be exposed. Fishing can be dangerous.

Many watches are made from durable silicone or rubber to ensure they are shock-proof and last longer.

Good legibility

Watches for fishing are also important because they must be legible.

You want to be able tell the time when you’re fishing by looking at your wrist. However, it is not always possible. Visibility can be affected by bright sun, rain, or other factors. This is why the watch focuses so much on legibility.

The watch should be legible in bright light (e.g. when fishing in the sun), but also in dark conditions, such as when fishing at night or in the early morning before sunrise.


Let’s now talk about the functions and features of fishing watches.

We believe every fishing watch should include GPS and compass. It is not necessary for all.

A number of reasons can make the GPS function extremely useful for fishers, such as marking good spots for fishing, identifying hazards and many other things.

While many fisherman already have a GPS, a watch GPS can be used as a backup or to help you locate it when you aren’t able to. It’s easy and convenient to have access to your GPS via your watch.


A compass is another useful feature for a fishing watch. A compass has many advantages, and although they can be both digital or mechanical, a mechanical one is more useful because it doesn’t require batteries or any other technological parts.

Battery Life

Many fishing watches can be used digitally, but they also have batteries. It is worth looking into the battery life of a fishing watch. Some watches have chargers while others have batteries that can be replaced when they run low.

While the battery life of watches varies, think about how often you fish and how durable the watch is.


The barometer function is next. The barometer function measures the air pressure. It is useful because it tells you a lot more about the weather and the tendencies of the weather, such as if there is stormy weather or blue skies. Low pressure usually means bad weather. High pressure is normally good.

It can be very important to know the weather conditions so you can plan your fishing accordingly. It is important to remember that weather can also impact how fish behave which in turn affects the quality of your fishing. The weather and pressure changes can be sensed by fish, making them more active in the storms. The barometer can be a great tool to help you fish better.

Moon phase and Tidal information

Last, but not least, there are the dial and moon phase functions.

The tide function is a measure of tide status and indicates whether it’s low or high tide. This information is crucial to have when fishing in areas that are affected by tides. Some fishing watches do not have tide charts, so it is worth looking into if you are fishing in waters that are affected by the tide. The moon phase can also have an effect on fish so it is useful to know what the status of your moon is.

Let’s now look at some of the top-rated and most sought-after fishing watches available.

Best Fishing Watches Reviewed

Suunto Traverse Alpha

SUUNTO Traverse Alpha - Black/Red

Size 50mm x 15mm
Weight: 75g
Water resistance 10 ATM/100 Meter
Cas: Composite
Lens: sapphire crystal
Strap/bracelet Nylon with a silicone aftermarket choice
Batteries Rechargeable lithium-ion
GPS: Yes
Compass: Yes
Tidal chart: Yes
Moon phases Yes
Barometer Yes

Suunto is a trusted brand for outdoormen. Their military-grade smart watches have been tested in harsh conditions by soldiers, hunters, anglers, and other outdoorsmen. Although normal smartwatch purchasers aren’t as impressed by what Suunto has to offer, it’s difficult to find outdoor enthusiasts who aren’t.

The Traverse Alpha is, in our opinion, a solid choice and a welcome addition. Although it is not perfect, the Traverse Alpha has a winning combination in looks, durability, features and battery life which earns it our top ranking. While we’ll point out its shortcomings, this is the best option for us.

This watch is packed with smart tech. It features a variable accuracy, full-function GPS system, weather updates and barometer readings, moon phase data, sunrise/sunset/moonrise/moonset info, a thermometer, a digital compass, and available tidal data, anglers won’t be disappointed by what this watch offers. This watch is the most feature-rich of all the options, which is quite impressive considering the Garmin Fenix 5.

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The barometer readings can be viewed in increments of 1 hPa/.032 inHg. A storm warning is also available to help you stay safe. The Traverse Alpha’s compass can be adjusted to adjust for declination automatically up to 5 degrees. This is more than enough to return you to your truck or launch.

The GPS is simple to use, and good enough to get you to the right place even at lower accuracy settings.

Like the Garmin Fenix 5 and the Suunto Traverse Alpha, the Suunto Traverse Alpha also offers “breadcrumb trailing” and a “find back”, which can help you return to your starting point. These extras are more useful for anglers than hunters, but they can be a great addition if you fish remote streams regularly or hike to your honey hole.

This watch is bomb-proof according to real-world users.

The Traverse Alpha is powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion batteries with a unique power system that draws electricity from a clip attached to the face. The battery is easy to use and lasts a good amount of time with the GPS set to low accuracy. It’s good enough to provide 50m resolution and should last for at least three days in the real world. You can expect to fish for a full day on the high setting.

The NATO-style nylon strap is the only downside to this watch. The silicone replacement is recommended immediately as it will soon start to smell. It is also quite large, so people with smaller wrists might find it distracting.


  • Amazing looks
  • Bright
  • Extremely durable
  • Simple to understand
  • Amazing features


  • GPS enabled battery has acceptable life expectancy
  • Bulky
  • Replacement of nylon straps is urgently needed

Casio AQW101-1AV

Casio Men's AQW101-1AVCF Active Dial Multi-Task Gear Sport Watch

Size 46mm
Water resistance20 ATM/200 Meters
Cas: Resin
Lens: Resin
Strap/bracelet 26mm resin
Batteries Lithium ion
Compass: No
Tidal chart: No
Moon phases Yes
Barometer No

Casio’s fishing watches are a great choice for those on a budget. They offer fewer options than most of their competitors, but still deliver quality and durability.

Don’t expect GPS, a compass, tidal charts, or a fancy barometer. Think rugged styling and real-world toughness. This Casio is water-resistant to 20 ATM, and can withstand years of fishing.

The watch has three specific fishing applications. It can display a thermometer and a moon phase indicator. However, the thermometer can also be adjusted to reflect your body heat. This watch is a great buy because of the fish indicator.

Four fish icons are used by the Casio to predict how good the fish will bite. The Casio does this by combining the moon phase and time. However, most anglers agree that this method works.

This alone is reason enough to spend the few dollars it will cost you.

The face is bright enough to read in full sunlight, well-illuminated to fish at night, and easy to read. It can be difficult to read some of its features due to the analog hands. There is also a lot of clutter that you need to get used too. When setting up this watch, it is important to read and comprehend the manual.

The battery life is great because it doesn’t have any intensive-draw features such as PS connectivity.

This is a great choice for anglers who can live without advanced features.


  • It’s affordable
  • Bright
  • Durable
  • Battery life is amazing
  • The fish indicator actually works!


  • GPS is missing high-end features
  • Dial clutter

Casio Pro Tech PRW2500T

Casio Wristwatches (Model: PRW-2500T-7CR)

Size50.5mm x 15mm
Water resistance20 ATM/200 Meters
Strap/bracelet titanium
Batteriessolar rechargeable
Tidal chart:Yes
Moon phasesYes

Casio Protech is a marked upgrade in price and function from its predecessor. This is Casio’s premium offering that’s both more expensive and more useful. It’s a great place to start if you want a product Casio designed specifically for anglers.

Contrary to other Casio we reviewed, this Casio has no analog features. Instead, it uses a data-rich liquid digital display. A number of fishing-specific applications, in addition to the standard watch features are also available.

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Although this watch does not have a GPS, it has a digital thermometer, tidal chart and moon phase indicator. These are all easy to read and access. We also appreciate the fact that the tide and moon data are right in front of you.

Pro Tech’s compass has 16 points. It measures 1-degree units and includes an automatic declination adjustment. This keeps it pointing north. The barometer measures pressure in increments of 0.05 inHg in 1 hPa.

This watch has a liquid crystal display that is visible both day and night. You can also expect Casio ruggedness. It’s possible to break it, but we wouldn’t be surprised!

Solar charging is another great feature on the Pro Tech. The battery life is excellent and the watch can be charged by simply being positioned in the sun.

We have one criticism: the watch’s case is too big. This makes it bulky and heavy for those with smaller wrists.


  • Bright
  • Durable
  • Simple to understand
  • Solar recharging can extend the battery’s life by extending its lifespan.
  • Amazing features


  • GPS is not available
  • Bulky

Garmin Fenix 5

Garmin fenix 5, Premium and Rugged Multisport GPS Smartwatch, Slate Gray/Black Band, 47 MM

Size47mm x 15.5mm
Water resistance10 ATM/100 Meter
Cas:Fiber-reinforced Polymer with Stainless Steel Rear Cover
Lens:Chemically enhanced glass, sapphire or sapphire crystal, also known as sapphire glass.
Strap/bracelet 22mm silicone
BatteriesRechargeable lithium-ion
Tidal chart:No
Moon phasesYes

Garmin’s Fenix 5 smart watch is equipped with all the necessary bells and whistles for any activity. Garmin has thought about what features anglers need and wants, and the Fenix 5 fisherman’s tool is top-of-the-line.

The only thing an angler may miss is tidal chart information. This is something Garmin should address but we can live with it given the Fenix’s other functions. Connect IQ is required for some features.

We are particularly impressed with Garmin’s TracBack safety system. Garmin explained that TracBack allows users to make a return on a previously traveled route or path without having to mark any waypoints. As it moves, the GPS device stores a tracklog. The device will analyze the tracklog points numbering in the hundreds of thousands and determine the most important and then create a route back to the original starting point.

It’s a great feature to have if you get lost.

Although not as water-resistant as the Casio’s 10 ATM, the Fenix 5 is quite tough. The sapphire crystal, which is available with three levels of lenses (and the most expensive and robust), is the best option.

The silicone strap is a great choice. It provides all-day comfort and durability.

The Fenix 5 is powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery. Garmin claims that you can get up to 24 hours of use from it with GPS enabled. In practice, a little less is better. However, a full day of fishing with GPS enabled is realistic.


  • Amazing looks
  • Bright
  • Durable
  • Simple to understand
  • Amazing features


  • GPS enabled battery has acceptable life expectancy

Our Pick – Suunto’s Traverse Alpha!

It was difficult to choose a top choice, but Sunnto’s Traverse Alpha won us over.

The rugged design, bomb-proof toughness and full-featured options make it a legend among outdoor enthusiasts. While it may not be popular with IT people in New York and San Francisco, the smartwatch has become the preferred choice for real-world anglers, hunters, and fisherman.

Expect features like a variable accuracy, a full-function GPS system, weather updates and barometer readings, moon phase data, sunrise/sunset/moonrise/moonset info, a thermometer, a digital compass, and tidal data–all of which can be powered for at least a full day’s adventure. If you are far from an outlet, setting the GPS system to lower accuracy can increase battery life by several days.

We recommend the Traverse Alpha to be used with caution.

The Fenix 5 is almost as good, but it has a few more useful features than the Fenix 5. The Fenix may be a better option if you don’t like the idea of having to change bands or want a more tailored look.

The Casio QW101-1AV is a great value for money if you have a tight budget.

These watches can track tide and time, so you have every advantage on the water.

Lewis Mark is a vastly experienced fly fisher. His encyclopedic knowledge of fly tying has led to start blog on fishing. He also review Fishing equipment based on his knowledge and experience.