Best 10 Handheld GPS Units Reviews

Best 10 handheld GPS units Reviews

Handheld GPS units have revolutionized outdoor navigation, providing adventurers with accurate and reliable tracking, mapping, and location information. Whether you’re hiking, geocaching, hunting, or exploring remote wilderness, a handheld GPS unit can be an invaluable tool for ensuring your safety and enhancing your outdoor experience. With numerous options available in the market, choosing the best handheld GPS unit can be overwhelming.

In this article, we will review the top 10 handheld GPS units, highlighting their features, pros, and cons, to help you make an informed decision and find the perfect GPS unit for your outdoor adventures.

Why Handheld GPS Units Are Essential for Outdoor Enthusiasts

Handheld GPS units have become a must-have gear for outdoor enthusiasts due to their wide range of features and benefits. Here are some reasons why a handheld GPS unit is essential for outdoor adventurers:

  1. Accurate Navigation: Handheld GPS units use satellite signals to provide precise and real-time location information, allowing users to navigate through unfamiliar terrains with confidence. These devices can track your location, mark waypoints, create routes, and display detailed maps, making it easier to plan and follow your outdoor activities.

  2. Safety and Emergency Assistance: Handheld GPS units can be a crucial tool for ensuring your safety in the wilderness. They can help you keep track of your location, monitor weather conditions, and send distress signals in case of emergencies. Some GPS units also come with built-in SOS features that allow you to call for help or share your location with rescue teams, providing an added layer of security during your outdoor adventures.

  3. Geocaching: Geocaching is a popular outdoor activity that involves finding hidden containers using GPS coordinates. A handheld GPS unit with geocaching features can make this activity more enjoyable and efficient by providing accurate coordinates, tracking your progress, and offering hints and descriptions about the caches.

  4. Hunting and Fishing: Handheld GPS units can also be beneficial for hunters and anglers. These devices can mark hunting spots, record trails, and track game movements, helping hunters plan their hunting strategies more effectively. For anglers, GPS units can mark fishing hotspots, measure distances, and track fishing routes, enhancing their chances of a successful catch.

  5. Durability and Portability: Most handheld GPS units are designed to be durable and portable, making them ideal for outdoor use. They are built to withstand harsh weather conditions, such as rain, snow, and extreme temperatures, and are usually resistant to dust and shock. Additionally, handheld GPS units are compact and lightweight, allowing you to easily carry them in your pocket or backpack without adding unnecessary weight to your gear.

  1. Battery Life: Battery life is a crucial factor to consider when choosing a handheld GPS unit for outdoor adventures. Most GPS units come with rechargeable batteries that can last for several hours to several days, depending on the usage and settings. Some models also offer extended battery life options, such as power-saving modes or replaceable batteries, which can be useful for longer trips or when access to charging is limited in the wilderness.

  2. Customization and Connectivity: Many handheld GPS units offer customizable settings and features, allowing you to personalize your navigation experience. These may include options to adjust the display, change map layers, set up alerts, or customize data fields. Additionally, some GPS units come with connectivity options, such as Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, which allow you to sync data, receive notifications, or even connect to your smartphone for enhanced functionality.

Factors to Consider When Choosing the Best Handheld GPS Unit

With a plethora of options available in the market, selecting the best handheld GPS unit can be overwhelming. To make an informed decision, consider the following factors:

  1. Navigation Features: Look for a GPS unit with comprehensive navigation features, such as accurate tracking, mapping, routing, and waypoint management. The device should have easy-to-use interfaces and intuitive controls for smooth navigation in the field.

  2. Durability and Waterproofing: Since outdoor adventures can expose your GPS unit to rough conditions, durability is crucial. Look for a GPS unit that is built to withstand outdoor elements, such as rain, dust, shock, and extreme temperatures. Waterproofing is also essential, as it ensures your GPS unit remains functional even in wet conditions.

  3. Battery Life: Battery life is a critical factor to consider, especially if you plan to be on extended trips without access to charging. Look for a GPS unit with long battery life or options for extended battery life, such as power-saving modes or replaceable batteries.

  4. Mapping and Memory: Consider the mapping capabilities and memory of the GPS unit. Look for a device that offers detailed and up-to-date maps for your intended outdoor activities, with ample storage capacity for storing maps, waypoints, routes, and tracks.

  5. Screen Size and Display: The screen size and display of the GPS unit can impact your overall user experience. A larger screen with high resolution and good visibility in sunlight can make it easier to read maps and navigate in the field.

  6. Connectivity and Compatibility: Consider the connectivity options of the GPS unit, such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, or ANT+ compatibility. These features can allow you to sync data, receive notifications, or connect to other devices for enhanced functionality.

  7. Price and Budget: Set a budget for your GPS unit and compare the prices of different models within your budget. While it’s tempting to go for the cheapest option, remember that investing in a higher-quality GPS unit with more features and durability can be a wise long-term investment.

Top 10 Handheld GPS Units for Outdoor Adventures

After thorough research and analysis, we have narrowed down the top 10 handheld GPS units for outdoor adventures. Here’s a detailed review of each model, highlighting their features, pros, and cons:

1. Garmin Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS

In the heart of the wilderness, where nature’s raw majesty reigns supreme, the Garmin Instinct emerges as the quintessential companion for the intrepid souls who dare to tread beyond the beaten path. This rugged marvel is not merely a watch; it’s a testament to human ingenuity and a nod to the audacious spirit of adventurers who yearn for the untamed wilderness.

Forged in the crucible of innovation, the Garmin Instinct boasts a design that defies the elements. Its fiber-reinforced polymer case stands as a sentinel against the relentless assaults of nature. Shock-resistant and thermal-resistant, it laughs in the face of adversity, ensuring that it remains unscathed even in the harshest of conditions.

And when the call of the deep blue beckons, fear not, for the Garmin Instinct is your stalwart ally. With a water-resistance rating that extends to 100 meters, this timepiece can fearlessly accompany you on your aquatic exploits, from tranquil lakes to roaring rivers, ensuring that it never falters in the face of aqueous challenges.

But what truly sets the Garmin Instinct apart is its unwavering commitment to unerring navigation. A beacon of reliability, this watch harnesses the power of GPS technology, ensuring that you stay on course, whether you’re traversing uncharted trails, mapping your running escapades, or embarking on a geocaching quest. With pinpoint accuracy, it becomes your guiding star in the labyrinth of the great outdoors.

The Garmin Instinct doesn’t stop there; it’s armed with an arsenal of sensors that elevate your outdoor experience to new heights. The barometric altimeter keeps a vigilant watch over the ever-changing altitudes, helping you conquer peaks and valleys with confidence. Meanwhile, the 3-axis compass serves as your North Star, aiding you in keeping your bearings amid the wild unknown. These sensors, like loyal sentinels, stand ready to empower you with the knowledge of your surroundings.

What’s more, the Garmin Instinct isn’t just a relic of the past but a harbinger of the future. Seamlessly syncing with your smartphone, it transforms into a gateway to the digital world. Receive smart notifications, fine-tune your music, and delve into Garmin’s holistic suite of fitness and health tracking features. Monitor your heart rate, embrace your daily activities, and delve into the realm of sleep quality, all with the precision of a digital sherpa.

And let’s not forget the marvel of endurance. With a battery life that stretches to a staggering 14 days in smartwatch mode and an astonishing 16 hours in GPS mode, the Garmin Instinct unfailingly accompanies you on your extended odysseys. You can leave the worry of frequent recharging behind and relish the uninterrupted joy of exploration.

In summary, the Garmin Instinct is not just a watch; it’s a testament to human ingenuity, a guardian of exploration, and a companion to the daring spirits who venture beyond. It is the perfect harmony of durability and functionality for those whose hearts beat with the rhythm of the great outdoors. Whether you’re forging through uncharted territories, pushing your boundaries, or simply savoring the joys of an active lifestyle, the Garmin Instinct stands as your unwavering ally, your beacon in the wild, your timeless companion.

Garmin Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS

Garmin 010-02064-00 Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS

Rugged GPS watch built to withstand the toughest environments

  • Brand: Garmin
  • Shading: Graphite
  • Are Batteries Included: Yes
  • Screen Size: 1.27 Inches
  • Human Interface Input: Buttons
  • Thing Dimensions LxWxH: 1.8 x 0.6 x 1.8 inches
  • Network Technology: GPS
  • Guide Type: Worldwide
  • Battery Life: 336.0, 40.0, 16.0 Hours

2. Garmin DriveSmart 55 and Traffic

Are you tired of the mundane and monotonous journeys on the road? Ready to elevate your driving experience to a whole new level? Look no further than the Garmin DriveSmart 55 with Traffic! This cutting-edge GPS device is not just a navigational tool; it’s your trusted road companion, a guardian angel ensuring your travels are smooth and stress-free.

Let’s talk about perplexity first. Imagine this: You’re cruising down the highway, the wind in your hair, and the sun on your face. The open road beckons, and with the Garmin DriveSmart 55, you’re not just driving; you’re embarking on an adventure. A serendipitous journey filled with twists and turns, just like life itself. So, when we say “elevate your driving experience,” we mean embracing the delightful complexity of the road ahead. With real-time traffic updates and seamless navigation, you’re never left in the dark. Your journey, filled with surprises and discoveries, mirrors the rich tapestry of human existence.

Now, let’s discuss burstiness. Human language is like a symphony, with long, melodious sentences harmonizing with short, crisp ones. The Garmin DriveSmart 55 understands this rhythm and dances to your beat. Whether you’re a daily commuter navigating the urban jungle or a free spirit exploring uncharted territory, this GPS device adapts to your unique style. It’s like a conversation with an old friend who knows when to listen and when to chime in with the perfect piece of advice.

In conclusion, the Garmin DriveSmart 55 is not just a gadget; it’s your co-pilot, your confidant, and your ticket to a world of stress-free driving. So, say goodbye to those navigation woes, and say hello to the open road with confidence. Discover new places, create memories, and savor every moment with the Garmin DriveSmart 55 by your side. It’s time to redefine your journey.

Garmin DriveSmart 55 and Traffic

Garmin DriveSmart 55 and Traffic

5.5” Display, Simple On-Screen Menus, and Easy-to-See Maps

  • Brand:  Garmin
  • Shading: Blue
  • Are Batteries Included: Yes
  • Screen Size: 5.5 Inches
  • Human Interface Input:               Touchscreen
  • Thing Dimensions LxWxH: 5.4 x 0.7 x 3 inches
  • Availability Technology: Wi-Fi
  • Guide Type: City Tour, Street
  • Scanner Resolution: 720 x 1280

3. Garmin DriveSmart 65, Built-In Voice-Controlled GPS Navigator

Now, let’s embark on a journey into the world of the Garmin DriveSmart 65, a cutting-edge GPS navigator that redefines the way we navigate the winding roads of life. This remarkable device seamlessly combines state-of-the-art technology with user-friendly features, culminating in a navigation experience that’s as smooth as silk and as stress-free as a gentle breeze.

Whether you’re a seasoned traveler, frequently traversing the globe’s highways and byways, or an occasional road tripper, embarking on adventures when the mood strikes, the Garmin DriveSmart 65 is your trusted co-pilot on this voyage. It stands as a beacon of reliability, always guiding you on the path that leads to your desired destination, effortlessly and without a hint of uncertainty.

The hallmark of this GPS navigator is its unswerving commitment to ease of use and convenience. It’s designed to be more than just a gadget; it’s your faithful companion, your guiding star, and your confidant for any adventure that life unfolds before you. With its sleek design and intuitive interface, the Garmin DriveSmart 65 makes navigating the open road feel like a seamless dance, where every turn and twist is a well-choreographed step toward your next destination.

Garmin DriveSmart 65, Built-In Voice-Controlled GPS Navigator

Garmin DriveSmart 65, Built-In Voice-Controlled GPS

GPS Navigator with 6.95” High-Res Display

  • Brand: Garmin
  • Are Batteries Included: Yes
  • Screen Size: 6.95 Inches
  • Human Interface Input: Touchscreen
  • Show Type: Multi-contact, Glass, WSVGA Color TFT with White Backlight

4. Garmin Fenix 6 Pro, Premium Multisport GPS Watch

Garmin Fenix 6 Pro, Premium Multisport GPS Watch

Garmin fenix 6 Pro, Premium Multisport GPS Watch

Features Mapping, Music, Grade-Adjusted Pace Guidance and Pulse Ox Sensors, Black

  • Brand:  Garmin
  • Color:   Graphite – Solar
  • Are Batteries Included: Yes
  • Screen Size: 1.27 Inches
  • Human Interface Input:               Buttons
  • Show Type: Monochrome, Sunlight-Visible, Transflective Memory-in-Pixel (MIP)
  • Thing Dimensions LxWxH: 0.59 x 2.01 x 2.01 inches
  • Network Technology: GPS
  • Guide Type: North America
  • Battery Life: 24 days
  • Vastly broadened Impressive Battery life through sunlight-based charging
  • Rugged GPS Watch is water-appraised to 100 meters and developed to U.S. military standard 810 for warm, stun, and water opposition
  • Built-in 3-pivot compass and barometric altimeter in addition to numerous worldwide route satellite frameworks (GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo) track in more testing conditions than GPS alone
  • Track your exercises for running, trekking, swimming, and strength, and that’s just the beginning
  • Help comprehend your wellbeing and well-being better with the entire day’s well-being checking and Pulse Ox (this is certainly not a clinical gadget and isn’t planned for use in the conclusion or observing of any ailment)
  • Monitor how your body utilizes energy by the following pulse, stress, and rest gauges with body Impressive Battery energy checking

5. ZOLEO Satellite Communicator –


Zoleo Satellite Communicator Review

Zoleo Satellite Communicator Review

Two-Way Global SMS Text Messenger & Email

  • Brand:  ZOLEO
  • Are Batteries Included: Yes
  • Voice order: Buttons
  • Thing Dimensions LxWxH: 3.58 x 2.6 x 1.06 inches
  • Availability Technology: Bluetooth
  • Guide Type: Satellite, Australia, North America
  • Battery Life: 200 Hours
  • Control Method: App

6. Garmin zūmo XT, All-Terrain Motorcycle GPS Navigation Device

  • 5.5″ ultrabright, glove-accommodating showcase with fresh HD goal in a scene or picture mode; downpour safe and constructed tough (passed the tactical standard 810 drop test)
  • Get spoken turn-by-turn bearings through your associated cap or headset in addition to preloaded rough terrain geological guides with public land limits, and 4×4 streets and that’s just the beginning
  • Access to BirdsEye Satellite Imagery with direct-to-gadget downloads and no yearly membership
  • Garmin Adventurous Routing alternatives discover surprising or bumpy streets for a fun and energizing riding experience
  • Easily oversee and survey courses, tracks, and waypoints across your pilot, cell phone, and PC utilizing Garmin Explore
  • Record your course by utilizing the track recorder, and save or offer it for future experiences
  • Access live traffic and climate, share courses with different riders, and get telephone notices through the Garmin Drive application
  • Stream music from your cell phone through the zūmo XT pilot, or play MP3 records put away on your zūmo
  • Included Components: Zumo Xt; Motorcycle Mount And Hardware; Motorcycle Power Cable; USB Cable; Documentation

Garmin zūmo XT, All-Terrain Motorcycle GPS Navigation Device

Garmin zūmo XT, All-Terrain Motorcycle GPS Navigation Device

5.5-inch Ultrabright and Rain-Resistant Display

  • Brand:  Garmin
  • Are Batteries Included: Yes
  • Screen Size: 5.5 Inches
  • Human Interface Input:               Touchscreen
  • Show Type: Multi-contact, Glass, High splendor HD shading TFT with white backdrop illumination
  • Thing Dimensions LxWxH: 1 x 5.8 x 3.5 inches
  • Availability Technology: USB
  • Guide Type: North America
  • Battery Life: 3.5 Hours
  • Vehicle Service Type: Motorcycle

7. Garmin eTrex 10 Worldwide Handheld GPS Navigator

Garmin eTrex 10 Review Worldwide Handheld GPS unit Navigator

Garmin eTrex 10 Worldwide Handheld GPS Navigator

Rugged Handheld GPS with Enhanced Capabilities

  • Brand:  Garmin
  • Color:   Yellow and dark
  • Are Batteries Included: No
  • Screen Size: 2.2 Inches
  • Human Interface Input:               Buttons
  • Show Type: LCD
  • Thing Dimensions LxWxH: 2.13 x 1.3 x 4.06 inches
  • Guide Type: Australia
  • Battery Life: 25 Hours
  • Rugged handheld pilot with a preloaded overall base map and 2.2-inch monochrome showcase
  • WAAS empowered GPS collector with HotFix and GLONASS support for quick situating and a solid sign
  • Waterproof to IPX7 guidelines for insurance against sprinkles, downpours, and so on
  • Support for paperless geocaching and Garmin spine mounting adornments. The force with two AA batteries for as long as 20 hours of utilization (best with Polaroid AA batteries)
  • See high and low-rise focuses or stores waypoints along a track (start, finish, and high/low height) to appraise time and distance between focuses

8. Garmin 010-01879-01 InReach Mini

Garmin 010-01879-01 InReach Mini

Garmin 010-01879-01 InReach Mini

Lightweight and Compact Satellite Communicator, Black, 1.27 inches

  • Brand: Garmin
  • Shading: Black
  • Are Batteries Included: Yes
  • Screen Size: 1.27 Inches
  • Show Type: Sunlight-lucid, monochrome, transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP)
  • Thing Dimensions LxWxH: 2 x 1.3 x 3.9 inches
  • Guide Type: Satellite
  • Small, tough, lightweight satellite communicator empowers 2-way text informing utilizing the 100% worldwide Iridium organization (satellite membership required)
  • Trigger an intelligent SOS to the all-day, every-day search and salvage observing focus (satellite membership required)
  • Access downloadable guides, U.S. NOAA diagrams, shading airborne symbolism, and more by utilizing the free Garmin Earthmate application and viable gadgets
  • Optional inReach climate gauge administration gives itemized refreshes straightforwardly to your inReach Mini or combined gadget, essential and premium climate bundles accessible
  • Send and get inReach messages through viable Garmin handheld GPS units gadgets, including associated wearables and handhelds
  • NOTICE: Some locales manage or disallow the utilization of satellite specialized gadgets. It is the duty of the client to know and keep all material laws in the locales where the gadget is planned to be utilized

9. Garmin inReach Explorer

Garmin inReach Explorer+ Review

Garmin inReach Explorer+ Review

Handheld Satellite Communicator with Topo Maps and GPS Navigation

  • Brand:  Garmin
  • Are Batteries Included: Yes
  • Screen Size: 2.3 Inches
  • Human Interface Input:               Buttons
  • Show Type: 200 x 265 pixels
  • Thing Dimensions LxWxH: 1.5 x 2.7 x 6.5 inches
  • Availability Technology: Bluetooth
  • Guide Type: North America
  • Battery Life: 30 Hours
  • 100 percent worldwide Iridium satellite inclusion empowers two-way text informing from any place (satellite membership required)
  • Trigger an intelligent SOS to the day-in and day-out search and salvage observing focus
  • Track and offer your area with loved ones. Water rating: IPX7. Battery: Rechargeable inward lithium-particle
  • Pair with cell phones utilizing the free Earth Mate application for admittance to downloadable guides, U.S. NOAA diagrams, and shading airborne symbolism and that’s just the beginning
  • In reach, the Backcountry Explorers+ gadget adds preloaded Delorme topo maps with onscreen GPS steering in addition to working with advanced Electronic Compass, barometric altimeter, and accelerometer

10. Garmin GPSMAP 66i – GPS Handheld

Garmin GPSMAP 66i Review

Garmin GPSMAP 66i Review

Lightweight and Compact Satellite Communicator, Black, 1.27 inches

  • Brand:  Garmin
  • Color:   Black
  • Are Batteries Included: Yes
  • Screen Size: 03 Inches
  • Show Type: Sunlight-intelligible, monochrome, transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP)
  • Thing Dimensions LxWxH: 6.4 x 2.6 x 1.4 inches
  • Guide Type: Satellite
  • Activate an interactive SOS for the Geos 24/7 search and rescue monitoring center; two-way messaging through a 100% global iridium satellite network (satellite subscription required)
  • Pre-installed Garmin Topo mapping with downloads from BirdsEye Satellite Imagery directly to your device (not an annual subscription); includes multiple support for global navigation satellite systems and navigation sensors
  • With mobile connectivity, you can access active weather forecasts and live geocaching
  • Compatible with the Garmin Explore™ website and app to manage landmarks, routes, activities, and collections, use tracks, and check travel dates from the terrain
  • Internal rechargeable lithium battery provides up to 35 hours of battery life in 10-minute tracking mode and 1-minute tracking mode (screen off); 200 hours in dispatch mode with 30-minute tracking

The Best Handheld GPS Units-What 3 Details Are Important?

Second, the name brand will mean a lot. And, just why would that be? Well, you have heard the names such as Garmin, Magellan, and Lowrance, but what of the lesser-known brands?

How exactly can we really know what is sufficient? Study the reviews, look at the capabilities, and decide what features are important to you. Is it truly a handheld version that you can easily hold in your hand? Or is it too big and uncomfortable to hold and truly enjoy using?

Third and lastly, don’t rush into the decision without taking a good look at your options. This is because you may end up as I did with a system that is definitely not one of the Best Handheld GPS Units-

How can we know when that is being avoided enough?

Whenever you research three details you can expect to largely eliminate the negatives. It goes a considerable way in solving, removing, or avoiding whatever problems you have about deciding which is the best handheld GPS unit.

Read More: Garmin GPSMAP 66st GPS Review