Everything you wanted to know about the Garmin Epix GPS watch. 

Every traveler knows that traveling around with the right gear can make or break any adventure. When it comes to your navigation gear, this notion cannot be any more accurate. One of the neat things about the travel world is the fact that technology has been a game changer. It is with this advancement of technology that travelers have been able to see the morphing of some of their favorite travel tools incorporated into one nifty product. One such product is the up and coming Garmin Epix GPS Watch.

GPS watches are great investment for a variety of reasons. Perhaps one of the most popular reasons is the fact that GPS watches are able to blend GPS capabilities with the ever-popular smartwatch. Not only do the collision of these two staple travel necessities make travelers roll over with glee, but it pleases the heart of outdoor enthusiasts and athletes alike. For starters, many popular GPS watches are able to provide outdoor enthusiasts a sense of location - literally. GPS watchers have the ability to map out a travelers adventures on any terrain, rough or not. If you are looking to embark on some of the best hiking trails in every state, a GPS smartwatch can be your best friend. 

Athletes are also sure to love a great GPS watch. Athletes can look for the ability to record and analyze details about their overall athletic performances. Along with that, athletes can look forward to expanding their field of exploration. Not only that, but they can enhance their overall athletic stamina and endurance. If these sound like goals you would like to reach, then chances are a great GPS watch can be an absolute game changer.

Today, we are going to take an in-depth look at one of the latest gadgets that have been changing the lives of many travelers, hikers, and athletes alike. This gadget is the Garmin Epix GPS smartwatch. In today's review, we are going to dive into all the features and benefits that this watch has to offer. From the design to the technology, we have got you covered. If you find that this watch is not the best tool for your travels, we have got some great options to go with as well. At the end of our review, we have listed thee additional smartwatches to choose from. These additional smartwatches are great GPS watches that offer capabilities that are too good to ignore. Without any more delay, let's get started on our review of the Garmin Epix GPS smartwatch!

Garmin: Behind the Brand

garmin epix

When it comes to top quality products, no brand is more reputable than Garmin. Garmin is one of the leading competitors in the world when it comes to GPS tracking and technology. When personal GPS devices first hit the travel scene, Garmin was at the forefront with their automobile GPS devices. Since then, Garmin has continued to advance in their ability to provide travelers with personalized tracking devices. For travelers and athletes who depend on the details that GPS tracking can provide, this personalized technology has been a real game changer. When it comes to the brand itself, the Garmin Epix is Garmin's first watch that offers such a range of features. In fact, it is the first watch of this reputable brand that offers a GPS mapping capability.

Garmin Epix Features & Benefits

You can easily find a range of smart watches on the market today. However, not many can compare to the Garmin Epix GPS watch. Not only does the Garmin Epix watch cater to all the needs that smartwatch users love, but it's precision as far as GPS goes is pretty astounding. Here are some of the top features and benefits that the Garmin Epix watch provides.

garmin epix - Features & Benefits

Credit: Garmin Epix / Facebook

1. Design

When you take a look at the Garmin Epix GPS watch, you will immediately be able to tell that this watch is different from any other smartwatch or GPS watch on the market today. The goal of many smartwatches is an emphasis on design. When it comes to the Garmin Epix, Garmin does not necissarily put the Epix's design in the forefront.

The Garmin GPS watch has a really rough, almost chunky look to it.  The watch certainly reflects the brand's theme in the fact that this is a rugged watch that is meant to be used outdoors. It is not so much a fashion statement or a fashion piece as it is a practicality piece. For some travelers, the design may be a little bulky and too rough around the edges for their liking. But for travelers who don't mind that look, then this can be a great GPS watch to go with. One thing is clear. Garmin may not have put a substantial amount of effort into the overall sleekness and design of the watch, but we don't blame them. In true Garmin fashion, the dedication was put into the practicality of the watch. As you will soon see, the features that this watch provides clearly outweigh the overall design of the watch.

For many outdoor travelers, dedication to quality and performance is a great selling point. For many other travelers, (especially guys) there is a certain appreciation in the rugged look. If you have a sense of a rugged style, then the Garmin Epix watch hits the mark. Although it can still easily translate from one environment to another, it is not something that would make the best accessory to a formal outfit.

2. Durability

garmin epix - Durability

Credit: Garmin Epix / Facebook

The Garmin Epix GPS watch was built to last. Just by simply looking at it, you can easily see the attention to quality and ability to withstand the elements. Along with that, the rugged design is the perfect look for any outdoor enthusiast who cares more about performance. When it comes to the specifics, this rugged design is reinforced with a rugged PVD coated surface. This means that no matter the environment, your Garmin Epix will be able to withstand it. Along with that, the face of the watch features a glass lens that will keep your screen protected. Finally, if you are a water lover, then the Garmin Epix is the perfect watch for the job. It has a water rating of 50 meters. Whether you are in the ocean or in a pool, you will not have an issue. You can be sure that your Garmin Epix GPS watch will be up for the challenge.

3. Touchscreen Capabilities 

One of the defining features of a Garmin Epix GPS watch is the fact that it features a touch screen. This touch screen is a 1.4 inch high resolution touch screen that is as easy to navigate as it is easy to read. As far as pixel size is concerned, the Garmin Epix measures 205 by 148 pixels. If you are hiking during the summer months when the sun can be blinding, the Garmin Epix still delivers. The watch's visible color chroma touch screen display makes navigating the face of the watch easy and effortless. Even in the most harshest of conditions, you will have an easy time using your watch. For travelers who don't like playing around with buttons, the touch screen is a simple life saver. This is especially true when you are trying to switch from one app or widget to another on your watch.

 4. Expanded Memory

garmin epix - Expanded Memory

Credit: Garmin Epix / Facebook

Unlike many other GPS watches on the market right now, the Garmin Epix is one of the top performing models when it comes to internal memory. The Garmin Epix offers 8 gigabytes of storage. This is an awesome feature for hikers who rely on maps. Your internal memory will allow you to download a range of maps that will help guide you on your travels. Some of the map capabilities include TOPO U.S. 24K and City Navigator NT. Many travelers love the ability to pull open their maps while on the trail. This helps give travelers a visual representation of their location and destination. What makes the downloadable maps even better is the fact that you get a detailed analysis with the maps. The analysis includes details such as altitude and distance covered. You can even set starting and ending points to reach any personal goals you may have set for yourself.

5. Activity Analysis

If you're not hiking around in the mountains and are instead being active via a physical sports, then the Garmin Epix is a great watch for you. There is a range of sports that the Garmin Epix can accommodate. Whether you are hiking, running, or swimming, the Garmin Epix can help calculate your every move. This is handy because the tracking capabilities give you a detailed analysis of your performance.

For example, if you are participating in high endurance activities such as a marathon, the Garmin Epix can help you calculate important details. These details include a stat on your heart rate and calories burned. When you pair your Garmin Epix with a Garmin heart rate monitor,  the data collected is surprisingly accurate. Another neat feature of the Garmin Epix is the fact that the built in accelerometer can help you measure your standing against other runners. This is done by measuring your running cadence. And if you are looking to improve your running cadence, then the metronome feature in the watch is a great tool to use as well.

When it comes to water activities such as swimming, the Garmin Epix is pretty awesome as well. The Garmin Epix can detect things such as your stroke. Based off of your movement, it can detect the different types of strokes (freelance, breast, butterfly, etc) and give you valuable information. This information will include details such as your speed and distance covered. For both competitive and occasional swimmers, the Garmin Epix can help you understand your performance when it comes to swimming. Not only that but depending on your needs, the Activity Tracking can help you enhance your technique too.  

Finally, for other activities such as skiing, boarding, and hiking, the Garmin Epix offers a wealth of information as well. You can find details ranging from how many steps you have taken to figuring out your ground covered. Whether you are a competitive athlete or not, knowing the fine details of your performance is a cool feature to have in any watch. 

6. Connectivity

garmin epix - Connectivity

One of the best features offered in the Garmin Epix is the fact that it is able to connect to a variety of apps and devices. You do not have to rely on the watch itself to see the results of your actions either. When you connect your Garmin Epix to the Garmin Connect app, you can see the fine details on your activity log.

Garmin Connect

There are several ways that you can connect your Garmin to an analysis platform. The first way is by using the USB cable link to sync your activity from your watch to Garmin Connect. (This will give you access to your activity log via a website.) When you do this, you will have the opportunity to see a detailed look at your performance, heart rate, distance covered, calories burned and time. You can also then go on to set goals for yourself as well. Finally, if you like sharing your activity log, you can easily post your results to share your activity with friends and family via social media and other platforms.

Another way to connect your Garmin watch it through a Bluetooth connection. You simply need a smartphone or other device that is compatible with Bluetooth. Once connected, The Connect Mobile app allows you to sync and drag your activities. Once you have synced your information onto your smartphone, you will be presented with most of the same information that syncing to the Garmin Connect website provides.

If you really want to go above and beyond when it comes to analyzing your data there is another method of connecting your Garmin Epix. when it comes to your iPhone or Android device, your activity from your  Garmin Epix Can sync directly with your health app. Once synced, you will have a detailed description of your health profile. While this might be unnecessary to some, some travelers like that the health apps offer the ability to give you a detailed analysis of your general standing in terms of how active you are over the course of your day. When it comes to connecting your Garmin Epix smartwatch, its ability to record your adventures coupled with additional info from some of the best hiking apps out right now, your adventures will be the epitome of awesome. 

Connect IQ

Finally, there are some additional connectivity tools you can use when it comes to accessibility through apps. For example, a downloadable app that you might want to get familiar with is the Connect IQ app.  While the Garmin Epix watch comes with a range of features, the Connect IQ app is somewhat like the cherry on top. With the Connect IQ app, you can truly customize and personalize your watch. For example, you can download images to set as your watch's background. You can also add widgets that cater to your traveling needs too. This opportunity to customize gives you the ability to make the Garmin Epix watch a true reflection of yourself.

Vibration Alerts

Last but not least, the Garmin Epix Smartwatch is awesome in the fact that you can get notifications from your smartphone directly to your watch. Emails, texts, and alerts will pop up directly on your screen. Better yet, the watch features a vibration notification ability.  Whenever you are traveling around, you will always stay connected with this convenient vibration that gives you the latest update. For travelers who love to stay connected, it is little details like this that make that Garmin Epix a great GPS watch to travel with.

7. Price Point

garmin epix - price point

The Garmin Epix watch is priced at just a little over 200 bucks.  Compared to other higher end Garmin products such as the Garmin Fenix 3 HR watch, the Garmin Epix is quite a bang for your buck. Though it is priced just a smidge over staple smartwatches, it is a pretty great buy. You get a range of features and benefits that are perfect for travelers who rely on GPS. Not only that, but you get many other features such as a touch screen that allows you to visually understand your surroundings. Coupled with downloadable maps and routes, you really are getting a steal when it comes to the price. Finally, with a brand such as Garmin, you have the certainty of a reputable brand on your wrist that will not fail you.

What Travelers Are Saying About the Garmin Epix 

When it comes to the Garmin Epix GPS watch, travelers are more than satisfied. As far as smartwatches go, the Garmin Epix covers all the bases. It even has a touch screen that allows you to use your watch in all the ways a smartwatch was meant to be used. Of course what sets the Garmin Epix watch apart from other smartwatches is the fact that it is a fully loaded GPS watch. Even when it comes to the GPS aspect of the watch, the Garmin Epix blows its competitors out of the water.

Travelers love the ease of access when it comes to downloading maps. This is perhaps because being able to visually see your activity in real time when you are on a hike is a deal breaker. Not only that, but you can get really neat details about your adventures as far as distance covered, calories burned, and altitude. Travelers love that the Garmin Epix is able to track your activity to the tee.

Finally, many outdoor enthusiasts love how rugged the Garmin Epix watch is. It is nearly indestructible because it is built with such care and protection. The Garmin Epix is another testimony of Garmin's ability to build products that truly last. For many travelers, this attention to quality is something that is very much appreciated.

Alternative Hiking Watches You May Like

While the Garmin Epix GPS watch is a great watch for any hiker, athlete, or traveler, we understand that it may not be a one size fits all watch. If you find that the Garmin Epix GPS watch is lacking in one way or another, we have got you covered. Below you will find some of our top favorite watches that will serve well on any adventure or atmosphere.

1. Garmin Fenix 3 HR

Garmin Fenix 3 HR

If you love the Garmin Epix GPS watch, but are not yet sold on the overall rugged look of it, then this next GPS watch might just be the best watch for you.  the Garmin Fenix 3 HR is another one of the best GPS watches in the market right now. In fact, there is an ongoing debate about whether the Garmin Fenix 3 HR outranks the Garmin Epix. While both watches have so much to offer, the Garmin Fenix 3 HR does beat out the Garmin Epix in one area; the style. 

The look of the Garmin Fenix 3 HR  Is simply stunning. The Garmin Fenix 3 HR offers a design that allows it to transition from the rugged outdoors to the indoors with ease. Bounce from hiking the trails to leading a meeting in the office with ease when you wear the Garmin Fenix 3 HR. Not only that but with the Garmin Fenix 3 HR, you can swap out your standard silicone reinforced watch band for a more elegant one without too much difficulty.

When it comes to the specs of the Garmin Fenix 3 HR, we are sure you will fall in love. It offers everything you could want in a GPS watch. From GPS and GLONASS technology to color display, to vibration alerts to TracBack technology and everything in between, the Garmin Fenix 3 HR delivers. As far as tracking your activity, this GPS watch is one of the best tools to have in your belt. (Or on your wrist for that matter).  

What athletes love about the Garmin Fenix 3 HR is the fact that this watch is so versatile. Not only is this smartwatch able to help you analyze your data, but it can help you train too. It can give you specific information such as your running cadence and swimming stroke. It can compare you to other runners and swimmers. And lastly, it can give you a training plan to help you become a better athlete. You can set goals for yourself and beat them with the capabilities offered in the Garmin Fenix 3 HR.

Lastly, the Garmin Fenix 3 HR is super dependable. You can take it nearly anywhere and be sound in the fact that the watch will record all your movement with accuracy. Even on the trails less traveled, the GPS capabilities will not fail you. For athletes who love training as much as they love running around in the wilderness, the Garmin Fenix 3 HR is a great GPS watch to invest in.

2. Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR 

Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR

When it comes to awesome sports watches, this next pick is a great watch to consider. The Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR is a great watch to have on hand (pun intended) throughout your activities. The Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR was put together with both practicality and design in mind. 

For starters, the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR is an absolutely stunning watch. The sleek and stylish design make it the perfect watch  no matter the environment you are in. You can transition from the outdoors to the office with absolute ease. For travelers who appreciate a sense of style, the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR checks all the boxes.

As far as the tech specs of the watch are concerned, the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR has a lot to offer. For starters, the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR is durable enough to withstand any type of environment. It is beautifully framed with a steel bezel. Not only that, but the face was constructed with a mineral crystal glass that will keep your watch working in tip top shape no matter what it encounters. Along with that, the strong design of the watch offers it the ability to be water resistant up to 100 meters deep. And as far as customizing goes, there is also a range of colors you can choose from. With the color options, you are sure to find a band that will perfectly complement your style.

As far as the GPS capabilities of the watch go, the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR  delivers pretty well too. For starters, it offers GPS route navigation. This allows you to plan out and coordinate your hikes and climbs. If you are a runner, the GPS navigation comes in handy as far as tracking your course, laps, speed, and calories burned. Athletes will also appreciate the fact that the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR offers over 80 sport-specific training modes. These training modes are great for interval use. Not only that but if you are looking to build endurance or accomplish personal athletic goals, this is the perfect watch to do it with.

While this watch has so many great features to consider, travelers are a bit wary of the battery life. With GPS capabilities on, you can expect to get about 12 hours of battery life. While this is a downside to this otherwise awesome watch, it is not too much of a deal-breaker for many travelers and athletes. For a sleek and stylish watch that delivers when it comes to GPS and athletic training, the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR is a great smartwatch to go with.

3. Suunto Traverse Alpha ​​​​

Suunto Traverse Alpha ​​​​​

If you are looking for a great GPS watch for hiking, then look no further. Another great GPS travel watch to consider when shopping for your next smartwatch is the Suunto Traverse Alpha. There are so many reasons to love this watch. For starters, the design of this watch is pretty unique. It offers a neat mixture of both ruggedness and luxury. The stainless steel knurled bezel offers an elegant yet almost classy look. However, the nylon strap perfectly balances this elegance with a more rugged appearance. 

Not only that, but the nylon strap is as durable as it is rugged. Not only will it keep your watch securely in place, but it is water repellent. This makes it the ideal watch that can withstand nearly any environment.  Speaking of durability, the face of the Suunto Traverse Alpha is made out of a premium scratch resistant sapphire crystal glass. You do not have to worry about your watch cracking or failing you when you are out in the wilderness.

Another neat feature of the Suunto Traverse Alpha is the fact that it was designed with hunters in mind. For example, the Suunto Traverse Alpha offers an Automatic Shot Detection Technology. This technology can easily calculate when and where you have taken a shot. For hunters who like to keep details accounts of their activity such as shot information and location, this can be a neat to have with you on your travels.

When it comes to the GPS capabilities of this watch, it delivers as well. The Suunto Traverse Alpha offers GPS tracking with automatic breadcrumb trailing. Easily download your route or plan out a new one with nothing more than your smartphone and smartwatch in tow. Along with the GPS capabilities, some other cool features of this GPS watch include its location-based moon phase calendar and its operating temperature of -5 degrees Fahrenheit to 140 degrees Fahrenheit.

Travelers and athletes alike have so much to love about the Suunto Traverse Alpha. If you are looking for dependability and quality, this handmade product that was crafted with care in Finland is a great smartwatch to choose. The quality design not only speaks for itself, but the practicality and reliability of this watch do as well. If you are looking for a great watch to add to your traveling gear, then the Suunto Traverse Alpha is a great watch to consider.

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for a great hiking watch that will meet all the need of your adventures, the Garmin Epix GPS Smartwatch is a great tool to add you collection. Especially if you are an outdoor enthusiast, a hiker, or a traveler who does a great deal of exploring on beaten off paths and trails. When it comes to the Garmin brand, you really cannot go wrong. The Garmin Epix does an awesome job reflecting this. Especially since so many travelers and athletes alike have chosen this brand time and time again. If you are in the market for a reputable GPS watch, then Garmin is a great place to start. Click below to get your hands on one of the best GPS watches this travel season.

REVIEW OVERVIEW
Ease of Use
Durability
Features
Style
Price
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Nadia El-Yaouti is a mother, English language arts middle school teacher, writer, and photographer. She lives in Central Virginia with her husband and two little girls. Although she considers herself a workaholic, Nadia’s greatest pride is being a mom. When she’s not juggling work, you can be sure to find her traveling the world with her little family.

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