Most people find it difficult to choose a tribal tattoo design. Some people have tattoos for their family or significant other and others may want to honor the culture they belong to. Tribal tattoos are one of the most popular choices because they look great on any skin tone, age group, or gender. In fact, you can even find them in many different styles.
There are so many different tribal tattoo designs to choose from, it can be hard to decide on just one. You may want to consider the culture and meaning behind the design before making your final decision.
This article will explore some of the best tribal tattoo designs and ideas for both men and women.
1. Tribal Wolf Tattoo
The wolf is a popular symbol in tattooing. It can represent many things, such as strength, ferocity, and agility. Some people choose to get a wolf tattoo as a way of representing their own personal qualities. If you are drawn to the power and mystery of the wolf, this may be the perfect tattoo design for you.
2. Tribal Dragon Tattoo
The dragon is a mythical creature that has been featured in many cultures around the world. It is often seen as a symbol of power, strength, and wisdom. Dragons can also represent change, transformation, and new beginnings. When choosing a tribal dragon tattoo design, it’s important to consider the symbolism behind the creature. If you’re looking for a more intricate design, you can add Celtic knotwork or other symbols to the piece. Dragons are often thought to be powerful creatures, so they make a great choice for larger tattoos, and can look particularly fierce when inked on the back.
3. Tribal Sun Tattoo
The sun is a universal symbol that has been revered by many cultures. It represents new beginnings, growth, and the cycle of life. When choosing a tribal sun tattoo design, you can incorporate many different symbols and designs. For example, you could add tribal patterns around the edge of the sun or include the moon and stars in the design.
4. Tribal Turtle Tattoo
The turtle is a symbol of strength, resilience, and protection. It has been revered by many cultures for its ability to survive in difficult environments. In Polynesian culture, the turtle is also a symbol of fertility and creation.
5. Tribal Scorpion Tattoo
The scorpion is another popular choice for tribal tattoos and has symbolism in many cultures. In Greek mythology, for example, the scorpion was associated with Hades, the god of the underworld. The creature is also seen as a representation of transformation, death, and rebirth in different cultures.
6. Tribal Lion Tattoo
Lions are often viewed as symbols of strength, power, and royalty. They are a popular choice for tattoos, particularly among men. When choosing a tribal lion tattoo design, think about the meaning you would like to incorporate. For example, some cultures see the lion as a protector while others view it as a symbol of courage.
7. Tribal Cross Tattoo
The cross is a universal symbol that has been used by many cultures. It represents faith, hope, and love. For Christian people, the cross can be a powerful symbol of their faith. A simple tribal cross tattoo can be a beautiful way to represent your religious beliefs. Pick a location for your tattoo that is visible so that you can proudly display your faith.
8. Tribal Butterfly Tattoo
Butterflies are a beautiful and delicate creature that can represent transformation and change. They are often associated with the feminine and can make a lovely tattoo design. When choosing a tribal butterfly tattoo, consider the colors and patterns that you want to use. You can mix and match different tribal styles to create a unique design.
9. Tribal Bear Tattoo
The bear is another animal that has been featured in tattoos for centuries. It is often seen as a symbol of strength, power, and courage. As with the wolf, consider the culture you are honoring when choosing a tribal bear tattoo. In some cultures, the bear is seen as a sacred animal. For example, in American Indian mythology, the grizzly bear is often associated with strength, power, and wisdom.
10. Tribal Elephant Tattoo
The elephant is a revered creature in many cultures. Despite the animals large size, they are also known for their gentle nature. Elephants represent wisdom, strength, and loyalty. They are also thought to be spiritual animals, capable of great intuition. A tribal elephant tattoo can be a beautiful way to honor this majestic creature and all it represents.
11. Tribal Flower Tattoo
Flowers are often considered to be symbols of beauty, love, and life. They can be a beautiful addition to any tribal tattoo design. When choosing a flower tattoo, you may want to consider the meaning behind the particular flower. For example, the rose is often seen as a symbol of love and passion. The lotus flower is a symbol of purity and enlightenment. The lily is a symbol of innocence and purity.
12. Tribal Eagle Tattoo
The eagle is a powerful and majestic bird. It is often associated with freedom, strength, and power. An eagle tattoo can be a great way to show your patriotism or represent your favorite military branch. You can also choose to include spiritual symbols in the design to give it additional meaning. For example, the Native American Thunderbird is often represented by an eagle.
13. Tribal Rose Tattoo
The rose is a popular flower that has been used in tattoos for many years. It can represent love, beauty, and innocence. A tribal rose tattoo can be a striking piece of body art. The lines and curves of the rose petals can be enhanced with tribal patterns, making for a unique and eye-catching tattoo.
14. Tribal Moon Tattoo
The moon is often seen as a symbol of femininity, mystery, and magic. It has been revered by many cultures for its power and influence. A tribal moon tattoo can be a beautiful way to celebrate your femininity. You can choose to include symbols that are important to you in the design of your moon tattoo. For example, if you are a fan of astrology, you might include the astrological sign for your birth month in the tattoo.
15. Tribal Skull Tattoo
The skull is often seen as a symbol of death, but it can also represent life and change. In some cultures, the skull is seen as a guardian or protector. When choosing a tribal skull tattoo, you can decide whether you want to focus on the positive or negative aspects of the symbol. You can also add elements like flowers or vines to give your design a more feminine or masculine look.
16. Tribal Angel Tattoo
Angels are often seen as messengers of hope and salvation. They can also represent protection and strength. If you are looking for a tattoo that has a positive message, an angel tattoo may be the perfect choice. You can choose to get a traditional angel with feathered wings or go for a more stylized design. For a tribal angel tattoo, look for designs that have an ethereal quality to them.
17. Tribal Heart Tattoo
The heart is often seen as a symbol of love. It can be a meaningful tattoo choice for couples or for people who have lost a loved one. A tribal heart tattoo can be quite striking, with its simple, bold lines. You can choose to add symbols and patterns around the edge of the heart to give it extra meaning.
18. Tribal Tiger Tattoo
The tiger is another powerful animal that has been revered by many cultures. It is often seen as a symbol of strength, power, and determination. If you are looking for a tribal tattoo design that is both fierce and beautiful, the tiger may be the perfect choice. As with all tribal tattoos, keep your design simple to avoid overcrowding. A single majestic tiger can make a stunning tattoo.
19. Tribal Feather Tattoo
The feather is a symbol of freedom, flight, and new beginnings. It is often associated with the spirit world and can be a reminder of the promises that life holds. A tribal feather tattoo can be a beautiful way to represent your journey through life. This design looks best when it’s inked as a small tattoo on the ankle, wrist, or behind the ear.
20. Polynesian Tribal Tattoo
The Polynesian culture is one of the most widely dispersed in the world. This is due, in part, to the immense popularity of their tribal tattoos. The designs are often based on nature and can feature a variety of animals and flowers. They often represent strength, power, and courage. As with all tribal tattoos, it’s important to do your research and understand the symbolism behind the design you choose.
21. Hawaiian Tribal Tattoo
Originating from the Polynesian islands, the Hawaiian tribal tattoo style is one of the most popular types around. This style is all about intricate and flowing lines, often incorporating symbols and shapes specific to the Hawaiian culture. Because of the oceanic surroundings and lush landscapes of Hawaii, this type of tattoo tends to be very colorful and vibrant.
22. Samoan Tribal Tattoo
Samoans are warriors at heart, so their tattoos often reflect that. With bold, dark lines and shapes, these tattoos can be quite intimidating. However, they also embody strength, power, and protection. As with all tribal tattoos, the Samoan style tells a story, often depicting important moments or elements of the wearer’s life.
23. Cherokee Native American Tribal Tattoo
The Cherokee tribal tattoo style is one of the most unique around. With its bold, geometric shapes and designs, it is easily recognizable. The Cherokee people are a Native American tribe who are known for their elaborate tattoos, which often incorporate symbols and designs specific to their culture. Because of this, a Cherokee tribal tattoo can be a true work of art.
24. African Tribal Tattoo
Africa is a vast continent with a rich and varied history. The tribal tattoos of Africa represent that history and the cultures that have inhabited the continent over the centuries. Each tribe has its own unique designs, which are often passed down from generation to generation. For example, the Zulu tribe is known for its warrior designs.
25. Tribal Aztec Tattoo
The Aztec culture is one that is often associated with Warriors. They were a very powerful and feared people who dominated much of Mesoamerica. Many of their symbols are still used today, including the sun, moon, and eagle. When choosing an Aztec tribal tattoo design, it’s important to do your research and understand the meaning behind the symbols. Many of the designs are quite intricate and can feature a variety of colors. If you’re looking for a bold and powerful tattoo, an Aztec design may be right for you.
26. Filipino Tribal Tattoo
The Philippines is a country that is home to many different tribal groups, each with their own unique style of tattooing. One of the most popular Filipino tribal tattoos is the “bukot”, which can be translated to mean “to rise above”. It is typically worn by men as a symbol of strength and power. Other popular designs include the “batik” and the “kalinga”. If you’re looking for a unique and eye-catching tribal tattoo, the Filipino style is a great option.
27. Maori Tribal Tattoo
The Maori are the indigenous people of New Zealand and are known for their tribal tattoos. The most popular design is the “Moko”, which is a facial tattoo that is unique to each individual. It can take many years to complete and is considered to be a highly sacred tradition. Other popular designs include the “Tiki”, the “Koru”, and the “Matau”. If you’re looking for a tattoo that is both unique and traditional, the Maori tribal style may be perfect for you.
28. Puerto Rican Tribal Tattoo
The Puerto Rican tribal style is a mix of both African and Native American influences. It is characterized by intricate designs and bold colors. One of the most popular designs is the “Ankh”, which is a symbol that is often associated with life and regeneration. Other popular designs include the “Calavera”, the “Taino Sun”, and the “Guarachero”.
29. Celtic Tribal Tattoo
The Celtic tribe is one that is often overlooked in the world of tribal tattoos. Celts were a nomadic people who traveled all over Europe and Britain. They are most well-known for their knotwork and symbols. Celtic tattoos often feature animals, spirals, and other geometric shapes, as well as crosses.
30. Nordic Tribal Tattoo
If you’re a fan of viking culture or Nordic mythology, consider a Nordic tribal tattoo. These tattoos are typically based on ancient Viking designs and often feature runes and patterns. They can be quite striking and make a great conversation starter. As with all tribal tattoos, they require regular upkeep to keep their appearance sharp.
31. Tribal Tattoo Sleeve
If you’re looking for a more permanent tribal tattoo, consider a sleeve. Tribal tattoos often cover the entire arm from shoulder to wrist and can be incredibly intricate and beautiful. They can take many hours to complete since the entire arm is inked and can be quite costly too. However, they are a true show of artistry and commitment. Tribal tattoos often depict symbols and designs inspired by nature or animals. They can be a great way to showcase your personality and style.
32. Tribal Armband Tattoo
If you’re looking for a less-committing tribal tattoo, consider an armband. These tattoos are typically worn around the bicep or forearm and can be as simple or complex as you like. They are often inspired by Celtic, Maori, or Polynesian designs and can be a great way to show your heritage. Like sleeve tattoos, armband tattoos require a fair bit of upkeep, as they are exposed to the sun and elements. They can also be a bit uncomfortable when first inked. However, they are a great way to show your love for tribal art and culture.
33. Tribal Arm Tattoo
A tribal arm tattoo is a great way to show your love of tattoos and tribal art. These tattoos are typically simple and can be inked on any part of the arm. You can choose from a variety of different designs, including animals, symbols, and flowers. Tribal arm tattoos are popular among men and women.
34. Forearm Tribal Tattoo
The forearm is a great place for a tribal tattoo. It’s a great option if you are looking for something less dramatic than a sleeve tattoo, but that will still make a statement. Forearm tattoos are often less expensive and less time consuming to complete than sleeve tattoos.
35. Tribal Hand Tattoo
Commonly placed on the back of the hand or around the thumb, a tribal hand tattoo is a great way to show your affinity for your culture. They are often small and simple, but can also be detailed and cover the entire back of the hand. For the fingers, you can choose a ring or tribal band design.
36. Tribal Wrist Tattoo
A small and simple design is perfectly suited for the wrist. Some designs you could choose include a feather, a sun, or a simple tribal symbol. These tattoos are often delicate and pretty, quick to ink and relatively inexpensive as a result!
37. Tribal Shoulder Tattoo
Shoulder tattoos are a popular choice for both men and women. They are less expensive and time-consuming than full sleeve tattoos, but still offer plenty of detail and symbolism. Tribal shoulder tattoos often incorporate geometric shapes and patterns as well as animals or plants.
38. Tribal Chest Tattoo
A chest tattoo is a great way to show off your tribal heritage. They can be any size, but should be designed to fit the contours of your chest. Like sleeve tattoos, they can be incredibly detailed and often tell a story. You can choose between upper and lower chest tattoos, or go for a full chest piece. For women, a tattoo along the sternum, between and under the chest, can be very sexy.
39. Tribal Leg Tattoo
The leg is a great place for a tribal tattoo, especially if you want something that is going to be visible when you are wearing shorts or a skirt. Designs that wrap around the leg are very popular, and can be as intricate or simple as you like. You can also choose between a full leg tattoo or just a partial design. As with all tribal tattoos, the symbolism will be based on your culture of choice.
40. Tribal Thigh Tattoo
A tribal thigh tattoo is a great way to show off your curves. They can be large or small, but should be designed to fit the shape of your thigh. Depending on the size of your thigh, you could fit quite a few designs here. Common images for thigh tattoos include flowers, vines, and butterflies.
Tribal tattoos can mean different things to different people. For some, they may simply be a beautiful piece of art. For others, they may represent their cultural heritage or hold spiritual significance. Whatever your reason for getting a tribal tattoo, make sure you research the meanings and symbolism associated with the design you choose. This will help ensure your tattoo is meaningful and special to you.
Tribal tattoos have remained in trend for many years and are still a popular choice for both men and women. They can be incredibly versatile and come in a variety of designs.
On average, small tribal tattoos can cost you around $50 to $250. Meanwhile, for medium-sized tribal tattoos, you can spend anywhere between $150 to $450.
Small tribal tattoos with less shading than other tattoos will take you around 2 hours. Meanwhile, for elaborate pieces like a tribal sleeve tattoo, expect multiple sessions lasting several hours each.