Rolex Explorer II white dial

Rolex Explorer II

Launched in 1971, the Rolex Explorer II is the watch of choice for adventurers. Robust and reliable, it was originally developed as a Professional watch for speleologists and polar explorers. The Rolex Explorer II was strikingly restyled in 2011, increasing the case size to 42mm.


The Rolex Explorer II is designed for extremes. The highly visible 24-hour hand was specially crafted to optimise legibility. It can be read against the engraved fixed bezel to clearly distinguish day from night during times of perpetual darkness. On expeditions, it can be used to display two time zones. Local time is shown by the conventional hour hand, while a second time zone can be read using the graduated bezel and 24-hour hand.


For speleologists and polar explorers spending days at a time in darkness, the Rolex Explorer II’s renowned legibility is an essential feature of the watch, making it a vital part of their equipment. The Chromalight hands and hour markers are filled with a luminescent material which emits a long-lasting blue glow, and contrasts beautifully with the sleek dial to provide excellent legibility.


Like all Rolex watches, each Rolex Explorer II is fitted with a COSC-certified chronometer – a successfully and thoroughly tested self-winding mechanical movement – and is certified to perform at a superlative level as a fully assembled watch. The superlative certification assessment conditions exclusive to Rolex exceed those of watchmaking norms and simulate real-life watch wearing, giving a more representative experience to guarantee performance on the wrist.

Book an appointment with one of our Rolex experts to discover and try the Rolex Explorer II from the comfort of our Rolex Room at 87 George Street, Edinburgh.

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