A surf watch is an essential tool a surfer or a wave rider should possess. It has a range of exciting features like tide data, wave counters, moon phases, wind speed, heart monitors, and GPS systems. Designed to help surfers determine the best time for surfing, these watches are proving to be mini surf computers on the wrist.
A good surf watch can also help improve your performance in the water by monitoring your current and past sessions. We have curated a list of the best surf watches to help you find the right one for the best time in the water.
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10 Best Surf Watches
Harnessing the sun’s power, the Garmin Instinct Solar Surf Watch gives you good battery life. Built to meet the U.S. military standards 810 for shock, thermal, and water resistance, this GPS smartwatch is waterproof to 100m. It tracks the weather and tide data, monitors oxygen saturation levels and heart rate, and provides a surf activity report that tracks your travel speed and distance.
It is preloaded with sports profiles that can be used for hiking, running, and biking. The built-in global satellite navigation systems and three-axis compass assist you in tracking the challenging environments. You can get notifications when you pair it with a compatible smartphone.
The CKE Men’s Sports Watch features a large dial and light-up LED to enable easy time reading of time in the dark. With a digital electronic movement, it provides accurate and precise time. It is shock-resistant and perfect for running, climbing, fishing, and recreational surfing. This multifunctional watch’s rugged looks appeal to men, especially to those who indulge in sporting activities. Waterproof up to 50m, it has 12/24-hour time mode, stopwatch function, alarm, and a backlight.
With a Japanese quartz movement, the Invicta Pro Diver Scuba Watch has a stainless steel and black silicone band to give it a classic look. Water-resistant to 100m, this 48mm analog watch is suitable for swimming, snorkeling, surfing, and other water sports. It features a scratch-resistant crystal dial and a unidirectional bezel with full chronographic functionality. The extra details, such as a rotating date calendar, silver-tone hands, and markers, add a sophisticated look to this timepiece.
Made for women surfers, the Casio Dive Surf Sports Watch has an analog display with three hands. With an imported Japanese quartz movement, it is highly accurate to +20 seconds per month. Water-resistant to 100m, this watch has a resin band with buckle closure, making it suitable for surfing, snorkeling, and swimming. It features a mineral glass dial, a date window, and a 33mm resin case. This all-white women’s surf watch also has a bi-directional bezel, giving it a trendy, fashionable look.
Lightweight and sleek, the Timex Men’s Ironman Watch has a digital display with two time zones that can be accessed with the tap screen technology. For easy readability, it has a display with large numbers and the Indiglo backlight. With water-resistance to 100m and a resin strap, it is safe for swimming and recreational snorkeling. Along with the standard alarm and timer functions, it also features a 100-hour chronograph and a 30-lap stopwatch memory.
The Brig Watch from Vestal is a functional yet fashionable surf watch. It has a tide tracker to find the popular surfing beaches worldwide and a tide graph to show tide height. This digital watch is water-resistant to 100m and has a heat mode with a countdown timer useful during surf practice.
The surf watch’sunique special training mode with a ‘suffer and recover’ interval timer. Made of sturdy stainless steel and polyurethane-wrapped ABS plastic, this watch is built to last longer.
Featuring 500 pre-programmed tide locations in the graph, this surf watch has an easy-to-navigate intuitive interface. It provides a detailed view and a graph of current and future tide heights. This lightweight timepiece has a sturdy polyurethane strap and is water-resistant up to 100m, making it a good option for surfers.
The large-size digital display includes a stopwatch, alarm function, and timer. The marine-grade stainless steel forged buckle and wristband fitted with a locking keeper keeps the watch secure on your wrist.
With a retro look, the Freestyle Shark Surf Watch displays sunrise/sunset times and tide data for 150 beaches. Water-resistant up to 100m, the watch features hydro-pushers, scratch-resistant mineral crystal dial, stainless steel back case, synthetic canvas strap, and clip buckle closure to ensure it withstands rough surf conditions.
The digital watch has a Japanese quartz movement with a dual-time function that shows you the time at home and the destination. Backed by a lifetime warranty, the additional functions include chronograph, timer, alarm, lap counter, and split stopwatch.
The Nixon Surf Watch has 550 pre-programmed tide locations worldwide and provides current, future, and past tide data. Water-resistant up to 100m, it is fitted with stainless steel hydro-pushers that can be used underwater. With a large-size digital display featuring day/date, wave counter, two time zones, chronograph, and three alarms, this watch also has a backlight for visibility in the dark. The stylish tapered 19mm white silicone band has a water-flow texture to prevent moisture from getting trapped against your skin.
The Garmin Fenix Pro-Watch is a small, multisport watch with a solar-powered battery. Fitted with a solar charging lens and customizable power modes, this watch can function for weeks in smartwatch mode. It has built-in activity profiles and features preloaded cardio, yoga, and Pilates workouts that are easy to follow. Tested to pass U.S. military standards for shock, thermal and water-resistant, it has a water-rating of 100m.
With access to GLONASS, GPS, and Galileo satellite systems, it can track your location under challenging situations. Built from high-quality materials, this digital timepiece provides mapping, pace monitoring, training progress tracking, and music. You can pair it with a compatible smartphone for notifications.
How To Choose The Right Surf Watch?
Here are some important points to consider while purchasing a surf watch.
- Size: Surf watches are available in different sizes, and you can choose an appropriate size depending on your comfort. Some people may prefer large dials, while some prefer compact watches.
- Materials: The best surf watch will be a combination of stainless steel, polyurethane, and plastic as they repel water and are flexible.
- Analog or digital: Analog and digital watches both have their pros. Digital watches have high functionality as the display allows you to switch between the time display and other data. Analog watches are sealed tighter, which improves their water-resistance.
- Water resistance: The water-resistance of a watch is tested by exposing it to different depths and pressures to check its “breaking point.” For surfing, a watch with 100m water resistance is ideal. But for scuba diving or other high-impact water sports, get a watch with 200m resistance.
- Comfort and style: The wristband should fit securely and comfortably on your wrist to eliminate chafing. Surf watches are available in different designs to suit individual styles. Some are black and functional, while others are bright or multicolored. Some designs are made to suit women’s wrists. Choose the one that matches your style.
- Features: Surf watches include tide data, heart rate monitors, monitoring training sessions, moon phases, and wave counters. Select a watch with useful features.
How To Clean A Surf Watch?
Surf watches can resist corrosion caused by exposure to saltwater, but they may collect some dirt overtime. Therefore, it is necessary to clean your watch every time you use it for a surf session to get rid of the saltwater. There are specialized cleaning products available, but regular soap and water also do the job. Wipe it down with a soft cloth after washing.
Surf watches have now become an essential part of surf gear as they provide useful information while you’re in the water. Remember to pay attention to the important details such as material and water resistance while selecting your surf watch. While some focus on tides and surfing, some are useful for other sports activities and everyday wear. With enough options, pick the one that best suits your requirement and style.