The 10 Best Gps Watches For Hiking Of 2023, Tested By Our Experts

Scott Nelson By, Scott Nelson
Best Gps Watches For Hiking
Best Gps Watches For Hiking

The Rundown

1. Best Overall: Apple Watch SE (2nd Gen) Smart Watch

The Apple Watch is the ideal personal gadget for whatever you enjoy doing since it gives you access to the tens of thousands of apps available in the App Store directly on your wrist. Read Review

2. Best For Price: Fitbit Charge 4 Fitness

This watch has real-time workout tracking with more than 20 different goal-oriented exercise modes. It is also water resistant up to 50 meters, allowing you to track swims and wear it in the shower and other wet environments. Read Review

3. Best Versatile: Fitbit Versa 3 Health & Fitness Smartwatch

This Health & Fitness Smartwatch offers a range of features to help you reach your fitness goals. With built-in GPS, you can easily track your real-time pace and distance, while the Fitbit app provides an intensity map of your workout for detailed analysis. Read Review

4. Best Durable: Suunto Core Classic Outdoor Watch

This Suunto watch is perfect for various outdoor activities because of its adaptability and durability, including running, swimming, cycling, gym workouts, hiking, and more. Read Review

5. Best Design: Garmin Vivoactive 4, GPS Smartwatch

Designed to offer comfortable and durable wear without the bulk of other smartwatches, the Vivoactive 4 offers customizable watch faces for any occasion. Read Review

If you love to explore the outdoors, you'll want to ensure you have the best gear. A GPS watch is one of the essential pieces of equipment for any outdoor enthusiast. GPS watches are necessary for hikers to stay on track and not get lost in unfamiliar terrain.

They can also track progress, measure distance and time, and even monitor heart rate. With so many GPS watches on the market, it can be hard to know which is best for you. That's why we've put together this list of the best GPS watches for hikers, so you can find the perfect watch to help you get the most out of your next hike.

After nearly -research hours, We think the best gps watches for hiking is Apple Watch SE (2nd Gen) Smart Watch. This watch has a rear case that has updated its design and color matched. It has been manufactured using an innovative production method that reduces carbon emissions by more than 80 percent. Or you can check the Fitbit Charge 4 Fitness as the other great option, even if the first option didn't meet your requirements.

Our Top Picks

TOP Choice #1 Apple Watch SE (2nd Gen) Smart Watch
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You can comprehensively understand your health, including alerts if you have an irregular rhythm or abnormally high or low heart rate. This watch has a rear case that has updated its design and color matched and has been manufactured using an innovative production method that cuts its carbon emissions by more than 80 percent. The updated Workout app provides you with new options to train and improved stats that provide additional information regarding your workout performance.

In addition, you'll get a free trial of Apple Fitness+ when you buy an Apple Watch. You will have everything you need to track your fitness, maintain your connections, keep an eye on your health, and protect yourself. The SE 2 does not include the ultra-wideband U1 chip; nevertheless, because its functionality is currently restricted, you are not missing out on much at this point. It is now up to twenty percent faster than before and comes with features such as Crash Detection and improved training analytics; overall, it is a better value than ever.

TOP Choice #2 Fitbit Charge 4 Fitness
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During outdoor activities such as running, riding, hiking, and more, you can make use of the built-in GPS to track your pace and distance on the screen, and the app will also provide you with a workout intensity map that displays how your heart rate changed along the course of your journey. Feel a buzz when you hit your goal heart rate zones while exercising with Active Zone Minutes, and celebrate when you earn extra minutes outside of activity with Active Zone Minutes.

You can see the average and range of your nighttime SpO2 readings displayed on your wrist, and you can view patterns over the past week on the Fitbit app. You can also maintain a nightly log of your skin temperature and compare it to your baseline to see how it varies. On the other hand, it is not sold in all markets; it is only displayable via the Fitbit app, which is the only place you can access it.

TOP Choice #3 Fitbit Versa 3 Health & Fitness Smartwatch
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This Fitbit watch has Active Zone Minutes makes use of your heart rate at rest as a measurement of exercise effort, and alerts you when you need to ratchet up the intensity of your workouts so that you may get the most out of your time in the gym. Fitbit Versa 3 is also water resistant to 50 meters. You can get more than six days of battery life on a single full charge, fast charging, and an additional day of battery life in twelve minutes.

Fitbit's improved heart rate technology and PurePulse 2.0 allows for more accurate monitoring of your heart rate around the clock. You can simply speak to your watch and use the Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa Built-in feature to receive brief news updates, program bedtime reminders and alarms, control your smart home devices, and much more. Although it is a bit pricey, considering everything that the Versa 3 has to offer, the investment is more than justified by the price tag.

4 Suunto Core Classic Outdoor Watch
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This product features a design reminiscent of that seen in Scandinavia and is crafted using exceptionally long-lasting materials. It monitors your scores, your daily activities, and the amount of sleep you get to help you strike a healthy balance between the demands of your life, your training, and your recovery.

This watch not only displays dual time zones, a date, and an alarm, but it also tells you the estimated times for dawn and sunset, which can help you make the most of the daylight hours. Additionally, it has a depth meter that is accurate up to 30 feet, so you can use it to measure the depth of water accurately. When you're outside, the watch face is simple to read, but when you're indoors, it can be more challenging to make out the numbers. Because it has a barometer built right in, this watch allows you to anticipate shifting weather conditions. An intelligent storm alarm will be able to detect a decrease in air pressure, which will then sound an alarm to warn you that storms are on their way.

With the Vivoactive 4, Garmin is taking the smartwatch to a new level with a GPS smartwatch that offers more advanced features than ever. With built-in heart rate, galvanic skin response, GPS, and an altimeter with barometric altimeter, it's also able to monitor your energy levels, pulse ox, respiration, and stress, as well as your sleep quality. Downloading music to your watch is a breeze, and you can even import playlists from services like Spotify, Amazon Music, or Deezer. However, you may require a paid subscription with a music service provided by a third party.

This watch can also connect to headphones, allowing you to listen to music without using your phone. It can record all the different ways you move with more than 20 preloaded GPS and indoor sports applications. These apps include yoga, running, swimming, and other activities. You can get animated routines that are simple to follow directions on the screen of your watch. 

6 Garmin Fenix 6X Pro
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You can enhance your workouts with the Fenix 6 Pro by adding features such as mapping, music, intelligent pace planning, and more. These durable gadgets, designed to be worn throughout the day, offer sophisticated training status, running and cycling dynamics, and environment-adjusted Vo2 Max estimates directly at your fingertips.

In addition, a first-of-its-kind pace pro function helps keep your pacing plan on track by delivering grade-adjusted assistance as you run a course. This tool was developed to assist in keeping your pacing strategy on track. You will have topo maps and ski maps preloaded for more than 2,000 ski resorts worldwide.

Enhanced wrist heart rate is one more highlight among many others. However, the data and information produced by these devices are intended to approximate the tracked activity and metrics. Still, it is possible that it will not be entirely accurate. To get the most out of your wearable device, the adjustable power Manager modes allow you to monitor and adjust how different settings and sensors affect battery life. 

7 Garmin Venu Sq, GPS Smartwatch
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This Garmin display has a vibrant color, and it also comes equipped with a GPS tracker; it finds out how well you sleep, how stressed you are, how much energy you have left in your Body Battery, and so much more. You can go for a run, walk, or ride your bike, or you can select one of the more than 20 preloaded apps for an indoor or outdoor sport. With intelligent notifications delivered directly to your wrist, you will never miss a call or text message again.

Garmin Pay allows you to make contactless payments and breeze past checkout lines and specific transit systems. Battery life that lasts up to six days between charges will enable you to go longer between charges. Nevertheless, the first time you use it, you could find that it is a little challenging to use, but after some time, you will become accustomed to it.

More To Consider

10 COROS VERTIX GPS Adventure Watch
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Product Images, Product Titles, Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API

Which Criteria Do Our Experts Advice To Consider When Purchasing Of best gps watches for hiking?

According to our experts, you should understand some sides of the product to get the finest one. Like others, best gps watches for hiking of 2023 might include many factors for you to take into account. For that, each among best gps watches for hiking will have unique features and challenges as well to consist of.

The focus on the following features of best gps watches for hiking is highly recommended, given they have come together with tech-evaluated certification:


A rugged design is usually complimentary to a hiking watch's look in the wilderness. They're usually big and bulky and don't have the right appearance for a night on the town. You might be able to use a replaceable watch band to dress it up a bit, if you want to wear your watch outside of hiking.


You want the watch band to be comfortable while hiking and you want to make sure it won't irritate your skin. It is important to keep sweat buildup in mind, as soft and ventilated bands prevent it. More importantly, the weight of the watch is important to keep in mind. A watch weighing less than 60 grams (about 2 ounces) is most comfortable.


You will eventually get rained on if you hike enough. A water-resistant watch will save you the expense of purchasing a new one if it gets wet. When wearing your watch in the water, ensure you know the depth of water resistance and what you plan to do. Some watches are water-resistant up to 30 metres and others are water-resistant up to 300 metres. If you want to paddleboard with your watch, 30 metres should be sufficient, but if you want to go deep-sea diving, you need a 300-metre water resistance.

Extra Features

Are you looking for a basic watch or one with all the bells and whistles? The following are some of the features commonly found on watches for the outdoors. You should keep in mind that these features will increase the price but also provide convenience: Music, GPS, compass, heart-rate monitor, barometric altimeter, barometer, altitude...


Make sure you are comfortable using the watch. It may be a touchscreen watch or a watch with buttons. Before you buy a smart watch, you should assess whether the buttons are comfortable for you to use. The buttons on a watch are not affected by your sweat, so you will not have to worry about removing your glove to use the watch if you are hiking in cooler weather. On the other hand, buttons are harder for some people to use.

Battery Life

You should be able to follow your activities with your watch. Some watches possess batteries that last for at least a year, while others require recharging every evening, and yet others are charged with solar energy. You might want to bring a portable battery charger if your watch needs to be recharged frequently. If you are hiking and your watch dies, you should bring a portable charger with you.


Are Hiking Watches Worth It?

If you're going on an extended hike and want altimeter features, a compass, or GPS navigation, the value of hiking watches is clear. You may also measure lap times and track your starting point to find your way back if you need to.

Can I Use My Phone GPS For Hiking?

Yes, hands-free GPS is available on most modern smartphones. However, if you want a hands-free trip or intend to hike on a route with rough terrain where the risk of breaking your phone screen is high, you might prefer a good hiking watch. GPS chips are frequently utilised independently of WiFi and cellular networks.

Are Hiking Watches Comfortable?

If you choose wisely, you can find lightweight hiking watches constructed of materials that prevent perspiration, for instance, a rubber watch. You will not be able to detect the watch on your wrist until you require one of its functions, making this an excellent hiking choice.

Can I Use Google Maps For Hiking?

While using a specific hiking maps app is a better choice for navigating to a friend’s house or checking the traffic on the way to work, hiking Google maps is not the best option. Instead, you should use a dedicated hiking maps app that includes trail maps, topographical imagery, and offline functionality.

Can Hiking Watches Be Used Offline?

Yes, all hiking watches can function offline for navigation and counting your steps. You will miss the mobile syncing that allows you to transfer your fitness data to your phone for long-term safekeeping, as well as downloading updated weather, receiving notifications, and similar features that require an internet connection.

Do I Need A GPS Watch For Hiking?

It depends on the nature of your hike and how long it will take you to complete it. If you are taking a casual hike or undertaking short excursions, a standard hiking watch might be sufficient. But if you are hiking longer distances or traversing tougher terrain, you should invest in a quality hiking watch with GPS, an altimeter, emergency support, and a barometer.

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About Scott Nelson

Scott Nelson

Scott Nelson is a freelance writer who specializes in camping and wildlife topics for CampFireUSA. He has written for several outdoor magazines and websites, and he enjoys nothing more than spending a weekend in the woods with his family. Scott is an experienced camper and backpacker, and he has also spent considerable time studying the behavior of bears and other large mammals.

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