Sunny days and balmy nights can only mean that summer is in full swing. Whether you’re spending the year’s hottest months poolside, exploring new cities, or venturing into the great outdoors, here are some of our favorite summer watches to wear right now.
Orient Defender Automatic Field Watch
If your summer plans involve camping, hiking, or just spending plenty of time outside away from screens, then the Orient Defender Automatic Field Watch is a great option for a wrist companion.
The Orient Defender’s stainless steel case measures a generous 42mm in diameter with a mineral glass to protect the dial. The dial is home to a range of functions such as the center hour, minute, and seconds hand, a date window, a day of the week subdial, and a 24-hour subdial to indicate day or night hours—all powered by an automatic movement inside the watch. There are plenty of luminous details to ensure legibility at night when the campfire goes out. Plus the watch’s 100-meter water resistance means you don’t have to worry about getting the watch wet.
Priced under $150, you won’t feel the need to treat the Orient Defender like a precious object when deep into summer adventures.
Tissot Quickster Chronograph
A thoughtfully curated watch collection should include at least one chronograph. And Tissot makes a great looking one in the form of the Quickster Chronograph. The Tissot Quickster Chronograph sports a 42mm steel case furnished with a pair of chronograph pushers flanking the winding crown.
The silver dial gives the chronograph a fresh look and is a striking contrast to the black hour markers, black bezel, and black leather strap . Like most modern chronographs, the Tissot Quickster includes a tachymeter scale on the bezel to measure distances or speeds—a fun tool to have if you’ll be attending any motorsports or yachting events this summer.
To keep the Swiss-made watch priced at a reasonable $425, the Tissot Quickster runs on a quartz movement
Seiko Prospex SRPC93 “Save The Ocean”
A dive trip or two on your summer calendar? Then a dive watch is in order and as many of you know, Seiko makes some of the best affordable dive watches out there. If you haven’t already, meet the relatively new Seiko Prospex SRPC93 “Save The Ocean” diver in a beautiful blue colorway. Encased within the 44mm stainless steel case is a blue-to-black gradient dial to symbolize the ocean while on top is a unidirectional timing bezel in light to dark blue. The watch is finished off with a sturdy stainless steel link bracelet.
As a dive watch that meets the ISO standards, this Seiko Samurai is water resistant to 200 meters. The automatic movement inside the watch drives the time and date functions with a 41-hour power reserve. The SRPC93 is part of Seiko’s “Save The Ocean” collection whereby a portion of proceeds will support marine conservation.
Retailing for $525 but widely available on sale for much less than that, the Seiko Prospex SRPC93 is a value-driven diver that you can enjoy this summer and beyond.
Seiko Prospex Diver Turtle SRPB01
This one might be a little tricky to get your hands on since it was released as a limited edition model (3,500 pieces) back in 2016. But if you can find one, the Seiko Prospex Diver SRPB01 “Green Turtle” is well worth the effort (and price point that hovers around $1,000).
The 45mm stainless steel case of the SRPB01 (aka SRPB01K1) dons that famed turtle-like silhouette that Seiko enthusiasts love, complete with the crown at 5 o’clock. The face of the watch is simply stunning thanks to the lustrous green hue of the dial and dive bezel. The glossy green dial has the customary oversized luminous markers and hands for legibility underwater. Along with the time, there’s also the double window to display the day and date.
The Seiko Prospex Diver Turtle SRPB01 comes fitted on a stainless steel bracelet, yet an additional silicone rubber strap is also part of the package.
Omega Seamaster Diver 300M
If high-end luxury diving watches are your thing, then look no further than the revamped Omega Seamaster Diver 300M collection. In true Omega fashion, the collection is varied with an assortment of metals, colors, and different watch bands. Among the selection, we particularly love the stainless steel edition with a blue rubber strap.
This Diver 300M features a 42mm stainless steel case fitted with a blue ceramic bezel and blue ceramic dial engraved with an appealing wave pattern. The helium escape valve protrudes from the case at 10 o’clock for protection against pressure damage during dive decompression periods. Turn the watch around and you’ll see Omega’s new generation Master Chronometer Caliber 8800 through the sapphire caseback, which provides the watch with 55 hours of power reserve.
Priced at $4,900, this is not an inexpensive watch but one that you will likely keep forever.
Zenith Chronomaster El Primero
Zenith is a pioneer of automatic chronograph watches, having debuted the legendary self-winding El Primero chronograph movement back in 1969. The current Zenith Chronomaster El Primero watch collection continues that legacy and here we have a stainless steel version with a brown alligator leather strap.
The 42mm case houses a silver dial with three different colored subdials—black, blue, and gray—as well as a date window at 6 o’clock. Furthermore, rather than placing the tachymeter on the bezel, Zenith has also included that on the dial. The display caseback provides a peek into the famous high-beat El-Primero movement inside, which operates at 36,000 beats per hour and provides 50 hours of power reserve.
From lazy brunches to chic cocktail soirées, the $6,700 Zenith Chronomaster El Primero is a handsome yet sporty timepiece to flaunt this summer.
Rolex Datejust 36
Few watches come close to the iconic status and enduring legacy of the Rolex Datejust. Boasting a classic design that has remained strikingly consistent since 1945, the Datejust’s 36mm case size is restrained and perfectly proportional for a wide range of wrist sizes. The face of the Datejust is instantly recognizable for its date window on the dial and protruding magnification lens on the crystal.
The Rolex Datejust lineup is replete with choices in terms of metals, styles, and bracelets, but the full stainless steel edition with a light dial and steel bracelet is an understated choice that will match pretty much anything in your summer wardrobe.
You can purchase a brand new steel Rolex Datejust 36 for $6,800 or explore the secondary market for less expensive versions.