So you’re a golfer, and you want to improve your game. Whether you’re talking about your on-course performance or country-club style, a watch has you covered.
What kind of watch you are looking for depends on the type of golfer you are, your personal needs and your tastes. For the data-driven athlete, there are smartwatches with GPS that can help you improve your skills and lower your scores. But if you’re a golfer who wants a watch that fits your interests and lifestyle, there are watches for that, too.
The good news is that there are great options for every type of golfer, and the watches below are the best.
- 1 GPS golf watches
- 2 Traditional golf watches
- 3 Vintage Golf Watches
GPS golf watches
Golfers are sometimes relatively bulky, Handheld GPS devices Help them manage the course, but you can get that information right on your wrist. Moreover, the same watches also give you information like wind direction along with all kinds of health and other performance metrics. Sure, the Apple Watch offers plenty of related functionality and golf-specific apps, but the following watches are made specifically for hitting the links.
Samsung Galaxy Watch5 Golf Edition
According to Samsung, the Galaxy Watch5 Golf Edition “does everything except carry clubs.” More specifically, it helps you manage the course with GPS and has specially designed features for tracking your shots and scores. The one exception is that it requires a Samsung Galaxy smartphone, but it’s one of the best options for those already using Samsung. We also like that it offers a relatively wearable 40mm option.
Article: 40mm, 44mm
Notable Features: GPS, fitness tracking, general smartwatch functionality, golf-specific applications, sapphire crystal, aluminum case, more
Garmin Approach S62
Many of the best GPS watches for golf are made by Garmin, primarily in its Approach series. Garmin’s full golfing range is worth exploring, but the S62 represents the most seriously golfer-focused watch of them all. The brand’s expertise is in GPS, so you know you’re getting some of the best, most accurate out there. It doesn’t skimp on other features, and those looking for serious data and functionality will be happy with the Garmin.
Notable Features: GPS, maps, pre-loaded courses, 20 hours of battery life in GPS mode, ceramic bezel, sapphire crystal, typical smartwatch functionality, more
TAG Heuer Connect Golf
The aforementioned watches can also be worn on the course, but the silhouette of the TAG Heuer Carrera on your wrist has a noticeable elegance. That’s what the Connected offers, and it’s probably the best choice for those looking for a balance of style and functionality. Aside from its slick software and luxury materials, the Connected Golf offers a fun little bonus: a ball marker integrated into the clasp (and a spare).
Notable Features: GPS, golf-specific applications, general smartwatch functionality, sapphire crystal, ceramic bezel, steel case, ball marker integrated into clasp, full-day battery life, more
Traditional golf watches
Is it any wonder that luxury watchmakers are associated with such a prestigious sport as golf? Well-heeled players and sports fans are natural customers for high-end watches. While a delicate mechanical clockwork may not often be well-suited to the shock of hitting a golf ball or offer the functionality of smartwatches, they still feel right at home in the wider world of golf.
Really, any Rolex watch from the Daytona to the Datejust feels right for golfers. The brand sponsors major tournaments and has been involved in the sport for decades. While Tiger Woods prefers the chunky Deepsea, we think the Day-Date, famously worn by the likes of Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player, is a perfect choice, inspired by the prestige element of golf.
Notable Features: Chronometer movement
Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra Golf Edition
Omega also sponsors tournaments and top golfers. They are so confident in the mechanical movements that power their Aqua Terra collection watches that the Golf Edition is actually meant to be worn while playing. It’s one of those watches, however, that transitions perfectly off the course — expressing your love of the game while retaining that sporty character.
Notable Features: METAS-certified Master Chronometer automatic movement
Vintage Golf Watches
If you are a golf fan, some vintage watches will bring a smile to your face. In the 20th century, watchmakers became more experimental with design and created some of the most iconic watches – as well as some quirky ones. The watches below are two notable examples that bring a ton of history and character to the game of golf.
Lord Elgin ‘Golf Ball’ direct read
Part of this watch series from the 1950s, it features a heavily covered face with an opening to digitally display the time on moving discs. The minutes are displayed on the outer track, but the trick up its sleeve is that the hour disc jumps forward to change the hour. Made in the United States, they are an exotic curiosity appreciated by collectors today and such versions with the dimpled dial cover that gives it its name are especially interesting and cool to golfers or golf fans.
Notable Features: Jumping hour, digital minutes
Gerald Genta Retro Fantasy Disney
Here, we’re talking rare, collectible and expensive (easily in the five-figure range). And it has a cartoon character on the dial. Of course, there are multiple versions featuring different Disney characters (playing different sports), but what these watches from rockstar designer Gerald Genta all have in common is a complicated movement that allows the time to be read in a unique way: the minutes are indicated by a golf club, instead of turning the dial all the way around, when it reaches 60. Jumps back to zero. At the same time, the hour jumps forward like the Elgin watch above.
Notable Features: Jumping hour, retrograde minutes