With Spring well on its way, many of us are eager to get outside while nature, and ourselves, begin to respond to the awakening of a fresh new beginning! Many of us are focusing on our health, and are interested in devices that will help us keep track of our body’s functions and progress, as well as keeping us in touch with our busy lives and schedules, as we hit the hiking trails. We are going to take a look at Fitness Trackers and Smartwatches, to help us determine the best device to fit our own individual wants and needs, as well as the all-around best device for hiking in nature!

Fitness tracking technology continues to advance rapidly. With top name brands like Apple, Fitbit, and Garmin all competing for top-notch ratings in the fitness industry, deciding on exactly which type of device we want and need can definitely become overwhelming! The major differences in Smartwatches and Fitness Trackers are the specific abilities and the variety of features they offer. Just remember that whatever device you ultimately decide on, you will be well on your way to a much more fit and health-conscious body and lifestyle!

One of the very first things we need to consider is what will we REALLY be using our device for? If the answer is the ability to always keep our lines of communication close at hand, even while we are on the hiking trails, the best device would be a Smartwatch. If the answer is to get away from modern technology for a while and totally focus on how your body is functioning and responding while on your hiking adventure, your best bet would be a Fitness Tracker.




A Fitness Tracker will help you keep an eye on your daily activities and progress. It will count your steps and distance traveled, track the calories you have consumed and are burning, as well as your blood pressure, heart rate, blood oxygen level, stress level, and your hours and quality of sleep.

The best Fitness Trackers have features that include:

  1. Blood Pressure Monitor
  2. Heart Rate Monitor
  3. Oxygen Monitor
  4. Stress Monitor
  5. Pedometer
  6. Calorie Tracking
  7. Mileage Tracking
  8. Cell/SMS Reminder
  9. Bluetooth
  10. Anti-Theft Alarm
  11. Waterproof Casing

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Smartwatches offer most of the same features as Fitness Trackers, along with more advanced features. Along with these advanced features, Smartwatches will have a shorter battery life, only lasting a day or two. They are also larger in size and offer a larger watch face, helping you view all your data much easier. Along with all the extra features and larger size, they also will come with a larger price tag, which will be well worth the price for those who just can never have enough technology and data!

The best Smartwatches will feature:

  1. Day and Night Heart Rate Monitoring
  2. Altitude
  3. Distance
  4. Time
  5. Calories Consumed and Burned
  6. Cadence
  7. Training Effect
  8. Recovery Time
  9. VO2 Max
  10. Sleep Tracking
  11. Stress Levels With Links To Meditation Apps
  12. Oxygen Saturation Levels
  13. Breathing Rates
  14. Skin Temperature
  15. Irregular Heart Rhythm Notifications
  16. ECG App Feature
  17. Sync With Smartphone To Receive Phone Notifications
  18. Ability To Receive Calls
  19. Music Playing Functions
  20. Waterproof Functionality













Now that we have analyzed the major functions and differences of Fitness Trackers and Smartwatches, it is time to determine the very best ones for hiking. We will delve into all the unique features of these top-rated hiking Smartwatches/Fitness Trackers, and discover just what gives them dominion over all others to qualify for The Very Best Hiking Smartwatch/Fitness Tracker.


The TomTom Adventurer Fitness Tracker Smartwatch is stylish, moderately priced, and offers some great features such as altitude tracker, ascent and descent data, pace tracker, and very accurate heart rate monitoring. Another key asset is its “Breadcrumb Trail” feature, which will keep you on track and keep you from getting lost on your return hike. This Smartwatch offers a compass that continually updates itself, and has built-in trails that are very accurate and reliable. You are also able to load your own GPX Files for your own personal hiking adventures! The battery has an impressive battery life of 12+ hours, even when using the GPS function. All of these great features makes the TomTom Adventurer one of the very best Smartwatches for hiking.




The Apple Series 7 GPS & Cellular Watch is a totally amazing Smartwatch for hiking and many other activities. The best features on this watch include an activity tracker, heart rate monitor, sleep monitor, blood oxygen level monitor, ECG and irregular heart rate notifications, sleep app, mindfulness app, tracks your workouts including running, yoga, swimming, dance, along with the new tai chi and Pilates workouts. This watch also features the most crack-resistant front crystal yet, is IP6X dust resistant, and has a swim proof design. You are able to stay fully connected to your calls, texts, and emails, and stream music, podcasts, and audio books, all without having to bring your cell phone with you. With the Apple Series 7 GPS & Cellular Watch, you truly get a top of the line Smartwatch that offers everything you need for your hikes, along with many other activities. You can’t go wrong with this awesome Smartwatch!




The Garmin Instinct Solar Smartwatch has received the highest rating for being the #1 Best GPS Smartwatch for hiking in all the reviews I have researched . One key feature that makes this Smartwatch the highest rated on the market is its very impressive battery life. Even when operated at Max GPS Mode, the battery will last up to 70 hours. Another key feature is when using this Smartwatch in Expedition Mode (with hourly GPS tracking), the battery life will extend to 28 days, and in the Battery Saver Mode, the charge can last up to 56 days. Just in case you are going on a very long hike, such as the Appalachian Trail, and need an even longer charge, this Smartwatch will continue to charge itself on sunny days, and will never run out of power!

The Garmin Instinct Solar Smartwatch offers all the standard features of a regular Smartwatch including heart rate monitor, oxygen readings, stress and sleep measurements, etc. It also offers a combination of high-accuracy tracking features that hikers will find quite impressive, such as elevation tracking, GPX route, altitude reader, compass widget, and an acclimatization wizard. The Garmin Instinct Solar Smartwatch features a very rugged construction and has quite a few hiker-friendly capabilities, making it the top pick for the Best Smartwatch For Hiking!




I hope this article has helped you understand the differences in Fitness Trackers and Smartwatches, along with the advanced features of the Best Smartwatches For Hiking. Did this article help you determine exactly which Fitness Tracker or Smartwatch YOU want and need for your hiking adventures or other activities? Hopefully, I have challenged, inspired, and motivated you to get up, get outside in nature, and start tracking your body’s capabilities and functions. You will be amazed as you strive to push your body forward, then watch in awe as your Fitness Tracker or Smartwatch records your ongoing progress every day as you hit those hiking trails!






  1. I had no idea that fitness trackers were so clever now. I have always had an Apple Watch which I use, but I see there are also many other great products out there for half the price. I would love to upgrade so that my watch could also measure Irregular Heart Rhythm Notifications. I suppose soon your watch will be able to take your blood pressure too.

    I love having a watch that tracks fitness as it definitely encourages one to be more active, and the bonus is that you earn points towards your medical aid with some medical aids which results in lots of savings.

    • Hi Michel, and thank you for your comment on my post!  Actually, both Fitness Trackers and Smart watches DO take your blood pressure – many of these devices keep a record all day and all night!  Technology has definitely advanced, and I sure can’t keep up with it!! You are very fortunate to have a Smartwatch that helps you earn points towards your medical aids – that sounds like a real life saver at times!  If you want to upgrade your Smartwatch, most of them will monitor and send notifications if they detect an irregular heart rhythm, and you can get a great one at a very reasonable price.  I love to hear from people like you that are active and also want to encourage other people to be more active also.  I wish you the best, and I hope you have an awesome weekend!!


  2. You wouldn’t want to ware a heavy watch and uncomfortable tracksuit for keeping fit. You would be making yourself more tired than it is supposed to. This review on the best smartwatch and fitness trackers will give you a walk into the world of fitness and help you decide which combination you ought to carry while on your way to the field. It would be advisable if they have a fast count on blood pressure, heart rate and crucial things like those.

    • Hi Johnny!  Thank you for your comment on my post!  I totally agree with you saying that you wouldn’t want to wear a big, heavy watch to workout or to hike in.  Actually, Fitness Trackers and Smart watches do track blood pressure, heart rate, and lots of other important body functions, although I have never seen one that would detect a fast count – you have a very good idea there!  Thanks again, and have a great weekend!


  3. Thank you so much for this great article and This guide to the finest smartwatches and fitness trackers will take you on a journey through the world of fitness and help you select which combo to bring to the field. It would be preferable if they could keep a close eye on their blood pressure, heart rate, and other vital indicators.

    I enjoy wearing a fitness watch because it motivates me to be more active, and certain medical aids allow you to earn points toward your medical aid, which can result in significant savings. Keep posting like this…

    • Hi Pasindu!

      Thank you for your comment on my article!  It seems that all of the updated fitness trackers and smartwatches do have features to keep a 24/7 eye on vitals such as blood pressure, heart rate, blood oxygen levels, and other vital indicators – technology is definitely advancing faster than I can keep up with it!

      You are so right – fitness watches will truly keep us more motivated!  I think it is because it holds us accountable for all of our time and fitness goals.  I have heard other people mention saving on certain medical aids also – that is definitely a major advantage!  Thanks again, and have an awesome weekend!!


  4. I actually have a friend who loves hiking but doesn’t have the right equipment to hike. I will be sure to share this article with her and I will let you know wh she thinks about it. Hopefully she will find something that will improve h hiking. Thank you for such an informative article 

    • Hi Aubin! 

      Thank you for your comment, and thank you very much for sharing this article with your friend!  I will be curious to hear what she thinks of it, and also if she finds advice on equipment that will help her along in the wonderful journey of hiking!  I truly appreciate your willingness to share this article, and I hope your friend will find it informative and helpful also.  Have an awesome weekend!



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