Garmin Vivoactive 3 Golf Review

If you are looking for a standard, budget-friendly, and multisport GPS watch, then Garmin Vivoactive 3 can be a great pick for you. The Garmin Vivoactive 3 is possibly the best multisport in its price range. I have been using Garmin Vivoactive 3 for the last 2 and a half years. Today I’m going to Garmin Vivoactive 3 golf review from a golfer’s perspective and also discuss details of its other top features, pros, and cons.

Garmin Vivoactive 3 as Golf Watch

We know that Garmin Vivoactive 3 is a smart multisport watch. So what features are there for golfers, and how it’s going to track golf activities? Let’s have a look.

Garmin Vivoactive 3 Golf App

Garmin golf app has made my game easy, fun, and competitive. It gives me the chance to test my skills. Now it offers some latest features, including weather updates and tee distance settings.

 Sometimes I live to chat with my friends and post our scorecards through the app. It gives us the feel of a tournament.

Golf Courses

There are 40,000 golf courses GPS data in Garmin Vivoactive 3. But the courses are not pre-loaded with all access. To use the GPS features, you have to simply download the course through the Garmin Connect App.

If you regularly play on the same course, then it’s just a matter of a few seconds. If you change course frequently, then don’t forget to download the course before the game starts.

Garmin Vivoactive 3 GPS Smartwatch


  • Garmin Vivoactive 3 GPS Fitness Smartwatch (Black & Stainless)

  • Garmin vivoactive 3 tracks your HRV, steps, distance traveled & calories burned, With Garmin Pay contactless payment solution lets you make purchases w/ your watch, Stay connected with free apps, built-in gps, smart notifications & live track

  • 1 Year Extended Warranty in Addition to the Included Full Manufacturer Warranty

Measuring Shots and Distance

The watch has a smart Autoshot feature. It automatically tracks your shots. As soon as you hit a shot, the whole information appears on the top of the watch’s display.

Most of the multisport watches of this prize range don’t have this feature. I’m glad that Vivoactive installed this feature.

It will measure the distance between you and your target.

To get a detailed view of a certain area of the green, simply click the position. Then you will have a detailed visual view of the area. If you want, you can select multiple positions and measure the distance.

Viewing Hazards

The watch gives a clear view of the onward hazards.

I just love its pinpointer feature. When I can’t see my target, it points an arrow to the green.

Round and Score Summary

This watch has a digital scoreboard feature. That means it will automatically track your score throughout the round, including strokes, putts, and fairway hits. 

Setting Handicap

To set your handicap click the menu from the screen, then go to activity setting. Now select handicap scoring and set your handicap.

However, the latest Garmin watches can automatically calculate handicaps.

I think the Vivoactive watch offers most of the golf features. As back then, I was an average golfer, and I don’t think I could have gotten better than this watch in this price bracket. After 2 and a half years of usage, it still gives me satisfactory outcomes. I think choosing this watch was one of my best picks.

Garmin Vivoactive 3: Other Top Features

Activity Recording

Garmin Vivoactive 3 GPS Smartwatch


  • Garmin Vivoactive 3 GPS Fitness Smartwatch (Black & Stainless)

  • Garmin vivoactive 3 tracks your HRV, steps, distance traveled & calories burned, With Garmin Pay contactless payment solution lets you make purchases w/ your watch, Stay connected with free apps, built-in gps, smart notifications & live track

  • 1 Year Extended Warranty in Addition to the Included Full Manufacturer Warranty

I basically use my watch for Golf, Swim, and Yoga activity recording. But Garmin Vivoactive 3 offers 22 activity recordings, including Run, Walk, Bike, Row, Sup, Indoor Track, and a lot more.

No matter what activity recording you are looking is already on the watch.

 One thing that I like is my chosen favorite 3 activities are shown as I click the site of the watch. It easily gets to them. The others are easily accessible with just one more click.

Measuring Shots and Distance

But one thing I didn’t like was that it doesn’t have hiking on the main menu. I need to Walk function and change it to Hike manually.

Alerts during activity recording

I really like this function. It gives me a notification in every mile/kilometer. So I don’t need to constantly check my watch to see how far I have gone and what my speed was.

I can also customize what notification I want during my activity, like pulse rate, total calories burn, speed, etc.

It’s really annoying when notifications constantly come from all the apps. The Garmin watch has also a solution for this. You can turn off notifications for other apps when you are in the middle of a game.

Sometimes I just get into my sports, especially when I play golf, and I don’t pay attention to my time. Thankfully my Garmin watch has the function to set the time to go home. It gives me a reminder on time. 

GPS Function

I just love hiking. But something, I don’t get good phone coverage in the hilly areas. Here I can completely rely on my watch and cause it performs greatly.


The manufacturer says it has up to 7 day’s battery life and more than 13 hours of GPS availability. 

But with my daily use and settings, I usually get 2-3 days out of a full charge. I have noticed that it consumes almost 20% of the battery if I do 1-hour activity tracking. I don’t like this thing.

However, I think the battery life depends on the settings you like and also your daily usage.


Just like other smartwatches, this Garmin watch is waterproof. Swimmers and non-swimmers both love this feature. Wherever you are, be it in the swimming pool or in the sudden rain, this watch can handle everything.

Garmin Live Track

This is a cool feature. Normally when we go on a full-day tracking or adventurous trip, our family gets worried. For this, Garmin has added an amazing Live Track feature.

You just have to select your family’s or friend’s contact who you want to track your location and activity. Whenever you are on a trip, the watch will send emails to your selected contacts, including your location and activity. Like this, they can make sure you are safe.

Daily Activity Tracking

This watch is going to do everything, just like a daily activity tracker, including steps, sleep, heartbeat, calories, etc. Again you can fully customize what activity track you want.

Don’t forget to set your sleeping time. In the beginning, it woke me up at 3 am with its horrible notification sound.

Heart Rate Monitor

It has an all-day HR monitoring function. It really performs well while running and hiking. But I don’t know why it doesn’t work well during cycling. 

Smartwatch Functions

You can receive notifications, check email or messages, check calendars, and other basic smartwatch functions. But if you want to take pictures, and respond to messages or emails, remember it’s not an Apple watch. It doesn’t have those features.


As I said before, this watch has been on my wrist almost every day for the last 2 and half years. It has survived everything like swimming pool, jumping in lakes, and river rafting.

Still, I don’t have any complaints about my Garmin watch. I’m satisfied with its performance.

There are a lot more features like music, Garmin pay, and connection to other apps. I am sure these features are enough to impress you and meet your expectations.

What I Liked

  • As a regular golfer, I really like its golf features.
  • Customizable notifications.
  • Live Tracking function.
  • Fast charging.
  • Satisfying durability.
  • Garmin pay.
  • Pre-loaded sports apps.
  • Smartwatch functionality.
  • Light weighted and can be used anywhere.

What I didn’t like

  • Its design is not stylish.
  • Excessive battery consumption during activity tracking.
  • Don’t give accurate HR monitoring all the time.

FAQs For Garmin Vivoactive 3 Golf Review:

Q:1: Can I play music through the watch?

Yes, the Garmin Vivoactive 3 can control music from a connected phone.

 It doesn’t have a built-in music player. But it allows you to control the music on your phone.

You can download up to 500 songs and listen to them through Bluetooth headphones. The Vivoactive 3 Music has 4 GB of onboard storage.

Now you can integrate with Spotify, Amazon Music, Deezer, and Iheartradio to listen to music.

Q:2: How close does my phone need to be for the watch to work?

You need to keep your phone within 20 feet to sync and receive notifications. But, it doesn’t need to be in range constantly to do other activities. It’ll sync whenever it gets back in range.

Q:3: Can I answer phone calls from the watch?

You can see the notification and answer or reject the call. But it doesn’t have any mick or speaker so you can’t use the phone for a conversation.

 Does it have automatic sleep tracking?

Yes, it has the automatic capability. You don’t have to click the app to start or end sleep tracking.

Final thoughts

Overall, I think Garmin Vivoactive 3 is an all-in-one watch. It has a great combination of golf features with smartwatch facilities. Its unbeatable durability has made me fall in love with the watch, and I would definitely recommend this watch.

I want to know that it’s the best watch with no flaws. But definitely, it has the best features in its price range. 

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