Apple's never been terribly generous with the accessories that it supplies with its products, and we reckon that the elegant design of the Apple Watch deserves something a bit smarter than the plain white charging cable that comes in the box.
Fortunately, there's a wide range of stylish and practical charging stands and docks for your Apple Watch – along with versions that support multiple Apple devices like the iPhone, AirPods and Apple Pencil.
Here, we round up some of the best Apple Watch docks and charging stands around. Most should be compatible with all generations of the Watch (Series 1 to 6), but be sure to check compatibility before buying.
We've also separately rounded up the best Lighting cables.
Lewis Painter and Simon Jary contributed to this article.
Apple Watch Magnetic Charging Dock
The 5W Magnetic Charging Dock is a typically smart piece of Apple design, looking like a little silver-and-white flying saucer. Right in the centre of the disk is a magnetic connector that holds the Watch in place while it's charging, and is designed to work with both 38mm and 42mm versions of the Watch.
This connector can switch between flat and upright positions, so if you come home and need a quick top-up you can just slip the Watch off and lay it flat on the charger, and then grab it again when you're ready to go out. At night, you can lift the charge connector up and wrap the strap around it, so that the Watch lies on its side. That will automatically tell the Watch to go into its special Nightstand mode so that it can act as an alarm clock while it's charging overnight.
The design is neat and efficient, but doesn't do a lot to justify its hefty price tag. There's plenty of interesting competition from the many rival docks and chargers that we've rounded up here.
Twelve South HiRise Duet
The Twelve South HiRise Duet is a dual charging stand for iPhone and Apple Watch, so can act as both charger and nightstand with Watch as a bedside alarm clock while taking up very little space (9.5cm footprint).
Compatible with all iPhones from iPhone 5 up and all models of Apple Watch (38mm & 42mm), it can charge at an impressive 15W.
At nearly half a kg, it's solid enough so you can trust it not to topple over when retrieving your phone.
As it charges via an integrated Lightning connector, the iPhone will power up faster than it would wirelessly. The wall charger is included, so you don't need to find an extra cable.
It even ships with travel adapters, so you can take it with you when you're away from home.
Spigen S350 Apple Watch Stand
Spigen is a trusted brand that we've recommended in many of our cases round-ups before, so we're glad to see it create stands for the Watch. You won't get the sleek aluminium finish of some of the other more expensive stands but it's hard to complain when it costs less than a tenner. The S350 is compatible with Watch Series 1 to 6.
Pick it up from Amazon for £9.99/US$10.99.
Mercase Apple Watch and iPhone Stand
Mercase's charging stand lets you juice up both your Apple Watch (Series 1-6) and iPhone (from iPhone SE to 12 range) simultaneously. In fact, the bracket for the phone can even accommodate an iPad up to 10.5in in size if you'd prefer to charge one of those instead.
Twelve South TimePorter
The TimePorter from Twelve South is a cool little case for storing and charging your Apple Watch whether at home or on the go.
Using the Apple Watch charging disc that comes with the Watch, you clip the cable into the case where you can store the plug, extra straps and other accessories. This is great as it tidies everything away; having the Watch and all its bits charging on your nightstand can otherwise be a cable-twisted nightmare.
Your Watch attaches to the charging disk on the outside, and if you lift the lid it acts as a stand in a viewing position like an alarm clock. You can pack everything away and chuck it in a bag, too.
Belkin Valet Power Pack
This is a pricey but worthy addition to the list. Not all of the products here actually come with the Apple Watch charger unit itself, and are stands to put a charger onto.
This power pack is a proper charger, and even better than that it is rechargeable. With 6700mAh of power when full, Belkin claims it can charge an Apple Watch eight times.
It also charges new iPhone models, and older models that rely on cabled charging. A great little travel tool for Apple Watch.
Belkin Powerhouse Charge Dock
It's probably safe to assume that anyone who owns an Apple Watch also has an iPhone as well, so it might be worth looking at a two-in-one dock such as Belkin PowerHouse, that will allow you to charge them both at the same time. The PowerHouse is compatible with all iPhone models and Watch Series 1-6.
It's an upgrade to Belkin's Valet Dock which is now outdated (and grossly overpriced!)
The PowerHouse has a rectangular base with a power cable at the back, and a Lightning connector that can be used to charge an iPhone 5 or later. The induction charger for the Watch extends out from the iPhone stand.
The charger also has magnets built-in, which grab the Watch and hold it in place.
It's a bit pricey, but we like the space-saving convenience of the PowerHouse, and it does have some nice extra touches, such as the ability to adjust the height of the Lightning connector so that you can charge your iPhone while it's still in a protective case.
It's available on Amazon for £79.99/US$145.24.
Twelve South Forté Charging Stand for Apple Watch
We reckon that Twelve South could teach even Apple a trick or two when it comes to designing elegant accessories, and the Forté is one of the smartest Watch Docks we've seen so far. You can find it in the UK on Amazon for £82.90.
The chrome and leather base looks smart and classy, and its gently curved gleaming edges mirror the shape of the Apple Watch itself. The stand is also weighted to provide a steady base on a variety of surfaces.
To charge up your Watch you simply insert Apple's charging cable into a groove in the back of the supporting arm, and we like the way that the arm curves up and behind the body of the Watch so that it looks as though the Watch is simply hovering in the air. It's designed to hold both sizes of Watch, with any type of open or closed-loop strap, and you can rest the Watch in the upright position or on its side to use Nightstand mode when you're charging overnight.
You can also rest your iPhone on the soft leather base if you want to keep your devices together, although there's no charging option built into the Forté for the iPhone.
If you're looking for charging dock that doesn't cost a fortune, then Griffin's WatchStand will fit the bill. It has a simple pedestal design that allows you to rest your Apple Watch on the top of a thin plastic column that stands almost eight inches tall on your desk.
You can place your Watch either upright with the strap open, or sideways so that you can use Nightstand mode when charging it up overnight (although sideways will be your only option if your Watch has a closed-loop strap).
The height of the WatchStand does make it look a bit bulky, but that's partly because the pedestal column is designed so that you can wrap longer cables around the inner core of the column to reduce clutter. The mostly plastic construction has something of a cheap and cheerful feel about it too, but you can't really expect the gleaming chrome or aluminium of more expensive rivals at this sort of price.
The base of the WatchStand angles slightly upwards and has a protruding lip on the front edge that allows you to rest an iPhone there if you want to charge the two devices together.
Powlaken 3-in-1 Wireless Charger
Here's an option if you want to charge multiple Apple devices at once. The 3-in-1 Wireless charger will keep both your Apple Watch (Series 1-5), iPhone (iPhone 8 and up), and AirpPods juiced in one go.
The convenience of the design is the iPhone stand folds down so you can take the charger with you if you're traveling.
You just can't charge your iPhone if it has a metallic case, as that would interfere with the wireless charging.
Nomad Pod for Apple Watch
There are also portable battery packs emerging that will help make your Apple Watch last longer if you're not going to have access to a plug socket to charge the device.
The Nomad Pod is a small gadget that has a 1800mAh battery inside, which the company claims will provide up to four full charges of the Apple Watch.
Nomad Stand for Apple Watch
Nomad also makes an Apple Watch charging stand, simply called 'Stand'. It's a sleek piece of kit, made from a single piece of curved aluminium that fits nicely with Apple's design approach and looks great with the Apple Watch, which rests on the stand at an angle and is held in place by the magnetic charging cable.
Pick it up directly from Nomad for $39.95 (around £30.72)
Elago Apple Watch Vintage Stand
Here's one for the Apple enthusiasts that have been following the company since long before all this fancy touch-screen malarkey started. Elago's W3 Stand (a.k.a. the Apple Watch Vintage Stand) turns your Apple Watch into a teeny tiny original Macintosh while it's charging.
It even sits at a slight angle to match the original Mac, and uses Nightstand mode to make sure the screen is aligned correctly.